Pre-show saw Nia Jax make squishy out of Sasha Banks, and the WWE RAW Tag Team Championships change hands in a pretty crazy match. One ref got blasted towards the end, and a cheap roll-up with tights held brought victory to Gallows and Anderson.
The main show kicks off with the RAW Women’s Championship match. Really good match. Bayley busts Charlotte’s mouth with a Macho Man Elbow Drop. Lots of back and forth, however Charlotte just destroys Bayley’s face with a Natural Selection on the ring apron, KOing the Hugger and retaining the championship. Winner and still champion: Charlotte
Kevin Owens retains the WWE Universal Championship against Roman Reigns
Chris Jericho is funny while hanging from the shark cage. This was a great match. Despite Roman Reigns being booed relentlessly, we got a ton of powerbombs, some table breaks… A huge one with Owens frogsplashing Reigns off the top and to the floor. Later Reigns knocks Owens into a pile of stacked chairs, which Owens had set up earlier on. Reigns powerbombs Owens through an announce table, and is about to claim victory… Until Braun Strowman arrives, beating the crap out of Reigns, powerslamming him through a table, which allows Owens to pin and retain.
We get a very oddly innuendo-filled commercial with Enzo and Cass and a KFC Chicken Platter.
Backstage: Stephanie and Mick Foley discuss the result, and how the shark cage turned out to be pointless. Shane McMahon and Daniel Bryan show up to roll the roulette cage as Sami Zayn steps in, doing some sort of shy anxiety gimmick, having difficulty grabbing his ball… Yes, lots of jokes about grabbing balls, and then Dean Ambrose shows up, and offers to help Zayn with his ball. Ambrose announces Zayn gets number eight… Zayn is upset, but Ambrose then clarifies… it’s upside down… it’s still eight. Ambrose wants to know where the churros are, he was promised churros.
WWE Cruiserweight Championship match: Neville defeated Rich Swann to become Cruiserweight Champion
Well, I was wrong on this one, but happy how it turned out. It was a pretty decent match, although there were a number of very slow moments and rest holds which hurt the momentum of the match. Rich Swann in angry mode is funny to watch. Neville and Swann hit each other hard with spin kicks and superkicks. Action picked up fast with Swann hitting some big spin kicks and kicking out of a top rope superplex. Unfortunately for Swann, the challenger had more left in the gas tank as Neville locked in the Rings of Saturn for the submission victory.
WWE World Heavyweight Championship: John Cena defeated AJ Styles to become a 16-Time champion
Wow. What a match. The beginning seems like a typical Cena-involved match with the punches and kicks, but gradually this turned into one hell of a match. If I did move-by-move, this article might go on and on until your eyes bleed. Lots of reversals and counters. Cena blasted AJ with some hard hitting slams, and AJ fired back with his arsenal of aerial assaults. Cliché, but true, and it looked awesome while they were doing it. A favorite part of the match for me, the two had a series of submission holds going back and forth. The end, oh the end. Cena lobbed Styles halfway across the ring with a top rope Attitude Adjustment, and still kicked out. Lots of Styles Clashes, which had us thinking Styles would retain, but in the end, two consecutive AAs did her in. Great match.
Okay, Cena won. Yes. He won. 16-time champion. It’s reality.
For the second time tonight, recap from NXT TakeOver, where Seth Rollins calls out Triple H, who does emerge from the back, only to send out security to get rid of him.
The Royal Rumble Match Moments:
All three members of the New Day eliminated at the same time, then Sheamus turns on Cesaro but both are eliminated by Chris Jericho.
Braun Strowman eliminated by Bacon Rorbin
Tye Dillenger entering at #10
James Ellsworth wasting a spot
Miz taking a lot of sick bumps
Braun Strowman eliminating Big Show
Goldberg eliminating Lesnar within seconds of Goldberg’s entry
The crowd chanting “BULLSHIT” when Roman Reigns enters number 30 and eliminates The Undertaker.
Sami Zayn lasting as long as he did.
Randy Orton eliminating Roman Reigns to win the Rumble.
Well, Reigns ruins the Rumble and RANDY ORTON wins. Good grief. No one wants to see Orton vs. Cena AGAIN.
Sigh… This was a horrible finish. But I will take Orton over Reigns any night.