Monday, January 31, 2011

JC's Take: Royal Rumble Review

JC's Take: Royal Rumble Review

Hello everyone, welcome back for my review of the 2011 Royal Rumble. Initially after the show, I wasn't too big of a fan of it. But after a second look of some things, I thought it was a good show. Lets get right into a review of the show.

Edge defeated Dolph Ziggler to retain the World Heavyweight Title (***3/4)
What a great way to start the show. I wasn't a fan of the opening few minutes but it played into the story later in the match. They had to go slow because of the fast paced action in the end. This was yet another star-defining match for Dolph Ziggler. He did not look out of place at all. The near falls were great in the match. The crowd also helped the match out alot. The finish was played out well. With both Vickie and the referee knocked out, Edge hit the spear on Dolph Ziggler. When the ref came to, Edge hit the unprettier, Christian's finisher, on Ziggler for the 3 count and the win. As I said, a great match to open the show. Ziggler is a future World Champion in 2011. I think he will have the title by the summer. Edge also stepped up his game in this match. He looked rejuvinated and back on his game like he was pre-Achilles injury.

The Miz defeated Randy Orton to retain the WWE Championship (**1/2)
This match was ok. There was just something missing. The crowd was dead for this. They may have been a bit worn out from the opener. But Orton continued to show that he lacks a certain charisma in the ring. I hate to say it because I used to like his character, but Orton is almost turning into John Cena in the ring. He keeps doing the same moves over and over and it is becoming just like Cena's routine. The Miz will probably get the blame for it, but Orton is just lacking in the ring. The Miz has had better matches with the right opponent (Morrison & Daniel Bryan), and I just don't think he has good chemistry with Orton. The finish came with the New Nexus coming down to the ring. Orton was distracted by them, and Alex Riley attempted to take him out. Riley missed and Orton flew him over the top onto the Nexus. Good hang time by Riley. Miz went for a Skull Crushing finale, but Orton countered it into an RKO. But with the ref still out on the outside, even though he was never hit, C.M. Punk came in and hit the GTS on Orton, allowing Miz to pick up the win. I wasn't a fan of the finish. It makes Miz look weak again. He has yet to have a clean win in a standard one-on-one match since he became Champion. If they want people to believe he actually has a chance against Cena at Mania, they better do it quickly.

Eve won a Fatal 4 Way Match w/Natalya, Michelle McCool, and Layla to win the Divas Title (*)
The RAW GM chimed in and said unlike Teddy Long, he would not allow Laycool to be co-Champions. So he was going to make it a Fatal 4 Way, and randomly put Eve in. Lots of people, including the Boston crowd, were hoping for Awesome Kong. The match was your typical Divas match, nothing to write home about. Eve's moonsault was nice. As she was pinning Layla, McCool rolled up Natalya, but the ref didn't see it. It gives something for Laycool, specifcally Michelle, to complain about for the next couple of weeks. So we will probably get McCool vs Eve at the next PPV. Like I said, just your standard typical Divas match that was filler between the 2 World Title Matches and the Rumble match.

Alberto del Rio won the 40 Man Royal Rumble by eliminating Santino Marella (***1/4)
I thought this was an ok, a slightly above average Rumble. It had its good and bad moments. Instead of breaking down the match one-by-one, I will just break it down into what I liked and what I didn't.

What I Liked
-Alberto del Rio Winning
Might as well start it with the guy that won. I think the right man won the Rumble. Cena didn't need to win the Rumble. Punk could have won it, but his character is over enough that he doesn't need it. Morrison or Barrett could have won it, but they aren't there quite yet as far as Wrestlemania worthy for a main event. Del Rio is the guy that is ready to be a main eventer at Mania, but he needed that one little extra push to get him over the top. Winning this match did that for him. Del Rio has been everywhere on WWE TV the last month, so clearly Vince and Co. is high on him. He is the top heel on Smackdown and deserves to be in a main event match at Mania.

-The First Ten Entrants
The first ten entrants in the Rumble were very good. Punk and Bryan starting was great. Justin Gabriel coming out as third was good. I wish he would have stayed in it a bit longer than he had, even if it was just for another five minutes. Bryan and Regal had a nice exchange after Regal came out. Heck, even Zack Ryder and Ted DiBiase had some nice spots. John Morrison also looked good, and if you haven't seen his SpiderMan like spot, go out of your way and try to find it. The Rumble started off great, but you just had a feeling it was going downhill from there.

Booker T and Kevin Nash Appearences
I liked both of these guys appearences. They both received huge pops from the Boston crowd. Booker T looked taken aback a bit by the reaction he got. I don't think he was expecting that big of a reaction. He looked ok for a 45 year old guy. And who doesn't love a classic Spinarooni. Kevin Nash, or Diesel as he was referred to, was also a good surprise. The crowd was into his appearence I think more than Booker's, considering the huge "DIESEL DIESEL" chant. Hell, they even booed Rey Mysterio when he gave Diesel the 619. Both of these guys could be used properly in the build to Mania in different spots.

