WrestleMania Bubble Watch: Will Bray Wyatt return to face Bobby Lashley?

Bracketology isn’t just for college basketball this time of the year, folks. At least not anymore. I’ll be mapping out the road to WrestleMania 39 with you all the way into greater Los Angeles on April 1-2.

Another heavily rumored contest was made official this week. WWE Hall of Famer Edge challenged Finn Balor step inside Hell in a Cell and the PrinXe accepted.

This is the first Hell in a Cell match booked for WWE’s biggest show since the Undertaker defeated Shane McMahon at WrestleMania 32. It’s a match I’m genuinely excited to see, for a multitude of reasons. The least of which being — it’s going to be an absolute barnburner and potential show-stealer.

The Rated R Superstar hasn’t missed yet when it comes to Hell in a Cell matches. His loss against the Undertaker at SummerSlam 2008 and win over Seth Rollins at Crown Jewel in 2021 are two of the better Cell matches in it’s 26 year history.

Now add into the equation what Finn Balor is capable of doing in the ring. Buckle up folks. It should be a wild ride.

Match quality aside, I’m thrilled with what this match signifies. The end of Edge’s rivalry with the Judgment Day.

This is a blow-off match more than a year in the making and it’s time for both sides to go their separate ways. Edge himself has said that he’s running out of time to accomplish what he set out to do when he initially came out of retirement. Hopefully WWE creative lets him get to it, after he loses to Finn Balor.

Expectations should be for The Bloodline to implode WrestleMania weekend. The dominant reigns of both the Tribal Chief and the Usos will most likely come to an end, sending WWE’s top faction spiraling toward the ominous darkness of uncertainty.

Thankfully for the company, one group will be there to step up and fill the void — The Judgment Day.

Rhea Ripley should walk out of Los Angeles as the new SmackDown Women’s Champion. Dominik Mysterio could very well best his old man. And Finn Balor’s demons need to be the difference maker that allows him to emerge from Hell victorious.

The odd man out in Los Angeles is Damian Priest, but WWE will hopefully make it up to him come Backlash. With Puerto Rico getting their first Premium Live Event in 18 years, Priest should be featured prominently at the show. Maybe even as the first challenger for new Undisputed WWE Universal champion Cody Rhodes.

The Bloodline’s demise will be The Judgment Day’s opportunity to seize control of the WWE landscape and I believe they’ll be quite successful.

Who else could get a chance to prove themselves on WWE’s biggest stage?

Let’s assess.

Here’s what’s been announced for WrestleMania so far:

  • Roman Reigns vs. Cody Rhodes for the Undisputed WWE Universal Heavyweight Championship
  • Charlotte Flair vs. Rhea Ripley for the SmackDown Women’s Championship
  • Bianca Belair vs. Asuka for the RAW Women’s Championship
  • Austin Theory vs. John Cena for the United States Championship
  • Seth “Freakin” Rollins vs. Logan Paul
  • Edge vs. Finn Balor inside Hell in a Cell
  • Becky Lynch, Lita & Trish Stratus vs. Bayley, Dakota Kai & IYO SKY
  • Brock Lesnar vs. Omos
  • The Miz will host WrestleMania 39

Here is what could be added to the card in the coming weeks:

  • Rey Mysterio vs. Dominik Mysterio
  • GUNTHER will defend his Intercontinental Championship vs. TBD
  • The Usos defending their Tag Team Championships against Sami Zayn & Kevin Owens
  • Women’s Tag Team Title Match
  • Bray Wyatt vs. Bobby Lashley

Those first three matches I just listed are near guarantees. Somehow Dominik will finally goad Rey Mysterio into fighting him. We already know GUNTHER will defend his Intercontinental Championship, we just don’t know his opponent yet. And everything surrounding the Usos, Sami Zayn, and Kevin Owens is leading to that Tag Team Championship Match.

Meanwhile, I genuinely have no idea what’s going on with a majority of the Women’s Division right now. There was absolutely zero storyline progression toward a Tag Team Title match. The champs are still booked in a non-title match at WrestleMania and have not been scheduled for a defense.

