As you probably know, we are ten days away from WrestleMania 38 and as of this writing, eleven matches have been set for the show, with five matches on the first night and six on the second. In theory, there are going to be about four or five more matches added to the card, though WWE needs to actually get somewhere with that. There are a few matches you can probably guarantee from here, but there are two people who seem to be sitting around waiting on something.

Within the last month, WWE has seen multiple title changes, including two singles titles. On February 28, Finn Balor defeated Damian Priest to win the United States Title. On March 4, Ricochet defeated Sami Zayn to win the Intercontinental Title. Both of those title changes are within six weeks of WrestleMania, but WWE does not seem to notice that either of the changes have taken place.

With regards to WrestleMania, the United States and Intercontinental Titles mean a grand total of nothing. Neither champion is currently scheduled for a title defense and based on the last most recent editions of Monday Night Raw and SmackDown, neither title is of much interest to anyone involved. This is hardly a new concept for either title, but that doesn’t make either situation any better.

Last week, Ricochet did not appear on SmackDown. Former champion Zayn was there and said that he wanted his WrestleMania match with actor Johnny Knoxville to be anything goes. This week on Monday Night Raw, Balor defeated Austin Theory, who made no reference to wanting the United States Title, but did have time to deal with announcer Pat McAfee before their upcoming WrestleMania match.

This was Theory’s second match against Balor since Balor became champion, but there was nothing to suggest that he was going after the title. Their first match was broken up by former champion Priest, who gave Balor the DQ win. The following week, Priest beat Balor in a non-title match but, again, that was not mentioned this week on Monday Night Raw. That isn’t exactly a great way to present the title and it doesn’t leave much room for the title match to be set up.

Now yes, odds are Balor vs. Priest will be set up next week on Monday Night Raw (or in some random tweet, because that’s how much the title means) but how did they screw it up this badly? It’s like Balor was thrown into two stories at the same time but his title only matters in the less important one. Was there really no one else for Theory to have those matches against other than the United States Champion?

Then you have Ricochet and….egads man. Where are they supposed to go with this? Ricochet won the title, had a rematch with Zayn, and then went onto the shelf the next week. It’s another case where WWE could throw someone out there as a title challenger, but why do I have a feeling that the best they are going to do is hang the title above the ring and have another mindless ladder match where six people fight to get as much camera time as they can?

What makes this all the more frustrating is the fact that this could all be solved in approximately fourteen seconds. How easy would this be: someone jumps Ricochet from behind (or just talks to him), says they want their WrestleMania Moment (cue trademark logo) and are going to get it and the title at the same time. Insert any of the following names into that situation: Apollo Crews, Damian Priest, Dolph Ziggler, Robert Roode, Jinder Mahal, Kofi Kingston, Sheamus, or, maybe Seth Rollins (AS IN THE GUY WHO KEEPS GOING ON ABOUT HOW HE NEEDS SOMETHING TO DO AT WRESTLEMANIA) and it works fine.

It’s incredibly frustrating to watch WWE have so many people sitting around while we have a wide open spot like challenging for the Intercontinental or United States Title? If Theory keeps wanting to impress Vince McMahon, why not have him go after either title? McAfee has a match at WrestleMania but has no personal issue with Theory in the first place, but because McMahon made the match (with no animosity towards McAfee either), Theory is in there with him. Is there any reason for that aside from that’s the decision that WWE made about the match?

It isn’t like WWE has a problem with throwing wrestlers into a title match. Consider the Raw Tag Team Title and Women’s Tag Team Title matches, which have a total of fourteen wrestlers between the two of them fighting over two sets of titles. Both matches have had challengers thrown into them, with the Women’s Tag Team Title match featuring Liv Morgan/Rhea Ripley whose first match together got them into the title match. No history, no time together, and now they get a WrestleMania title match.

Yet here we are, with another situation that makes both midcard titles feel that much more worthless. That isn’t a WrestleMania exclusive problem as Shinsuke Nakamura defended his Intercontinental Title less than three times in his six month reign. The only thing that needs to be done to make a title feel valuable is to have someone go after it, but for some reason we are stuck with literally weeks if not months between anyone even acknowledging the titles in the slightest.

All that leaves you with is a big circle, as the titles mean nothing because WWE doesn’t make them seem important so they aren’t treated as important, which is what causes the titles to not matter. This could be solved with something as simple as two wrestlers being given some time and a feud over a championship, but instead we need to focus on a match that McAfee was thrown into on a podcast or Zayn having some kind of wacky match against an actor from a stunt show.

That’s what makes this all the more frustrating: the problems that exist are there because WWE doesn’t want to put in the effort to make them better and they get worse and worse as a result. It takes all of two or three weeks to turn a story into something interesting, but instead we are sitting around hoping that we get some kind of a match for either championship at a show that feels like it is doing everything they can to fill in spots on a two night show.

Now again, I do think that both titles will be defended in some way or another (likely in a ladder match, because WWE LOVES itself some ladder matches), but it would be nice to see WWE acting like the titles mean something going into the biggest show of the year. All that is requited is to put in some effort coming into the show but for some reason that is not something WWE feels like doing this year.

WrestleMania 38 is going to have a lot of matches on the card, including a lot of matches that feel like they are there to fill in time and nothing more. WWE has multiple titles right there waiting to fill in spots with little effort, but for some reason WWE is making it more complicated than it needs to be. Were WWE to just make it easy on themselves, it would be downright stupendous.

Thomas Hall has been a wrestling fan for over thirty years and has seen over 60,000 wrestling matches. He has also been a wrestling reviewer since 2009 with over 6,000 full shows covered. You can find his work at, or check out his- Amazon author page with 30 wrestling books

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