Defending The 2015 Royal Rumble

The 2015 Royal Rumble is in the books and for the second year in a row I find myself in a position where I feel I have to defend the show the following morning. Just like last year, the winner of the Royal Rumble (this year Roman Reigns) was met with a chorus of boos in the arena that even the returning Rock couldn’t fix.  My Twitter timeline and what seems like the majority of the Internet are absolutely CRUSHING the WWE even going so far as getting #CancelWWENetwork to trend worldwide. I consider myself a pretty well informed wrestling fan and I’ve got to say… I don’t get it.

2015 Royal Rumble Poster

2015 Royal Rumble Recap & Thoughts

With the Rumble match itself taking up so much time there are typically very few matches on the card. Unfortunately I missed the pre-show match where Cesaro & Tyson Kidd def. The New Day. Guessing that was a pretty decent match especially since Adam Rose who was supposed to be there was removed because Xavier Woods was out due to injury.

The Ascension def. New Age Outlaws – I’m not quite sure why the WWE front office would bring The Ascension up from NXT if they were just going to shit on them once they got to the main roster. They’ve been going against jobbers on a weekly basis and the commentary crew has been pointing it out. Last week on RAW they got their asses kicked by a bunch of old guys and then they’re in the kickoff match against said old guys. That said, this was a descent opener where The Ascension did what they needed to do… win.

WWE Tag Team Championship Match: The Usos (c) def. The Miz & Damien Mizdow – It’s simply amazing how much the fans hate The Miz. And that’s why I respect him so much. It’s rare in today’s wrestling landscape where there’s a heel that everyone hates. Most of the time the cool kids (IE, the Internet Wrestling Community – IWC – who think they know everything) latch on to the heels and cheer them. That doesn’t happen with Miz and people overlook just how awesome (pun intended) that is. That said, it’s time for Mizdow and Miz to part ways and those seeds were sowed in this match and later on in the Rumble match itself. This wasn’t great as a stand alone match but it did what it needed to do from a storyline perspective and all 4 guys worked hard.

Nikki & Brie Bella def. Paige & Natalya – As per usual we get one match on the card that’s just sort of there. Apparently this match was set up on Total Divas and since I don’t watch it (and honestly since I typically fast forward over Divas matches on RAW) I don’t know the back story. For what it’s worth, it was good to see the Bella twins dominate here and actually do some good wrestling work. I don’t think Paige ever even got into the match which could lead to some dissension between her and Natalya which could lead to a great program.  Oh yeah one other thing… Nikki Bella is crazy hot.

Lesnar At The RumbleWWE World Heavyweight Championship Match: Brock Lesnar (c) def. John Cena and Seth Rollins – This… was… AMAZING!!!  I’ve gone on record several times saying how I’m not a Brock Lesnar fan and how I think having him break the Undertaker’s streak and putting the title on him was a mistake.  I’ve got to say that between his appearance on RAW last week and this match I’m changing my tune. Dude is a beast and worked a damn solid match. Throw in Seth Rollins who continues to impress and a very (in my opinion) underrated worker in John Cena and this was gold. I absolutely cannot wait to re-watch this match tonight. It’s early in the year but this will definitely be up there for Match Of The Year candidates when 2015 comes to an end. BRAVO.

Roman Reigns won the Royal Rumble Match – Just like last year when Batista won the match, this should surprise no one. Apparently though there are many in the WWE Universe and the IWC that didn’t see this coming a mile away.  Last year’s Rumble propelled Reigns to superstardom when he broke Kane’s single Rumble record and eliminated 12 competitors. He’s been shoved down our throats ever since his return from injury and it only makes sense that he’d win the Rumble to be put into the main event at WrestleMania vs. Lesnar.

Reigns And The Rock At The Rumble

As for the Rock returning.

I’ll admit it… I don’t care how many times it happens, when his music hits, I mark out.

The Rumble itself was hugely entertaining. We got the return of Bubba Ray Dudley, The Boogeyman and DDP. I was really glad we didn’t get more ECW guys (*cough cough* Rob Van Dam) just because we were in Philadelphia, but it was tremendous to see Dudley back in the WWE.  I’m hoping it wasn’t a one night shot. The lack of having Devon there was sort of a bummer, but luckily R-Truth was there to allow them to get their spots in.

There was a great article a while back about racism in wrestling. Unfortunately the WWE didn’t do themselves any favors by not bringing Devon back and just plugging in R-Truth. Sad and unfortunate choice.

Daniel Bryan Gets Eliminated

Daniel Bryan Eliminated From RumbleThe crowd really turned on the event when Daniel Bryan was elimated early in the match. I can’t help but think that Daniel Bryan wasn’t quite ready to return to full time action which is why this course of action was taken. Sure he’s had a match here or there on Smackdown but I’m guessing he’s not ready for the run to a WrestleMania main event. We’ll probably never know, but if that’s the case I wish they would have just kept him off TV until he was truly ready to return. If they did, we wouldn’t have had this unfortunate crowd reaction for the second year in a row.  Bottom line is this… Bringing Daniel Bryan back for the Rumble was a huge mistake. The fans wanted him to win and if he was in the match and he didn’t win they were going to turn on the winner. Period.

People often underestimate the importance the crowd plays in a PPV event. Sure they can turn down the mics on the crowd, but when they’re booing every entrant after Bryan gets elimiated they kill the atmosphere. I feel really bad for Roman Reigns because just like Rey Mysterio last year, it’s not his fault that Bryan wasn’t there at the end of the Rumble.  Is Reigns ready for the top spot in the company? Time will tell. He certainly needs to get WAY better on the mic or get himself a mouthpiece like Heyman but consider this. For YEARS folks in the IWC have been talking about how they want to replace the old guard with new guys. This is exactly what’s happeneing and they’re pissed.  Guess you can’t keep everyone happy.

HUGE props to Bray Wyatt for his time in the Rumble match. While he didn’t do what Reigns did last year he was the standout in my opinion. Sucks to be Curtis Axel who was never eliminated. Wonder if they’ll follow that up with any sort of story line?

The Aftermath

Apparently things were SO bad last night and fans went to the WWE Network online cancellation page and brought the site down. This is really stupid. I said it last year and I’ll re-state it now.

And for those folks that did indeed cancel their WWE Network subscriptions after the Rumble, I’m guessing they’ll magically re-appear just before WrestleMania 31 goes on the air. I ran across this article where people were blocking the parking lot out of the arena so the wrestlers couldn’t leave. Folks… this is why wrestling fans get a bad wrap. Do you block the parking lot of a movie theater after you see a movie you don’t like? Get a grip. Stop making us look bad. Don’t live up to the stereotypes.

Regardless of your feelings about last night’s event, this is the best time of the year to be a WWE fan. We’re on the Road To WrestleMania and I for one can’t wait for the ride!

What did you think of the 2015 Royal Rumble?

7 thoughts on “Defending The 2015 Royal Rumble

    1. Lemme guess… you were one of the geniuses who was stopping traffic getting out of the arena right? Go cry on your Daniel Bryan poster… it’ll be all right. LOL.

    2. And yes… I AM a mark. And proud of it. Why be a wrestling fan if you’re not going to mark out every once in a while? Oh that’s right… being bitter is much more fun 🙂 YES! YES! YES!

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