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NotBAMF watched all the Royal Rumble matches... so you don't have to! (2017!)

Not BAMF

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Re: Not BAMF watches all the Royal Rumble matches... so you don't have to!
« Reply #120 on: March 10, 2015, 07:10:41 PM »
2015: The BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

Participants

1. The Miz
2. R-Truth
3. Bubba Ray Dudley
4. Luke Harper
5. Bray Wyatt (this gets called his first Rumble ever, which is odd because most guys get their whole career counted. During Rikishi's run, commentary counted his years as Fatu and Sultan towards his current count)
6. Curtis Axel Erick Rowan
7. The Boogeyman
8. Sin Cara
9. Zack Ryder
10. Daniel Bryan
11. Fandango (who had his music changed in a glorious attempt to stop anyone from ever caring about him)
12. Tyson Kidd
13. Stardust (Ooookay. Commentary also says this is HIS first Rumble, And not in a "This is Cody's first Rumble AS STARDUST" kind of way. They just say "This is his first Royal Rumble!")
14. Diamond Dallas Page
15. Rusev
16. Goldust
17. Kofi Kingston
18. Adam Rose
19. Roman Reigns
20. Big E
21. Damien Mizdow
22. Jack Swagger
23. Ryback
24. Kane
25. Dean Ambrose
26. Titus O'Neil
27. Bad News Barrett
28. Cesaro
29. The Big Show
30. Dolph Ziggler

The Final Four

3rd (tie) - The Big Show and Kane (eliminated simultaneously)
2nd - Rusev
WINNER - Roman Reigns

Notes/Thoughts

-JBL starts us off with an interesting statistic: Only 13 of the previous 22 Royal Rumble winners actually won the title at WrestleMania. That's only a 59% success rate!

-Philly ERUPTS for Bubba at #3 and dusts off an ECW chant. Bubba and R-Truth team up against Miz (because black people are interchangeable), and Bubba even orders R to "GET THE TABLES!" Bubba then starts a "Tables!" chant, but no table ever materializes before Bubba ends up getting Truth and Miz out.

-Luke Harper and Bray Wyatt double-team Bubba, inspiring a "We Want D-Von!" chant. Instead of giving the fans what they want, WWE books Bubba to be easily eliminated by the heels. And so begins the first chorus of jeers for the night.

-THE WYATT FAMILY EXPLODES as Erick Rowan steals Curtis Axel's spot. There is a decent tease by Harper that he'll work with Rowan against Bray, but as soon as Rowan's back is turned (hey, remember when his angle was that he is a genius?), Harper jumps him instead. For all the good it does him... Bray ends up flipping them both out of the ring.

-Bray goes on a dominance push, making short work of The Bogeyman and Sin Cara. He messes up his timing at #9, however, and makes a big "open challenge" on a microphone to the next guy to come out, and it's... Zack Ryder. That big speech was obviously meant to lead into Bryan's entrance.

-DDP is already the third Returning Old Guy entrant by #14, and he looks essentially the same as how he looked in 1997. This leads me to spend a minute or so pondering if he looks great for a man his current age, or if he looked super old back during his main event run in WCW. As he enters, everyone involved gets Diamond Cutters (except DB, who was on the outside).

-Just the absolute worst booking in history sees Daniel Bryan inconspicuously eliminated after about 10 minutes of doing nothing by Bray Wyatt. Nobody as over as Daniel was just so pointlessly tossed in a way that would lead to NO storyline for them. It is utter nonsense. This elimination DESTROYS the environment of the match, as the fans realize that WWE just has no fucking idea what to do with a guy who is so over in this day and age. Hogan, Hart, Michaels, Stone Cold, Rocky, Cena... none of them ever had nearly as pointless and unproductive of a Rumble appearance at their career highs as Bryan was thrust into in 2015. It is baffling.

Daniel Bryan is Eddie Guerrero, in that his charisma and ring skill have gotten him over with the fans to just an incredible level, but WWE has no idea what to do with him but give him one year near the top and expect the fans to just be happy with that and shut up. Except when Eddie wrestled, there were TONS of top-tier guys still in their prime. Angle, a young Brock, a young Cena and Orton, Trips, Batista, Michaels, Undertaker, a young Edge. Daniel Bryan is getting the "What do we do with this guy except make sure to NOT push him" treatment in an era where the top of the card sucks.

-After DB's elimination, the ring has four heels (Rusev, Stardust, Goldust, and Bray), so OF COURSE the fans are using all their energy to alternate between booing and chanting for Bryan. Nothing like making sure the fans have several minutes to stew in their anger, WWE.

-Kofi's moment this year is getting saved by the Rosebuds. Meh. Now his "moments" don't even involve his doing anything.

