Royal Rumble 2011
Date: January 30, 2011
Location: TD Bank Garden Arena, Boston, Massachusetts
Commentators: Michael Cole, Matt Striker, Jerry Lawler
Well we’ve finally, and I do mean FINALLY arrived. This is the first 40 man Rumble and while I’m still not behind the idea it could be good I guess. There are only 4 matches tonight: the Rumble, a Divas match and the two world titles. It should be fun as WWE has been on a straight up roll recently. Let’s get to it.
Smackdown World Title: Dolph Ziggler vs. Edge
Well you can’t say they’re going easy to start. And Edge’s pyro doesn’t go off. Remember that the Spear is banned here and if Edge uses it then Ziggler loses the world title. Vickie comes out to do the intro and tries to start a Spear chant which is kind of funny. We get big match intros too which is always nice. Lawler: “Ziggler is just like Santa Claus. Everywhere he goes he takes that old bag with him.”
Dang Edge goes from winning the match to starting the show the next year. Quite a drop…yet he has a title here. I love logic or whatever you call it in wrestling. Striker is doing a great job of tossing softballs up for King to get good lines off of. Lawler has always been a guy that needs someone to set him up but once he gets a start he’s fine.
Edge controls a lot early on with some basic stuff. We hit the floor and it’s all Edge. Ziggler gets a kick to the side of Edge’s head as they come back in to get his first advantage. Off to a chinlock now as the LET’S GO EDGE chant gets going. Sunset flip is blocked for two. More chinlock and this time a longer version of it. Big elbow drop gets two.
Dolph gets a running charge to send Edge out to the floor and into the barricade. Back in that gets two. Hey look it’s a chinnlock! Edge fights up and a double cross body puts both guys down. Stinger Splash in the corner misses by Zigs. Ziggler gets that Downward Spiral into a Stunner for two. Edge counters the Fameasser into a sitout powerbomb for two.
Uncharacteristically for Edge he goes up top but Ziggler beats him to the punch. Cross body off the top is rolled through for a VERY close two by Ziggler. Dropkick gets two on Edge. Zig Zag is blocked and Edge busts out the Edgecator (modified Sharpshooter) for two. Edge misses a charge at the ropes and the Fameasser hits for two.
Big Boot puts Ziggler down and Edge sets for the Spear in the corner. Vickie like an idiot, yells at him to not do it. Ziggler wants the sleeper but gets caught in the Edgecution but Vickie grabs the referee. She and Edge get into it and Kelly of all people comes out to beat on Vickie. As Edge is watching the catfight a Zig Zag gets two and that more or less seals the ending here.
Dolph gets the sleeper and Edge is fading fast. Oh of course he fights it off. He manages to get a big jawbreaker out of it instead and down goes the referee. Vickie is down as well so there’s the Spear. Edge pulls an Eddie and lays down too. Cole: SOMEONE HAD TO SEE THAT! He’s totally right you know. Edge uses an Unprettier of all things to end it.
Rating: A-. This was a solid back and forth match, but I really don’t like the Spear in there. Striker calls it the Unprettier which is supposed to be the Killswitch I believe? Anyway this was a very good match with Ziggler getting some very close near falls out there. It’s your regular Rumble match that had a challenger who simply wasn’t going to win but Dolph looked great. Very good opener indeed.
Mania is 63 days away! Naturally we have the Chamber in there which is going to take away a lot of that time.
We recap Miz vs. Orton which goes back to Miz cashing in. That’s still sweet and was perfectly done. DEMON CHILD!!! Also Miz beat the tar out of Orton on Raw.
Miz and Riley say Miz will win and insult Boston.
Raw World Title: Randy Orton vs. The Miz
Cole talks throughout the WHOLE entrance and then in the ring he says that this is a big match for Miz. Thanks for clearing up that defending the world title on PPV against one of the biggest stars of all time is a big match. Miz chant to start as it’s all Orton early on. Back in the ring as Orton stomps away and Lawler and Cole get into it as always. I’m still thinking that results in a Mania match which it should. Lawler deserves a match at Mania.
Orton beats him down in the corner and Cole says this is unfair to him. Nice flashback to Heenan in 92. Riley interferes and here comes the Champion. Orton fights back but misses a charge in the corner to give Miz the advantage back. The Miz is a Triple crown winner. Let that sink in for a bit. Ok he kind of is at least. Corner clothesline gets two. More beatdowns and a knee to the ribs get two.
