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WrestleMania XIX was the nineteenth annual WrestleMania professional wrestling pay-per-view (PPV) event produced by World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE). It took place on March 30, 2003 at Safeco Fieldmarker in Seattle, Washingtonmarker. The event was the first WrestleMania held in the state of Washingtonmarker. A record-breaking 54,097 fans from all fifty states and numerous countries from around the world at Safeco Field resulted in a gate attendance generating more than USD$2.76 million.

WrestleMania XIX was the first WrestleMania to be promoted under the WWE name and the first to have taken place after the WWE Brand Extension. It was a joint-promotion pay-per-view event, featuring performers from the Raw and SmackDown! brands. The tagline for WrestleMania XIX was "Dare To Dream". The official theme song for the event was "Crack Addict" by Limp Bizkit. Limp Bizkit performed the theme song live, as well as "Rollin' " during The Undertaker's entrance.

The main match on the SmackDown! brand was Kurt Angle versus Brock Lesnar for the WWE Championship, which Lesnar won by pinfall after executing an F5. The predominant match on the Raw brand was for the World Heavyweight Championship between Triple H and Booker T, which Triple H won by pinfall after performing a Pedigree. Other matches on the undercard included Shawn Michaels versus Chris Jericho, Hulk Hogan versus Vince McMahon in a Street Fight., and The Rock versus Steve Austin

Background

The main feud heading into WrestleMania on the SmackDown! brand was between Kurt Angle and Brock Lesnar, with the two feuding over the WWE Championship. Angle won the title three months prior at Armageddon by defeating then-champion The Big Show with Lesnar's help. At the Royal Rumble in January, Angle defeated Chris Benoit to retain the WWE Championship, and Lesnar won the Royal Rumble match to become number one contender to the WWE Championship at WrestleMania when he last eliminated The Undertaker. The following month at No Way Out, Lesnar and Benoit defeated Team Angle (Kurt Angle, Shelton Benjamin, and Charlie Haas) in a Handicap match. During that Pay Per View, it was originally supposed to be Edge teaming up with Lesnar & Benoit to wrestle Team Angle in the scheduled Six Man Tag team match but Edge suffered an injured neck during the Pre-match assault. On the March 6 edition of SmackDown!, Lesnar defeated Paul Heyman in a Steel cage match to earn a championship match against Angle the next week. The next week on SmackDown!, Angle defeated Lesnar to retain the WWE Championship. Before the match began, Kurt, who was "praying" in the corner, switched with his brother Eric. Lesnar then came out and the match began. Shortly after the match began, Benjamin and Haas came to the ring and distracted Lesnar, which gave Eric time to switch back with Kurt. As Lesnar regained his focus, Kurt was able to pin him with a small package for the win. The following week on the March 20 edition of SmackDown!, SmackDown General Manager Stephanie McMahon told Angle that if he tries to get himself disqualified or if his brother, Benjamin, or Haas try to interfere in their match at WrestleMania, he would lose the title.

The main feud on the Raw brand was between The Rock and Steve Austin. On the February 20 edition of Smackdown!, The Rock returned to WWE after a six month hiatus from wrestling (since SummerSlam). On that evening, he was having a confrontation with Hulk Hogan before their WrestleMania X8 rematch at No Way Out. At the Pay Per View, The Rock defeated hogan with the help of Vince McMahon. On the following night's edition of Raw, The Rock returned to the Raw brand in a 20-man Battle royal that would determine the opponent for the World Heavyweight Championship. Rock however, was unable to win after he was eliminated by Booker T; after the match, Rock criticized Steve Austin for being chosen as the Superstar of the Decade by the WWE fans in January, beginning the feud between Rock and Austin. The following week on Raw, Austin, who was on a long hiatus before returning that previous Sunday at No Way Out, made his WWE television return, as he cut a promo about the WWE fans, before he was interrupted by Rock, who challenged him to a match at WrestleMania because The Rock, himself, was obsessed of not beating Austin at a WrestleMania event by the time they fought at WrestleMania XV and WrestleMania X-Seven during a four year span. As soon as the challenge was made, Raw General manager, Eric Bischoff, announced that the following week on Raw, Rock would face Booker T in a match, and if he won, he would have the choice to face either Austin or Triple H at WrestleMania. On the March 10 edition of Raw, Rock, with Bischoff's approval, announced that he would pick his own opponent for later that night, which turned out to be The Hurricane, in hopes for Rock to gain an easy victory. However, Austin made his way down the entrance ramp, which distracted Rock and allowed Hurricane to Roll up Rock into a successful pinfall, which made the Austin-Rock match at WrestleMania official. On the March 24, and final edition of Raw leading into WrestleMania, Austin was banned from entering the arena that night. He managed to enter the arena and attack Rock, however, before Rock fled the ring.

