WrestleMania 29: Biggest Missed Opportunities at WWE's Marquee Event

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistApril 9, 2013

Photo courtesy of WWE.com
Photo courtesy of WWE.com

It didn't take long for fans to bash WrestleMania XXIX and call it the worst 'Mania of all time. While that sentiment is a complete exaggeration and nowhere near accurate, there were definitely a few things that WWE could have done to take WrestleMania XXIX from average to great.

Some might point to John Cena turning heel or CM Punk ending The Undertaker's streak, but neither of those things were ever truly on the table, and neither of them would have made sense for that matter.

At the same time, WWE could have gone the extra mile in some cases in an effort to appeal to a wider fanbase and make the show more interesting as a whole.

Here are the three biggest missed opportunities that WWE could have realistically made happen at WrestleMania XXIX.


Dolph Ziggler Cashing In Money in the Bank

When Dolph Ziggler cashed in his Money in the Bank contract Monday on Alberto Del Rio and became the new World Heavyweight Champion, there was no doubt that it was a great moment. It was the culmination of a ton of hard work on Ziggler's part, and the reaction from the crowd at the Izod Center was excellent as well.

All of that would have been magnified at 'Mania, however.

The Del Rio vs. Jack Swagger match seemed to be put on the back burner as the fans weren't overly involved. The in-ring action was pretty good; however, it had a basic ending and neither Swagger nor Zeb Colter sought retribution.

Considering that fact that they were essentially trying to have Del Rio deported from the United States, one would think that they would punish him after the match.

That would have been the perfect opportunity for Ziggler to cash in as nobody had ever done it before at WrestleMania. Maybe the logic behind it was saving Ziggler's cash-in so he didn't receive a face reaction, but he received a favorable reaction at the Izod Center anyway.

Ziggler cashing in at 'Mania would have been a WWE moment for the ages, and the WWE's reluctance to make it happen is definitely a head-scratcher.


Ryback Beating Mark Henry

There has been plenty of talk about WrestleMania XXIX being the most predictable 'Mania of all time, and while it could potentially be true, it's nothing more than semantics.

The one shocking result of the night came in the match between Mark Henry and Ryback. The World's Strongest Man dominated much of the bout, but Ryback made a comeback and seemed poised to prevail. Henry broke up an attempted Shell Shocked, however, and scored the pinfall victory.

As great and entertaining as Henry is as a heel, there was no reason for him to beat Ryback.

Since Ryback hasn't won a meaningful pay-per-view match yet, WrestleMania should have been his time to shine. Things got a bit clearer Monday night as Ryback came to the ring following Henry's match with Cena.

He attacked Henry first, but he followed that up by taking out Cena. That either means that Ryback is now a tweener or perhaps even a full-fledged heel.

WWE seems to be going with the storyline that Ryback is frustrated over losing big matches, which is fine, but he still could have won at 'Mania.

Had Ryback won the match and Henry attacked him afterward, Ryback would have had a reason to fight back on Monday. He still could have taken out Cena as well because Cena eliminated him in the Royal Rumble.

Whatever the case, Ryback needed momentum, but he is entering a feud with Cena having lost essentially every pay-per-view match he has competed in.


Randy Orton Turning Heel

There isn't much that wrestling fans agree on, but the feeling is nearly unanimous when it comes to Randy Orton. While Orton is still one of the most popular guys on the roster, his face run grew stale a long time ago.

WWE had a chance to turn him heel by having him double cross Sheamus and Big Show in their match against The Shield at WrestleMania, but it instead decided to have Big Show cement his status as a heel.

Keeping Big Show heel was actually the right move as nobody has any desire to see Big Show as a smiling, vanilla face yet again, but Big Show easily could have remained heel while Orton turned as well.

The best way to do it would have been for Sheamus to take the fall. That could have led to an argument that resulted in Big Show knocking out Sheamus. Orton could have then tended to Sheamus and hit him with an RKO when he got to his feet.

WWE furthered tension between Sheamus and Orton on Raw as they faced each other for the right to take on Big Show, but Big Show ultimately interfered. That likely means that a triple threat at Extreme Rules is on the horizon. Maybe that is where The Viper will finally flip his lid.

Whatever the case, a heel turn at WrestleMania would have been memorable and the creative team should have made it happen.

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