Orton is able to get back in there with a kick and up the ropes we go. Superplex gets two as Cole talks about Riley. Elevated DDT is countered by a backdrop and we hit the floor again. Back in Miz gets two. Miz goes up and a double axe gets two. He throws on a chinlock as it’s all champion here. Back to the floor one more time and Orton eats the post.
He beats the count at 9 and the beating is on again but this time with Orton in control with the Thesz Press. Powerslam sets up the stomping. Orton sets for the powerbomb but Riley distracts him. Miz gets that backbreaker/neckbreaker combo he’s been using lately for two. Angle Slam hits so Miz wants to get the title and leave. Instead Orton kills him with a clothesline.
Since we’re looking at a split screen replay we miss what Miz hits to get two out of nowhere on Orton. Miz misses a kick and Orton grabs a rollup for two. Elevated (called Suspension by Striker which works also) gets two. He sets for the RKO and HERE THEY COME! It’s the New Nexus minus Punk who stare down Orton. As the referee is distracted Riley gets in and in an AWESOME spot, Orton picks up Riley and LAUNCHES him over the referee and onto Nexus. Riley was AIRBORNE! There’s the RKO but Punk runs in with a GTS and Miz retains! Cole jumps up and down like a little girl in celebration.
Rating: B. Good match but definitely not as good as the previous one. The thing is that with a show like the Rumble, everything besides the one big match is pure bonus. The two title matches have been rather good so this show is already looking up. This was very good stuff for the most part here which is pretty much expected. If nothing else it gives us some new direction. Not bad at all here and a pretty good match.
Cody Rhodes gives a prepared statement while we can’t see his face which is always funny.
Divas Title: Natalya vs. Laycool
Just before the match starts we get an E-Mail, making it a fatal fourway and he adds….Eve? Uh…ok. Oh and the GM makes fun of Cole and all the people that complain about him. No tagging here of course. There isn’t much to say here as it’s an insane spot fest for the most part. Natalya gets the double Sharpshooter on Eve and Layla which is a great visual. Layla gets the neckbreaker on Natalya. There isn’t much to say here like AT ALL. Michelle kicks Layla, Eve wins the title with a moonsault. Natalya might have pinned Michelle at the same time.
Rating: D. This was pretty bad overall. It was a mess of a Divas match which is bad as usually they have some good stuff going for them and certainly have been recently. This was bad and it was the epitome of a bridge to the Rumble. Speaking of which, let’s go to that.
Bellas/Gail/Bryan segment. It’s stupid and the same thing from Monday but with the Bellas pretending to be nice with flowers.
Rumble By the Numbers.
Punk is #1 to the shock of no one, and to no one else’s shock, Corre has a member in at #2 but they all surround the ring. Punk gets beaten down by everyone until Nexus comes down for the save. Cole gets an E-Mail which says STOP IT! Everyone but Punk has to leave and only Punk is in at the moment. LOUD Punk chant and #2 is Bryan. The IWC just orgasmed loudly.
Bryan speeds things up and takes Punk down with some nice shots. It’s dueling chant time as Bryan hits the top rope dropkick. In at 3 is Gabriel. Gabriel beats Punk up with ease but misses the 450 and Bryan tosses Justin easily. The timing is absurd already as you expected it to. Number 4 is Zach Ryder. He gets both guys down in the corner and manages to get a Rough Ryder on Punk. Bryan throws him out with ease as I hope we’re not going the 95 route.
Regal is in at #5 and he cleans house which isn’t very dirty at this point. Lots of suplexes all around. Regal and Bryan slug it out with European uppercuts which surprisingly Bryan wins despite not being, you know, European. Bryan kicks both guys with ease and we get #6 in the form of Ted DiBiase. Backbreaker for Bryan and dropkicks to him and Regal. Down goes Punk to the following clothesline.
Bryan vs. Regal and DiBiase vs. Punk for awhile which gets us nowhere. Seventh is Morrison to a BIG pop. Springboard kick puts Regal down and Morrison cleans house, including with his eternal rival in Punk. C4 to Bryan. I had Morrison as a dark horse but methinks that’s out the window. He gets thrown by DiBiase but lands on the apron. Morrison gets launched to the railing and GRABS THE WALL like freaking Spiderman, climbs up to the apron, tightrope walks it to the steps and gets back in. Ladies and gentlemen, that is not going to be topped tonight.
Tatsu is #8 and he does nothing at all. Ninth is Husky Harris. Regal went out somewhere in there that I missed when I was dying from Morrison’s wall grab. Harris immediately gets in front of Punk for defense so Morrison and Bryan try to kill him. He’s 23 and the youngest person in this Rumble. That’s rather impressive. We get to ¼ of the way through this with Chavo.
