Becky Lynch and Rhea Ripley - April 1, 2024 RAW

WrestleMania Opening Matches: What Matches Will Open Each Night Of WrestleMania?

Each year, WrestleMania takes place and often gives us one heck of an incredible show. Each show, regardless of how good the card is, at least gives us something to walk away happy with. Yet we often judge a show based on its main event, and we all know what will go on last for both Night #1 & Night #2 by now. However, the WrestleMania opening matches set the tone for each respective night. They make us feel invested in the overall show.

Every WWE Superstar will tell you, that if you are not going to main-event WrestleMania, then you dang sure want to be the one that opens it. Why would someone want to open the show rather than be in a Co-Main Event spot or the middle of the card? There are a few reasons for this.

Let’s dive into the WrestleMania Opening Matches, and discuss what might go on first this year for WrestleMania 40.



Daniel Bryan & AJ Lee - WrestleMania 28
[Image via WWE]

Often, WWE trusts the people in the opening match for each night to deliver. If you have a so-so opener, it can be a downer for fans. It can also make people fear that the rest of the night will be blah and damper a normally good mood. Look at the Daniel Bryan vs Sheamus match at WrestleMania 28 as an example.

While that event had a pre-show match, Bryan vs Sheamus was the first official match on the card. It memorably lasted 18 seconds. This WM is considered to be one of the worst WMs of all time. Even if the main event was a big deal, it was just an okay match. The Hell in a Cell with Triple H & The Undertaker was good but couldn’t save the show.

This opening match set the tone and we saw one of the worst WrestleMania events in terms of overall card.

Meanwhile, look at the great WrestleMania 39 card. John Cena had a pretty good match with Austin Theory to open WrestleMania as it was the first match on Night #1.

It made us care. Normally the WrestleMania opening matches are going to be for chaotic matches, such as a ladder match. It might also be a spot for the workers, so you could see a secondary title match of some kind in this slot. Such as a United States or Intercontinental Title match.

Wrestlers know their match won’t be cut for time. The fans cramp into their seats and are amped for the show to start. When it finally goes, they’re pumped and ready to go nuts for the talent. It’s such a fun spot to be for any performer because you know the fans are into everything.



Rhea Ripley Looking Down At Becky Lynch
[Image via WWE]

First, we need to discuss the fact that there are a ton of great matches that could go here. This is perhaps one of the most stacked WrestleMania cards in recent memory, meaning any match that opens the show could be awesome. We can safely say that the big tag match with Cody Rhodes & Seth Rollins facing The Rock & Roman Reigns will not open Night #1, as it will go on last.

The question is, who opens Night #1?

To us, you could easily put the big WWE Undisputed Tag Team Title Ladder match in this slot. It is going to be incredibly chaotic and would easily make sense as an opener to set the tone for WrestleMania. However, WWE could also throw LA Knight vs AJ Styles into this spot.

This is a bitter rivalry between two great workers. Styles always brings it at WrestleMania, and this is Knight’s first big WrestleMania appearance. He’s a clear star and wants to give his growing fanbase something to love. However, WrestleMania opening matches can also be about bigger things, such as the WWE World Championships.


However, according to The Wrestling Observer, it is likely that Becky Lynch vs Rhea Ripley for the WWE Women’s World Championship will be the opening match.

This makes sense. Rollins will be in the last match and Lynch is his wife. They have a little girl who will be at the show. It makes sense to have one of her parents around her at all times. Becky could do her thing, hit the showers, then hang with her daughter as dad goes out to main event the card.

Plus, this should be an awesome match, similar to what Rhea gave us last year with Charlotte Flair. It makes all the sense in the world for this to open Night #1. This slot is meant for the workers and both of these women are capable of giving us something incredible.

On Night #2, one could see Gunther vs Sami Zayn for the WWE Intercontinental Championship open the show. It certainly could be a fun opener.

However, Seth Rollins is going to be hurting a lot from Night #1. If The Rock tries to pull something “corporate” to punish Seth further, having him open the show to defend the World Heavyweight Championship makes a lot of sense. Plus, Rollins could also get involved in the main event later in the night, so giving him a small break could be useful.

It seems WWE is likely thinking the same, as The Wrestling Observer is reporting that Drew McIntyre vs Seth Rollins is supposed to open Night #2.

While they claim the card is subject to change, we can totally understand why they’d go with these options. We’ll get quality matches, and there is even a storyline element to make sense of the placement too.