Monday, January 26, 2015

Royal Rumble, Come and Gone...What Happened?

Yesterday was the 2015 Royal Rumble, and in my last blog update, I made some wild prediction.  I'll be honest, I felt pretty good about them, so how did I do?
Dean Ambrose and Roman Reigns, WWE
Dean Ambrose and Roman Reigns, WWE
Photo Credit: Flickr Creative Commons License by Megan Elice Meadows


New Day

Match #1 was Kofi Kingston and Big E of New Day, versus Cesaro and Tyson Kidd.  First off, I thought it was a six-man tag-team match, but I was wrong right there.  It was just a tag-team.

I predicted New Day would beat their rivals will plenty of cheating to go around.  I was incorrect, as Cesaro and Kidd took the match, however, there was a bit of cheating.

But what I really predicted was that this match wouldn't matter, and I was right.  The Philly wrestling fans booed New Day, and when the match was over, and they lost, it was like it never happened.

The Ascension vs New Age Outlaws

This one I got right.  I picked The Ascension, and they took out the not so New Age Outlaws, who catered quite well to the Philly crowd, but were dominated in a short match with the colorful young upstarts.

However, I'm still of the opinion that The Ascension is a sideshow that won't get much respect, unless they can take on the Usos, and win.

The Usos vs The Miz and Mizdow

Speak of the devil, The Usos are really the only cool horse in the tag-team race, at this point.  Miz and Mizdow put up their typical bafoonary, as expected.  Mizdow never really got in the match, and The Usos defended their tag-team championship belts.

Again, I love the Usos high-flying, but without a rival that makes any sense, they're only as good as their competition.  Is The Ascension the rival they're looking for?  Was this a set up for Wrestlemania?  Maybe...But who knows.

That's two-for-three, so far, but that's the last match I predicted correctly.

Paige and Natalya vs The Bella Twins

Natalya and Paige, hold up Brie Bella, WWE
Natalya and Paige, hold up Brie Bella, WWE
Photo Credit: Flickr Creative Commons License by Dave White
In a short match, as is usual with the divas, the Bella Twins, took down Paige and Natalya.  It was a little disappointing, because I thought Paige was the big up-and-comer of this match, and this was a chance for her to shine, but she did't get much screen time at all.

Instead, Natalya battled the Bella's, nearly on her own, as the twins tagged back and forth, keeping the blond Canadien girl under control.  There was a short battle between Brie and Paige, but not much to say.  

I also thought Paige was the bad girl of this bunch, and I expected more cheating from her, but the UK Goth didn't do much out of control.  The Bella's looked more out of control than her.  It was a little disappointing.

Still, I'm hopeful this will just fuel the feud between the divas.

Triple Threat Match, Brock Lesnar vs John Cena vs Mr Money in the Bank, Seth Rollins

This match was off the chain.  It was well worth the disappointment on who won, for all the carnage that was caused.

The Philly fans seemed thrilled with Lesnar, and even a little with Rollins, but they booed Cena.  That was surprising enough that even one of the commentators said something.

The match had everything--AAs, F5s, curb-stomps, Lesnar was thrown by Cena through a baracade, and then set up on the announcers table, for Rollins to launch himself off the turn buckle, and into Lesnar's chest, breaking the table.

It looked like a two man race, with Lesnar out, and Paul Heyman shouting for a medic.  They wheeled out a gurney to carry off the wounded defending champ, as Rollins and Cena traded pin chances, and big moves, including Cena's five-knuck shuffle, that garnered boos from the crowd.

But then, Lesnar appeared, from the apron, took out Cena, then Rollins, and pinned Rollins in the middle of the ring, to retain his title for another day.

It was awesome!

30-Man Royal Rumble Match

This was the first time I'd ever seen a Royal Rumble, and I didn't really know what to expect, but I have to say, I thought it was a little lame.  It was so long, and so many guys came in that just shouldn't have been there, like Diamond Dallas Page who looked like he just came in from an old folks home.

Or the Boogeyman, who spent about 30-seconds posturing, and trying to out freak-out Bray Wyatt, before Wyatt finally dispatched him with a single move.  Or what about The Miz, and Mizdow, who had their little tiff at the side of the ring, only to be thrown out in under 10-seconds, each.