-Fans are still pissy and booing by the time #19 buzzes, and oh look... it's Roman Reigns. The arrival of The Chosen One makes the fans even saltier.

-It's FINALLY Damiem Mizdow at #21 who gets some positive energy from the crowd... and he lasts less than a minute before Reigns pitches him. The crowd goes back to shitting all over the match. This was more shit booking because Mizdow was over by this point in time, but I can ALMOST understand it, because he was basically just a lower midcard comedy act. But it's the second example of "Oh, you fans like something? Fuck you" of the night.

-The fans apathetically take part in Swagger's "WE! THE! PEOPLE!" battlecry, but settle right back into an angry murmur afterwards. The next cheer of the match isn't until Ryback hits a clothesline on Reigns.

-The lull between Ryback and Kane sees a "CM PUNK!" chant break out.

-Fans finally pop again for Dean Ambrose at #25. He gets a good enough newbie push in the match, but as he settles in for the haul, the fans return to their naturally displeasured state.

-Almost as soon as Show emerges at #29, a "WE WANT ZIGGLER!" chant starts. Dolph then hits the ring at #30 to the loudest reaction since D-Bry way back at #10. Ziggler's run is exciting, but short. An ill-advised top-rope move is turned into a KO Punch by Show, and then Dolph is treated like a literal sack of shit as Show and Kane drop his lifeless body over the top. Then they do the same to Bray Wyatt, and the fans are fuming.

-As much as the fans like Dean, there was never any chance he was winning this match, and when Dolph and Bray go out, it's 100% clear that Roman is getting this Rumble. Hope springs eternal, though...

-...Until Big Show and Kane out Dean just like they did Dolph and Bray. IMMEDIATE chants of "BULLSHIT!" from the fed-up crowd.

-Idiotically, Roman Reigns doesn't even get to look strong as the end draws nigh. Instead of just beating the hell out of Kane and Show, Reigns lies on the mat until the two way-past-their-prime giants turn on each other near the ropes, allowing Roman to sneak over a dump them. More just weird silliness, because if the fans are supposed to buy this guy against Lesnar, why make his win a fluke?

-"WE WANT REFUNDS!" is the response to Romans' fake victory.

-Show and Kane return to beat up Roman, and AGAIN instead of allowing Reigns to look strong against these two old men, he goes down to them until The Rock makes a surprise appearance to fend them off for him.

-Rusev pointlessly returns from not ever having been eliminated, but Reigns is FINALLY allowed to look strong against RUSEV--a young up-and-comer who didn't need to be bitched out--by just effortlessly Spearing the fuck out of him and throwing him out.

-The Rock returns to share in Reigns' moment of having an entire arena tell him how much they hate him.

As I rewatch this Rumble and talk about it now... this is the worst one. This is even worse than the 1995 Shit Roster Rumble and the 1988 "We Don't Know What We're Doing Yet!" Rumble. This one is just an hour of befuddling nonsense.

Daniel Bryan didn't even need to be in this! For all the entire fanbase knew, he was still very hurt and out indefinitely. Bringing him back and putting him in this Rumble when there was previously only a slight glimmer of HOPE that he might appear was a terrible decision if THIS is what they were going to do with him. It's infuriating to see a guy reach a height of being over that maybe only a half-dozen other men in history have achieved, only for WWE to say "No, he's a midcarder. Shut up".

Despite this Rumble being just two months after Survivor Series, it made that event feel like years ago, because WWE just dug a hole and threw Dolph Ziggler's forward momentum into it. The Survivor Series was never meant to be a career-reviving moment for Dolph after all. It was just WWE saying "Oh, you like this guy? Well here's your bone: we did a thing with him. Shut up about it forever now, okay?"

Kane and The Big Show were booked like mythical fucking gods EIGHTEEN YEARS INTO THEIR CAREERS and at a time when NO ONE would have bought them as a threat to win this (hell, Kane was a full-fledged Jobber To The Stars throughout 2014!), so why tease it? Reigns is wrecked by THEM, but then treats like Rusev like a bag of irrelevant garbage? Just... WHY?

Look, I get Roman Reigns... I do. I know WHY WWE is pushing him. He's got a great look and... he's got a great a look. And they think he'll eventually put together the pieces on the microphone. And he's carryable in-ring. But there were just so many better options. Reigns is a decent young superstar, but so many guys could be making better work of his spot while he works on being more than "Guy Who Is Related To The Rock".

