WWE WrestleMania 40 Results – Night 1

WWE WrestleMania 40 results (Night 1) and commentary from Danny Damage!

Previously On…

CM Punk has spent most of this year (and last?) injured, but he’s still involved and has been helping with the press/publicity/hype for the show of shows.

Punk’s watch-along with Randy Orton warmed our hearts, his three-way promo with Drew McIntyre and Seth Rollins made us laugh, and he also made Tony Khan and the AEW love-blind die-hards shriek loudly into the sky during his interview with Ariel Helwani. All of these displays have made us want to tune in and find out what he gets up to next.

Although WWE didn’t need the extra hands for WrestleMania this year, The Rock showing up and (eventually) turning heel has grabbed a little attention too. He/WWE can say “this was the plan all along” all they want, but nobody outside of the board room is buying it.

Dwayne wanted to be the knight in shining armour so he could repair his damaged public image caused by getting his hands dirty with Oprah Winfrey. He will get what he wants, in time, but the year-round business was prioritised by the fans and Cody now gets to “finish his story” one way or another.

You’re welcome, Dwayne!” – The WWE fans who have your back, even if you don’t deserve it.

WWE WrestleMania 40 Results (Night 1)

Triple H quickly opened the show to a very welcoming crowd. He didn’t say much after soaking in the atmosphere, I guess he just likes to show his face.

Rhea Ripley vs. Becky Lynch (Women’s World Title)

WrestleMania 40 Results: Becky Lynch vs Rhea Ripley

Winner: Rhea Ripley (pinfall)

If heavily advertising her merchandise during her entrance wasn’t enough, Becky’s outfit was based on her book’s cover with a few quotes plastered on there to really drive the idea home. Although the ringside area wasn’t aggressively decorated with another company’s branding, as it was for most of the rest of the night, one of the stars was essentially a walking advert, which is just as bad.

Rhea shouldn’t have taken this much time to beat someone who’s primarily turned up to use the WrestleMania platform to peddle their wares, but WWE loves Becky. The crowd, on the other hand, were split 50/50, possibly a little more in Ripley’s favour, and they were mostly pleased when Becky was put away with a Rip Cord.

Let’s keep it this way, please. There’s nobody close to being on Rhea’s level at the moment.

6-Pack Tag Team Ladder Match (1-2x Tag Titles)

WWE WrestleMania 40 Night 1 - Six Pack ladder match

Winners: Waller/Theory (SmackDown), Awesome Truth (Raw)

A chaotic, car-crash of a six-way tag team ladder match, everything you’d expect from those stipulations combined.

The masks that Balor and Priest wore to the ring looked like they were borrowed from the Dark Order, which was only the biggest eyesore until the camera revealed that the digital boards would be taken over by a vodka brand for THE ENTIRE MATCH. As well as causing the setting to look generic and interchangeable as hell, it’s just another distraction amongst the five other things simultaneously happening in and out of the ring. Balance, please.

After a certain amount of time/number of spots, Grayson Waller and Austin Theory claimed the SmackDown belts, but were then KO’d for the rest of the match. Sometime after that, R-Truth and Miz climbed up to grab the Raw tag titles for themselves.

Rey Mysterio & Andrade vs. Santos Escobar & Dominik Mysterio

WWE WrestleMania 40 Night 1: Rey & Andrade vs Dom & SantosWinners: Rey Mysterio & Andrade (pinfall)

This match was also subjected to sponsor-soaked signage surrounding the ring, taking the usual WrestleMania vibe away. BUT…this time, the Spanish-influenced brand/tagline made it okay…right??? </sarcasm>

Anyway, we were given a showcase of impressive Lucha Libre flips and counters until Dirty Dom tried to bring a chair into the ring. Before he could do that, he was stopped by two unknown meatheads in masks, who turned out to be players from the local Philidelphia Eagles team.

Once the heel faction’s attempts at cheating were flattened, Rey won with a splash from the top.

Jey Uso vs. Jimmy Uso

WrestleMania 40 Night 1: Jey Uso vs Jimmy Uso

Winner: Jey Uso (pinfall)

At last year’s WrestleMania, Jey and Drunky Jimmy Uso were a part of Sami Zayn and Kevin Owen’s climb to the top of the tag-team mountain while simultaneously weakening the Bloodline/Roman Reign’s backup for Cody Rhodes to finish his story. Part of that plan came to be, but this year, the tag belts have been lost in Judgment Day’s obscurity and the Usos are left playing White Gi Ryu vs. Grey Gi Ryu.

This was the first match where the fans didn’t seem overly bothered. Sure, they danced around for Jey’s entrance, but they calmed down soon after.

At the risk of taking you out of the moment, I feel compelled to state that WWE took me out of the moment once again with yet another unique sponsor for this match.

During the pre-show, Natalya made reference to Bret and Owen Hart fighting at one WrestleMania and Michael Cole later mentioned the Hardy Boyz battling at another. This match neither of those, it wasn’t even close.

You could fit a full Rikishi in the gaps left between the punches and kicks that Jimmy and Jey throw around and WWE’s version of Aubrey Edwards in a striped shirt didn’t help keep things serious either.

Jey won with a spear and a splash off the top.

