Royal Rumble 2016: This Rumble Game Thing

Royal Rumble 2016
Date: January 24, 2016
Location: Amway Center, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: Michael Cole, John Bradshaw Layfield, Byron Saxton

It’s time to start the Road to Wrestlemania and it’s never started on this hot of a note. This year it’s all about the World Title as Roman Reigns is defending the title in the Royal Rumble itself for the first time ever. That leaves a lot of possible options open and with Reigns starting at #1, there could be a lot of drama by the end. Let’s get to it.

Pre-Show: Darren Young/Damien Sandow vs. Ascension vs. Dudley Boyz vs. Mark Henry/Jack Swagger

One fall to a finish and the winning team gets spots in the Rumble. Swagger and Young get things going but it’s quickly off to Henry as the fans want Sandow. That changes into a “HEY! WE WANT SOME SANDOW!” chants and that’s exactly what they get, including the Wind-Up Elbow for two on Jack. Konnor tags himself in and it’s a big four way standoff as we take a break.

Back with Swagger holding Konnor in a chinlock but D-Von tags himself in, only to get stomped down in the corner. Konnor puts D-Von in a chinlock as the fans want Sexual Chocolate. D-Von avoids a charge and it’s a double tag to Bubba and Viktor with the former cleaning house. A Rock Bottom gets two on Viktor and Young takes What’s Up, meaning it’s table time. Actually scratch that as a 3D gets two on Viktor with Swagger making a fast save. Henry splashes D-Von and covers Viktor for the pin and the Rumble spots at 7:58.

Rating: D+. This was fine and the right team won. There’s no point in putting a thrown together team or either regular team in there so go with the two former World Champions. Neither of them have a chance of winning but at least they add a bit more prestige to the lineup. The match was just there but that’s all it was supposed to be.

Vince and Stephanie arrive before the opening video with Vince saying (while stooping down to be on JoJo’s height) they’re going to give Reigns an opportunity to do something unheard of tonight. Vince loves this night, almost as much as he loves himself. Pretty pointless scene but good night Vince is a ball of energy.

The opening video focuses on the statues before going into a regular video all about Reigns being up against the entire roster tonight.

Intercontinental Title: Dean Ambrose vs. Kevin Owens

Owens is challenging in his rematch from TLC and this is last man standing. It’s a brawl to start with Owens taking an early bulldog to send him outside. Dean sends him over the announcers’ table with a suicide dive with Cole being wiped out by Kevin. Owens hits the champ in the ribs with an iPad so Dean whips him into the steps for four. It’s already kendo stick time and Cole is suddenly a huge Ambrose fan.

Owens comes back with a Cannonball to drive Ambrose through the barricade for a nine. They head inside and the fans sound like they’re mainly on Owens’ side. The backsplash keeps Dean in trouble and it’s time to throw in a bunch of chairs. A chair to the back drops Ambrose again but Owens has a seat instead of following up. The Rebound Lariat puts Owens down but Dean has to counter the Pop Up Powerbomb with a backdrop through the chairs.

Kevin bails to the floor but suckers Dean in for some hard whips into the steps and a seven count. It’s table time (fan: “I feel like you’re wasting your time right now!”) as Dean is laying on the apron, which should earn him a count. Owens stacks up two tables on top of each other in front of a post but gets a chair pelted at his face. It hangs around his neck so Dean starts punching the chair until it falls off. That’s not the brightest thing in the world champ.

The Pop Up Powerbomb is countered with a hurricanrana and Dean grabs Dirty Deeds for eight. Dirty Deeds onto the chair has Owens in trouble but he rolls outside and onto his feet to break the count before collapsing. Dean loads up another table at ringside (“HEY! WE WANT SOME TABLES!”) and drops the top rope elbow for a double eight count. We get yet another table in the ring and they trade shouts of I HATE YOU.

Ambrose loads up a superplex through the table but Owens reverses into the fisherman’s superplex for the big crash. They’re both back up again so Owens grabs a hard Pop Up Powerbomb for nine and a half, only to have Dean collapse at 9.6. Frustration sets in for Owens as he loads up all the chairs and goes up, allowing Dean to shove him off the top and through the double tables at ringside for the win to retain at 20:21.

Rating: B. Good but certainly not great last man standing match. The double tables were clearly going to be the ending and it was just a matter of time instead of a big surprise at the end. It was good enough though and all it needed to be, though I was hoping Owens would get the title back. However, it leaves the door open for a big match at Wrestlemania which is the important thing.

We recap the destruction of Francesca the Trombone. That’s a really odd statement if you’re reading this a long time from now. In other words it’s time for the Tag Team Titles.

Tag Team Titles: New Day vs. Usos

New Day (Kofi/Big E.) is defending and Kofi asks for a moment of silence, allowing Woods to debut Francesca II. Yes Xavier will miss Francesca but he has, ahem, needs. As for tonight, one of them will also win the Rumble because 2016 will be the year of all gold everything. Thankfully the Usos have the different color boots on again.

Kofi and Jimmy get things going with Kofi missing his reverse leapfrog, allowing Jimmy to throw him down. It’s off to Jey as we have a discussion of Byron’s street cred. Big E. comes in and sends Jey shoulder first into the post to take over. It’s back to Kofi to pummel away in the corner as Woods rants about being in the match as well. The fans want Woods to play Francesca but Woods says not so fast.

Both guys try superkicks (shocking I know) but Kofi pulls Jey down by the leg so Big E. can get in a splash. A slingshot stomp crushes Jey again but he enziguris Kofi off the apron and out to the floor for a nice crash. Jimmy gets the tag and starts cleaning house with a Samoan Drop and Whisper in the Wind getting two on Big E. Everything breaks down and Big E. knocks Jimmy off the top, setting up a belly to belly for two of his own.