FINAL RANKINGS

1. 2001 (Austin III) - 10/10

2. 2010 (Edge) - 9/10
3. 2004 (Benoit) - 9/10
4. 1992 (Flair) - 9/10

5. 2007 (The Undertaker) - 8/10
6. 1997 (Austin I) - 8/10
7. 1998 (Austin II) - 8/10

8. 2008 (Cena I) - 7/10
9. 2002 (HHH) - 7/10

10. 2005 (Batista I) - 6/10

11. 2003 (Lesnar) -5/10
12. 1989 (Studd) - 5/10
13. 1996 (Michaels II) - 5/10
14. 2011 (Del Rio) - 5/10
15. 1999 (McMahon) 5/10

16. 1993 (Yokozuna) - 4/10
17. 1990 (Hogan I) - 4/10
18. 1994 (Hart/Luger) - 4/10
19 2013 (Cena II) - 4/10
20. 2009 (Orton) - 4/10

21. 2012 (Sheamus) - 3/10
22. 1991 (Hogan II) - 3/10
23. 2014 (Batista II) - 3/10
23. 2006 (Mysterio) - 3/10
24. 2000 (The Rock) - 3/10

25. 1995 (Michaels I) - 2/10
26. 1988 (Duggan) - 2/10

27. 2015 (Reigns) - 1/10
« Last Edit: March 11, 2015, 06:50:35 AM by Not BAMF »

Speed of Zound

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Some Rumbles might have been bad, some had obvious outcomes but this is the only one that seemed spiteful; like Vince is trying to get back at the fans for not welcoming Batista back. And to be followed by the Fastlane main event, then D-bry and Heyman fellating Reigns on RAW is the perfect set-up for the shittiest WM ever.


Jabroniville

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Yeah this one was just plain spiteful and awful to the fans. I can't imagine a worse decision or plan of booking. Just utter fucking garbage. And then they made sure we KNEW it wasn't going to be Bryan a month later, just in case we didn't get it.

Because Vince would rather be right than make money.

Propeus The Fallen

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Yeah, it's insane how they treat Daniel Bryan. I mean, you have YES chants going on in different sports--so let's not make the guy who is megaover with the fans the star with an angle that writes itself.

Daniel Bryan comes back from severe injury after never losing his belt, The Authority says no and he has to enter the Royal Rumble, he wins, The Authority finally fully alaigns with Brock Lesnar and want Lesnar to end Bryan at WM.

I mean, it was there! Like a giant red X in the sand!

I don't have much hope for Lesnar vs Regins because Lesnar is basically Scott Steiner. Everyone one else throws themselves around to make him good. When they don't like his matches with Triple H--the matches are horrible. And I don't even want to think about what the fans will do because this WM looks horrible outside of the IC title match.

GeneralPresidentSkeletor

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I'm still holding out hope that Rollins cashes in his MitB shot DIRECTLY after Reigns wins and walks out as the champ.

I could handle having spent what I've spent to take 3 people to this shit-fest, out of town, for the weekend, in the expensive-ass-fuck-if-you-don't-live-here Bay Area, if I can just RUB ROLLINS BEING CHAMP in the faces of my children on the 4+hour drive home! :D

Not BAMF

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That is the best possible ending to this 'Mania.

Second best is just Lesnar beating the holy fuck out of Reigns a la SummerSlam against Cena.
« Last Edit: March 11, 2015, 01:58:41 PM by Not BAMF »

Crab Master

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Fans chanting bullshit during a wrestlemania main event? Has that ever happened before?

Not BAMF

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I'm going to update this to include the 2016 Rumble soon. I have my notes on it, I just haven't gotten around to doing any write-up. Hopefully Sunday afternoon, at the latest.

Not BAMF

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2016: The One That Wasn't As Bad As It Should Have Been

Participants

1. Roman Reigns
2. Rusev
3. AJ Styles
4. Tyler Breeze (LOOK! It's Tyler!)
5. Curtis Axel
6. Chris Jericho
7. Kane (or "Demon Kane". Or whatever)
8. Goldust
9. Ryback
10. Kofi Kingston
11. Titus O'Neil
12. R-Truth
13. Luke Harper
14. Stardust (who is now announced as having participated in many Rumbles. Get it straight, WWE!)
15. The Big Show (BUT IT ISN'T IN THE 20's!)
16. Neville
17. Braun Strowman
18. Kevin Owens
19. Dean Ambrose
20. Sami Zayn
21. Eric Rowan
22. Mark Henry
23. Brock Lesnar
24. Jack Swagger
25. The Miz
26. Alberto Del Rio
27. Bray Wyatt
28. Dolph Ziggler
29. Sheamus
30. Triple H

Final Four

4. Sheamus (eliminated by Reigns)
3. Roman Reigns (eliminated by HHH)
2. Dean Ambrose (eliminated by HHH)
W: Triple H

Notes/Thoughts

-For the second time ever, the 2016 Royal Rumble saw the match being competed for the World Heavyweight Title. For the first time ever, the champion (Roman Reigns) was actively defending his title in the match.