Seven people in there now as Gabriel, Ryder and Regal have been eliminated so far. Three Amigos to DiBiase but Punk cuts him off. And never mind as he takes three of his own. Punk’s get broken up so it’s suplex time to Morrison. Here are some for Bryan as well. He must have done ten suplexes in like 30 seconds. This is kind of cool actually. FINALLY he gets the third in a row.
Number 11 is Mark Henry to clear out some dead weight. There go Chavo and Tatsu. Punk beats Henry down a bit as it’s time for JTG to be #12. This portion of the Rumble brought to you by not Michael Hayes. JTG, Henry, Punk, Harris, DiBiase, Morrison and Bryan in there at the moment. Hey I’ve actually got this up to date! Number 13 is Michael McGillicutty to give Punk some backup.
Punk tells him to HURT EVERYBODY. There goes JTG as we’re getting a bit cluttered here. Granted a lot of that is Henry and the midcard is well represented. Harris and McGillicutty put out DiBiase to make room for Masters at 14. Masterlock to Punk but he can’t get him out as McGillicutty makes the save. Bryan hammers on Masters as #15 is Otunga. That makes four members counting Punk in there at the moment.
Bryan is out almost immediately and Masters joins him soon. Nexus cleans house and gets Morrison out too. Over to Henry now and yep he’s gone too. Just Nexus left in the ring now. Tyler Reks is the sacrificial lamb at #16. How long can he be unknown for? There he goes of course. So are we just waiting on Cena now? I think that’s pretty clear. In at 17 is Kozlov who has history here.
Why not just wait on the floor and wait for like five people to get together to at least have even odds? Vladimir is out with ease. Punk gets all meditational on us and it’s Truth in as the Rumble is now legal. Striker agrees with the whole wait it out. This is a great way to run through some of the weaker guys though. Punk gets the corner clothesline and bulldog. In between, he looks at the camera and raises the roof shouting WHAT’S UP in a sarcastic voice. Funny stuff.
Truth is gone. And here’s trouble in the form of the Great Khali. He chops them all down and gets rid of Harris to break up this blockade. GET BETH PHOENIX STAT! Naturally in next is Mason Ryan (20). India vs. Wales goes to the darker skinned ones until Ryan gets him out. BOOKER T IS NUMBER 21!!!!! SCREW YOU MAIN EVENT MAFIA!!!!! Epic pop for him too and Booker looks awesome.
Kicks all around and a Book End to McGillicutty. SPINAROONI! SPINAROONI! OH MY GOODNESS A SPINAROONI! Punk charges but Ryan makes the save. Booker is out but that was insanely awesome. My screen froze on Booker’s eyes bugging out. You knew it was coming. John Cena is in next and the fight is on. He takes everyone down with basic moves and there goes Ryan to a low bridge. Otunga and McGillicutty to a double clothesline and it’s down to Cena and Punk!
Cena charges into a corner elbow but Punk can’t get GTS. Double clothesline puts both men down ala Hogan and Warrior in 1990. Number 23 is…..it’s Hornswoggle. The look on Punk’s face is hilarious. More or less it says “no…..freaking….way.” Punk gets up and drills Horny but goes after Cena instead. FU TO PUNK AND HE’S OUT! Cena is left with Horny as #24 is Tyson Kidd. Headscissors to Kidd by Horny sets up an FU and there he goes. Ok no he doesn’t yet as Horny wants to do it. Horny gives him an FU and there goes Kidd.
Twenty fifth is Slater who takes a low blow from Horny and a super Stunner which actually looked pretty cool. Double You Can’t See Me. Tadpole Splash and there goes Slater. It’s Kofi Kingston at 26 and this could be awesome. Cool moment as they stare down and look at the Mania sign. I totally buy Kofi as a threat to Cena here which is a very good sign. Kofi beats on him a bit but it’s really a standoff. Swagger is 27th and takes down the weakened guys.
Vader Bomb to Cena and one for Kofi as well. And now….dude go for the midget already. Swagger goes after Horny but Kofi kills Jack with a cross body. Double Boom Drop as Horny is a bridge for Kofi to jump off of. 28 is SHEAMUS. Oh yes. This guy is a, and I will never ever say this again, a dark horse to win this. Sheamus cleans house and goes after Horny. Cena saves him AGAIN and it’s another Tadpole Splash coming. Never mind actually as Sheamus KICKS HIM IN THE HEAD to eliminate him.
