The 2015 WWE Royal Rumble Recap

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The Rumble came… and the Rumble went. Like a casual wind. It was there, we felt its touch, then forgot about it since its slight caress lacked the feeling of importance or novelty.

Lots of surprises tonight, and yet so many disappointments and a very awkwardly paced Rumble match. It was not a bad event, but it was not great either. The shocker, is the WWE Championship match being the best match on the card, with the Pre-Show match being close to a show-stealer as you can get.

We kicked off the pre-show with a welcome victory, as Cesaro and Tyson Kidd picked up a solid, strong, and clean pinfall victory over Kofi Kingston and Big E. Langston. A great match which was evenly paced. Kidd, struck down Kingston with a corkscrew fisherman’s Suplex for the pinfall victory. Glad my prediction was wrong on this one. Hopefully this means they are coming up for a run at the Tag Team Titles.

The Ascension defeated The New Age Outlaws

My hopes for a continued entertaining burial were dashed. I get the Ascension are supposed to be big and mean, but when they are outclassed by the heroes of yesteryear on live television, I could only think this was going to turn out terribly. It seems the dominators of the NXT tag team ranks are getting a new lease on life, as they fought off a very polished and “still got it” Billy Gunn and Road Dogg, using the Fall of Man as their finisher.

The Usos retained the Tag Team Titles against Miz and Mizdow

In a mixed bag of comedy and fast-paced back-and-forth, all four pulled out a great contest. The focus was on Mizdow, and the live Philadelphia crowd went absolutely bonkers when Mizdow finally got into the ring. Unfortunately his ring time was for naught as Miz was unable to overcome a 2-on-1 situation, and got pinned. One Damien Sandow, was not happy with his partner.

Bellas defeated Natalya and Paige

Between the lost count of botches, Paige and Natalya did their best. But, bigger boobs and plastic surgery prevail in order to push Total Divas or some other crap.

Brock Lesnar retained the WWE Championship against John Cena and Seth Rollins

I have said it before and I will say it again. Kudos to WWE for putting a guy like Rollins in the same right with Lesnar. Seth Rollins was, without any doubt, the MVP of the match. He took the majority of bumps, took all the high risks, and easily outclassed both other wrestlers. Now, not going to take away from Cena tonight. He put up his fair share of both offense and defense, but it was noticed Cena was mostly in “five-moves-of-doom” mode, basically doing nothing but punching, kicking, and throwing everyone with Attitude Adjustments. Highlights include:

  • Brock Lesnar throwing BOTH Jamie Noble and Joey Mercury with a German Suplex AT THE SAME DAMN TIME. I kid you not, he held one in each arm, launching them both.
  • As Brock and Cena were tied up in a Gulliotine Choke hold, Rollins came flying off the top rope with a knee, clobbering Brock in the face, and then landing on top of a folded Cena.
  • Seth Rollins planting Brock through the announce table with a bigtime elbow-drop dive off the top rope.
  • Seth Rollins hitting a twisting 450 splash onto Cena, and then immediately having his upper bone structure rearranged by Brock, who had been deemed “out of action” due to lying motionless following the table spot, running into the ring and German Suplexing the crap out of Rollins, then hitting an F5 for the win.

It was an awesome match. I dare say, better than the Royal Rumble itself.

We know by now who won, Roman Reigns. While fans booed, chanted vulgarities, and begged for CM Punk, we need to remember something important. Last year, when it came down to Batista and Reigns, the live crowd, and likely everyone watching home were begging for Reigns to win. He didn’t, we cried. This year, it comes down to Reigns and Rusev, and we still cry at the inevitable outcome.  Let’s get to the highlights:

  • Entering #3 was the first surprise entrant, Bubba Ray Dudley, wearing the classic ECW glasses.
  • Entering #10 was Daniel Bryan, and nine minutes later, is eliminated by Bray Wyatt – This caused the live Philadelphia crowd to boo without end.
  • Bray Wyatt pulls out a mic during the match and starts taunting everyone, even getting the fans to sing “He’s got the whole world…”
  • The Boogeyman showed up
  • Titus O’Neal was eliminated in four seconds
  • Diamond Dallas Page is another surprise entrant and hits Diamond Cutters on everyone before being launched by Rusev.
  • Speaking of Wyatt and Rusev, both were the “dominators” this year, doing most of the eliminations.
  • Dolph Ziggler drew #30 and lasted all of five minutes.
  • Kofi Kingston’s annual elimination saving leap was not so impressive as he was thrown over the top and caught by The Rosebuds who then helped him back into the ring and marched away just as Adam Rose was hurled over the top.
  • Zack Ryder showed up
  • Curtis Axel’s spot was taken by Erick Rowan, who along with Luke Harper had a weird three-way staredown with Wyatt, breaking down into a brawl which saw Harper and Rowan get eliminated.
  • Goldust and Stardust turned and tried eliminating each other
  • Miz attempted to take Sandow’s place in the Rumble, but wound up getting punched out, and became irate when Sandow was eliminated after a few minutes. Sandow then mocked Miz’s angry temper tantrum.

This was a mostly jobber-filled match. Sin Cara, R-Truth, Ryder, Boogeyman, Axel, Kingston, Rose, Jack Swagger, Fandango, and even Tyson Kidd. Like any of those guys had a shot. Sure, you need some filler, but the filler folks seemed to last longer than any of the big names! When Bryan was eliminated, the live crowd just crapped on the rest of the show. They chanted for everyone else, and booed the hell out of Roman Reigns. Towards the end, Big Show and Kane just knocked everyone out and tossed them over the ropes like garbage bags. They did that to Ziggler, Ryback, and others. Way to go. It came down to Dean Ambrose, Roman Reigns, Show and Kane. Ambrose is eliminated, but then something stupid goes wrong and Show attacks Kane. They brawl, and predictably Reigns eliminates them both. Rusev was on the outside, having rolled out of the ring earlier on. Show and Kane return to punish Reigns, but suddenly The Rock shows up “outta nowhere” to save the goddamn day. Pointless. Rusev returns and is quickly tossed, allowing Reings to celebrate with cousin Rock. Guess what, having the Rock in the ring did not change a single mind in attendance. They still booed.

There you have it, for the second, maybe third year in a row, not just a predictable outcome, but done so slowly, as if WWE wanted everyone to understand what was unfolding. Triple H and a very busty Stephanie came out with frowns on their faces to close the show.

Well, I have no idea where they are going next. Roman Reigns vs. Brock Lesnar. What happens with John Cena? Wade Barrett? Daniel Bryan? Bray Wyatt?

They have about six weeks and change until WrestleMania 31. They have a lot of work to do for this to be a good one, because right now, I’m scratching my head, and it’s not because of the dandruff.