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NY Post
New York Post
1 Apr 2023


NextImg:WWE WrestleMania 39 predictions for Night 1: John Cena starts wave of new champs

Night 1 of WrestleMania 39 has a little bit of everything, and could be a precursor of plenty of things to come in WWE.

There will be legends in Lita, Trish Stratus and John Cena at SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles on Saturday night (8 p.m., Peacock).

We will see Logan Paul’s first singles match at WrestleMania, a father vs. son clash and Phase 1 of the weekend’s Bloodline story.

Can Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens deliver the first dent in The Bloodline’s armor and is Cody Rhodes primed for an even bigger blow on Night 2?

Will the tag team championship match be the main event or will WWE give the stage to Charlotte Flair and Rhea Ripley in what could be a night filled with new champions?

The Post’s pro wrestling columnist Joseph Staszewski tries his hand at predicting how it will all play out:

The logic used for the women’s tag team showcase match — matching the winner to either babyface or heel champs — doesn’t apply on the men’s side as the undisputed championships will likely be tied up in The Bloodline feud no matter who wins.

WWE has something in Strowman and Ricochet and I think this will be a great way to promote them even if Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn leave L.A. as babyface champions.

If it’s not them, then look for the Viking Raiders to get the ‘W.’

Rey and Dominik Mysterio
WWE

Normally the younger star would get the nod in this spot to give him something to push his career forward and add a notch to his belt.

But after all the abuse Dominik has put his dad and family through, it feels like he needs to be put in his place, especially with Rey being inducted into the Hall of Fame Friday night.

I could see Damian Priest cheating so Dom can win, but this is just the first match between the two, so there is no reason we can’t get more out of this story in the run-up to SummerSlam, where Dom finally wins in a match with a stipulation.

Maybe Rey wins and Dom and Priest start beating him up in front of the Mysterio family out of frustration, only for Santos Escobar and the newly reformed LWO to come to his aid. 

It’s hard to see WWE bringing Trish Stratus and Lita back for their WrestleMania moment and having them lose.

The only way that could happen is if they want to turn Stratus heel early for a match with Lynch at SummerSlam.

But I can’t see her costing her best friend Lita here.

Instead, a lot of this story feels like it’s been about Lynch trying to bring Bayley to her senses that she is actually being held back by being in Damage CTRL with Iyo Sky and Dakota Kai.

Damage CTRL losing here could finally allow for some more movement on that storyline.  

This one feels extremely tough to call considering Paul is coming off a loss to Roman Reigns and Rollins’ less-than-stellar recent record on pay-per-view.

Rollins vs. Paul feels like something WWE can get a trilogy out of this year, and because Rollins has been caught with the one-punch knockout twice, I feel like he won’t let it happen a third time here.

Rollins needs a win of this caliber more than Paul, who can push Rollins into a rematch and win.

WWE

John Cena will be your new United States champion.
WWE

This match will open Night 1, which makes me think even more that Cena will be leaving SoFi Stadium with the United States championship after humbling Theory.

Because what better way to set up the rest of the night, charge up the crowd and start a WrestleMania in Hollywood than having a star such as Cena win over a hated heel.

This story was set up by Cena telling Theory he isn’t ready yet and the young star likely needing to figure things out.

A loss moves that story forward, even if Cena loses the belt back the Raw after WrestleMania — to either Theory or a debuting Jay White — or a few weeks later. 

WWE

Sami Zayn will get his WrestleMania moment in Hollywood.
WWE

By not having Sami Zayn defeat Roman Reigns for the Undisputed WWE Universal championship at Elimination Chamber, WWE pretty much kicked the can for his triumphant moment to this match at WrestleMania.

Zayn and Owens created some special TV as they found their way back to friendship.

Even if Cody Rhodes doesn’t dethrone Roman Reigns, Jimmy and Jey Uso need to lose their belts to give fans hope the Tribal Chief will too and create a point of tension in The Bloodline either way.

WWE

Rhea Ripley will leave WrestleMania 39 as SmackDown women’s champion.
WWE

If you go by the pattern that Flair loses at all the odd-numbered WrestleManias and wins at the even ones, we got this one covered.

There is a lot more than that working in Rhea Ripley’s favor here, as this is a story about becoming a true star after Flair took her NXT championship from her at WrestleMania 36.

WWE needs Ripley to keep being a star and the only way to do that is by defeating Flair to put her on her level, especially if Triple H does make this the Night 1 main event.