-An aside? Why does The Authority "hate" Roman Reigns? It makes absolutely no sense. When they've played this angle historically, there's always been a viable reason for the higher-ups to put down the hero. With Austin, he was foul-mouthed and vulgar and violent, and you could pretend WWE didn't want that as their front man. With The Rock, he had betrayed The Corporation, so he was a target. With Bryan, he had his "vanilla midget" build and unkempt appearance. Even when The Authority was opposing Cena, it still made sense because they had decided Orton was "The Face" and wanted him to be in the spot no matter what. With Reigns... what is the argument against him? This is just... they don't like him because he is a babyface, but there's no rationale for it. Not only is it derivative, but it's lazy.

-MASSIVE boos for Reigns as he debuts, and Michael Cole blows this off by saying that fans just want to see new winners of the Rumble every year.

-Rusev at #2 is a rematch of the final 2 from the year before. Not quite the Shawn/Taker rematch of several years ago, ya know?

-AJ Styles at #3, and he becomes the second guy of the Post-CM Punk era to be allowed to keep his "indy identity" in WWE (Samoe Joe being the other) after other guys like El Generico, Prince Devitt, Kevin Steen, and KENTA were all given new WWE names.

-Styles music, which no one had heard to this point, hits to complete silence, and Roman sells this pretty well with a "WTF?" look. When AJ comes to the ramp, there is a huge pop. The fans are IMMEDIATELY on board with AJ, thereby proving there is no longer any such thing as "casual fans", and that all WWE has left is the IWC. Reigns reverses an early Styles Clash attempt, and the fans crap on him for it.

-Tyler Breeze is eliminated before the countdown to #4 even starts. And it happens right after a fan had raised a "PUSH TYLER BREEZE" sign that is then sheepishly pulled back down.

-After formulating an entire year-long identity out of never having been eliminated in the 2015 Rumble, Axel is tossed by Styles here with no fanfare. IMO, they should have had him tie/break Santino's record in this spot.

-After Jericho comes out, the ring starts filling up, and there are no more eliminations until Goldust is dumped after #11 (Titus) comes out.

-Really just CONSTANT chants for AJ Styles throughout the match.

-JBL smartly ribs on Specialized Spots after both AJ and Jericho are caught in cross-body attempts by Titus O'Neil so he could hit his backbreaker combo. "You'd think guys would stop jumping at him".

-R-Truth fucking NAILS a comedy skit mid-Rumble by coming out, immediately fetching a ladder, and trying to obtain the non-existent Money In The Bank briefcase. This really works with the confused gimmick Truth had establish over the last year, of thinking he was involved in ladder matches that he wasn't. I cracked up at this.

-Kofi's annual spot sees him get flipped onto Big E's shoulders, who then parades him around the ring for a while, even hanging out with some fans and drinking their coke.

-After Harper at #14, Vince brings out the League of Nations to pull Roman out of the match and assault him at ringside, complete with putting him through the announce table. If you ignore the "why didn't they throw him OVER?" aspect, this is good booking. It lets Roman rest without sitting in a corner all match, and it also removes the specter of him hanging over the match.

-Roman valiantly refuses stretcher service to the back and walks back instead. Honestly... I think this had the opposite effect of what they were going for. Instead of making him look "strong", it makes you think "If he can walk, why isn't he getting back in the match?"

-Kane and Show, one year after burying great young talents, put over crappy young talent by letting Braun Strowman single-handedly eliminate both of them.

-Kevin Owens with some old-school hardcore selling here. After having had a BRUTAL Last Man Standing match earlier in the night, he comes to the ring basically dragging his dead leg behind him.

-AJ Styles lasts 28 minutes before Owens gets him out to solidify his heelness. Would have been nice to see Owens and Jericho switch exits, but oh well. It's a good sign that they gave Owens that elimination.

-Sami Zayn gets a big pop at #20 for his Rumble debut, and this leads to Kevin Owens being involved in his third straight huge brawl after an entrance (he and AJ after Kevin came out at 18, he and Ambrose after Dean came in at 19, and Sami here). Sami gets Owens out after a short but impactful tenure. In his run just from 18 to 20, Owens has three great brawls, tosses AJ Styles to maybe set up a storyline, brawls with Dean to put a period on their ending story, and then gets dumped by Zayn to continue their long-established arc. THAT is how you do a short Rumble stint. This match actually has surprisingly good booking at times.

-With Rowan's entry, the Wyatt Family becomes an official force in the match, tossing Stardust, Neville, and Mark Henry effortlessly.

-It's short-lived, however, as Lesnar pops out at #23 and trashes the family, getting all three out by himself.

-Another fun spot sees Miz come out, trash talk Brock Lesnar at ringside, and then join commentary for several minutes, smartly noting that it's "not the right time" to enter the ring (while Brock is there).