I guess the biggest loser of all came when Titus O'Neill trash talked his way down the ramp, and into the ring, only to be tossed right out, in under 4-seconds.  Poor Titus just can't get a break.  There were others I can't really remember, but to be honest, there were so many moving parts to this, it was hard to keep track.

I had made my prediction that Daniel Bryan would come out victorious, so when he entered at #11, and only lasted until about #17, I was a little heart broken.  So much so, that I couldn't really enjoy my real favorite guy in the match, which was Dean Ambrose.

I knew Ambrose wouldn't win, but I like his whole disheveled look, as if he just woke up in a gutter, realizing there was a fight, and charged in with reckless abandon to help out his friends.

It came down to Ambrose and Roman Reigns, the old Shield buddies, versus Big Show and Kane.  Ambrose would be taken out first, leaving Reigns to be man-handled by the two big men.

But in a moment where Kane was about to toss Reigns, Big Show saw an opening to eliminate them both, and took it.  This led to a shoving match between the two giants, that Reigns was able to take advantage of, for the win.  Big Show and Kane re-entered the ring, though, and began the beatdown of Reigns, until some unsuspecting help arrived.


That's right, The Rock showed up to help his cousin Reigns in the ring.  After that, it turned out Rusev was still eligible, so he came in for about 10-more seconds, before Reigns easily tossed the fat Bulgarian out, and then pointed at the Wrestlemania sign.

So, there you have it.  The main event at Wrestlemania will feature Roman Reigns versus Brock Lesnar.  Who will win?  I have a sneaky suspicion that with Lesnar's contract ending in March, Reigns will find a way to beat The Beast.

The thing is, this opens up some interesting narratives.  Obviously, Reigns has a rivalry with Big Show, Seth Rollins and The Authority, so this brings up a number of possible story lines for him.

The Philly crowd, and much of the WWE Universe was disappointed that Daniel Bryan didn't win, but after thinking about it, I have to agree, Bryan is better kept as an underdog.  I enjoy his charisma, and I especially enjoy when he enters the ring angry.

There's another factor here, as well.  When Bryan defeated Kane in his first match back from injury, he was jumped by The Authority, but Ambrose and Reigns came to his rescue, to even the odds.  Then Triple H decided those three would have a six-man tag versus Big Show, Kane and Rollins, and Bryan won the match.

So, I don't think losing the Royal Rumble takes Bryan out of the storyline.  In fact, I think it brings him to the forefront.

Some Other Notes:

Bubba Ray Dudley, WWE
Bubba Ray Dudley, WWE
Photo Credit: Flickr Creative Commons License by Nick Noid
Did you see who came in at #3?  That was Bubba Ray Dudley, or Bully Ray as he's called in TNA Impact.  That was his first appearance in the WWE, since very early on.  I thought he was great.  His presence in the ring was very interest.

I saw toughness, humor and a lot of character.  I especially liked his stand-off with Bray Wyatt.  I think those two could have a hell of a rivalry.

Kurt Axel never actually made it to the ring.  Does that mean he has a legitimate complaint as to having not been eliminated?

The truth is, Axel wouldn't have had much of a chance, because standing there was Wyatt and Luke Harper, obviously as a team waiting to pounce.  Erick Rowan entered, instead, and the three went at each other until Rowan was tossed along with Harper.

What is up with that guy Boogeyman?  Please WWE, do NOT bring him back.  He was just gross.  I was glad to see him gone, so quickly.

And will there be any kind of repercussions for Damien Mizdow with The Miz for what he did?  I'm kind of curious, and I'd like to see The Miz versus Mizdow, at some point.  I'm just saying, I don't get the schtick, anymore.  It was funny for a while, but enough already.

After this title loss, what happens to John Cena?  Will he continue to go at Lesnar, or will there be another target.  In The Royal Rumble Fallout, Cena was seen going head-to-head, literally, with Rusev.  Does this mean, Cena will now go after the United States Champion belt?  That's kind of a step down for him.
But most importantly, can you see Roman Reigns as the WWE Champion?

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