The Fast Lane PPV is over and now WrestleMania is right around the corner.
Virtually all of the card is very straight-forward and clear cut; Roman Reigns versus Brock Lesnar, John Cena versus Rusev, Diva's Title Match, Intercontinental Championship Ladder Match, The Usos versus Tyson Kidd and Cesaro, Triple H vs Sting, Bray Wyatt versus Undertaker and Randy Orton versus Seth Rollins - as well as the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal.
However, there is one key player who does not have an obvious direction for the show of shows and that is Daniel Bryan. Bryan lost the chance to main event his second 'Mania after he lost to Reigns at Fast Lane and most of the top heels in the company (Triple H, Seth Rollins and Bray Wyatt) are already engaged in feuds not involving Bryan and so I will explore a few different options for Bryan to face at the granddaddy of them all, Wrestlemania.
Ziggler and Bryan have teased a potential 'Mania match a couple of times on twitter with Ziggler most recently tweeting:
The two are great performers and this has the potential to be a show stealing match. Ziggler also has no obvious feud heading into Wrestlemania after seemingly falling by the wayside after being the sole survivor for Team Cena at Survivour Series, losing to Bray Wyatt and taking the pinfall in the 6-man tag team match between himself, Ryback and Erick Rowan against Big Show, Kane and Seth Rollins.
A change of direction would be good for Ziggler as there are a lot of baby faces on the roster who are ahead of him at the moment. Whereas there are only really two top heels on the roster in Wyatt and Rollins. Ziggler can use the story that he got rid of the Authority and ever since Bryan came back he has been an afterthought, blaming him for the losses that have halted his momentum.
This is another heavily rumoured match for Bryan with Sheamus about to return from an injury.
Sheamus would also have to turn heel and he needs to do this more than Ziggler because the Celtic Warrior has had a very stale character as of late. This would give Sheamus a chance to establish himself back in the main event picture and Bryan a chance to get back his infamous 18 second loss at Wrestlemania.
As shown at Extreme Rules that year in a two out of three falls match, Sheamus and Bryan have great chemistry which could also lead to a potential show stealing match.
They can use the story that Sheamus has not been near any form of world title for a long time and the last time he had a good run at the top was after beating Bryan at 'Mania. He can put his attack on Bryan down to jealousy as Bryan's career has been on the up since that bout whereas Sheamus' has been on the decline.
Intercontinental Championship Ladder Match
Another potential match for Bryan is being a part of the ladder match for the Intercontinetal Championship. This would help increase the prestige of WWE's secondary title and put talented workers like Bad News Barrett and Dean Ambrose alongside, arguably, the most popular man in the company.
However, a ladder match is much more dangerous than a singles match, so is putting Bryan in one not that long after returning from a potentially career ending injury such a good idea? However, with him recently defeating Barrett in a non-title match it does make sense for him to go after the championship and this match would definitely tear the house down.
In my opinion, I think Bryan vs Ziggler would be the best option as they already have a huge amount of chemistry and are two of the most over performers right now.
A Ziggler heel turn could finally cement him as a main event talent, which is long overdue, and would be an interesting story to carry on into Extreme Rules and beyond.
Whilst Sheamus does need a heel turn desperately, the idea of a Ziggler vs Bryan matchup on the grandest stage of them all just intrigues me more. A program with Sheamus could, and should, be revisited down the road, perhaps heading into SummerSlam.
I feel that Ambrose and Barrett could definitely deliver a great bout without Bryan and are over enough for fans to care about their match. There has not been a clean finish to their title matches yet so why the need to insert another man into the feud? Whatever direction the WWE decides to go with Bryan, one thing is for sure - he will put on a great show no matter who he is facing.