-Bray at #27 right after Strowman is out, and the Wyatts allr re-enter to attack him. After a good bit of back-and-forth (which sees Brock toss all the Wyatts a SECOND time for a face-off with Bray in which Bray shows no fear), the Wyatts overpower him and dump him out. The only problem I have here is that Brock then just leaves, and that is a bit incongruent with the rampaging, vindictive, angry character they've established for him. I figured he would at least F5 everyone still in the ring before going to the back.

-Roman returns at #29 to attack Sheamus.

-HHH is maybe the least surprising "big surprise" entrant ever at #30.

-Jericho gets the Iron Man rub here, lasting 50 minutes to the last five.

-Roman surprisingly DOESN'T make it to the final two, showing for the second time (WrestleMania 31 being the first), that WWE knows what major show crowds are going to do with him. This allows HHH to get the win over Dean, a fan-favorite, and get booed.

After two absolute pieces of crap Rumbles, it was nice to get a thoroughly entertaining match here. There are several fun spots, the crowd loved AJ, the booking was good, and they managed to find a way to not let the entire span be about Roman.


FINAL RANKINGS

1. 2001 (Austin III) - 10/10

2. 2010 (Edge) - 9/10
3. 2004 (Benoit) - 9/10
4. 1992 (Flair) - 9/10

5. 2007 (The Undertaker) - 8/10
6. 1997 (Austin I) - 8/10
7. 1998 (Austin II) - 8/10

8. 2008 (Cena I) - 7/10
9. 2002 (HHH I) - 7/10

10. 2016 (HHH II) - 6/10
11. 2005 (Batista I) - 6/10

12. 2003 (Lesnar) -5/10
13. 1989 (Studd) - 5/10
14. 1996 (Michaels II) - 5/10
15. 2011 (Del Rio) - 5/10
16. 1999 (McMahon) 5/10

17. 1993 (Yokozuna) - 4/10
18. 1990 (Hogan I) - 4/10
19. 1994 (Hart/Luger) - 4/10
20. 2013 (Cena II) - 4/10
21. 2009 (Orton) - 4/10

22. 2012 (Sheamus) - 3/10
23. 1991 (Hogan II) - 3/10
24. 2014 (Batista II) - 3/10
25. 2006 (Mysterio) - 3/10
26. 2000 (The Rock) - 3/10

27. 1995 (Michaels I) - 2/10
28. 1988 (Duggan) - 2/10

29. 2015 (Reigns) - 1/10
« Last Edit: February 02, 2016, 07:01:32 AM by Not BAMF »

Not BAMF

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http://411mania.com/wrestling/reviewing-the-rumbles-2017/

The Participants
1. Big Cas
2. Chris Jericho
3. Kalisto
4. Mojo Rawley
5. Jack Gallagher (with his umbrella, William III!)
6. Mark Henry
7. Braun Strowman
8. Sami Zayn
9. The Big Show
10. Tye Dillinger (in one of those spots that everyone knew was coming, but was still absolutely wonderful)
11. James Ellsworth
12. Dean Ambrose
13. Baron Corbin
14. Kofi Kingston
15. The Miz (who doesn’t come out to Daniel Bryan’s theme, despite all the predictions)
16. Sheamus
17. Big E
18. Rusev (Rocking the Richard Hamilton mask!)
19. Cesaro
20. Xavier Woods
21. Bray Wyatt
22. Apollo Crews
23. Randy Orton
24. Dolph Ziggler
25. Luke Harper
26. Brock Lesnar
27. Enzo Amore
28. Goldberg
29. The Undertaker
30. Roman Reigns

Final Four
4. Chris Jericho (eliminated by Roman Reigns)
3. Bray Wyatt (eliminated by Roman Reigns)
2. Roman Reigns (eliminated by Randy Orton)
1. Randy Orton

Thoughts

-Personal aside to start: I had some of my buddies over who haven’t watched wrestling since the mid-2000s to watch the Rumble with me (and I even had the wife watching again). They were fans of the show overall, and I gave them homework for this week: find as much of Wrestle Kingdom 11 on YouTube as possible (they had already asked about “that six-star match”) and find The Final Deletion while they are at it. Just because everyone should at least experience that. Anyway, they had a blast, so I might have my rose-colored goggles out for this one because it’s a lot more fun watching with a group.

-Two minute intervals this year!

-I’m generally a putridly bad prognosticator, so whenoOne of my very few correct predictions happens, I have to tout it: Enzo and Cas out first to get their spiel in before the match starts!

-The aisle to the ring is about an eternity long here, to the point where the bigger athletes actually rode a cart to the ring off-camera. The first time this happens—for Mark Henry—Jerry Lawler starts to point it out, but I imagine Vince screamed in his ear to leave it alone.

-Early on, the previously stats-allergic Cole lets us know when Jericho breaks the record for most combined time spent in Rumbles at over 4 hours. Wow!

