April 12 (UPI) -- WrestleMania 37, WWE's biggest event of the year, concluded Sunday night at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, where live fans were viewing the action for the first time in over a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The sports-entertainment extravaganza took place over two nights for the second year in a row on Saturday and Sunday. New champions were crowned, legends were born and history was made.
Universal Champion Roman Reigns had the tall task of defending his title against 2021 Men's Royal Rumble member Edge and Daniel Bryan in a Triple Threat match. The marquee bout was the main event of night two of WrestleMania 37.
Reigns was accompanied to the ring by his special counsel Paul Heyman and cousin Jey Uso, who quickly got involved in the match by Superkicking both Edge and Daniel Bryan. Uso's involvement was legal due to Triple Threat matches containing no disqualification rules.
Edge took out Uso momentarily by sending him head-first into the steel steps with a DDT. Reigns and Edge both took each other out with a Spear and Reigns later smashed Bryan through the announcer's table with a Powerbomb. The champ, who was standing on the steel steps, was speared off of them by Edge.
The Rated-R Superstar then took a page out of Bryan's book and applied the Crossface submission hold onto Reigns, while using a broken piece of a steel chair. Bryan returned to the action and simultaneously applied his version of the Crossface named the Yes Lock onto Reigns. Bryan and Edge then started head-butting each other to stop their holds.
Edge was able to Spear Bryan and then Reigns, placing him in control. Bryan pulled the referee out of the ring after Edge tried to pin Reigns, sending the Hall of Famer into a rage. Edge grabbed multiple steel chairs and whacked his opponents multiple times before he delivered his most devastating the move, the Con-Chair-To, to Bryan.
Uso was able to return and momentarily save Reigns before he ate a Spear from Edge. Reigns recovered and performed a Spear followed by a Con-Chair-To of his own to Edge. Reigns covered both Edge and Bryan to win the match and remain Universal Champion.
Raw Women's Champion Asuka defended her title against Rhea Ripley in a highly-physical match. Ripley was confident during the bout and would slap and talk trash to Asuka.
The Empress of Tomorrow planted Ripley with a DDT off the ring apron, sending her down to the ringside area. Asuka tried a number of submission holds on Ripley, but she could not never keep The Nightmare down for long.
Ripley won the match in decisive fashion after dodging a kick from Asuka and slamming her down with the Riptide to earn the three count and become the new, Raw Women's Champion. Asuka's reign has ended after 230 days as champion.
Intercontinental Champion Big E, the hometown hero of Tampa, defended his title against heated rival Apollo Crews in a Nigerian Drum Fight. The match had no rules and the ring was surrounded by weapons such as kendo sticks and tables. Big E came to the ring as rapper Wale performed his entrance song.
Big E and Crews started the match by both exiting the ring and grabbing kendo sticks. The grapplers swung the kendo sticks at each other multiple times until Big E gained the advantage.
Crews, after taking control, placed Big E on the steel steps and attempted to throw the other half of the steps onto the champ. Big E was luckily able to escape and retaliated by slamming Crews into the steps. Big E was later poised to win the bout after landing his finishing move, The Big Ending.
Big E started to pin Crews but he was suddenly attacked by Daba-Kato, who hasn't been seen on WWE programming in months. Daba-Kato was dressed in a military uniform and knocked Big E out with a Chokeslam. Daba-Kato then moved Crews onto Big E to pin him, making Crews the new Intercontinental Champion.
Zayn's special guest for the match was YouTuber, boxer and podcaster Logan Paul, who viewed the action from the announcer's desk. Paul was brought into the mix after he took interest in Zayn's conspiracy theory and wanted to see if he was telling the truth about how WWE prevents him from winning matches.
The closing moments of the match featured Owen's performing a Fisherman Suplex from the top rope before Zayn was able to connect with the Helluva Kick. Zayn tried for a second one but Owens recovered in time to hit Zayn with two Superkicks followed by a Stunner, which was enough to claim victory.
Paul checked on Zayn afterwards and congratulated Owens, which angered Zayn. Paul pushed Zayn to the mat and held up Owens' hand in victory. Owens didn't like being touched and took the internet personality out with a Stunner.
WrestleMania night two was kicked off with The Fiend facing off against Randy Orton. The Fiend, who had been set on fire by The Viper in December, was fully healed at the event with his mask restored.
The Fiend's partner Alexa Bliss summoned him to the ring by winding up a giant jack-in-the-box. The Fiend immediately leaped at Orton and the match got underway.
The Fiend and Orton battled outside the ring where The Fiend was unfazed by Orton slamming him into the announcer's desk. Orton, back inside the ring, performed multiple Drapping DDT's, which also couldn't stop the demonic monster.
The Fiend avoided an RKO and applied the Mandible Claw as he got ready to deliver his finishing maneuver, the Sister Abigail. Fire then erupted from the ring posts as Bliss emerged from the jack-in-the-box wearing a crown that poured black ooze down her face.
The Fiend was distracted by Bliss, allowing Orton to land the RKO and win the match. The Fiend quickly recovered and stared at Bliss until both of them disappeared after the lights in the arena went out. The mysterious moment possible hinted at Bliss becoming Sister Abigail, The Fiend's long-lost mentor.
Other moments from WrestleMania 37 night two included Women's Tag Team Champions Shayna Baszler and Nia Jax successfully defending their titles against Natalya and Tamina; Sheamus defeating Riddle to become the new United States Champion; and Hall of Famers Nikki and Brie Bella of the Bella Twins tossing Bayley down the entrance ramp as she bothered WrestleMania hosts Titus O'Neil and Hulk Hogan.
The first night of WrestleMania 37 featured Bianca Belair defeating Sasha Banks to become the new SmackDown Women's Champion in the main event. This was the first time ever that two Black women competed at WrestleMania for a championship.
Latin music star Bad Bunny showed off his wrestling skills when he and Damian Priest defeated The Miz and John Morrison. Bad Bunny earned the praise of many in the professional wrestling world by performing a number of impressive moves, setting a new bar for celebrity matches.
Other moments from WrestleMania 37 night one included WWE Champion Bobby Lashley successfully defending his title against Drew McIntyre; Natalya and Tamina winning a Tag Team turmoil match to face Jax and Baszler on night two; Cesaro defeating Seth Rollins; AJ Styles and Omos defeating Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods of The New to become the new Raw Tag Team Champions; and Braun Strowman defeating Shane McMahon in a Steel Cage match.