If WWE is going to take the belts off of Becky Lynch and Lita in order to set up a separate match, they are very quickly running out of time to do it.

It feels like WWE is playing a game of wait and see with Ronda Rousey, who is currently dealing with a hairline fracture in her arm. If she isn’t healthy enough to perform, WWE may be ready to just scrap any plans for a Women’s Tag Team Title match.

That’s not a report, that’s just my speculation. Which, admittedly, is a dangerous thing and a perfect segue.

Bray Wyatt expected back soon after missing the last few weeks


Bray Wyatt’s name surprisingly popped up on the bubble watch this week after he missed a house show at New York’s Madison Square Garden, despite being advertised.

Once word got out that Wyatt had missed the show for unknown reasons, the internet took the story and ran with it. Speculation spread like wildfire that Bray Wyatt had once again become frustrated with the WWE Creative team. He apparently was not happy with his WrestleMania direction and decided to “take his ball, and go home.”

In reality, the reason Wyatt missed the show at MSG, and his last few television appearances, was due to an undisclosed physical issue — which Fightful Select later reported that Bray has been sidelined with an illness.

Once again, the IWC (internet wrestling community) has shown off its nasty side. Hopefully the takeaway for people here is that you absolutely cannot believe everything you read on Twitter.

Now allow me to speak directly to the keyboard warriors for a second. Just because you may not like someone’s creative direction, does not mean the talent themselves has an issue with the company. Also, the phrase “he went home” does not always mean that a performer has left the company as a form of protest.

Be better. Be responsible. Let’s all try to make the internet a better place. Thank you for attending my TED talk.

While a considerable amount of bull has been smeared along the information superhighway this week, one fact has remained constant. Bray Wyatt is absent from WWE programing and time is running out to ramp up the build to his match with Bobby Lashley, or to find the All Mighty a suitable replacement.

The belief backstage, according to the Wrestling Observer’s Dave Meltzer, is that Wyatt will be back soon and his match with Lashley is still on for WrestleMania 39.

Concern will continue to amount amongst Bray Wyatt fans the longer he is off television, but until we see something new start to be lined up for Bobby Lashley, I have to trust Uncle Dave on this one and keep this match locked in for April 2nd.

Rumor mill keeps L.A. Knight’s WrestleMania hopes alive

Is L.A. Knight just a little over two weeks away from getting into a fight with Stone Cold Steve Austin at WrestleMania?



You heard me. WWE is reportedly still making creative pitches to the Texas Rattlesnake in hopes of luring him into Los Angeles for another appearance on the Grandest Stage of Them All.

Austin was a WrestleMania headliner last year in Dallas. After nearly two decades away from the ring, Stone Cold came out of retirement to defeat Kevin Owens in a No Holds Barred match that received rave reviews.

The 58 year-old remains in great shape. He’s been posting workout videos on his social media accounts for months, which ramped up speculation that he would be booked for ‘Mania again this year.

That speculation has not come to fruition just yet, but it hasn’t been for a lack of trying on WWE’s part.

Austin had been a rumored opponent for Roman Reigns and that match was at least discussed at one point in the lead up to the show this year. Another potential match up would have pitted Stone Cold against Brock Lesnar.

Sports Illustrated says WWE was confident enough in booking Austin and Lesnar for ‘Mania, that they moved Brock’s final match with Bobby Lashley up to Elimination Chamber.

When Austin and WWE could not come to terms, that caused a trickle down effect. Lesnar was pitched a match with Bray Wyatt, which he reportedly turned down. Lashley was then paired up with Bray, while the Beast was booked to fight Omos – a match that reportedly was heavily pushed for by Vince McMahon.

One of the latest overtures made to Austin, according to reports, is for him to work in some capacity with the one and only bonafide Superstar in WWE — L.A. Knight, YEAH!

Big things are ahead for L.A. Knight, once again, if you believe the rumors swirling around on the internet.

