Sandy Scott passed away this morning. I never saw any of his work, but still feel the need to raise a glass to the memory of a former wrestler.

Also, Merlin Olsen has passed away. I always knew him from ‘Little House on the Prairie’, but his brother, Ted, was a long time jobber in the WWE known as Moondog Spot. Ted had tried to convince Merlin to join him as a tag-team after football, but the NBC contract for Little House was more tempting.

I’ll miss him.

On to happier news (I think…), Wrestlemania is coming up soon. The lineup is shaping up as follows:

— Shawn Michaels vs. The Undertaker – No DQ, No Count-out match (added 3/8 Raw) – Michaels’s Career vs. Taker’s Undefeated Streak – This match has been built up amazingly well. I went from outright refusing to care to totally hooked in. I’m curious if these two will really take each other to their limits. I’ve heard Taker’s going to take more time off after this, as is Michaels, so who knows what outcome this will have?

— WWE champion Batista vs. John Cena – WWE Title match – It’s been a strong build-up in such a short amount of time, but Batista’s been portrayed the right way in this feud of jealousy over Cena’s popularity. Cena isn’t the most proficient wrestler, but I enjoy what he does and am interested in how this develops.

— World Hvt. champion Chris Jericho vs. Edge – WWE World Hvt. Title match – This is gonna be good. Anything Jericho does has my full attention. He’s been amazing at everything he’s done for over the last year and I can’t get enough of him.

— Bret Hart vs. Vince McMahon – This has been poorly laid out. The “injury” to Bret’s leg from a female driver was so pointless. The story that was real and already there would have been enough, even though many newer viewers only recently watch WWE would have no idea who Bret Hart was and why he and McMahon don’t get along. You’d think being Mr. McMahon would be enough.

— Triple H vs. Sheamus – I don’t care. There’s been too little build-up for no good reason. At least there’s no title involved.

— Unified tag champions Big Show & The Miz vs. John Morrison & R-Truth – Unified tag title match – I love the antics of The Miz, but Morrison and R-Truth? Really? It might be good, but I’m not invested in the build-up. It feels obligatory, since WWE never is really that high on tag teams anymore.

— Money in the Bank Ladder match
Raw brand: Christian, Evan Bourne, MVP, Jack Swagger
Smackdown brand: Dolph Ziggler, Kane, Shelton Benjamin, Matt Hardy

These are always good. There should be enough action and good wrestlers involved to keep an interesting pace, even with slower paced people like Kane.

Other potential matches to be added to the PPV

— Match involving Legacy – Randy Orton, Ted DiBiase, and Cody Rhodes – Depending on what match is done, it could be good. If Orton plays the face vs. them both as heels, it would be strong.

— Divas match involving the Raw and Smackdown brands. Meh. Unless there’s a singles match between Mickie James and Beth Phoenix or something similar, I don’t care. WWE! Hire more Shimmer women! Let them actually be significant! Beth Phoenix is awesome, but your continual acquisition of giggly eye-candy is infuriating. If you want to parade them around, fine. Great for your “PG” attitude. If you’re going to have female wrestlers, find real wrestlers!

— Intercontinental champion Drew McIntyre possible title defense. – Who? Kidding, but not much. This guy’s not doing anything significant to me. And his newest theme music and overly dramatic entrance? Forced and lame! 😛

As always, I look forward to the event. It’s the best WWE offers all year long, or so they try. I do hope it can deliver.

I’ll be catching it with my Comic Geek Speak Super Show buddies somewhere around Reading, PA, so I’m excited to see how this wrestling crowd compares to the East Lansing scene I usually converse with.