By Louie Dee
WWE descended on Trump Tower for the WrestleMania 23 press conference Wednesday, and many wondered what would happen when Mr. McMahon and Donald Trump’s egos collided one last time before April 1. WWE fans found out, as they bore witness to “The Donald” delivering a billion-dollar bitch slap of his own to WWE Chairman Mr. McMahon at the end of the event.
Several WWE Superstars and Divas spoke at the press conference, including WWE Champion John Cena, Shawn Michaels, Women’s Champion Melina, Playboy cover girl Ashley and World Heavyweight Champion Batista. But when his time came, The Animal kept his words short, instead pumping the fans up for what was to come: battling billionaires.
And boy, did those billionaires live up to their billing.
Mr. McMahon spoke first, casting the first stone by referencing Trump’s rocky financial past.
“Nice building,” the Chairman posited. “I wonder if it’s for sale.”
He continued on, saying that Trump symbolized greed and he couldn’t stand people like that, so it would be his great pleasure to embarrass Trump at WrestleMania.
“I can’t wait to see the look on his face (after Lashley loses to Umaga),” the Chairman crowed before walking over to a barber’s chair next to the podium. “I’m going to snatch Donald Trump, strap him down into this chair, and SHAVE HIS HEAD!”
Umaga made a quick appearance, but left before Trump came out to a huge ovation from the thousands of WWE fans packed into the Trump Tower. He quickly made it clear that the animosity between the billionaires was mutual.
“This morning, I was asked by a major television station if Vince McMahon and I are friends,” he revealed. “We used to be, but I don’t like him one bit lately, and that’s the truth. He treats people like crap.”
The WWE fans (and some of the Superstars) nodded in agreement, as Trump reminded everyone that he is taller, better looking, richer and stronger than the Chairman before introducing his representative: ECW World Champion Bobby Lashley.
Lashley kept his words short and sweet, providing a couple guarantees for April 1.
“Mr. Trump, I won’t let you down,” he said, before turning to the Chairman. “And Mr. McMahon, I guarantee you that after WrestleMania 23, you WILL leave the arena bald.”
Tensions were already running high, but once special referee “Stone Cold” Steve Austin came to the podium, everything escalated. After reminding everyone that it would be his way or the proverbial highway on April 1, Stone Cold invited the billionaires down for one last photo opportunity while they both had hair.
Photographers got their opportunity, but then they got more than they could ask for. Mr. McMahon offered a handshake, but pulled away before The Donald could complete the gesture. So, when the WWE Chairman tugged at Trump’s jacket and tie, the real estate mogul responded by slapping Mr. McMahon in the face.
The heated Chairman had to be restrained by a member of Trump’s security team, who was barely able to keep the frenzied McMahon at bay. In one last act of defiance, Mr. McMahon turned and went to slap Lashley, but that only enraged the ECW World Champion, who grabbed the Chairman and tossed him over a table. At that point, it was clear that Mr. McMahon had enough, as he stormed off the press conference set. The event came to an abrupt end at that point, as stunned WWE fans in attendance still could not believe what they had just seen.
The issues between McMahon & Umaga and Trump & Lashley have been building like a tidal wave ever since Trump made his WrestleMania challenge. A little bit of that wave smashed into Trump Tower on Wednesday…but what will happen when the wave breaks at Ford Field on Sunday?