WWE hosted their annual spectacle that is the Royal Rumble last night- and we got a really good show (Spoilers do follow) that showcased some great wrestling, had some good moments and sewed the seeds for the run to WrestleMania. So lets look at the top moments and the path forward.
Owens Vs Ambrose
This was the best solo match on the show without any question, both individuals brought the intensity and really delivered on the high dangerous spots. This bout was booked the way it should have been, it showed off the power and violent streak of Owens while allowing Ambrose to look unpredictable, unbreakable and like a strong champion. The match got a good length to really play into the violence and made all of the big spots count as they got close to the 10count and this helped the crwod get drawn into the match. If the WWE hadnt already noticed how much the crowd loves these two, and how capable they are before this match then surely now big things are coming for them. THis is the match I would reccomend you checking out the most as they really brough the big fight feel to their intense rivalry, and opened the show with a bang.
Charlotte and Becky were delivering a great match, unbtil the moment Ric Flair kissed Becky for no reason other than to provide a distraction and from this point forward the match lost a little bit of steam. Despite this the competitors delivered a technical match, that showcased both of their strengths and made Becky look like a star and a real viable contender for the title (which we all already knew). However what damaged this match massively was the end to the bout, as it saw Ric Flair distract Becky by throwing his coat on her face; how this isn’t a DQ I’m unsure, before Charlotte was able to take advantage and hit a spear for the pinfall. The match had been one of the better main PPV divas bouts for a long time but the lazy booking really hurt the overall finish.
The Boss is Back…….
This was the real development after the Divas title match, as Sashas music hit and she made her way to the ring and rolled Becky out before looking to make all friendly with Charlotte- howeve rthe minute Charlotte turned her back Sasha delivered the ‘Banks statement’ and held the title aloft looking to set-up the match between these two at Wresltmania. Watching these two feud along the way should be great fun, and should also deliver within the ring. I’m hopeful the Becky isnt just dropped from the picutre immeadiately as watching the three ladies go in the ring togetehr could be brilliant. This is the most exciting development I feel the WWE could have put in place for the Divas championship as Sasha is great in the ring and Fans lover her naturally.
AJ Styles Debuts, Zayn Arrives (Again)
I’ll be honest as the clock counted down from 10 to 0 for entrant number 3 I wasnt expecting what was to follow. We all knew Styles debuting soon, but to get him in the number3 spot was insane- the crowd went mad and he instantly became the biggest face in the whole evening so far. Seeing Styles in the WWE was odd but amazing at the same time. Styles got some good time in the Rumble and got a good stand off and fight with Reigns, Owens and Brock which should point to a bright future for him in the WWE. Heres hoping they capitalise on the huge fan reaction and the teased feuds for Styles to keep him at the top of the card for Wrestlemania.
Sami Zayn was the other big shock arrival into the Royal Rumble and to see him appear and Kevin Owens look genuinely frightful was great telvision and wrestling booking- as these two deserve and need to keep this going for a little longer as its great to watch and the chemistry they have together is rare and wonderful. Watching return to the main roster was brilliant, and a feud with Owens who may have moved away from Ambrose now would be more than fitting at WrestleMania and would make both men top level stars instantly.
The only down side to both of these men entering was the early eliminations, Owens got rid of Styles before Zayn took him out. It was good booking from a storyline perspective but I personnally wanted Styles there until nearly the end.
Brock and the Bray
This was one of the more interesting moments of the Rumble itself, as we got to see Brock destroy everyone in the Rumble with his Suplexes (and boy was this fun) and eventually eliminate the Wyatts, all bar Bray himself. And when the beast and Bray interacted Bray got his family on the apron to enter the ring and make sure that Brock was eliminated after a beatdown at the hands of all4 Wyatts. This has the potential to be a brilliant feud on the way to WrestleMania, as Bray can talk; we all know HEeyman can talk, so these two could be gold together. We could also see Brock slowly dismantle the rest of the Wyatts leading to the eventual 1-1 showdown between the two at Mania, not only would this be great viewing but it would help elevate Bray up the card to the place he should be rather than were the WWE seem to drop him too after putting him in high profile matches. I still feel asthougb Bray and Brock were eliminated to easily in the end, why didn’t Bray have his family stay and eliminate everyone? But it could build to some great moments on the way to the biggest spectacle of the year.
Roman Empire Crumbles, as the Game Begins
This was the moment everyone was expecting- the eventual and inevitabel title switch. However how it occured may suprise some as we saw Vince McMahon himself bring the League of Nations down to take Roman out (under the ropes) to beat him down mid Rumble and he was then escorted to the back. At this point no-one thought he was gone for good and I expected him toreturn towards the end and then retain- which I wasn’t happy about. However When Sheamus entered at number 29 and Roman ran past him to hit hi with a Superman punch it seemed inevitable he would win and the live crowd felt the same as they booed him massively for this. However as the final entrant count reached 0 we got the ‘Game’ and the crwod went mental (in a good way) for the arrival of HHH and Reigns looked suitably upset. As superstars got eliminated we made it down to HHH, Amborse, Jericho and Reigns and it still looked like Roman would make the last two before more schenanigans had him removed; but in a decision that made sense him and Jericho got elimnated leaving HHH and Ambrose as the final 2. The crowd loved it, I loved it and it helped Ambrose look even stronger than the match at the beginnig of th night did (this is saying something). However it finally ended with the Game standing tall and victorious for his first title reign in 7years. This ending will foreshadow the WrestleMania main event as Reigns gets his rematch for the gold agaisnt HHH- but this is one of the best matches they could have picked for Reigns right now to get his WrestleMania moment.
My only concern moving forward is that Reigns got booed out of the building again, when you compare him to Owens, Ambrose, Styles, Lesnar and Zayn whil HHH got a reaction on par with these guys so creative need to work hard to switch HHH back to the heel and Reigns to the face therwise this could all back fire massively. Maybe Raw tonight will move this forward or Reigns will get a more positive crowd reaction but only time will tell. Either way this was one of the better Royal Rumbles in a long time and WretleMania planning looks good for now!