Jey dives off the apron (out of the WWE Universe according to Cole) to take Kofi out, followed by Big E. spearing Jimmy through the apron in an always cool looking spot. Back in and the Midnight Hour is broken up, allowing Jimmy to superkick Kofi into a very quiet Superfly Splash. Woods makes the save though, earning himself a suicide dive from Jey. Back in and Jey superkicks Kofi down but misses a blind tag to Big E., allowing the Big Ending to pull Jey out of the air for the Big Ending to retain the titles at 10:54.

Rating: C+. This picked up a bit at the end but the tag division is at such a weak point right now that it’s hard to get excited about a match we’ve seen a few times already. I don’t know if they think the Usos getting the titles back is going to be a big deal but this never felt important or really anything more than just a regular title defense.

We recap the Highlight Reel from Monday and the ensuing chaos.

The Wyatts talk about slaughtering the Beast and the Chosen One. Tonight they slaughter them all on their way to the title. Then he really will have the whole world in his hands. Run.

US Title: Alberto Del Rio vs. Kalisto

Del Rio is defending and this is the rubber match because WWE can’t count to four. They’ve traded the title in recent weeks with Del Rio’s League of Nations teammates beating Kalisto down three days earlier on Smackdown. Kalisto hammers away in the corner to start but gets kicked in the chest for two. Del Rio rains down some right hands in the corner but gets kicked in the back to knock him out to the floor.

We get another suicide dive to take the champ out but he knocks Kalisto off the top with an enziguri. A chinlock gives both guys a breather before the tilt-a-whirl backbreaker drops Kalisto again. They head outside again so Kalisto can snap off a hurricanrana. Byron: “Kalisto looked up to guys like Rey Mysterio and Eddie Guerrero.” JBL: “He looks up to everybody Byron. He’s short!”

Del Rio whips him into the barricade and it’s time to go for the mask, which you know is enough to start a comeback. That’s quickly cut off by the low superkick for two but Del Rio misses another running enziguri. A very nice tornado DDT gets two for Kalisto and there’s the corkscrew crossbody. The hurricanrana driver gets two more but Kalisto takes too long going up, allowing Del Rio to reverse superplex to connect for two.

They botch a sunset bomb but Kalisto turns into a quick rollup for two more anyway in a close enough save. The top rope double stomp misses and a springboard Salida Del Sol gets two more with Alberto grabbing the bottom rope. Kalisto tries a springboard but lands on two knees for a unique counter. Del Rio would rather take the turnbuckle pad off though, only to be sent face first into the steel. A quick Salida Del Sol gives Kalisto the title back at 11:30.

Rating: C. This didn’t have nearly the surprise and shock factor that the first title change did but at least they got it back on Kalisto for a good moment. He’s more interesting as champion by default after Del Rio’s boring time with the belt so why not do something here to give us a nice moment? Another good match as this show is on a roll so far.

Kickoff recap.

Paul Heyman comes in to see Stephanie and the disgust is quickly on. Heyman talks about Brock winning the title tonight with just ten weeks before we go to Wrestlemania. He promises that Brock will eliminate the entire Wyatt Family tonight but all Stephanie cares about is Reigns being eliminated. If Brock gets rid of him, Stephanie will gradually renegotiate Lesnar’s deal, which is all Heyman wanted.

Ad for Edge and Christian’s Network show.

Fastlane ad.

We recap Charlotte vs. Becky Lynch. They were friends but Charlotte freaked out after losing to Becky, triggering a heel turn as Charlotte wanted to be more like her dad. Becky tricked Ric Flair into setting this up by implying that Charlotte was a coward.

Divas Title: Becky Lynch vs. Charlotte

Charlotte is defending. Becky takes her to the mat to start but can’t get the arm this early. An armdrag sends Charlotte into the corner as they’re sprinkling in some Steamboat vs. Flair. The Figure Four doesn’t work so Charlotte cranks on an armbar of her own. The fans are entirely behind Becky here but Charlotte takes over with some good old cheating from her dad, who kisses Becky to distract her.

Back in and a suplex gets two for the champ and we hit the figure four neck lock with Charlotte slamming her face first into the mat. The hold stays on for a long time until Becky fights up with some running clotheslines. Becky forearms out of the Figure Eight and grabs a t-bone suplex for two. The running legdrops set up another t-bone but Charlotte hits a quick spear to take over again.

Becky is sat on top but grabs Charlotte’s arm and rolls into an armbreaker. That’s countered into a pretty impressive powerbomb for two more as Flair’s cheerleading gets louder and louder. Back up and Charlotte baseball slides her dad by mistake, allowing Becky to grab the Disarm-Her. Ric throws his coat onto Becky’s face though to break up the hold (and somehow not draw a DQ). Another spear retains Charlotte’s title at 12:37.

Rating: C-. As usual, the Divas are hurt by too many rest holds and WAY too much Ric Flair. This is getting into the Evolution format from thirteen years ago when it was already old. Not a great match here, which is a shame considering what these two are capable of doing. Just stop with the rest holds and the Ric and things will get better overnight.

Post match Charlotte beats Becky down even more until Sasha Banks comes out (on her own thank goodness)…..and kicks Becky to the floor. Sasha says she wants the title but waits until Ric leaves before putting on the Bank Statement. Somehow Flair doesn’t notice this for a bit, despite the fans going NUTS for it.

Some fans won a tour of the Performance Center from Chex Mix.

Rumble by the Numbers video. Good night they’re stretching the heck out of this.

WWE World Title: Royal Rumble

Roman Reigns is defending and is coming in at #1 with ninety second intervals. The fans instantly boo Reigns to continue their tradition. It’s Rusev in at #2 as we get the final two from last year starting this year. They slug it out to start and Rusev elbows out of a Samoan Drop. There’s a spinwheel kick to stagger the champ and Rusev throws him through the ropes to the floor. That sets up the Apron Boot and a spear to get rid of Rusev quick.