-Jack Gallagher gets an early humor spot in the Rumble, assaulting everyone with his umbrella, culminating in coming off the top rope with the umbrella open and getting unceremoniously dumped by Mark Henry (he still seemed more graceful than Mrs. Featherbottom, at least).

-Braun out at #6, and the Rumble gets its first real forward momentum of the night, as he hit the rings and tosses everyone except Jericho (who falls into a habit of hiding most of the rest of the evening). Mojo, Cas, and Henry all fall to the monster, and admittedly… I have loved Strowman’s booking since Survivor Series. This is how you get a monster over. Now let’s all hope he doesn’t get Rybacked in a few months.

-Separately, Strowman pitches both Mark Henry and Big Show by himself, and somewhere—if only in my head—R-Truth is saying “Pfft, call me when you do that at the same time”.

-I can’t stress how happy I am that WWE went through with Tye Dillinger at #10.

-James Ellsworth takes an elimination from Strowman (after some fun hemming and hawing about getting in the ring with the goliath that haunts his dreams) that I like to call “How To Break Your Pelvis”.

-Still on the Strowman Show, Braun is “single-handedly” eliminated by Baron Corbin with a clothesline, but it DOES follow a flying dropkick by Dean and Sami’s Helluva Kick. So it makes everyone involved look quite good.

-Kofi’s annual save isn’t great here. He falls off the top of the ring post, but catches himself and dangles for a bit before righting the ship. As far as saves go, it’s not amazing, but the spot itself is impressive because when it happened, I thought he might have died; it appears as though he just misses cracking his face off the post.

-Jericho gets the “Iron Man” tenure here, but it’s mostly his hiding and lying down. Not in a disappointing way because it is his character, but… it’s not like he faced an endurance test, you know?

-Bray Wyatt and Xavier Woods relive their gimmick from this past summer, with Woods showing terror in the face of the cult leader. Continuity! And like previously, Woods overcomes his paralysis to do battle with Wyatt.

-The lull between #22 and #23 sees the first “Goldberg” chant break out.

-Sheamus and Cesaro eliminate the entirety of The New Day in one fell swoop, but then immediately get dumped by Y2J when Sheamus tries to sneak Cesaro out. So 5 guys out in about… 10 seconds? Or less? That might be a record.

-With Randy Orton’s appearance, we are informed by Michael Cole that three men have won from the #23 spot, but then he leaves us hanging without any further sage words, but don’t worry fans! Your humble Rumble reviewer has your back. Lex Luger (1994) is the only other man who has won from the #23 spot, so… I’m not sure what Cole is on about. There have been a few #22’s and #24’s, but… wait a minute… twice in history (Hulk Hogan in 1991 and Steve Austin in 1998), the man who won at the #24 spot did it in year where there had earlier been a no-show. So while three people haven’t won from the “23 position” (Cole’s words), three men who were the twenty-third entrant in the match have won. So there’s that. Damn, Cole. Don’t make me do your homework for you. Get in the game.

-Fun fact: Brock Lesnar rocks the ring like a hurricane, eliminating Ambrose and Ziggler before just obliterating everyone else, BUT… he neither eats nor sleeps between eliminating them. Paul Heyman is a damnable liar.

-Goldberg out to face off with Lesnar at #28, and… can someone explain this angle to me? Goldberg is now 2-0 against Lesnar in his career with one of those wins being an uncontested stomp, and an effortless Rumble elimination making up a third official encounter. Why on Earth do I want to see them fight again? I really can’t figure out what they are trying to build here. If their roles at the Rumble had been reversed, sure. Then they’d each gotten over the other in rapid fashion. But as it is? This is befuddling. I am befuddled.

-Undertaker and Goldberg go at it, and THERE’S an angle I want to see. They have a much more interesting (though equally as brief) confrontation, and… why can’t we be building to that at WrestleMania instead?

-Hahaha, so yeah. When Undertaker was at #29 (and Brock and Goldberg and Braun had all already been in and back out), the assumption was that #30 was going to be a huge surprise. And it was… oh, it was. But you know what else is a surprise? Finding a bug in the steak you ordered. Not all surprises are fun is what I’m saying. I remember sitting on my couch, and exact words were “Balor, Joe, or Angle. Balor, Joe, or Angle. Balor, Joe, or—huh? OH COME ON”.

I took some abuse in my review of 2014 for giving WWE too much credit by believing Daniel Bryan was always the endgame. And I’m probably doing it again with my belief that WWE is booking Roman the way they are because they have found the formula to book a heel the will never get cheered, but come on… there’s an unbelievable level obliviousness that comes with the booking of Roman. It’s hard to swallow.

-A Roman/Undertaker angle is built towards when Roman pitches ‘Taker, and I am reminded of what I alluded to earlier: can’t we have Undertaker/Goldberg instead? Let Brock and Roman fight again. That’s a fine pairing. That was fun at WrestleMania 31.

