WWE Battleground 2017: Ranking John Cena vs. Rusev Matches

4 of 5

credit: wwe.com

2. Wrestlemania 31

On to the two highlights of this feud.  It shouldn’t be a surprise that these two stepped up their game on this night in California for “The Grand Daddy of Them All’.  If a wrestler is going to take their game to the next level, Wrestlemania is the place to do it.  Much like their Russian Chain Match at Extreme Rules, this match was right around 14 minutes.  The difference in this one was that both guys had a sense of vigor not seen in their follow-up matches which the over 75,000 fans in attendance seemed to draw out of them.  It didn’t hurt that both of their entrances were pretty cool too.

However, there were some faults to this match.  First off, everybody knew Cena was going to win this one.  Rusev had won their match the month before at Fastlane and for anybody who’s followed the WWE for the past 15 years, it was quite obvious that Cena wasn’t going to lose twice in a row.  So with the element of surprise gone, the WWE had the chance to still make Rusev like strong.  The guy had been running with a year-long unbeaten streak, so to see him taken down by one AA after kicking out of one at Fastlane by Cena was a bit of a head-scratcher.

But at the end of the day, this was probably the third best match of the night on what was an overall pretty strong Wrestlemania.  The two were fired up, committed to the program, and as such, put on a strong performance on the company’s biggest stage.  Good stuff, but their first encounter was better.