It’s…..AJ STYLES in at #3 and the fans lose their minds at the reveal. Roman looks as stunned as anyone as the announcers acknowledge the internet rumors, which to be fair were on WWE.com. An early Styles Clash attempt doesn’t work so AJ Pele Kicks him, only to have another Clash countered into the Samoan Drop. Tyler Breeze is in at #4 with kicks to both guys as the fans chant for AJ. Breeze can’t get Reigns out so AJ picks him up, only to have Roman punch AJ in the ribs, sending Breeze out to the floor.

Curtis Axel is in at #5 and actually gets in the ring. Axel actually gets the best of it to start but the Outcasts’ interference doesn’t work, allowing AJ to clothesline Axel to the floor. Chris Jericho is in at #6 and goes after Reigns before elbowing AJ down. Reigns is sent shoulder first into the post, leaving AJ to try another Clash on Jericho. That’s countered into a Walls of Jericho attempt but Reigns makes the save. Kane is in at #7 and Cole actually calls him arguably the greatest Rumble performer of all time. You know, minus the whole WINNING THE MATCH thing.

Kane kicks AJ in the face before going after the other two as things settle down. Goldust is in at #8 and Kane is the only person on his feet. Everyone gets into the same corner as the fans are still chanting for AJ. Ryback is in at #9 and WOW the fans are not happy. Kane and Jericho form an unlikely team (time heals all hot coffee wounds) to put Ryback on the apron but not to the floor. Kofi Kingston is in at #10 and goes after Jericho. AJ hits the springboard forearm on Jericho but gets dropped to the mat for his efforts.

Titus O’Neil is in at #11 and does the usual cleaning house spot, including eliminating Goldust. We’ve got Reigns, Styles, Ryback, Jericho, O’Neil, Kane and Kingston in at the moment and it’s R-Truth in at #12. That means it’s time for a ladder but there’s no briefcase to grab. Kane gets rid of him in a few seconds and throws Kofi out as well, only to have him land on Big E.’s shoulders for the save of the year. Kofi stops to have a Coke and it’s Luke Harper in at #13.

Cue the League of Nations and Vince to pulls Reigns to the floor for a beating, which is likely the way to keep him out of the match until much later. The camera ignores everything going on in the ring as the beating goes on, continuing a long stretch of bad camera work tonight. Stardust is in at #14 as Rusev splashes Reigns through the French announce table. We’ve been away from the ring for the better part of two minutes at this point.

The camera FINALLY goes back to the ring as the League walks off with a monitor for some reason. Kofi was eliminated off camera and it’s Big Show in at #15, giving us Show, Reigns (down on the floor), Styles, Jericho, Harper, Stardust, O’Neil, Ryback and Kane. Titus and Ryback are dumped by Big Show as a stretcher comes out for Reigns. Neville is in at #16 and Reigns gets off the stretcher but goes to the back anyway. We finally see that it was Jericho who eliminated Kofi earlier in the match.

Braun Strowman is in at #17 and runs people over before breaking Kane’s chokeslam attempt. Strowman dumps Kane with ease and it’s time for the showdown with Big Show. Another chokeslam attempt is broken up and Strowman chokes him out for another easy elimination. So the old giants are already out and we’re not even to #20 yet. That’s quite the surprise. Kevin Owens is in at #18, limping to the ring to sell the injuries from earlier.

We’ve got Jericho, Strowman, Harper, Stardust, Styles, Owens and Neville in the ring at the moment with Reigns in the back. Kevin goes right for AJ for the slugout but Neville breaks it up. The Clash is broken up again as Owens superkicks Styles and throws him out for a bit of a surprise. Dean Ambrose is in at #19 and goes right for Owens as you would expect. The fans start cheering for AJ as he leaves and we recap the League beating Reigns down earlier. Sami Zayn is in at #20 for a big surprise and goes right for Owens, tossing him in pretty short order.

Erick Rowan is in at #21 to give us three Wyatts with Bray still to come. The Wyatts get together to dump Stardust and Neville before Strowman starts choking Jericho. Mark Henry is in at #22 and Strowman slams him with ease. The three Wyatts dump Mark about ten seconds after he got in and get rid of Sami as well. Strowman chokes Jericho some more and it’s Lesnar in at #23. Brock goes right for Jericho and Strowman before suplexing anyone he can find.

We get Brock vs. Braun and a BIG forearm puts Strowman on his back. Lesnar clotheslines Rowan out and German suplexes Harper. Strowman elbows out of one but misses a charge into the post. Another clothesline drops Strowman and Brock is looking winded. Jack Swagger is in at #24 and charges right into an F5 for an elimination in fifteen seconds. We’ve got Lesnar, Strowman, Harper Ambrose and Jericho in the ring.

Miz is in at #25 and goes to commentary where he promises to turn Suplex City into Mizney World. Lesnar gets rid of Harper and it’s Alberto Del Rio in at #26. Brock throws him down with ease before clotheslining Braun a few times for the elimination. Del Rio, Jericho and Ambrose gang up on Lesnar and it’s Bray Wyatt (Cole makes it sound like a random Uso) in at #27. The rest of the Wyatts come back for the gang attack but Brock shrugs them off like the nothings they are.

It’s time for Bray vs. Brock and Wyatt is quickly suplexed. Harper saves Bray from the F5 though and we get a big gang beatdown. Sister Abigail allows the rest of the Family to dump Lesnar and set up a Wrestlemania match. Dolph Ziggler is in at #28 and starts cleaning house with his usual stuff. Miz finally gets in the ring and plants Dolph with the Skull Crushing Finale. It’s not enough for an elimination though as Jericho goes after Miz until Sheamus is in at #29. Reigns decks him in the aisle and gets back in to eliminate Miz and Del Rio.

Bray is up to go after Roman as Sheamus hasn’t gotten in the ring yet. The Superman Punch decks Wyatt and the booing is all over the place again. Reigns is the only man standing and indeed it’s HHH in at #30 to give us HHH, Reigns, Sheamus (on the floor) Jericho, Wyatt, Ambrose and Ziggler as the final group.