Bianca Belair, Jade Cargill & Naomi vs. Damage CTRLWWE WrestleMania 40 Night 1 - Six Woman Tag

Winners: Bianca Belair, Jade Cargill & Naomi (pinfall)

Chicken wings were the focus of the next match…well, apart from the six women involved. This signage was definitely the most distracting of the night.

Not a great deal happened in this one, other than Jade showing off some of her stuff and having her aura drained by Naomi’s go-go dancing and Bianca childishly playing with her hair during their entrance. Once Cargill tagged in, she was only a couple of power moves and her Jaded finisher away from victory.

Well, at least “the official wings of WrestleMania” got 10x of their logos onscreen for a few minutes!

Gunther vs. Sami Zayn (Intercontinental Title)

WrestleMania 40 Results: Gunther vs Sami Zayn

Winner: Sami Zayn (pinfall)

Going into the contest, Gunther’s 660-day reign was mentioned, as were the Rocky films. This didn’t bode well for Gunther’s immediate future.

The crowd was split quite evenly at the start, until the guys started telling a story. Since Brock Lesnar wasn’t able to make it, Sami played his role and went toe-to-toe with the much larger Gunther.

It didn’t take long for Zayn to become overwhelmed and get beaten down, but Gunther’s dropkick and powerbomb combination failed to get a three-count. Gunther started pummeling Sami some more, even barking over at Mrs Zayn on the front row, but a two-count continued to be the best he could get.

Eventually, Zayn started writhing around on the floor like he was Luffy/the Sun God Nika awakening before our very eyes, which led him to make a title-winning comeback. Gunther was defeated with a brainbuster into/onto the turnbuckle, followed by multiple Helluva Kicks.

I’ve nothing against Sami, but this was the wrong call, IMO. Gunther should have dropped the belt to someone whose career needed elevating, such as Chad Gable or Bron Breakker. Despite having a secondary title, Zayn doesn’t feel like he’s better off than last year’s tag title win, or even just when he was facing Roman Reigns for the Undisputed Championship.

Oh yeah, since I’ve been keeping track of the rest, this match actually retained the WrestleMania 40 decoration/colour scheme…bar the top/bottom turnbuckle pads and the outside facing part of the ring posts. It’s not much, but it did help keep us in the moment.

Cody Rhodes & Seth Rollins vs. The Rock & Roman ReignsWrestleMania 40 Results: Cody Rhodes & Seth Rollins vs The Rock & Roman Reigns

Winners: The Rock & Roman Reigns (pinfall)

Despite taking about 25 minutes to get all the combatants in the ring and to sound the bell, everyone’s entrance was a spectacle and looked great, especially the Rock’s.

Ricochet’s Mrs doing the introductions should either dial it back a little and realise she’s not what people are there for, or head over to AEW where the other spotlight-stealers are.

Considering his remaining number of bumps is rather close to zero, the Rock did very well to hide this and he only left his feet when he absolutely needed to. Even then, he was always in control and he generally went down as a result of being struck and wasn’t getting thrown around and/or taking hard falls.

To get the most out of this, all four men spilled to the outside and began fighting around the arena. Just as the referee was about to start counting them out, the Rock threatened to fire him, so they were left to brawl at their own leisure.

Similar threats were made to the official’s employment status when Rock and Roman started illegally double-teaming and even dishing out low blows to Cody and Seth. The referee was even dragged out of the ring when Reigns appeared to be down for a three-count.

Reigns inadvertently speared the Rock at one point, but the Bloodline remained on the same page. After Seth was incapacitated by a spear through the ringside barricade, Cody’s attempt at hitting Roman with a third Cross Rhodes was thwarted by the Rock and a belt.

Reigns hit a spear and tagged an eager Rock in. One Rock Bottom, a People’s Elbow and a pinfall later left Cody with something else to look disappointed about.

Fear not, as this is probably just part of the plan. Cody still has a chance of winning the belt(s) off of Roman in the main event of Night 2, but his uphill struggle is a bit steeper now. If he can pull it off, his victory will be so much sweeter.

This match had a specific sponsor too, but due to the design of the logo on the graphics boards, it couldn’t be seen for a large portion of the bout. Instead, the ring/screen/arena just looked empty and nondescript.

And Another Thing…

Due to his reduced schedule and the amount of noise made/air-time given to the other three involved, Roman Reigns, the Universal/Undisputed Champion, has felt like somewhat of a minor attraction during this build; especially in the shadow of his “cousin”, the People’s SHAMpion, the Hollywood-owned, Dingbat Dwayne.

Roman has to face Cody one-on-one tomorrow, so he’ll get a bit of the spotlight back on him, but will it be underwhelming in compassion? I guess we’ll have to watch to find out.

Speaking of things not making as much of an impact, I’m going to point out the needless, shameless, whoring of other brands (again, I know).

To reiterate my past comments and continuing stance: yes, I understand sponsorships are important, money makes the world go around and it keeps the lights on. However, I don’t think WWE is that strapped for cash that it needs to drop trow, bend over and let anyone with some spare dollar go balls deep in them.

In the future, we’ll look back at clips of these matches and it won’t be clear where/when we are. The colour scheme for the show will be absent, the ring will look like it’s been dropped in from the sky and the sponsors will be the only ones 100% happy with their immortalised investment onscreen and in high definition.

Please, have a little class, WWE.

Everyone else, I’ll see you tomorrow for night 2:WrestleMania 40 Results: Roman Reigns vs Cody Rhodes


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