Another WrestleMania has come and gone and while I don't think anybody can dispute that this year's show was not entertaining- the Hogan-Rock and Undertaker-Flair matches were extraordinary, I do have major hang-ups with the way the WWF has left itself exposed heading out of the card.
So have they already given up on the nWo storyline so quickly? All that cash was spent on Hogan, Hall, and Nash so that Rock & Austin could defeat them at the very first PPV and they immediately do the Hulka-face switch and waive the Immortal one into the sunset? I have one word to ask- why? Why so soon? They could have milked this angle for quite possibly a full year. They could have turned the nWo into a bona-fide threat to the health of the WWF and built it up to the point where it was the main event of WrestleMania 19! Why not have Hogan go over on Rock and make it into a true battle for Rock to obtain the torch, stretch it out so that Rock is chasing the real Great One.
Have Rock be the one to turn heel and join up with Hogan, adding a dose of change into the already stale product. Instead, Hogan is now back as a good guy so quickly and where does that leave the Outsiders? Some stated that they were extremely surprised by the crowd's overwhelmingly pro-Hogan reaction. I can't say I was completely shocked with this one. For years, I have been reading on the Internet that Rock and Steve Austin have equaled, if not eclipsed, Hogan's popularity from the late 1980's. That is really a farce, and the Skydome crowd proved tonight that there will never be anyone like Hulk Hogan again. He is head and shoulders above any other wrestler in history when it comes to mainstream popularity- nobody, not Austin, Rock, Triple-H, Flair, Savage, or Andre was ever at the level that Hulk Hogan has achieved.
But back to Mania, I will not dispute the fact that this was a fabulously entertaining card, and while viewed in a vacuum I would even rank it as one of the top WrestleMania's in years; however, I do not believe that this card was helpful in furthering the WWF storylines. The WWF now finds itself at yet another crossroads- do Hall & Nash swear vengeance and recruit new nWo members (i.e.- Scott Steiner, Shawn Michaels, X-Pac?) or do they just become another WWF tag team? Does the red and yellow of Hulkamania run wild again on a regular basis or have we seen the end for the Hulkster? We'll get a lot of those answers tonight on Raw. I'm keeping my fingers crossed; but if Hogan drops the leg on Stephanie and they cart her away forever, it'll all be worth it.