HHH and Reigns have their big staredown but Ziggler has to be Pedigreed. Bray gets speared and it’s back to the staredown with all seven still in. They slug it out with Reigns countering the Pedigree. Sheamus gets in and throws Reigns to the ropes before it’s time for the parade of finishers. Bray gets a Codebreaker and Lionsault but Jericho can’t put Reigns out. HHH sidesteps a charging Dolph for an elimination and we’re down to six.

Bray and HHH have a bizarre staredown but HHH points to Reigns. That’s not cool with Bray who punches the boss in the jaw, only to have Sister Abigail broken up with a Brogue Kick. HHH and Sheamus put Bray out but are both sent to the apron by Reigns. Ambrose takes Sheamus down with a neckbreaker but Jericho drops Dean with a high cross body. A Codebreaker drops HHH but Dean throws Chris out to give us Ambrose, HHH, Reigns and Sheamus (he’s always there near the end) for the final four.

Sheamus misses a Brogue Kick and gets Superman Punched to the floor, only to have HHH throw Reigns out for a big ovation. We’re down to Ambrose vs. HHH which is a really surprising final pairing. The fans are all behind Ambrose (duh) and there’s an early Rebound Lariat (which Cole actually calls, I kid you not, the Wacky Line). The Pedigree is broken up and Dean sends him to the apron but charges into a knee. HHH backdrops him out and wins the title at 1:02:45.

Rating: A-. That was exhausting. You kind of knew HHH was going to win but it’s still the right call as it sets up Reigns vs. HHH at some point, hopefully next month instead of in Dallas. I really liked the fact that they didn’t have HHH vs. Reigns as the final two as it would have been way too easy. Ambrose wasn’t going to win of course but it was nice to have the false hope instead of just going with the obvious.

The rest of the match was awesome though I have no idea what they’re thinking if they want to do Brock vs. Braun. It was almost painful watching them same spots over and over as Brock can only clothesline and knee him in the back so many times. Lesnar was kind of all over the place in this as he really doesn’t fit the wrecking machine mold like you would expect him to.

It was a good enough night for surprises with AJ (I had forgotten he was in by the end though that’s not a criticism) and Sami, who hopefully is main roster bound soon, as the main names. It’s probably best that they didn’t do the legends and such in a match for the title so well done all around. Really good Rumble and easily the best in years, at least partially because of the options near the end. I know I say that a lot but they’re so important in a match like this.

A very quick celebration takes us out as it’s 11pm.

Overall Rating: A. Oh yeah this was great. The Rumble is a tricky show as it’s all about the one big match and it more than delivered this year. On top of that though we had four good to really good matches for a strong undercard. I had a great time with this show, though I’m really curious to see what they have planned for Wrestlemania at this point. HHH vs. Reigns really isn’t a strong enough headliner though I’m not sure what else they have with so many injuries. Still though, great stuff here and an awesome show.

Results

Dean Ambrose b. Kevin Owens – Ambrose shoved Owens through two tables

New Day b. Usos – Big Ending to Jey

Kalisto b. Alberto Del Rio – Salida Del Sol

Charlotte b. Becky Lynch – Spear

HHH won the Royal Rumble last eliminating Dean Ambrose

Remember to follow me on Twitter @kbreviews and pick up my new book of the Complete Monday Nitro Reviews Volume IV at Amazon for just $3.99 at:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B01AXP08DK

And check out my Amazon author page with cheap wrestling books at:


http://www.amazon.com/Thomas-Hall/e/B00E6282W6

80 comments

  1. Socko says:

    If Bray Wyatt goes over Lesnar I’m done watching Wrestling.

    Ollie Reply:

    I think it’s fine if Wyatt doesn’t do it clean, but I guess that would have to be the point of doing the match in the first place. Still when you look at the size of the other Wyatts it’s not unreasonable that they could bring down even Lesnar.

    Isaiah Morrow Reply:

    Bray Wyatt should go over Lesnar…

  2. SamualDude says:

    Will Triple H vacate the title? I feel that Triple H vs Roman Reigns at Wrestlemania for the title isn’t really going to get the fans fired up for Roman and isn’t really a good Mania title match.

    klunderbunker Reply:

    No it isn’t. I think they do HHH vs. Reigns at Fast Lane to set up the big main event…..and I have no idea what that is.

    SamualDude Reply:

    It just seems like it didn’t make sense to put the title on HHH when all HHH should of done was eliminate Roman.

    klunderbunker Reply:

    It really kind of doesn’t, unless they think that the tickets are already sold so why not go with that in Dallas.

    SamualDude Reply:

    Plus Roman had his big screw you authority. I won the title moment. He doesn’t need another especially at Wrestlemania where it probably won’t go down well.

  3. Your Eternal Reward says:

    To me they booked the League/Roman and Wyatt/Brock out of order.

    Have the Wyatts and Brock go on mid match. Bray remains till the end though

    Then near the end Roman gets swarmed by the league, after fighting them off Hunter comes out and eliminates him.

    That way Roman doesn’t go backstage and goes to sleep for 20 bloody minutes. Seriously who thought having the champion walk off half way through then return was a good idea? A positive though is having KO eliminate AJ, smartest booking in a rumble in three years.

    klunderbunker Reply:

    I could go with that. Reigns leaving for that long was really, really stupid.

    meka3000 Reply:

    Keeping Reigns in that match BLOWN UP would’ve been more stupid.

  4. Proph says:

    Styles better be on Raw tomorrow.

  5. meka3000 says:

    I wish they would’ve had the balls to pull the trigger on Ambrose there, but then that would give the fans a babyface they can actually get behind. And God forbid we have THAT with Roman Reigns around.

    beckett929 Reply:

    I thought they’d go Ambrose there too, even if it took Reigns screwing HHH. Place still would have popped big-time.

  6. Ayden says:

    Really interested in seeing where Sami and Styles go. Zayn/Owens is obvious but they’d probably want to save that for Mania. Styles/Owens could be good for Fast Lane if Zayn goes back to NXT for a little while.