The Santino Surprise
Some people probably didn't like it, but I thought it was a fun little surprsie. I actually did forget about Santino until one of my friends brought him up. There was actually a point where I thought Santino would actually win. Hell, he is an over enough act that the crowd would be into him. They would have two months to build him up as a credible threat to win the title. It probably would have been bad overall, so I'm glad they didn't follow through with it. But it was a nice surprise, especially for the live crowd, as it gave them one last glimmer of hope before the hated heel won the Rumble.

-C.M. Punk Nexus Dominance
I was slightly ok with this, but I think it went on a bit too long. It also happened at the expense of a couple of good guys that the crowd was into: Daniel Bryan and John Morrison. Since it happened so early, you also knew that Punk and Company weren't going to last until the end, and that Punk wasn't going to win. Since it also happened so early, you knew that SuperCena was going to come in and take them out.

John Cena
There was a lot to not like about Cena in this match. On the plus side he didn't win. On the negative side, the Rumble almost came to a halt when he entered. He made the Nexus look terrible by singe handedly taking out all of them. To add to that, his slight comedy bits with Hornswoggle were overdone. It would have been ok if it was only 1 time, but it went on longer than it did.

The 2 Cena/Orton Confrontations
Hey Vince, did you hear that? The two times you had Cena and Randy Orton face off in the Rumble, you could hear soda being poured in the concession stand. If that doesn't get the message through to Vince that people don't want to see these guys fight again, then nothing will. Not only do people not want to see them fight again, people want to see new guys at the top besides these two.

Randy Orton & Dolph Ziggler in the Rumble Match
If you are going to have 40 guys in the Rumble match, it looks bad when two of the guys in it were wrestling in title matches earlier in the show. It just looked weak having them in the Rumble, and it exposed the lack of depth the WWE currently has on their roster.

I'd give the entire PPV a 6 overall. It had a solid opener in the World Title Match, and the Rumble was slightly above average. The WWE Title match was ok, and the Divas Match was your typical Divas Match. I also forgot to point out the "official" Dashing Cody Rhodes statement that was read. It was quite funny and just adds to the good character that is Rhodes. I would recommend the PPV to people who haven't seen it.

The Elimination Chamber PPV is in 3 weeks. The WWE looks like they'll give us the following:
RAW Chamber for the #1 Contender Spot
John Cena vs C.M. Punk vs Randy Orton vs John Morrison vs Sheamus vs Mason Ryan
WWE Championship Match
The Miz vs Jerry Lawler
Smackdown Elimination Chamber for the World Title
Edge vs Dolph Ziggler vs Rey Mysterio vs Cody Rhodes vs Wade Barrett vs Big Show
Intercontinental Title
Kofi Kingston vs Jack Swagger
The Corre (Gabriel, Slater, Jackson) vs The Nexus (Otunga, Harris, McGillicutty)
Eve vs Michelle McCool

Wrestlemania 27
WWE Championship
The Miz vs John Cena
World Title
Edge vs Alberto del Rio
Randy Orton vs C.M. Punk
HHH vs Sheamus
Rey Mysterio vs Cody Rhodes
Undertaker vs Wade Barrett
Big Show vs Kevin Nash
Money in the Bank
John Morrison vs Dolph Ziggler vs Daniel Bryan vs Kofi Kingston vs Christian vs Jack Swagger

Now if I was booking for the WWE from now until Wrestlemania, this is what I would pitch to Vince.

Elimination Chamber PPV
RAW Chamber for the WWE Title
The Miz vs John Cena vs John Morrison vs Randy Orton vs C.M. Punk vs Sheamus
Smackdown Elimination Chamber for the World Title
Edge vs Dolph Ziggler vs Rey Mysterio vs Cody Rhodes vs Big Show vs Wade Barrett
IC Title
Kofi Kingston vs Jack Swagger
US Title
Daniel Bryan vs William Regal
Divas Title
Eve vs Michelle McCool
Corre vs Nexus

Wrestlemania 27
WWE Title
John Cena vs Alberto del Rio
World Title
Edge vs Christian
Undertaker vs Wade Barrett
C.M. Punk vs Randy Orton
Rey Mysterio vs Cody Rhodes
Miz vs Jerry Lawler
HHH vs Sheamus
John Morrison vs Dolph Ziggler vs Daniel Bryan vs Justin Gabriel vs Kofi Kingston vs Jack Swagger

It's not too different I know, but something about a Del Rio/Cena program interests me more than a Del Rio/Edge or Cena/Miz program. And I know Christian will never co-main even a Wrestlemania, but one can dream right?

That's all for today. My first mock NFL Draft will be up either Tuesday or Thursday.

Until next time,
Justin C

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