Grandest stage of them all

It felt like one big dream.  

After being in Dallas for World Wrestling Entertainment's WrestleMania 32 weekend, it was time for the real reason people traveled from around the world -- the event itself.

If they can’t be there in person, millions watch at home or from wherever they can find a TV set. WrestleMania is the biggest event on WWE's calendar.

It's the one event where, even if someone doesn't follow wrestling regularly, they watch this annual event.

As Parker Schmidt, who traveled with me, and I woke up around 6:30 a.m., there already was a buzz in the air.

Everyone has already in the hotel lobby, ready to start what would be a day that will forever be etched in history.

While most people were fired up about WrestleMania 32, Schmidt and I were more worried about getting to the morning Axxess session at the Kay Bailey Convention Center.

Let's not forget that WrestleMania 32 was still hours away.

We wanted to get to the session early so that we would be the first few people in the building. Especially because Schmidt really wanted to meet Brie and Nikki Bella, who are known as the Bella twins.

The Bella twins are not only two of WWE's female talents, but also are reality TV personalities, starring on The E! Network's Total Divas.

Schmidt and his wife, Katie, are huge supporters of the show. As soon as people were allowed to enter the Axxess session, I could see that everyone was going towards one station, which was where the line for the Bellas was.

Liong talking to Sgt. Slaughter

Liong talking to Sgt. Slaughter

Schmidt and I rushed over and there already were hundreds of people in line.

I was in shock.

“What the . . .,” I said. “Where did all these people come from?”

“I know, dude,” Schmidt said. “There's already so many people in line. We won't get to see them. Not worth waiting and not even knowing it'll get cut off. Like, look at this line. Crazy. Let's go for someone else.”

We ended up meeting A New Day, which is a stable consisting of Big E Langston, Zavier Woods, and Kofi Kingston.

 Along with that, Schmidt and I went to see WWE legend Sgt. Slaughter along with Samoa Joe and Tyler Breeze, who are currently in NXT, WWE's developmental program.

We left the building around 11 a.m., which was before the session even ended.

That way, Schmidt and I could head back to the hotel and grab some lunch.

Buses were scheduled to pick up people and head to AT&T Stadium in Arlington, where WrestleMania 32 was to be held, at 2 p.m. The last thing we wanted was to be in a rush.

Once we got on the bus, I just sat in my seat beside Schmidt, all quiet. I was trying to imagine what it was going to be like, how I was going to feel.

I asked myself: “Am I really on a bus on my way to WrestleMania 32? Really?”

I started thinking of all the possible finishes and stories that could be told in the matches on the card and what a huge night this was going to be. About an hour went by, and I was in my own little zone.

It finally clicked with me that we had arrived at AT&T Stadium. When I got off the bus with Schmidt, I thought that there wasn't going to be much of a distance to an entrance to the building.

That wasn't the case at all.

AT&T Stadium prior to the start of WrestleMania 32

AT&T Stadium prior to the start of WrestleMania 32

We didn't know which gate to enter, even with thousands of people trying to get to the same place. 

Eventually, we found our way in and were actually one of the first few in the building.

We showed the supervisors our tickets. They told us that we needed to get a wristband in order to be allowed to get down to our seats.

Wristbands were getting handed out at a certain section and, again, Schmidt and I had no idea where we were going.

Once we did, the building was so massive that it was a journey just to get to our seats.

When I actually got to sit down in my seat, I just took a minute to look around the stadium. There aren’t words to describe it. One would need to be there to truly understand how incredible that place is.

It was then when I spotted Roger Sportsnet's Jackie Redmond and former WWE referee Jimmy Konderas.

“Mr. Konderas!” I said, trying to get his attention. “Mr. Konderas!”

Jackie Redmond, Dickson Liong and Jimmy Konderas

Jackie Redmond, Dickson Liong and Jimmy Konderas

Konderas couldn't hear me, but Redmond did. She helped me call him over. It was great to meet him.

That was the second time I saw Redmond, too.

“You guys again!” she said.

Once the show started, I felt like I had entered another world for a few minutes. Yes, I was at WrestleMania 32, but there was a particular reason, too.

Are celebrity crushes still a thing? Well, I have one. I've always been a supporter of Fifth Harmony, a five-piece girl band, especially Camila Cabello. She's so cute. So adorable.

WWE announced on March 21 that the group was scheduled to perform 'America the Beautiful' at WrestleMania 32 to start the show.

I actually sent out a tweet that read the following:

Just two days later, for whatever reason, I decided to send Cabello a tweet.

I knew the second I tweeted it that I wasn't going to hear the end of it. Of course, I didn't care.

In fact, when Schmidt and I were on our way to Seattle before leaving for Dallas, he had his iPodconnected to the car.

Songs were on shuffle.

Then all of the sudden, one of Fifth Harmony's hit songs, 'Sledgehammer', came through the speakers. I had no idea Schmidt listened to Fifth Harmony too.

“Is that . . . is that coming through the radio or your iPod?” I said, taken aback.

“It's my iPod, man,” Schmidt said. “Come on, I know you're all over this. I saw those tweets. 'Congratulations to Fifth Harmony.' I saw you. Come on, sing it man.”

Schmidt went to turn up the volume and I just couldn't stop laughing.

Fifth Harmony performing 'America the Beautiful' 

Fifth Harmony performing 'America the Beautiful' 

So when Cabello, along with the rest of Fifth Harmony, came out to perform ‘America the Beautiful', if someone was paying attention, they could probably see little hearts in my eyes.

Oh, in case anyone was wondering, I never got a reply to my tweet from Cabello.

By the chance that she ends up reading this story, my phone number is 604-3. . . never mind. Bad idea. My direct message inbox on Twitter is always open, though.

At least, I think it is.