Ashanti performing "America the Beautiful"
The secondary feud on the SmackDown! brand was between Hulk Hogan and Vince McMahon. One month prior at No Way Out, during a match between Hogan and The Rock, McMahon gave The Rock a chair, which he used to hit Hogan and pin him for the win. On the March 6 edition of SmackDown!, McMahon told Hogan that he hated him for leaving WWE (then known as the WWF) for Ted Turner's WCW and for testifying against him in the steroid trial in the 1990s. McMahon proceeded by challenging Hogan to a match at WrestleMania where if Hogan lost, he would have to retire from professional wrestling. Hogan accepted his challenge later that night. Two weeks later on the March 20 edition of SmackDown!, McMahon and Hogan had a contract signing for their match at WrestleMania. As Hogan was preparing to sign the contract, McMahon attacked with a steel chair from behind. Shortly afterward, McMahon hit Hogan several times with the chair in the head, causing him to bleed. McMahon then signed the contract and forced Hogan to sign with his blood.

Another feud on the Raw brand was between Triple H and Booker T, with the two feuding over the World Heavyweight Championship. Triple H won the title three months prior at Armageddon by defeating then-champion Shawn Michaels in a 3 Stages of Hell match. Since that event, Triple H had fought Scott Steiner during the following two pay per view events for the World's title. First was at the Royal Rumble, where Triple H got himself disqualified when he nailed Steiner with the Sledgehammer but retained the title. Then at No Way Out, he defeated Steiner by Pinfall to retain the title. On the February 24 edition of Raw, Booker won a 20-man Battle royal by last eliminating The Rock to become the number one contender to the World Heavyweight Championship at WrestleMania. On the March 3 episode of Raw, Triple H referred to Booker T as a joke that earns a World's title shot and also stated that WCW (Where Booker T became a five time WCW World Champion in) was also a joke. On the March 24 episode of Raw, Booker T & Goldust defeated Triple H & Ric Flair in a Tag team match.

Another feud from the Raw brand was the squabble over the WWE Women's Championship; the champion Victoria had captured the title from Trish Stratus back in November at Survivor Series. Then a month later at Armageddon, Victoria defeated Stratus and Jacqueline in a Triple threat match to retain the Women's title. Stratus and the returning Jazz had a match on Raw to determine who would challenge Victoria for the Championship at WrestleMania. During the match, Victoria entered the ring and hit both women with the title belt, earning a double disqualification. It was then announced that Victoria would defend the title against both Stratus and Jazz in a Triple Threat match at the pay-per-view.

A smaller feud, also from the Raw brand was between Chris Jericho and Shawn Michaels. When Michaels was a guest on Jericho's in-ring show The Highlight Reels, Jericho claimed he had idolised Michaels from a young age and that he had been his inspiration to become a wrestler. The feud had been ongoing for some time with Jericho sabotaging Michaels in the Royal Rumble after Michaels received the number at which Jericho wanted to enter. The feud would be settled as the two would face each other in a match at the pay-per-view.

Event

Before the event aired live on pay-per-view, Chief Morley and Lance Storm defeated Kane and Rob Van Dam via pinfall to retain the World Tag Team Championship in a taping of Sunday Night Heat. As the event began, Ashanti sang a rendition of "America the Beautiful". The first match that aired was a Cruiserweight Championship match between Rey Mysterio and the champion, Matt Hardy. The match began with back and forth action between the two wrestlers, until Hardy hit a Twist of Fate that got a near pinfall on Mysterio. Mysterio however, retaliated by hitting a 619 on Hardy, but as Mysterio delivered a West coast pop, Hardy ducked into a Roll-up that saw Hardy use the ring ropes for leverage and successfully pinned Mysterio, thus Hardy retained the Cruiserweight Championship.

An attendance record-setting 54,097 fans at Safeco Field for WrestleMania XIX
The next match was a tag team match between the team of The Undertaker and Nathan Jones against the team of The Big Show and A-Train. It was then announced that The Undertaker would have to face both Show and Train in a Handicap match. Both Show and Train had the advantage of The Undertaker in the beginning of the match, however late into the match, Jones entered the match and attacked Show, which allowed The Undertaker to deliver a Tombstone piledriver on A-Train into a successful pinfall, thus The Undertaker won the match and remained undefeated at WrestleMania.

