With less than three weeks left until WrestleMania, anticipation is running high for the biggest WWE event of the year.
WWE’s “Showcase of the Immortals” takes place on the first weekend in April at SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles.
Last week, John Cena returned to WWE and set up a match with Austin Theory for the United States Championship, and a match between Logan Paul and Seth Rollins was also confirmed for April’s event.
There is still plenty of room for more matches to be added on the card while there is talk of many names as potential inductees for this year’s Hall of Fame.
sports mail sums up the latest gossip from the world of wrestling.
WrestleMania 39 will take place at SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles in the first week of April
Keeping it in the family
On Friday Night SmackDown, the first name of the 2023 WWE Hall of Fame was officially announced with Rey Mysterio as this year’s headliner.
Rey, who is still an active competitor in WWE and is set for a high-profile matchup with son Dominik Mysterio at this year’s WrestleMania, made his WWE debut in 2002 and is regarded as one of the greatest Luchadores in the company’s history.
After his introduction was confirmed, attention turned to who would introduce the 48-year-old, with the Los Angeles Times almost confirming that it would be longtime friend and former tag team partner Konnan.
Konnan, who is the godfather of Rey’s son Dominik, has known Mysterio since he was 11 and was trained by Rey’s father, the legendary Rey Misterio.
The pair bonded during his time in WCW and were part of the popular Filthy Animals faction in the late 1990s. Rey is said to have asked Konnan to become his member as part of his induction into the Hall of Fame.
The WWE Hall of Fame will take place on Friday, March 30, the day before the first night of WrestleMania.
Rey Mysterio (right) may be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame by a former tag team partner
Becky Lynch to get some Stratus faction
Another match that was officially announced at WrestleMania last week was a six-woman team battle that pitted Damage Ctrl – Bayley, Dakota Kai and Io Skye – against Becky Lynch and WWE Hall of Famers Lita and Trish Stratus.
Stratus came out of retirement for a match in Los Angeles, but it looks like this may not be the only one and complete return for the former women’s champion, and a full program is in the works.
According to WKRD stocksStratus is ready for the upcoming shift where she will work on the story with Lynch and lead the pair to clash in a high-profile matchup at this year’s SummerSlam in August.
Stratus’ last match was at SummerSlam 2019 where she “retired” after losing to Charlotte Flair in Toronto.
Becky Lynch (pictured) prepares for the summer show with WrestleMania partner Trish Stratus
WrestleMania is not bliss
One name that shouldn’t be part of the WrestleMania card this year is five-time Women’s Champion Alexa Bliss.
Bliss had not been seen on WWE television since the Royal Rumble in late January, where she lost a WWE Raw Women’s Championship match to Bianca Belair.
The 31-year-old is not expected to return anytime soon, with Wrestling Observer reporting that Bliss is taking “another WWE hiatus for a while.”
Prior to her disappearance from television, the character of Bliss was once again seduced by Bray Wyatt’s dark art, but there’s no indication that this will still be the plan when she finally returns to Monday Night Raw.
It looks like we won’t be seeing Alexa Bliss at this year’s WrestleMania as she’s on hiatus
Selection of streaks
As for the shocking moments of WrestleMania, one of the biggest in the event’s history was when Brock Lesnar became the first superstar to defeat The Undertaker at WrestleMania and ended his 20-match unbeaten streak on the greatest stage of all.
Much was made at the time with the decision for Lesnar to be the one chosen to end The Undertaker’s legendary streak, but according to the man himself, Lesnar was not the original choice.
In an interview with BT Sport’s Ariel Helwani, the WWE Hall of Fame says Vince McMahon had two other names in mind to beat him at WrestleMania.
With Russian tough guy Vladimir Kozlov and longtime rival Edge, the two names that would be the first to beat The Undertaker on WWE’s biggest stage.
The Undertaker revealed, “When we got to WrestleMania, we pretty much knew what was going to happen, but there were a few people who I think wanted to break the streak. (Vladimir) Kozlov, he wanted it. It was early and I think he wanted Edge to come over and Edge refused.
“He said, ‘No. I can not do that”. That’s how much he respected the streak and me and what that streak meant to the business. I didn’t know it then. I didn’t know that until years later. That says a lot about what kind of person he is.
Ultimately, the honor went to Lesnar, who famously ended Deadman’s winning streak with a victory at WrestleMania XXX in 2014.
The Undertaker (pictured) revealed that both Vladimir Kozlov and Edge could have broken his streak
According to The Undertaker, Brock Lesnar (pictured) wasn’t the first name to defeat him at WrestleMania and end his legendary undefeated streak