    Also not sure what the tag team picture looks like. Uso’s/New Day has been done but who else is there really unless they pull from NXT? The Ascension? I can’t even type that without laughing.

    beckett929 Reply:

    We’ll get Enzo/Cass, and if anything about the last 2 years have showed us, it’ll be the RAW after WM. And then, my god, the promos between those teams!

    Ayden Reply:

    It’s what I’m really hoping for! Carmella can meet Francesca 2; it’ll all be good.

    Ayden Reply:

    It’s what I’m really hoping for! Carmella can meet Francesca 2; it’ll all be good.

  7. james gracie says:

    Oh man how bad was the Royal Rumble? I don’t know why I even bother anymore. This company is lost. You had so many great booking opportunities and they of course missed every fucking one of them.

    What a fucking awful show. I’m sick of this bullshit! I guess its 2003 again. LOL Triple H is the WWE champion? I mean is this REAL? #LOLWWE. No need for hashtags tonight. NO ONE can save us now

  8. beckett929 says:

    Excellent show.

    Dean/Owens are always going to be gold. The Charlotte/Becky match was fine, my stream kept fucking during this one though so it felt more disjointed. We’ll probably get Charlotte/Sasha at Wrestlemania, which is the right pairing. And the tag match was about what you can expect from the Usos.

    Del Rio matches have taken the old Divas piss-break/make a sandwich spot because he is such a huge bore.

    The Rumble match was awesome. Knew it was coming, but still jaw-dropping to see AJ Styles walk out.

  9. klunderbunker says:

    That too. It’s why I think we get Reigns vs. HHH in February and then they can set up something else, whatever that may be.

    SamualDude Reply:

    They’d pretty stupid to have HHH vs Reigns for the title at Mania considering the reaction Reigns got tonight and will probably get in Texas. This time around, no open air to cover up the boo’s

    klunderbunker Reply:

    The Mania crowds would make last year’s Philly crowd look polite.

    SamualDude Reply:

    Oh shit yeah. I think Roman can’t be THE face of WWE. He can be a main event level guy but not the guy.

  10. Reid says:

    Well the Rumble wasn’t a disaster so I’m a little disappointed. But for real, this was actually pretty good this year. I was shaking for half of the Rumble because of AJ coming in and really wanted him or Wyatt to win it. HHH winning was kinda obvious but I couldn’t believe the pop he got for it.

    Wyatt stuff was pretty good but it’ll be interesting to see Wyatt/Lesnar. God, imagine the promos!

    Digged the continuity with Zayn and Owens, having him throw Owens out immediately after AJ got eliminated was smart.

    Rest of the card was alright too but more importantly, they didn’t do a stupid!

    beckett929 Reply:

    They weren’t crowning AJ in his debut. But, we could get AJ/Owens at FastLane and then AJ/Dean at Wrestlemania.

    And Wyatt, I think he parallels Undertaker as a character that doesn’t need to be in title feuds to be legit. Taker went from winning the belt off Hogan and all tht controversy to going years without being in the title picture. Bray is strong enough of a character that its okay at this point in his career that he’s not about championships.

    klunderbunker Reply:

    True but at some point he needs to win SOMETHING.

    beckett929 Reply:

    Win a feud, yes, absolutely and I agree. But I don’t know how they do that with him vs Brock on the WM stage, unless they go at FastLane and then shuffle them around for Mania.

    You don’t pay Brock $5 million to lose in-front of 100k people.

    beckett929 Reply:

    HHH puts over younger guys at Wrestlemania, if they do Brock/Bray and HHH/Roman at FastLane, they could do Bray/HHH at Mania for Wyatt not helping him eliminate Roman during the Rumble.

    Wyatt/Hunter could have a certain feel to it as a true “rebel against the machine” with how well Bray does his shtick.

    klunderbunker Reply:

    Maybe though I wasn’t feeling Brock tonight. He looked a bit lost.

  11. meka3000 says:

    Still, very exciting rumble all things considered.

    Also an awesome show, with good efforts from everyone on the card.

    IC: ****
    WWE tag: ***1/2
    US: **1/2
    Divas: ***
    WWE Rumble: ****1/2

  12. klunderbunker says:

    Well for one thing you can’t really hand pick the face of the company. There have only been a handful of them over the years and most of them get huge on their own and then are crowned the new guy.

    SamualDude Reply:

    If we do end up getting Triple H vs Roman for the title at Mania do you think WWE will change it because at this rate it ain’t going to end well.

    klunderbunker Reply:

    As in keep it on HHH/ Nah.

    SamualDude Reply:

    Tomorrow will be interesting. I just don’t know what they will do for a mania main event. Maybe Dean vs Roman?

  13. Ted says:

    Good show shitty ending. Can we please stop with Roman now. Dude got booed over triple h for gods sake. He is not charismatic enough for the spot he’s in. Also we so don’t need triple h as champion in 2016. Was awesome to see a j styles in the rumble. I look forward to seeing aj and Owens at wrestlemania. Or you could do Owens, Sami,. You can’t really go wrong with either. Amazing to see Sasha get a huge ovation. Leading to a no doubt awesome wrestlemania match. Dean and Owens had a good match. I dont need to see kalisto and del rio ever again. 3 title changes in a week is plenty. I don’t have hope for the main event going forward but there are good matches coming.

    Also lesnar does not need to waste his time killing Braun. Him and beat might be able to do some good things though.

  14. klunderbunker says:

    That’s very true too, though Brock isn’t the kind of guy who is going to care as long as his checks cash.

    I’m really not sure what we’re getting at Mania though and it’s getting hazier instead of clearer.

  15. calling the obvious now – Rock vs HHH for the title @ Mania.

    Ted Reply:

    Rock isn’t wrestling

  16. BSE says:

    Why is Triple H, a 47-year old wrestler, WWE Champion? I mean honestly. This is WWE’s problem. They’re not creating new stars.

    Goodbye to all that hard work getting Reigns over. It was fun while it lasted.