The third match was a Triple threat Women's Championship match, between Jazz, Trish Stratus, and the champion, Victoria. Throughout the match, Jazz and Victoria would double team Stratus and Steven Richards, who was at ringside in Victoria's corner, would intervene in the match. As Jazz was thrown over the top rope onto ringside, however, Richards entered the ring with a steel chair and attempted to hit Stratus with it but missed and hit it off the ropes, allowing Stratus to do the Stratus Faction on him. Victoria attempted the widow's peak on Stratus who got out of it and hit Victoria with a chick kick, that led to a successful pinfall, thus Stratus won the match and the Women's Championship, tying the official number of reigns set by The Fabulous Moolah.

The next match was a triple threat Tag Team Championship match between the team of Rhyno and Chris Benoit, against the team of Los Guerreros (Chavo and Eddie Guerrero), and the champions, Team Angle (Shelton Benjamin and Charlie Haas). A non-stop action match, as all competitors participated in the match. Rhyno delivered a Gore on Chavo, however, where Benjamin tagged himself into the match and successfully pinned Chavo, thus Team Angle won the match and retained the Tag Team Championship.

Team Angle (Benjamin and Haas) faced off with Los Guerreros (Eddie and Chavo) and Rhino and Chris Benoit
The fifth match was the encounter of Chris Jericho and Shawn Michaels. Jericho had the advantage over Michaels in the beginning of the match, as he early on applied the Walls of Jericho onto Michaels. Late into the match, Michaels attempted to hit Jericho with Sweet chin music, however, Jericho countered it into a Walls of Jericho. After Michaels freed himself from Jericho's submission hold, Jericho attempted a suplex that Michaels countered into a roll-up that gave Michaels a successful pinfall, thus Michaels won the match.

The Rock vs. Steve Austin
Before the next match begun, a pillow fight took place between the team of Stacy Keibler and Torrie Wilson against the team of the Miller Lite catfight girls (Tanya Ballinger and Kitana Baker), which went to a no contest. The next match was a World Heavyweight Championship match between Booker T and the champion, Triple H (HHH). The match began with Booker in control of the match over HHH, however, Ric Flair, who was at ringside in HHH's corner, tossed Booker's knee into the ringside steel steps. The attack allowed HHH to work over Booker's leg, as he applied various submission holds onto Booker's leg including the Indian deathlock. Booker however retaliated and took control of the match; after he hit HHH with a Harlem legdrop, Booker grasped his knee in pain, which allowed HHH to recover and hit Booker with a Pedigree into a successful pinfall, thus Triple H won the match and retained the World Heavyweight Championship. The seventh match was a Street fight between Hulk Hogan and the WWE Chairman, Vince McMahon. Both Hogan and McMahon tested each other's strength in the beginning of the match, until McMahon tossed Hogan onto ringside. Hogan then countered a chairshot by McMahon into several of his own, that caused McMahon to bleed from the head. Late into the match, Roddy Piper interfered in the match as he hit Hogan with a pipe. Hogan however, later retaliated by hitting McMahon with a Big boot into a Leg drop and successfully pinned McMahon, thus Hogan won the match.

Angle and Lesnar after their WWE Championship match.
The next, and final match on the undercard, was the encounter of The Rock and Steve Austin. The match began with Austin and Rock brawling in the ring, which ended up at ringside. Throughout the match, Rock worked over Austin's leg, which included Rock applying a Sharpshooter on Austin. Rock then began to taunt Austin, as he put on his vest and imitated his taunts, which led to The Rock running into a Rock Bottom by Austin. Rock then retaliated by hitting Austin with a Stone Cold stunner. After he failed to pin Austin with the People's elbow, Rock then hit Austin with three Rock Bottoms that led to the Rock successfully pinning Austin, thus The Rock won the match.

The main event was a WWE Championship match between Brock Lesnar and the champion, Kurt Angle. The match began with Lesnar and Angle wrestling back and forth, until Angle countered a shoulder block into a German suplex. Lesnar would then attempt to retaliate by attempting to F-5 Angle, however, Angle countered it into an Ankle lock, that Lesnar was able to escape out of. As Lesnar escaped, Angle would attempt to deliver an Angle slam, however, Lesnar countered it into an F-5. Instead of covering Angle, Lesnar climbed to the top rope and hit a botched Shooting star press on Angle, which Angle covered for by going for the pin attempt and getting a two count. After Lesnar kicked out, Angle picked up Lesnar only to be hit with another F-5, Lesnar then successfully pinned Angle, winning the match and the WWE Championship.

