Minutes to Bell Time

I Was There for WrestleMania 23

I Was There for WrestleMania 23

Chapter 14 – I Was There for WrestleMania 23

I Was There for WrestleMania 23

Event: WrestleMania 23

Location: Ford Field, Detroit

Date: April 1, 2007

Headline: John Cena vs. Shawn Michaels

Miles from Home:  650 Miles

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A Celebration of Fandom

I went to WrestleMania 23 with the eagerness of a hungry puppy. This wasn’t my first wrestling show. It wasn’t even my first televised show. But it was the first time I ever dedicated a whole weekend of traveling to see Pro Wrestling.

The Main Show

I rewatched the entire show (for the first time), and I saw some pretty good wrestling. Dave Meltzer even gave  three of the eight matches a four star rating or better. Batista probably had the match of his career against the Undertaker, and I enjoyed the John Cena vs. Shawn Michaels finale.

Battle of the Billionaires

While the world may have been a much different place in 2007, one thing remaining the same today is Donald Trump and Vince McMahon’s headlock on the news cycle. Yes, WrestleMania 23 included the infamous Battle of the Billionaires and I Was There. I’m not sure who the heel was in 2007, and today . . . I’ll leave that up to you.

Money in the Bank

The best match on the entire card was the Money in the Bank Ladder Match. While Money in the Bank has its own Pay Per View these days, the match started out on WrestleMania’s undercard. WrestleMania 23 featured the third installment, and I noticed a few interesting things about the match:

  • Five of the eight wrestlers are still active today (Edge, Randy Orton, Matt Hardy, Jeff Hardy, and Mr. Kennedy).
  • The other three still work for WWE (or Fox) in some fashion today (CM Punk, Finlay, and King Booker). The recent furlough impacted Finlay, but you get the point.
  • Edge and Randy Orton are still wrestling each other in WrestleMania gimmick matches 13 years later.

I didn’t love seeing this WrestleMania live. Traffic in downtown Detroit on a Sunday night was a nightmare. I was less than a year into my professional career at the time, and I had a 6AM flight on Monday morning. I didn’t get much sleep. The lights hanging above the ring obstructed my view of the entrance ramp. Of course, all those issues didn’t stop me from going to WrestleMania 24. With the benefit of hindsight, I could have easily taken Monday off and purchased better seats to improve the overall experience. Don’t get me wrong, I still had the time of my life and walked away with a ton of WrestleMania 23 merchandise.

The Rest of My Weekend

At the beginning of this post, I compared my attitude to the eagerness of a hungry puppy. Between seeing the Class of 2007 (Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler, Dusty Rhodes, and more) inducted into the Hall of Fame and attending the premiere of Stone Cold’s movie The Condemned, my hunger was satiated. Growing up, the idea of attending WrestleMania seemed like something I would never be able to do. When I came into adulthood, I had to ask myself why couldn’t I attend? If wrestling was priority entertainment for me, why couldn’t I make the investment in my happiness? Luckily for me, I married well as my wife shares my eagerness for pro wrestling. We’ve had countless memorable experiences attending wrestling events since WrestleMania 23, but this was the first!

If I have learned anything in the last decade and a half, it’s that happiness is almost always worth the investment. Invest well!

Thanks for reading this week’s installment of “I Was There.” Stay well and keep safe during the pandemic. Follow me on Instagram to stay current on all I’m doing.  If you have any questions or want to talk wrestling, feel free to reach out. – Ryan ([email protected]).

I Was There for WrestleMania 23 - Entrance


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