    Why didn’t Daniel Bryan return? He’s been cleared by every doctor except WWE’s.

    A.J. Styles was dumped way too early. So was Kevin Owens and Rusev. Where were the Dudley Boyz? When was Kofi Kingston eliminated?

    Why did Brock Lenar peacefully walk to the back after the Wyatts eliminated him? He was supposed to go on a rampage and suplex the Wyatts and everyone in sight. Also, Wyatt has NO chance of going over Lesnar, so forget about that. That’s exactly Wyatt needs though, right?, ANOTHER loss.

    I know I’m complaining a lot, but this company is just… boring. So average, predictable, and boring (And no I didn’t read the dirt sheet)

    klunderbunker Reply:

    You’re not looking at the long term.

    First off, HHH is champion because he can still have a really good if not great match with almost anyone. Second, if you think he’s holding that belt longer than the end of Wrestlemania at the latest, you need to pay closer attention.

    Reigns will be in a huge match at Mania if not the main event.

    Bryan didn’t return because WWE doctors haven’t cleared him. If he did return without them clearing him and got hurt again, WWE would lose millions upon millions in a lawsuit.

    AJ lasted half an hour. That’s fine.

    Rusev….eh I’m fine either way. The Dudleyz weren’t in because they didn’t win the opener. Did we really need them in there? Kofi was eliminated during the League beatdown. They showed it in a replay.

    Brock will go beast mode soon enough. It’ll happen.

    Patience. We’ve got four weeks to Fast Lane and ten to Wrestlemania. It’ll work out.

    ted Reply:

    “You’re not looking at the long term.”

    Neither are they.

    “First off, HHH is champion because he can still have a really good if not great match with almost anyone.”

    Never mind the fact that he’s on the wrong side of 40, or the fact that he does not need a 14th world title run. Or that this feud is not what fans want to see. The boos are the indication.

    “Second, if you think he’s holding that belt longer than the end of Wrestlemania at the latest, you need to pay closer attention.”

    Doesn’t make it any less unnecessary.

    Reigns will be in a huge match at Mania if not the main event.”

    I’ve already said why this is a bad idea multiple times. Suffice to say It’s a really bad idea if it happens.

    “Bryan didn’t return because WWE doctors haven’t cleared him. If he did return without them clearing him and got hurt again, WWE would lose millions upon millions in a lawsuit.”

    The real question is why multiple doctors have cleared Bryan and the wwe doctor hasn’t. Does the wwe doctor have information his own doctor wouldn’t?

    No the company wouldn’t lose any money. Seeing as how they’re independent contractors and are under no obligation to pay for them in the event they get hurt.

    Also don’t kid yourself the wwe does not give a crap about any of their employees. If they did they would have insurance, an off season, etc.

    “AJ lasted half an hour. That’s fine. ”

    Agreed, I thought He looked great.

    Rusev….eh I’m fine either way. The Dudleyz weren’t in because they didn’t win the opener. Did we really need them in there Kofi was eliminated during the League beatdown. They showed it in a replay.

    They should have shown Kofi being eliminated, I don’t think anyone could argue that. None of those jobber teams on the pre show matterd any way. Jack was tossed in what 20 seconds?

    Brock will go beast mode soon enough. It’ll happen.

    Shouldn’t have to wait. If The wyatts can come in and kill brock after being tossed. Brock can come in and kill them all dead. There was no reason for waiting. Brock is not subject to the weekly nonsense of raw.

    “Patience.”

    The wwe no longer deals in patience. Not with the network. You show me a reason to keep watching or I find something else to watch. Simple. Now I know you’ll probably say doing this nonsense will keep their diminishing hardcore fans and it probably will. But it’s not going to grow the audience. How many times can you piss them off before you run them off for good? Bottom line someone under 40, preferably someone the audience likes should have won.

    “We’ve got four weeks to Fast Lane and ten to Wrestlemania. It’ll work out.”

    History says otherwise. They have had chance after chance to be given the benefit of the doubt. The trust is gone there. Now they have to earn it back and hopefully they can. Now this wasn’t as bad as the last 2 rumbles. But the ending killed it dead again. Maybe they can fix it at no way out but I remain skeptical.

    klunderbunker Reply:

    As far as the booing goes, I really wouldn’t put much stock in what a Royal Rumble crowd thinks. That show has rapidly become second to Wrestlemania as a smark haven.

    As for Bryan….you’re wrong. You just are.

    Show you a reason to keep watching in the Network Era? The ending to Wrestlemania XXX. That was a multiple month story built up and executed to perfection, oddly enough featuring HHH as a featured player.

    Javier Torres Reply:

    You show me a reason to keep watching or I find something else to watch. Simple.

    With the exception of watching 2 full episodes in 2015 and watching highlights between flipping channels I have pretty much stopped watching Raw and have stopped watching SD completely since Dec of 2014 after the stupid angle where Rollins made Cena bring HHH and Steph back to power. I only watch the ppvs and follow the events on the Meltzer newsletter besides taking a peek a few mins of raw to see if they give me any bread on to watch. I been a wrestling fan since 1981 and this is the least interest I have had in the wrestling product since the ridiculous New generation era of 1994-1995. Between sabotaging other companies and stealing talent and their lousy booking decisions WWE is slowly killing the wrestling business. It won’t happen now or even next year but I feel the effects will be felt in the near future. U heard it here first. I hope I’m wrong though.

    Javier Torres Reply:

    Reason I meant dumb spellchecker

    beckett929 Reply:

    Do you just think they flipped the HBK switch on in 1992? I mean jesus, there’s a lot of dudes on this roster that look a lot like he did when he started his singles run. And, of note, IT TOOK 3 YEARS for him to really go anywhere beyond where Dean Ambrose is today!

    Shit takes time. And part of the joy is watching these young guys grow up. You can complain about HHH but it does fill in part of the story with Roman – HEY! another young guy. Just because you don’t like him doesn’t mean they aren’t trying to make a new star. Lots of folks didn’t like Diesel either.