Enough about that.

The match card for WrestleMania 32 looked like this:

Roman Reigns vs. Triple H -- WWE World Heavyweight Championship Match

The Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal

The Undertaker vs. Shane McMahon -- Hell in a Cell Match

Charlotte vs. Sasha Banks vs. Becky Lynch -- WWE Women's Championship Triple Threat Match

Brock Lesnar vs Dean Ambrose

The League of Nations vs The New Day

Chris Jericho vs. AJ Styles

Kevin Owens vs. Zack Ryder, Dolph Ziggler, Sami Zayn, The Miz, Stardust and Sin Cara -- Intercontinental Championship Ladder Match

There were surprises the entire show . . . especially with most of the finishes.

I had Kevin Owens retaining the Intercontinental championship in the ladder match.

But he didn't.

Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens on a ladder

Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens on a ladder

Zack Ryder won.

Schmidt, who is a huge Ryder supporter, went absolutely crazy in excitement while I stood in disbelief. Ryder was the last person I expected to win the match.

When it came to Chris Jericho going up against AJ Styles, I thought for sure Styles would come out with the victory.


Because Styles had just made his WWE debut at the Royal Rumble in January. A victory at WrestleMania for Styles would be a moment for fans to remember for a lifetime.

Jericho, on the other hand, has been with the company for years and has always been established as a top star.

Jericho got the pin and left with the victory.

“What the . . .,” I said to Schmidt.

Chris Jericho during  his entrance at WrestleMania 32

Chris Jericho during  his entrance at WrestleMania 32

“I guess Jericho is sticking around for a bit.”

Jericho is signed to a part-time contract with WWE. That's because, aside from wrestling, he is the lead singer for Fozzy, a heavy-metal band.

What happened next was by far, my favourite moment of the night . . . something I'll never forget.

WWE legends Shawn Michaels, Mick Foley and 'Stone Cold' Steve Austin all made surprise appearances and came out to a thunderous crowd.

No, that wasn't a typo.

Stone Cold, Shawn Michaels and Mick Foley

Stone Cold, Shawn Michaels and Mick Foley

Austin is the reason I started watching professional wrestling. He's my favourite wrestler of all-time. To see him, Michaels and Foley in the ring together, even if it was only for a few minutes, brought back so many memories.

Things just picked up from there.

I was really invested in the women's triple-threat match. Earlier in the night, Lita, one of the best female wrestlers in the history of the company, came out and announced that there was going to be a new championship introduced.

For eight years, WWE's female talents were called Divas.

WrestleMania 32 was the end of that.

Whoever won the triple-threat match between Charlotte, Sasha Banks and Becky Lynch was going to be crowned the new WWE women's champion.

The championship looked similar to the main one for the male talent, which is the way it should be.

I never liked the term 'Divas' either.

Dare I say that the women are just as talented, if not moreso, than the male talent. A new era has begun for women's wrestling, which is great to see.

Sasha Banks, Charlotte, and Becky Lynch

Sasha Banks, Charlotte, and Becky Lynch

I really wanted Banks to win. She had an amazing entrance, with Snoop Dogg, her cousin, rapping her theme song.

Banks, along with Lynch and Charlotte, put on what was, at least to me, the match of the night. It ended when Charlotte put Lynch in a figure-eight leg lock.

“No, no, no, no, no,” I said to myself. “Don't tap.”

Banks was outside of the ring, laid out.

Just as she got up and was about to re-enter the ring and break up the hold, Ric Flair, who is Charlotte's father and was at ringside, held Banks' legs, preventing her from doing so.

Lynch couldn't hang on any longer, and submitted. Charlotte won.

I booed loudly.

Another match that I was really looking forward to was the Hell in a Cell between Shane McMahon and The Undertaker.

The entrances alone gave me chills.

To see McMahon come out with his children while prop bills were falling from the rafters. . . I mean, what a sight. People were more concerned about catching the bills than watching the entrance.

I thought that was hilarious.

If that wasn't enough, the second I heard gongs for The Undertaker's entrance, I could feel goosebumps. I couldn't believe that I was seeing.

During this match, I had great concern for McMahon.

Near the end of the match, Undertaker was laying on one of the announcers’ tables, when McMahon started climbing to the top of the Hell in a Cell. He jumped, but The Undertaker had moved out of the way just in time.

I was speechless.

I screamed as McMahon jumped from the top of the Hell in a Cell, but as soon as I heard the crash of the table breaking, it took my breath away.

There was another moment I will never forget.

The Undertaker won.

Undertaker and Shane McMahon inside Hell in a Cell

Undertaker and Shane McMahon inside Hell in a Cell

Honestly, I didn't care who was going to come out as the victor in the match.

I just truly appreciated it.

The Undertaker is 51-years-old. To see him perform at this level is unbelievable.

No one knows when he is going to retire, and I'm just grateful I got to watch him live before he does.

Will McMahon wrestle again? Who knows?

To see him jump off the Hell in a Cell and risk his life, well, there are no words for that.

The night, still, at this point, was far from over.

Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson came out to an electrifying roar from the crowd. He came out make an announcement. The record previous attendance was 93,173 at WrestleMania 3 inside the confines of the Pontiac Silverdome in Pontiac, Mich.

The Rock announced that the record had been broken. What was the attendance for WrestleMania 32? 101,763. Outstanding, isn't it?

The Rock announcing an attendance of 101,763

The Rock announcing an attendance of 101,763

What a night it was, as I expected it to be. 

When Schmidt and I got on the bus to return to the hotel, I was quiet again. Even though some of the finishes had me confused, I felt extremely grateful to have been a part of WrestleMania 32.

Schmidt and I were looking forward to what the next chapter had in store, and we didn't have to wait long to find out.

NEXT: Monday Night Raw