Bryan and Kingston Steal the Show at Wrestlemania 35
As Wrestlemania 35 came to a close we saw some good matches and some bad. Miz and Shane and the fatal 4 way, HHH and Batista performed better than I expected in their match, Rollins vs Brock was a complete dud, but there was one thing that stood out above the rest, Kofi Mania running wild!
While the main event did have that big fight feel, it had a lackluster ending to the match. It was actually anticlimactic, to say the least. However, the WWE did a masterful job of telling an underdog story with Kofi more than Becky Lynch. With the story flipping on Kofi, and Daniel Bryan who called Kofi a B+ player, a line echoed 5 years earlier as HHH called Bryan the exact same thing heading into their Wrestlemania 30 feud. With Vinny Mac joining the side of Daniel Bryan and screwing Kofi every time, emotionally you got invested. That's what makes the feud so special in a sense. Fans were chanting for Kofi, but Vince didn't think he was worthy of getting a World title shot and replaced him with Kevin Owen's at Fastlane.
Imagine; you’re good your job, you bang on company drum for years not missing a day of work just for your boss to tell you that you're not worthy of a promotion or a raise. Most of the world can relate to that story. In fact, people deal with that in their jobs on an everyday basis. It had a sense of realism that people go through. WWE hooked fans every week on Smackdown with Kofi Kingston and Daniel Bryan. The sense of curiosity and intrigue to see what WWE does next in this feud. Smackdown was must-see TV and you were craving for more every time the show ended.
The match itself lived up to the hype. At mania, it's tough to have a good quality match, partly because there are so many matches on the show. The time constraint to a match is very strict that it limits a lot of their wrestlers. Usually, wrestlers don't have enough time to build a good story and have to rush to get their moves in the match. So many times in the match Kofi looked like he was done and would have his storybook ending crash to the ground. Kofi's back seemed to be against the wall but hitting the "Trouble In Paradise" and getting the three count on Bryan had the crowd going nuts. It felt like a special moment and it would have been the perfect ending to Wrestlemania with the image of Big E and Xavier Woods hoisting Kofi Kingston with the belt.
A lot of credit has to go to his dance partner. Daniel Bryan walked into Mania as probably the biggest heel in the company and with the hottest feud, and he propelled Kingston to the top of the chain. Bryan bringing in his real life veganism brought reality to his character. Changing the belt and bringing his own championship was a simple but creative concept, and the storyline brought a more vicious element to his wrestling which made him a more of a devastating bad guy. His anger in his promos, criticizing the crowd for being meat eaters, and wearing clothes that had animals imprint. Bryan became an effective heel the last few months and changed the focus to Smackdown live. Bryan knows how to build a feud going into Mania. The last 6 Manias’ Bryan arguably has been involved in the 2 biggest feuds and matches. He is a big player that can perform at the grandest stage of them all.
The show overall was good but Wrestlemania 35 was the show Kofi became a star, and his match with Daniel Bryan will be talked about for years to come. That's what's funny with wrestling, you can be a good wrestler and be a good actor but that doesn't mean you will be World Champ. What’s even funnier is the next day you can be the biggest thing in the company and be the WWE World Heavyweight champion. Cheers Kofi, you deserve the shine.