Rey is #29. We have Kofi, Cena, Swagger, Sheamus and Rey in there at the moment. Trouble in Paradise to Sheamus but Swagger takes him down. Rey was on the corner and Swagger tries the running belly to belly. Rey ducks and knocks him to the apron and a 619 takes him out. Barrett is 30 as this is FLYING by. Wasteland to Kofi is blocked by a kick to the knee by Rey.
Cena vs. Barrett goes to Wade in the form of a Boss Man Slam. That could so be a finisher for someone. Maybe Ryan? The first #31 in history is Dolph Ziggler??? Oh crap man, that could be a shock. He hammers away on Sheamus as Barrett is in trouble. Dolph, Sheamus, Barrett, Kofi, Cena and Rey at the moment. Cena is in trouble and the crowd reacts BIG.
32 is DIESEL???? OH WOW! The crowd pops HUGE. I can’t get used to hearing him called Diesel. Drew is 33rd. Nash looks kind of awesome in there. Drew and Sheamus hammer down Diesel who is all of a sudden getting a HUGE chant! Dude sign this guy up! 619 to Diesel which I can’t believe I just typed.
34th is….the Miz??? Oh wait it’s Riley. He slides in and Cena just drills him. Striker got cut off mid sentence in a laugh. Barrett puts Diesel out. ANOTHER big Diesel chant as he leaves. Miz sits in on commentary for a bit. Big Show is number 35 and it’s time to clear out some guys. Show and Diesel look at each other. Oh dang there’s some history there. The Celts jump Show as he comes in which doesn’t go well for the UK guys.
Miz sounds like he has a cold. There goes Ziggler at the hands of Show. I want to know who #40 is. 36 is Big Zeke. Uh oh. Show puts Drew out. Zeke puts Show down and OUT on his own! There are four entrants left. Who isn’t out here yet? Rey, Zeke, Cena, Kofi, Barrett and Sheamus at the moment. Santino is 37th and gets a solid pop. He goes right at Sheamus of all people. And now he goes for Zeke who growls at him.
Santino gets knocked to the floor under the bottom rope. Alberto is 38 and I completely forgot about him. Ricardo does the intro! No one else has gotten an intro but no one else is Alberto Del Rio. Del Rio takes his sweet time and isn’t in before Orton is 39th. ONE MORE TO GO! RKO to everyone and there goes Kofi. Sheamus is out too as is Drew. And then, it’s Cena vs. Orton. The crowd just went SILENT and in the awesome way I mean.
They stare it down with the Mania sign between them and there’s the clock. And it’s Kane. Uh, kind of anti-climactic but ok. So it’s Kane, Cena, Orton, Santino, Rey, Del Rio and I think that’s it. I likely left someone out though. Oh and Zeke and Barrett. Zeke beats up Kane with relative ease after Kane cleans some house. There goes Zeke. Ok now we’re down to Barrett, Kane, Cena, Orton, Rey and Del Rio. Kane is put out by Rey! Barrett puts out Rey! I LOVE YOU BARRETT!!!
Final four are Barrett, Orton, Cena and Del Rio. Cena and Del Rio are in trouble but both hang on. Randy and John (sounds weird calling it that) stare it down again to another hush. There they go with the punches. Both finishers miss as FU is broken up by Barrett for no apparent reason. Maybe he’s the new Corre member? Del Rio vs. Cena and Barrett vs. Orton at this point.
FU to Del Rio but here comes Riley again for no adequately explained reason. MIZ ELIMINATES CENA!!! LET THE INTERNET ERUPT!!! Blast it not Orton again. Is Santino still in? Orton busts out a bunch of his basic stuff and there goes Barrett! DEL RIO PUTS OUT ORTON TO WIN THE ROYAL RUMBLE!!! Wait Santino is back! COBRA!!! THEY WOULDN’T!!!!! Oh thank goodness Del Rio threw him out to officially end it.
Rating: A. I was wrong. I thought this would be overblown but it felt more epic this way. HUGE props to WWE for putting someone new in there. That is absolutely huge for WWE as they are actually giving someone the huge push and the momentum to do it with. He’s a glorified midcarder and he won. This is exactly what they needed to do with this and it worked wonderfully. Mania has matches set up for it now and we got some great surprises. Epic Rumble although maybe just a step beneath next year. GREAT ending though.
Overall Rating: A. This was a great show indeed. The Divas match was the only bad thing all night and on a card with four matches you can’t argue that in the slightest. They’re setting Mania up very early this year and that’s nothing but good. This was a great show as WWE now has two big wins in a row. I’m freaking pumped up for Mania now as this was great stuff indeed. Loved it and bring on Elimination Chamber baby!