    You know what we didn’t get tonight – John Cena or Randy Orton winning, and Big Show and Kane combining for like 2 eliminations and maybe 7 minutes of ring time.

  17. tamale says:

    Just with his debut, I was immediately excited for the potential of AJ Styles feuds on the main roster:

    AJ/Roman
    AJ/Neville
    AJ/Jericho
    AJ/Bray
    AJ/Owens
    AJ/Dean
    AJ/Seth

    Hell, I feel AJ/HHH would be fantastic. He adds so much content for the show. Easily, the best major signing WWE has made in a long while.

    beckett929 Reply:

    AJ/Dean makes a great IC title match at Mania.

    The glorious thing is at his age they aren’t going to waste him.

  18. BSE says:

    The four main reasons I didn’t like this PPV:

    1 – Triple H is WWE Champion… in 2016.
    2 – Roman Reigns still isn’t over.
    3 – Bray Wyatt will lose again.
    4 – Daniel Bryan still isn’t back.

    Greg Reply:

    Last one you can’t fault them for.

  19. klunderbunker says:

    Nah. That’s more a September PPV main event.

    I’m really not sure what we’re getting to close out Mania but there are several options.

  20. Jay H (the real one) says:

    A vast improvement over last year’s Show and I just don’t see how some people can sit there saying it was terrible. I had a feeling HHH would sneak in at #30. Which he did and him winning was the right way to go. I think its him vs Reigns at 32 and not next month.

    A great debut for AJ Styles and to the person who said he was dumped early he lasted 27 minutes. I don’t see how’s that being eliminated early. Also loved Sami Zayn showing up and eliminating Kevin Owens. I kinda predicted that would happen and lead to them meeting at WM 32.

    The rest of the Rumble was good including LMS with Ambrose & Owens. I disagree on the Divas Title I thought it was very good.

  21. dookie blaster 3000 says:

    why couldnt Roman screw HHH after he eliminated him and helped his “Brother” win the title? meanwhile Dean loses the IC Title and Owens vs Zayn gets better

  22. Bj says:

    The King of Kings is back!!!! And so is The McMahon/Helmsley era

  23. Bj says:

    Hhh the modern day Nick Bockwinkel the modern day Harley Race!!!

    Javier Torres Reply:

    That’s am insult to those two. Those two are true legends while HHH is a legend in his own mind.

    Greg Reply:

    HHH is a legend. To say otherwise is asinine.

    Javier Torres Reply:

    Then I guess I’m asinine because he’s not a legend. With all due respect to compare HHH to real legends like Bockwinkel and Harley Race is a joke. Least Bockwinkel and Race helped made stars and put them over when the time came unlike this selfish egotistical piece of garbage who did more to harm WWE and kill careers pushes and momentum of wrestlers than anyone in this modern period besides Hogan. You want to believe he’s a legend fine but I choose not to.

    Rocko Reply:

    He put over Batista, Cena, Orton, Benoit, Sheamus, Hardy (that’s just off the top of my head). He honestly made Batista a star. He is going to put over Reigns.

    Maybe the only two guys who he should have put over but didn’t were RVD and Booker. However, Booker lost due to Goldberg coming in and WWE management didn’t like RVD’s attitude (they wanted him to be more aggressive in his promos but he refused).

    ted Reply:

    Ok look I don’t hate Triple H. But no he’s not a legend on the same level as an undertaker or a macho man. Triple H was smashed over when no one wanted it at the expense of other people. He’s the guy who works with the guy that draws the money. Sure the wwe will tell you h is a legend. They also say ko ko beware is a legend. That doesn’t make it so.

    “He put over Batista, Cena, Orton, Benoit, Sheamus, Hardy (that’s just off the top of my head). He honestly made Batista a star. He is going to put over Reigns.”

    He put over Cena after he was already at the top. He did not do Orton any favours. Watch wrestlemania 25 main event again. Yea how good is sheamus doing these days? being killed with there other guys at the altar of reigns. He beat hardy multiple times and only lost the title in a triple threat where he was not pinned. Batista i”ll give you.

    Look Triple H is a good wrestler and he can have good matches. But his polictkitng and jackass friends keep me from respecting him as an all time great. His promos are droning and boring. He just wasn’t and isn’t versatile enough To reach that tier of all time great. That’s not his fault. It’s very difficult to reach that tier. The only reason The Triple H all time great argument is given merit is because after years of being told how amazing he is, naturally people believe it. Is he good? yes Great? no.

  24. Isaiah Morrow says:

    Crap Rumble. Fourth year in a row now.

  25. Javier Torres says:

    I don’t wish to see that idiot HHH in the Mania main event. Instead of giving the title to someone who would deserve it more like an Ambrose Owens or even Bray Wyatt for that matter the one who’s champion is the one who still thinks it’s the period of 1999-2007 when he thought he meant anything. Gotta love that WWE youth movement.

    Dragon Reply:

    So put Kevin Owens in the main event of the biggest WM ever? He is only a main event star among you internet fanboys, no casual fans even know who he is.

    Javier Torres Reply:

    Check the reactions he get and it shows not only internet fanboys know who he is. And if u don’t want to count him Ambrose would’ve been a better choice not some has-been idiot who’s a supposed legend in his own mind and still thinks this is 1999-2008 when he was relevant. They could’ve had Hunter still accomplish the goal of screwing Reigns without making himself champion.

    Dragon Reply:

    So you are saying Kevin Owens vs Roman Reigns for WM 32? Maybe after another year. I just can’t see it on a billboard and making people want to watch.

    ted Reply:

    He is only a main event star among you internet fanboys,”

    Your an internet fan boy so why would you want to insult yourself? Also why would that term be an insult? Everyone on this site is both on the internet and a fan.

    klunderbunker Reply:

    Along with the WWE who had him go over one of the biggest stars of all time clean in his main roster debut. Clearly just fanboys.

