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WrestleMania XXX sees a new champion and the end of a streak in New Orleans

Daniel Bryan celebrates after winning the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at WrestleMania XXX. He defeated Randy Orton and Batista on Sunday night in New Orleans to win the gold.
Daniel Bryan celebrates after winning the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at WrestleMania XXX. He defeated Randy Orton and Batista on Sunday night in New Orleans to win the gold.
WWE, Inc.

Any WrestleMania event is guaranteed to be huge, but an anniversary edition such as the 30th version of the annual spectacular was guaranteed to be historic. And on Sunday night in New Orleans, WWE fans saw witnessed the unthinkable at WrestleMania XXX.

The night kicked off with a special two-hour pre-show that aired on the WWE Network. Fans saw a Fatal Four-Way tag team elimination match for the WWE Tag Team Championships, as The Usos defended the gold against Los Matadores, Real Americans, and RybAxel. The champions would retain their titles, but maybe the bigger story was the impending breakdown of the Real Americans. After the match, Jack Swagger got into a heated confrontation with his partner Cesaro. It ended with Cesaro putting Swagger on his back and giving him a giant swing for his troubles.

As WrestleMania got started, fans were treated to an appearance by Hulk Hogan. The WWE Hall of Famer was brought in to be the host of the event. However he quickly made a big error by calling the Superdome (where the event was held in New Orleans) as the SILVERDOME (where he bodyslammed Andre The Giant at WrestleMania III). Once he realized his error, fans were quick to laugh and enjoy his presence. He was then joined by Texas native "Stone Cold" Steve Austin, who was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2009 in Houston, and The Rock. They expressed their appreciation for the event, the history of it, and encouraged fans to enjoy the spectacle they were about to witness. To close, they all celebrated with a beer in the middle of the ring to set the tone for the night.

Kicking off the actual PPV was a match between current WWE C.O.O. Triple H and perhaps the most popular superstar in recent memory, Daniel Bryan. The winner of this match would go on later in the main event to compete for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. Bryan showed up with an obvious disadvantage, his shoulder heavily taped after a rough couple of weeks thanks to Triple H. This turned into a vicious and brutal match early, that even saw Bryan kick out of Triple H's signature Pedigree finisher. Bryan would eventually get the pin on Triple H, and punch his ticket for the main event.

But after the match, Triple H blew a serious gasket. Infuriated, the COO attacked Bryan. He battered Bryan into the corner, and left him face down. He then went to the outside and grabbed a steel chair and slammed it into Bryan's arm, which was draped around the ringpost. It furthered the damage that had already been done recently, and severely jeopardized his chances of even making it to the main event later in the night.

The second match of the evening was a special 6-man tag team match, as The Shield (Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins, and Roman Reigns) faced off against The New Age Outlaws (Road Dogg and Billy Gunn) and Kane. This stemmed from weeks of dissention between Kand and The Shield in recent weeks. This turned out to be a relatively quick match, as The Shield picked up the victory after Roman Reigns hit a double spear on both members of the New Age Outlaws.

Up next, was the first-ever Andre The Giant Invitational Battle Royal. This over-the-top-rope match featured 31 WWE superstars as they battled to win a large trophy that featured Andre himself. The odds-on favorite to win the whole thing was The Big Show, who came to the ring dressed similar to Andre with his singlet. But he didn't plan on running into Cesaro, who shocked the WWE Universe by picking Big Show up for a bodyslam and dumping him over the top rope for the victory. Surprisingly, Cesaro accepted a congratulatory handshake from Show after the match, as he stood tall in the ring.

Over the last few weeks, John Cena and Bray Wyatt have been engulfed in a nasty feud. After costing Cena chances at the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at the Royal Rumble and Elimination Chamber, the leader of the Wyatt Family accepted a match for WrestleMania to end what he called "an era of lies." This turned into a physical match for both men, but it would be Cena getting the upper hand. As Bray went for his Sister Abigail finisher, Cena countered it and floored him with an Attitude Adjustment. It earned Cena the victory, but one has to wonder if he's heard the last of the Wyatt Family.

From there it was time for the highly anticipated match between The Undertaker, who went in as an undefeated 21-0 at WrestleMania, and Brock Lesnar. Paul Heyman had declared several times over the last few weeks that there was only one man that could break the undefeated streak and that it was Lesnar. The Undertaker gave Lesnar everything he could possibly throw at him, including a Tombstone piledriver. In any other situation, that Tombstone would finish off any other man. But Lesnar kicked out and would hit his patented F-5 finisher for the third time in the match to finally put The Undertaker down. The 75,000 fans in New Orleans fell to a silenced shock, as Lesnar pinned him and was declared the winner. Nobody knew what to say or do, even the announcers were at a total loss for words as the longest active streak in sports entertainment came to an unthinkable end.

Once the dust had settled from the shocking conclusion of that match, it was time to move on with the Vickie Guerrero Divas Championship Invitational. This featured all the WWE Divas in action, as they tried to walk out with AJ Lee's Divas Title. She would force Naomi to submit to her Black Widow submission hold, as she inches closer to a possible year-long title reign. She was part of something special on this night, as it was the first time that the WWE Divas Championship had been defended at a WrestleMania.

Finally, fans were prepared for the main event and the triple threat match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. Randy Orton walked into the match as champion, but had a big task ahead as he defended the gold against Batista and the already injured Daniel Bryan. At one point, Orton and Batista (former Evolution teammates) worked together for a few minutes to further inflict damage on Bryan's shoulder. They even set up for a vicious double-team maneuver on the ringside announce tables. Batista set Bryan up for a power bomb, and Orton put Bryan and himself through the table with a thunderous RKO.

The impact took Bryan out of the match, to the point that medical personnel rushed to the ring with a stretcher to remove him from ringside. But to everyone's surprise, Bryan was able to roll himself off the stretcher and struggle to get back to the ring. His perseverance and desire to finally become champion paid off, because he would finally be able to get the win and finally become champion. The Superdome crowd erupted as they celebrated with the new champion.

Overall it was a memorable WrestleMania event. For the 30th anniversary edition, it provided its share of excitement,d drama, and shudder.The biggest question of the night is how Brock Lesnar was able to do what nobody had been able to do in 21 previous attempts. The biggest names in the industry, including Shawn Michaels, Triple H, Jimmy Snuka, Kevin Nash, Ric Flair and several other legendary names couldn't be the one to finally end the streak. It took the brutality and lethal offensive attacks from Lesnar to do what many said couldn't be done. Now the unanswered question is what will happen to both men, now that the streak is official over and one with.

WWE returns to pay per view on Sunday, May 4 with their Extreme Rules pay per view at the IZOD Center in East Rutherford, New Jersey. That event, just like WrestleMania XXX, will be carried on the WWE Network.

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