-A lot of this Rumble harkens back to 2014. The air getting sucked out of the arena at #30. A final four that is… unimpressive. And that final set-up is made even more so when the only palatable guy left is the first one out. Leaving…

-Roman, Randy, and Bray as the final three, and I was—wait, I’m going to try to sound young and hip here—checked out AF at that point. If I were ranking current WWE superstars instead of Rumbles, we’d be looking at three great candidates for my bottom five, and it all comes down to them. And what’s more, the one of them that makes the least sense to win… wins. Randy Orton? In 2017? But… why? They can’t possibly be down for another Orton/Cena stretch, can they? The only storyline that would make sense for WrestleMania is Orton/Wyatt and oh my god, Wyatt is winning the title before ‘Mania, isn’t he? Damn it.

This honest-to-god felt like an 8/10 Rumble until #30. Now I'm trying not to be super snarky and down on Roman just because... but what a momentous disappointment of what could have been a huge return/debut spot. Everything kind of soured from that point on, dragging down what had genuinely been a great Royal Rumble. So close, WWE. So close.

FINAL RANKINGS

1. 2001 (Austin III) – 10/10

2. 2010 (Edge) – 9/10
3. 2004 (Benoit) – 9/10
4. 1992 (Flair) – 9/10

5. 2007 (The Undertaker) – 8/10
6. 1997 (Austin I) – 8/10
7. 1998 (Austin II) – 8/10

8. 2008 (Cena I) – 7/10
9. 2002 (HHH I) – 7/10

10. 2016 (HHH II) – 6/10
11. 2017 (Orton II) – 6/10
12. 2005 (Batista I) – 6/10

13. 2003 (Lesnar) -5/10
14. 1989 (Studd) – 5/10
15. 1996 (Michaels II) – 5/10
16. 2011 (Del Rio) – 5/10
17. 1999 (McMahon) 5/10

18. 1993 (Yokozuna) – 4/10
19. 1990 (Hogan I) – 4/10
20. 1994 (Hart/Luger) – 4/10
21. 2013 (Cena II) – 4/10
22. 2009 (Orton I) – 4/10

23. 2012 (Sheamus) – 3/10
24. 1991 (Hogan II) – 3/10
25. 2014 (Batista II) – 3/10
26. 2006 (Mysterio) – 3/10
27. 2000 (The Rock) – 3/10

28. 1995 (Michaels I) – 2/10
29. 1988 (Duggan) – 2/10

30. 2015 (Reigns) – 1/10

Speed of Zound

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Re: NotBAMF watched all the Royal Rumble matches... so you don't have to! (2017!)
« Reply #130 on: February 05, 2017, 02:42:04 AM »
I'd give it a 4. It was pretty bad.

Jericho winning as a pure chickenshit heel would have worked alright imo.

Propeus The Fallen

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Re: NotBAMF watched all the Royal Rumble matches... so you don't have to! (2017!)
« Reply #131 on: February 05, 2017, 11:42:01 AM »
Explain the Lesnar-Goldberg angle. Heck, they know Goldberg can't wrestle for more than a minute and can't cut a promo and are probably going to main even WM. Trying to find logic in this is like The movie Cell where you go in the mind of a lunatic to find one key note of information.

Personally, I think Reigns was sent out because they didn't want Orton booed and knew tossing Reigns would get him some points with the fans.

And I've been thinking about Orton winning the Rumble. I'm okay with it. He's been great this year and he's part of the best storyline the WWE has done in years with him infiltrating the Wyatt Family to kill it from the inside out. So you know, let it be for the title match at WM. It's got the build and it should be a great match.

If we get Cena vs Orton again...ugghhh.

Not BAMF

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2017: The Rising Sun



The Participants
1. Rusev
2. Finn Balor
3. Rhyno
4. Baron Corbin
5. Heath Slater
6. Elias
7. Andrade “Cien” Almas
8. Bray Wyatt
9. Big E
10. Tye Dillinger Sami Zayn
11. Sheamus
12. Xavier Woods
13. Apollo Crews
14. Shinsuke Nakamura
15. Cesaro
16. Kofi Kingston
17. Jinder Mahal
18. Seth Rollins
19. “Woken” Matt Hardy
20. John Cena
21. The Hurricane
22. Aiden English
23. Adam Cole
24. Randy Orton
25. Titus O’Neil
26. The Miz
27. Rey Mysterio
28. Roman Reigns
29. Goldust
30. Dolph Ziggler


Final Four
4. Finn Balor (eliminated by John Cena)
3. John Cena (eliminated by Shinsuke Nakamura)
2. Roman Reigns (eliminated by Shinsuke Nakmura)
WINNER: Shinsuke Nakamura


Thoughts

-God, it’s fascinating how over “Rusev Day” is as a concept (or gimmick or what-have-you). The fans absolutely LOVE Rusev here. Perpetual chants for him throughout, and a particularly boisterous one for him at his introduction (performed with style and gusto by Aiden English).