    Dragon Reply:

    Who said it was an insult? I am just trying to say that Kevin Owens does not belong in the main event of the biggest WM…..established stars are needed to draw in the casual buyers. The diehards will attend/buy no matter what.

  26. CrazySole says:

    I thought that Rumble was…phenominal. Seeing AJ Styles was just amazing, Zayn also a great suprise. I don’t mind HHH winning, it fits the storyline very well although I would’ve liked to have seen Wyatt win.

    I think Mania card is shaping up like;
    HHH vs Reigns – Title
    Lesnar vs Bray Wyatt (and family possibly)
    Sami Zayn vs Kevin Owens
    Ambrose vs Jericho for the IC title

    The big mystery is still who Taker will face. Maybe him and Kane may challenge for the tag titles.

  27. Dragon says:

    The youth movement is NOT hotshotting someone into the WrestleMania main event that only die hard fans are aware of. It is giving them good storylines and giving them a slow climb. The main event of the biggest WM ever as to appeal to all audiences, young, old, die hard, and casual. The way to do that is with established workers. Much of the internet masses do not agree but it is the truth. If Rock could go then Rock vs Triple H would be the way to go with a less established star taking the belt off the winner the following month at a lesser PPV. I agree that the WWE does need to focus on the youth, but not at the main event of WM 32.

  28. Gunther_224 says:

    I’m calling it now, HHH vs Reigns turns into a schmozz with every heel on the roster running in to help HHH. Dean Ambrose comes out to help even the odds to no avail when suddenly Rollins makes his return as a face and helps Reigns get the title back. Mania ends with a Shield reunion.

    Greg Reply:

    ACL takes 6 months to reattach, minimum. Rollins will not be at mania in a physical capacity.

    Gunther_224 Reply:

    All he’d have to do is swing a chair or something to that effect. It will be just about 6 months come mania anyway. He will be returning shortly after mania in all likelihood so it makes sense to keep him in the minds of fans while simultaneously keeping the crowd from shitting on Reigns inevitable win and giving us a mania moment all at the same time.

    Rocko Reply:

    He can’t run. So he’d have to have a reason to be down at the ring (or else prepare to wait 5 hours for him to do a walk-in). He literally cannot do anything but walk straight. I’d say wait until he is fully healed. ACLs are really easy to tear for the first five months after surgery. After it reattaches, Rollins will need time to build his muscle back up. Usually takes people around 7-8 months or even a year to return from a torn ACL (usually depends on type of surgery done).

  29. Javier Torres says:

    Didn’t say just Owens. I think people would’ve cared if it was Reigns vs Ambrose at Mania with one of the other turning in the end. Right now WWE has to try something as Rollins who they tried to push as well as the big stars like Cena and Orton are out with injuries. I understand that all these injuries have made the options limited but I still think they could’ve had someone eliminate Reigns and HHH would still get his mission accomplished without winning the title himself. Besides sadly WWE bought this situation on themselves because besides Rollins and possibly Ambrose they pushed nobody else above mid card status

  30. Gunther_224 says:

    Even better. Rollins casually strolls to the ring meanwhile HHH has a huge grin on his face thinking Rollins is out there to help him then *wham* Rollins turns on the authority and the crowd loses their minds. It’s the only way I can see them having Reigns walk out with the title without getting booed out of the building.

    Proph Reply:

    He can’t stroll to the ring.

    He can barely walk.

  31. Pugman says:

    Pretty good Rumble in my eyes. People don’t seem to understand WWE has very limited options right now and the WM main event is gonna look weak on paper regardless. Trips was really the only choice they had. I mean Dean could have won and defended the belt against Trips at Fast lane, only to have Regins turn on him after the match due to Dean holding both belts while Reigns had nothing. Setting up Ambrose vs Reigns at WM. Other than that I don’t see any other possible options. I mean lets be honest i’m sure a lot of people would love Lesnar vs Styles for the belt at mania but we gotta be realistic WWE only has like 4 WM main event options. Reigns Trips, Lesnar, and maybe Ambrose.a

    ted Reply:

    Their limited options are they’re own fault. They don’t get slack for being stupid.

  32. rampah says:

    I’ve watched the rumble match twice this week. I just like this type of match and it it is way better, than the last three years.

    With that being said, I don’t think an A- fits it very well. It is god, and a huge improvement from the last ones, but still not great. And I believe, that when you will redo it next year it won’t hold up to an A.

    Just a few random thoughts on it:
    + AJ Styles debut was phenomenal! Great crowd reaction, great booking. It was good, to let him debut very early in it, but even better, that he didn’t last until the end, because the fans would have been very mad about it. Also smart, to get KO some heat for it. Very good indeed.

    + I haven’t watched the last PPVs, so Rusev is now an official jobber? Kind of sad, but I suppose that’s the way things work.

    + The New Day stuff was hilarous. It was annoying, that they didn’t show the elimnation live, but I still liked it.

    + RR not winning. He was booed more than I expected. It wasn’t as bad as last year, but nevertheless the audience clearly didn’t want him to win it. Good choice.

    + Miz waiting. That introduced a bit of common sense and was very nice to see.

    – The beatdown of RR. That really hurt the match. The champion out of it for that long and everyone knew, he was coming back. Really, really stupid.

    – The booking of Brock. The way this was handled was strange and having him be srewed out that early simply left only HHH as a winning option.

    – The finale. The moment HHHs music hit, I knew he was going to win. That was bad drama, as the only other option in the ring left was RR and that would have been even worse. I don’t despise the idea of HHH holding the title, but it killed the last minutes of the match for me.

    So after watching it a second time, I think it was a good match, but all the injuries really hurt it in the end. There were only three people in the mix, with one eliminated before the finale (Brock), one being booed out of the building again if he would have won it (RR) and a semi retired wrestler (HHH). With RR selling the beatdown that long, it became like a filler, for an ending, that was obvious wenn #30 came in.

    Rollins, Orton, Cena, Bryan, CM Punk would all have been great additions, but they weren’t there, so I guess besides a few smaller mistakes, this was the best they could do.