In this case, I do. He’s exactly what he says he is and that’s a star. Knight has all the tools and the crowds either love him or love to hate him. He should be a prime candidate to win this year’s King of the Ring or Money in the Bank and a WrestleMania altercation with Stone Cold could be the spark he needs to ascend to the next level over on SmackDown.

Let’s assume for a moment that Austin agrees to fly into L.A. and work with Mr. Los Angeles Knight. What would that look like and how does WWE get there?

For weeks now Knight has been preaching about making WrestleMania moments, but he’s built up very little momentum to get there. He failed to earn an Intercontinental Title shot last Friday and lost to Cody Rhodes on Monday.

In fact, losing has become his modus operandi. Knight only has one win, televised or otherwise, dating back to October and that was a squash win over Johnny McJobber in route to his showdown with Bray Wyatt at Royal Rumble.

With only 15 days left until the big show, I highly doubt a match between Austin and Knight will be teased, set up, or announced.

I could see a scenario where Knight makes an unannounced appearance in an attempt to hijack WrestleMania and then is promptly interrupted by the sound of glass shattering. Said interruption would be followed up by a certain someone stomping a mud hole in Knight’s backside and then chugging beer over his unconscious body.

As of now, I’m considering this a long shot. But the rumors are enough to keep L.A. Knight in the conversation.

New rumor puts more names on the Bubble:

This is welcomed news for the eight men listed above, because until this morning I did not see a path forward for any of them to make the show. It will be interesting to see how this match comes about because they mostly tied up with their own stories and rivalries right now.

It is mildly surprising that Maximum Male Models are not mentioned here, as they have been trying to recruit Otis from the Alpha Academy for weeks now.

As far as the women’s match, I have to assume the plan revolves around the Women’s Tag Team Championships. Maybe it’s something as simple as a No. 1 Contender’s match. But as I said earlier, until I see what’s going on with Ronda Rousey, I’m leaving this match off the card.

Potential Night One Card:

  • GUNTHER vs. Drew McIntyre vs. Sheamus for the Intercontinental Championship
  • Brock Lesnar vs. Omos
  • Rey Mysterio vs. Dominik Mysterio
  • Seth Rollins vs. Logan Paul
  • Sami Zayn & Kevin Owens vs. The Usos for the Undisputed Tag Team Championships
  • Charlotte Flair vs. Rhea Ripley for the SmackDown Women’s Championship (WOR reports this will main event)

Potential Night Two Card:

  • Austin Theory vs. John Cena for the United States Championship
  • Bobby Lashley vs. Bray Wyatt
  • Bianca Belair vs. Asuka for the RAW Women’s Championship
  • Edge vs. Finn Balor inside Hell in a Cell
  • Becky Lynch, Lita & Trish Stratus vs. Bayley, Dakota Kai & IYO SKY
  • Roman Reigns vs. Cody Rhodes for the Undisputed WWE Universal Championship

On the bubble:

  • L.A. Knight, Stone Cold Steve Austin, Braun Strowman, Ricochet, The Street Profits, Alpha Academy, Viking Raiders
  • Ronda Rousey, Shayna Baszler, Liv Morgan, Raquel Rodriquez, Carmella, Chelsea Green, Candice LaRae, Nikki Cross, Natalya, Tegan Nox

Not looking likely to make the cut:

  • Maximum Male Models, Damian Priest, Karrion Kross, Xavier Woods, Bronson Reed, Santos Escobar, Baron Corbin, Dolph Ziggler, Mustafa Ali, Elias, Rick Boogs, Dexter Lumis, Butch, Ridge Holland, Hit Row, Madcap Moss, Shinsuke Nakamura
  • Alexa Bliss, Mia Yim, Piper Niven, Emma, Lacey Evans, Shotzi, Sonya Deville, Zelina Vega

Out due to injury (Kayfabe or otherwise):

  • Randy Orton, AJ Styles, Matt Riddle, Bobby Roode, Tommaso Ciampa, Kofi Kingston

What do you think of this potential WrestleMania card? Let us know in the comment section below. You can follow Rick Ucchino on Twitter and subscribe to the Bleav in Pro Wrestling Podcast Channel for more of his work.

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