Sunday, January 31, 2010

1/31/10 Royal Rumble

Christian vs. Ezekiel Jackson (ECW Title): This was a good match. Hey, I didn't know Zeke went to law school...we could become fast friends. Big Zeke had some good power offense and a couple of near falls, but it was Christian who carried it and played to Zeke's strengths. I think the rating could have been a lot higher if Zeke pulled off some different moves. I also hoped Zeke would win so he could get pushed, but I guess WWE wanted Christian to beat everyone on the roster first. **1/2

The Miz vs. MVP (U.S. Title): This match, made by Teddy Long right after the ECW Title match, was another solid match. Miz/MVP has had some nice buildup on RAW over the last few weeks. If there was a secondary title to be defended, it would be the U.S. belt because the IC belt was just defended two days ago on Smackdown. Nice back-and-forth action for a match lasting about eight minutes, but the finish left a little to be desired. **

Sheamus vs. Randy Orton (WWE Title): The crowd really did not care for most of the match, and I didn't care, either. A bunch of people got behind Orton as the match went on. The end was a big disappointment, but probably signals the beginning of the end of Legacy and Orton as a unit. As for Sheamus, this match only reaffirmed my fears: he is not looking like a credible champion. This may be the worst-booked World Title or WWE Title reign since Rey Mysterio. By the way, an Orton face turn would rule. *3/4

Mickie James vs. Michelle McCool (Women's Title): Um, what the hell? It would be unfair to give it negative stars because it wasn't bad (hell, it was too short to be bad). But I'll say this much: after all that buildup this angle got, the match lasted less than 20 seconds. Pathetic. This is the Trash of the Night because I was actually hoping for a decent match. Not much to ask for after all that buildup, right? And especially on a PPV, give the WWE Universe something other than a big middle finger of a "match." This gets a big fat zero. DUD

The Undertaker vs. Rey Mysterio (World Heavyweight Title): So Taker bleeds and no one stops the match (like how they stopped it to tend to Christian at the TLC Ladder Match)? I guess it's because it's Taker. The crowd loved both competitors, but I wish the match went longer. Understandable though, because Taker is all banged up and Rey's knee is not the best right now. **3/4

Royal Rumble: Very nice Rumble, but man it was SHORT. This thing went less than 50 minutes, and no one had an impressive stay in the match (at least to my knowledge). What saved it for me was Punk's appearance and the couple of nice shockers that took place. Keep reading below for the action. ***1/2

Here is my log of what happened, in real time:

Dolph Ziggler drew #1, while Evan Bourne drew #2. Nice offense by both. Ziggler got the Zig Zag in...Bourne got Air Bourne in.

#3 is CM Punk (with the lovely Serena). He took both Ziggler and Bourne out. He grabs the mic to talk...I loved it.

#4 was JTG and he lasted all of 10 seconds before Punk got him. More talking for Punk, woohoo!

Khali out at #5 and Punk wants to convert Khali. He and Punk have a bonding experience, all right. Khali gets Punk in the Khali Vice.

#6 is BETH PHOENIX WTF?! SHE KISSED KHALI AND ELIMINATED KHALI WTF?! Crowd (and I) went absolutely nuts. Beth gets Punk up on her shoulders...damn. Punk counters out...GTS! Punk eliminates Beth as the next entrant comes out.

#7 is Zack Ryder. Punk nukes Ryder for his fifth elimination. Punk wants the next competitor because he is better than that person.

#8 is HHH...uh oh. Offense from the Game. OK, these entrants are not coming in every 90's more like 30-45 seconds.

#9 is Drew McIntyre. HHH goes for a Pedigree, countered by Punk, who wants a GTS, but HHH counters that and eliminates Punk.

#10 is Ted DiBiase. Ted and Drew beat down HHH.

#11 is John Morrison. Starship Pain to McIntyre from Morrison.

#12 is Kane...he could break the Rumble record for most eliminations in a career. Kane double chokeslams McIntyre and Morrison, then knocks down HHH. Ring filling up now.

#13 is Cody Rhodes and he helps DiBiase.

#14 is MVP...but MIZ from behind to KO MVP! Morrison with Flying Chuck to McIntyre. Legacy trying to eliminate HHH, but Kane interrupts.

#15 is Carlito and he goes after everyone. Backstabber to HHH eventually, then one to McIntyre, then to DiBiase. Half the people have entered.

#16 is Miz. SCF to Carlito. WHOOPS...MVP coming out! MVP eliminates Miz and himself as they brawl to the back. HHH and McIntyre both almost out, but saved.

#17 is Matt Hardy. Kane eliminates Hardy, but HHH takes Kane out. So much for Kane breaking the record (he is now two behind Austin, 36-34).

#18 is Shawn Michaels and eliminates Carlito, Rhodes, DiBiase, and Morrison. DX knocks out McIntyre (counts as one each for HBK and HHH in my book). HHH and HBK in the ring, but the countdown is on, and buzzer sounds....

#19...John Cena! Cena with his usual moves...Double Five Knuckle Shuffle to DX. AA to HBK...but HBK hangs on to the rope. Pedigree to Cena. HBK SWEET CHIN MUSIC ELIMINATES HHH! So much for my prediction.

