(NEXSTAR) — Celebrity wrestlers largely stole the show during a 2-day WrestleMania at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas that saw “Jackass” stuntman Johnny Knoxville, YouTube star Logan Paul, and sports broadcaster Pat McAfee compete in the ring.
The biggest shock of all: 76-year-old WWE CEO Vince McMahon challenged one of those celebrities, former NFL punter McAfee, to an impromptu match and defeated his much younger opponent.
Here’s how each celebrity fared in their WrestleMania matches:
McAfee, 34, arguably put on the top celebrity performance of the weekend in a victory against cocky newcomer Austin Theory. However, that scheduled match became an afterthought after McMahon, who was sitting at ringside, challenged McAfee to an impromptu match.
With the help of constant interference from Theory, McMahon defeated McAfee by pinfall. As McMahon and his protégé celebrated, the glass shattered and longtime rival “Stone Cold” Steve Austin marched down to the ring.
After beating up Theory, Austin offered McMahon a beer. As you might expect, Austin stunned the WWE boss before celebrating with a few more cold ones.
Before the beer bash, McAfee showed off outstanding athleticism throughout the scheduled match with Theory. He shocked his opponent and the Sunday crowd of more than 77,000 when he backflipped off the top rope before leaping back to the top and superplexing Theory.
McAfee is no stranger to the wrestling ring. He had a handful of standout wrestling matches on WWE’s NXT program over the last few years. McAfee, who is a commentator for Smackdown on FOX, recently had McMahon on his podcast for a rare interview. During the segment, McMahon offered the opportunity for McAfee to fulfill a dream and compete at WrestleMania against a competitor of his choosing.
Few could’ve predicted McMahon would end up physically entering the mix.
Knoxville managed to win an “anything goes match” against wrestler Sami Zayn during the Sunday night edition of WrestleMania.
In the match, Knoxville was suplexed through a table, smacked with a crutch, and crushed with a cookie sheet. He gained control of the contest when members of his Jackass crew, including Chris Pontius and Wee Man, interfered in the match.
At one point, Wee Man brought the crowd to its feet as he body slammed Zayn.
Knoxville scored a strike after sending a bowling ball sailing directly into Zayn’s split legs. He followed that up by tossing Zayn into a table covered with mousetraps.
In what was likely the strangest match finish in WrestleMania history, Knoxville scored the pinfall after trapping Zayn inside a giant human-sized mousetrap.
This match came about after Knoxville’s appearance in the 2022 Royal Rumble match. Zayn took exception to Knoxville receiving the spotlight and regularly reminded him he didn’t belong in the wrestling world.
After Zayn crashed the rep carpet premiere of Knoxville’s movie, the stuntman and actor returned the favor by costing Zayn his Intercontinental Championship in a match on SmackDown against Ricochet. This prompted Zayn to make the challenge for a match at WrestleMania.
After being on the losing side of a match against Bad Bunny and Damian Priest at last year’s WrestleMania, The Miz vowed to be victorious with a celebrity partner at this year’s event. He did just that with tag team partner Logan Paul in a Saturday night battle against legendary luchador Rey Mysterio and his son Dominik.
Paul, a YouTube star and celebrity boxer, looked like a natural during his debut match. He had no trouble tossing his opponents around — even executing some signature moves of Rey Mysterio’s best friend, the late Eddie Guerrero.
In the end, The Miz was able to hit his signature Skull Crusher Finale to earn his team the win.
Surprisingly, Miz turned on his partner after the match. After attacking Paul, Miz left the ringside area mocking Paul as he went to the backstage area.
Paul first appeared in WWE in 2021 where he was initially positioned as a crowd favorite. It quickly became clear the audience didn’t see him as a traditional “good guy” performer leading to Kevin Owens giving him a stunner to a rousing ovation at WrestleMania 37 in Tampa. He returned to WWE a few weeks ago to kickstart the feud with the Mysterios ahead of his second WrestleMania appearance.
Gallery: Celebrities at WrestleMania
In 2021, music superstar Bad Bunny set the bar for celebrity performances putting on what’s been regarded as the top celebrity wrestling match in WrestleMania history. He did that against WWE mainstay and former champion The Miz.
Arguably the most successful celebrity appearance took place at WrestleMania 23 in Detroit, Michigan when then-TV host Donald Trump and WWE owner Vince McMahon took center stage in a hair vs. hair contest. The 2007 event ended with record pay per view purchases and McMahon shaved bald. One of wrestling’s top acts, “Stone Cold” Steve Austin, served as the special guest referee.
WrestleMania Sunday notes
- Roman Reigns defeated Brock Lesnar to become WWE’s Unified Champion.
- Edge defeated AJ Styles with a massive spear after Damian Priest provided a distraction at ringside.
- Randy Orton and Matt Riddle successfully defended their RAW tag team titles over Alpha Academy and the Street Profits. After the match, NCAA champion wrestler Gable Steveson confronted Chad Gable tossing him with an overhead belly-to-belly suplex.
- Former champion Bobby Lashley defeated the 7’3″ giant Omos after two spears.
- Sasha Banks and Naomi captured the Women’s Tag Team Championships in a fatal 4-way match.
WrestleMania Saturday notes
- Steve Austin made his long-awaited return to the ring defeating Kevin Owens in a no-holds barred match.
- Charlotte Flair defeated “The Baddest Woman on the Planet” Ronda Rousey by pinfall to retain her Smackdown Women’s Championship.
- Bianca Belair captured the RAW Women’s Championship defeating champ Becky Lynch.
- Rick Boogs suffered a serious leg injury in his WrestleMania debut. Boogs was unable to finish the match. The show’s announcers confirmed he’d need surgery.
- On Friday night, wrestling legend The Undertaker was inducted into WWE’s Hall of Fame as part of WrestleMania weekend. He appeared in front of the crowd on Saturday and received a standing ovation.