Monday, January 26, 2015
Royal Rumble Recap - Oh Boy We Have a Problem
Royal Rumble is in the books, and for the second year in a row the live crowd was not feeling the end result. Roman Reigns did not get booed as badly as Batista did last year but he did hear it from a house that wanted Daniel Bryan to take the victory here. And to make matters worse, Bryan came in and got tossed pretty early and once that happened the boos began to come down. Then later on the two other guys who they could have lived with, Dolph Ziggler and Dean Ambrose, got tossed. When Ambrose got eliminated leaving Reigns with no-hopers Kane and Big Show it was clear what the end would be and the fans reacted accordingly. It's not Reigns fault and he's been put in a real bad spot. Bryan never got to see his run as champ come to any meaningful conclusion due to his injuries, and the fans wanted to get the win at the Rumble then WrestleMania so he could get that chance. But clearly, Vince McMahon had other ideas. My guess is that he didn't see repeating last year's finish with a man he doesn't want on top anyway as the right way to go. When I watched the Rumble and how it shook out, I didn't think of Vince McMahon. No, I thought of this guy:
Yes, Eric Bischoff. Why? Because of the way the internet fan darlings got treated. Bischoff coined the term 'Vanilla Midgets' to denigrate certain WCW wrestlers who'd developed a pretty strong following but weren't his guys, and parked them all in the midcard without letting any of them so much as sniff a main event. You may have heard of some of these guys; the midgets were none other than Chris Jericho, Chris Benoit, Eddie Guererro, and a few others like Dean Malenko. And no matter how they got themselves over in the ring or on the mic they all hit a glass ceiling. The modern equivalents of this are Dolph Ziggler, Bryan, and it looks like Dean Ambrose. Ziggler gets jerked around with the Intercontinental Title and usually takes an L if he's put in with a big name. Ambrose blew up last summer but has jobbed on pay per view shows to Seth Rollins and Bray Wyatt for four straight. And Bryan, despite his successes, seems to get slapped down whenever McMahon feels he can get away with it. Last night was no different. Bryan came in at number 10 and wasn't around long. Ziggler came in at number 30 but was gone in about 10 minutes. And Ambrose made it to the final four but was the first one to go. Reigns on the other hand is the guy who was anointed by Vince a year ago and by god he's going to make it happen by hook or by crook. So now we're looking at a potential repeat of the run up to last year's WrestleMania where the presumptive challenger to the tile is someone the fans just flat out don't want
All that being said, the show was a good one. The pre-show tag team match and the tag team title matches were good. The Divas tag team match wasn't bad, and the Triple Threat WWE World Championship match was freaking awesome. Seth Rollins certified himself as a main event in ring talent last night, and the flying elbow onto Brock Lesnar on the table followed by the Phoenix splash onto Cena in the ring were two of the craziest spots I've seen in a long time. That match alone was worth whatever you paid for it, the $9.99 monthly fee for the Network or the pay per view price. That match is why you watch wrestling in the first place and should not be negated because you didn't get the Royal Rumble winner you wanted. I'm sorry but I refuse to go on a "I hate Vince McMahon...I'm done!" rant after seeing that title match. They have two months to turn WrestleMania into something all the boo-birds want to see, and guessing they will one way or another. If you can't bring yourself to soak in he awesomeness of that Phoenix splash from Seth Rollins then I don't know what to tell you. That doesn't mean you should accept the result of the final match going forward, though. By all means make your voices heard and get it changed. Hey, it worked last year.