#20 is Shelton Benjamin; goes after HBK. German suplex to Cena. Paydirt to HBK. And Cena eliminates Benjamin. Down to HBK and Cena, with 10 superstars left.

#21 is Yoshi Tatsu. Spin wheel kick to HBK. Punches to Cena. Kick to HBK. Yoshi misses a kick and Cena dumps Yoshi over. Aww. Back to Cena/HBK. Chops to Cena. Irish whip reversed, Cena with a bulldog. Punches by Cena in the corner. Countdown on again.

#22 is Big Show. Cena looks like he's crapping himself. Big Show nukes both Cena and HBK. HBK and Cena tried to get Show over. HBK almost out more than once. HBK skins the cat, nearly pulls Show over, but Show pulls HBK into the ring.

#23 is Mark Henry. Henry and Show square off. Henry almost got Show up, but a headbutt and right hand from Show. Henry and Cena take down Show. Cena tried to get Henry up, but no avail.

#24 is Chris Masters...he got his spot in on Superstars. Masters with gorilla press to HBK. Masterlock try to Show, but nope. Bye Masters. Henry trying to get Show over. HBK over to help.

#25 is R-Truth...and TAKES OUT MARK HENRY AND BIG SHOW (they were teetering on the top rope)! Axe kick to Cena. Offense to HBK and Cena. R-Truth trying to eliminate HBK.

#26 is Jack Swagger and clotheslines R-Truth. Splash to Cena, and another for HBK. Throw on Cena. Suplex to HBK. Swagger on a roll. Swagger back to R-Truth. HBK now with offense on Swagger. HBK almost clotheslined to the floor, but held on.

#27 is Kofi Kingston...controlled frenzy. #27 has given us more winners (four) than any other spot. Boomdrop to Swagger. Swagger trying to throw Kingston over, but Kingston counters...Swagger out! Offense on HBK by Kingston, then on R-Truth. Kingston nearly eliminated, but he holds on. Kingston gets R-Truth...R-Truth gone!

#28 is Chris Jericho. Jericho on Cena. Attitude Adjustment on Jericho. HBK with DDT to Cena. HBK to top rope...elbow on Jericho. Sweet Chin Music setup...OOP Trouble in Paradise to HBK! Cena eliminates Kingston. Codebreaker by Jericho to Cena!

#29 is EDGE OH CRAP! Jericho is screwed.... Edge has a full beard. Crowd going nuts! SPEAR to Jericho! HBK gets one! Cena gets one! Jericho gone! Edge-O-Matic! Edgecution to Cena!

#30 is Batista. Final four is Batista, Cena, HBK, and Edge. OK I got three of the four right. He sprints to the ring and goes to work. Spinebuster to Edge. Hits HBK and Cena. Batista "Warrioring" up. Feed really got busted up around here, but I could make out that Batista eliminated...HBK?! HBK is pissed. Down to Edge, Cena, and Batista. John Cena eliminates Batista! Down to Edge and Cena!

Edge goes for the spear, Cena kicks Edge in the arm, Cena looks to eliminate Edge...but EDGE THROWS CENA OVER! EDGE WINS AND GOES TO WRESTLEMANIA 26!

And there goes my WM predictions blueprint totally shot and out the window to be eaten by killer monkeys.

MVPs: Edge and Beth Phoenix share co-honors for their shockers of the night. Good stuff.

Final Thoughts: Aside from Beth and Edge appearing in the Rumble, it was not that great of a PPV. Passable yes, but not great. Quite mediocre, actually.

Sadly, the match quality was about the same as Smackdown, which was free TV.

I really wanted Mickie and Michelle to get at least *some* time to wrestle to make the storyline all worth it, but they basically killed that off. I mean, the PPV went off the air at about 7:43 Pacific Time (leaving 17 minutes to spare). While WWE is notorious for going off the air earlier than other PPVs, they could have at least spared five minutes for the Women's Title match, right?

No one lasted extraordinarily long in the Rumble this year. I think Cena went about 25 minutes. A bunch of people lasted under 20 seconds.

Shawn Michaels had the most eliminations (six; five solo and one with Triple H's help). CM Punk had five. John Cena threw four people out.

Shawn Michaels, with his six eliminations, becomes the all-time leader in career Royal Rumble eliminations. HBK now has 37 eliminations, one more than Steve Austin (36). Undertaker is next with 35 (did not participate in this year's Rumble), and Kane is fourth with 34 (this includes his one elimination tonight).

Triple H moves past Hulk Hogan into fifth on the all-time list of career Royal Rumble eliminations. HHH eliminated two entrants to bring his total to 25, one more than the Hulkster.

Edge becomes the second person in the #29 spot to win the Royal Rumble. The first? Brock Lesnar in 2003.

How about Edge vs. Jericho for the belt at WM 26? Of course, that means, Edge or Jericho must go in the elimination chamber at the next PPV and win the belt then. Edge/Taker works too, I guess.

Overall Rating: **1/2

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