Other on-screen talent
Role: Name:
Commentator Michael Cole
Jerry Lawler
Jim Ross
Tazz
Carlos Cabrera
Hugo Savinovich
Ring announcer Tony Chimel
Howard Finkel
Interviewer Jonathan Coachman
Referee Jack Doan
Earl Hebner
Nick Patrick
Chad Patton
Charles Robinson
Jim Korderas
Brian Hebner
Mike Chioda
Mike Sparks


Aftermath

On the SmackDown! edition after WrestleMania, SmackDown General Manager Stephanie McMahon announced Kurt Angle suffered a pulled hamstring and a neck injury, while Lesnar suffered multiple concussions. She later announced that a tournament would take place to determine the number one contender to Lesnar's WWE Championship. On the April 17 episode of Smackdown!, John Cena would become the number one contender after he defeated Chris Benoit in the tournament's final match. At Backlash, Lesnar defeated Cena to retain the WWE Championship. Lesnar would then feud with The Big Show, as he defeated him at Judgment Day to retain the WWE Championship in a Stretcher match. Lesnar would however lose the WWE Championship to Angle at Vengeance in a Triple threat match that also involved The Big Show. Lesnar then regained the WWE Championship from Angle on the September 18 edition of SmackDown!, in an Iron Man match winning 5-4.

On the April 3 edition of SmackDown!, Vince McMahon forced Hulk Hogan to leave WWE forever as a part of their storyline. On the May 1 edition of SmackDown!, "Mr. America" (who was in reality Hogan under a mask), made his debut on Piper's Pit, where McMahon promised to prove America was in reality Hogan. Involved in the feud was also, Zach Gowen, a one legged wrestler who was brought in to the feud by Mr. America. After multiple failed attempts to prove Mr. America was Hogan, however, McMahon succeeded on the July 3 edition of SmackDown!, after he aired footage of Mr. America unmasking and revealing himself to be Hogan. He then announced that Hogan was fired from WWE.

On the Raw edition after WrestleMania, Steve Austin was fired from the WWE in storyline by then-Raw General Manager Eric Bischoff due to medical reasons. Austin was then re-hired by WWE CEO, Linda McMahon, however, as Co-Raw General Manager on April 29.) Later that night, The Rock taunted Austin for his firing; which proceeded to Rock challenging another superstar in a match. Goldberg would answer the Rock's challenge by stating that "you're [The Rock is] next", which led to Goldberg spear The Rock. On the April 14 edition of Raw, The Rock would accept a challenge made by Goldberg, which he rejected a week earlier, in which the two would wrestle each other at Backlash. At Backlash, Goldberg successfully pinned Rock. After the match, The Rock gave a farewell speech in which he stated that he was to take a sabbatical from professional wrestling.

Results

# Results Stipulations Times
Lance Storm and Chief Morley (c) defeated Kane and Rob Van Dam. Tag team match for the World Tag Team Championship. 10:00
1 Matt Hardy (c) (with Shannon Moore) defeated Rey Mysterio. Singles match for the WWE Cruiserweight Championship 05:39
2 The Undertaker defeated The Big Show and A-Train. Handicap match 09:45
3 Trish Stratus defeated Victoria (c) (with Steven Richards) and Jazz. Triple Threat match for the WWE Women's Championship 07:17
4 Team Angle (Shelton Benjamin and Charlie Haas) (c) defeated Los Guerreros (Eddie and Chavo Guerrero) and Chris Benoit and Rhyno. Triple Threat match for the WWE Tag Team Championship 08:46
5 Shawn Michaels defeated Chris Jericho. Singles match 22:33
6 Stacy Keibler and Torrie Wilson fought the Miller Lite Catfight Girls (Kitana Baker and Tanya Ballinger) to a no contest. Pillow fight n/a
7 Triple H (c) (with Ric Flair) defeated Booker T. Singles match for the World Heavyweight Championship 18:47
8 Hulk Hogan defeated Vince McMahon. Street Fight 20:48
9 The Rock defeated Steve Austin. Singles match 17:53
10 Brock Lesnar defeated Kurt Angle (c). Singles match for the WWE Championship 21:04


Notes

  • A documentary entitled The Mania of WrestleMania was filmed live during the event and released the following year. It was the first production from WWE Films.


References



External links




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