-Two beloved superstars start off the Rumble as Balor joins Rusev to start. That’s how you get the fans hot to start!

-Michael Cole annoys me early on by bringing up Shawn Michaels’ win in 1995, going wire-to-wire. He talks about discussing this with HBK and mentions how Shawn was able to last that whole hour. That Rumble wasn’t even forty minutes long! Don’t lie to the people, Cole.

-Rhyno is an oddly shaped man. Has he shrunk? Or am I just noticing this?

-Great booking for Corbin sees him toss Rhyno before his own lack of focus costs him, and Balor sneaks him out. Then Corbin goes on a tear, beating the tar out of Balor and Rusev before leaving. So this allows him to look strong, but it plays into how he has a history of missing opportunities. Also, I don't care for matches that involve Baron Corbin, and it gets him out quickly here. Win-win-win.

-Baron also batters an emerging Heath Slater before he can enter the ring, starting a humorous trend of newly entering stars kicking Heath around.

-Andrade Almas is the first reigning NXT champion to participate in a Royal Rumble, and I really hope I’m not wrong on that. The only research I did was making sure Bo Dallas wasn’t champ yet when he entered in 2014. But I certainly don’t recall anyone else that could make this claim.

-I don’t know why this bothers me, but WWE continues to ignore Bray Wyatt’s full history, as Cole calls this Bray’s fourth Rumble. It’s his fifth! They’re incredibly inconsistent with who they count the “whole” history of and who they don’t.

-Rusev starts a little “Hulk Up” from the Rusev Day chants to try to empower him to get back in the ring right around the time of Big E’s entrance. Bray smacks him off the apron over and over, but Rusev keeps getting right back up. This guy has become a treasure, haha.

-It’s finally Sheamus who allows Heath Slater into the ring, but instantly regrets it when Heath eliminates him Santino Marella fast with a clothesline. This leads to the best commentary of the night—and I honestly kept laughing at this to myself all show long—when Cole points out it is Sheamus’ birthday, and Corey Graves responds incredulously “Sheamus’ birthday is on Rusev Day?”

-Speaking of which, moments before #12 is counted in, the fans are back to chanting “Rusev Day!”.

-Xavier Woods seems to have overcome his terror of Bray Wyatt, and goes right after him after entering the match.

-Upon Apollo Crews’ entrance—and damn, am I taking a lot of notes on this Rumble—Michael Cole informs us that only 4 men have ever won from a spot in the teens (foreshadowing!), but he doesn’t tell us who they are. Never fear, 411maniacs, because I got you covered. They are: Jim Duggan at #13 in 1988 (but there were only 20 men, so…), Shawn Michaels at #18 in 1996, John Cena at #19 in 2013, and Roman Reigns at #19 in 2015.

-Nakamura gets a BIG reaction for his appearance, with the fans humming his song for SOME TIME, and then giving him an applause and a chant when they finally wrap up with that.

-Jinder Mahal goes right after New Day, eliminating Xavier Woods and Big E in short order. His eventual effort to toss Kofi Kingston is thwarted when Kofi lands on the fallen Xavier Woods. This leads to some pancake-based humor where Big E produces a platter of the breakfast food for Kofi to stand on as he re-enters the fray.  Kofi then gets Jinder out, but is quickly tossed by Almas.

-Seth Rollins and Cesaro, who would fight later in the evening for the Raw tag titles, have a bit of a skirmish that ends with Seth… somehow springboard kicking Cesaro out of the ring? It might have sounded good in theory, but it just looks like Cesaro threw himself out of the ring. Eh, not all eliminations can be winners.

-An interesting Rumble twist sees two rivals come face-to-face (Matt Hardy and Bray Wyatt), but then they start working together (to the crowd’s dismay, as their union results in the elimination of Rusev). They then turn their attention to Almas for a second before it all implodes and they go at each other. They blew that up a bit early, if you ask me. I think having them work alongside each other for a few minutes could have been something worth doing. Ah well. 

-John Cen enters and is immediately dog-piled by Elias, Balor, Seth, Shinsuke, and Almas (everyone left at the moment). The fans appreciate it, even though it is just a brief moment of Everyone Vs Cena. As the crowd disperses, Cena pitches Elias.

-Andrade Almas lasts until after Randy Orton enters, at which time the NXT champ eats an RKO on an impressive springboard spot. Good effort, and it’s nice to see him last as long as he did (and, to be fair, commentary notes several times during the match how long he had been in there).

-Rey gets a HUGE pop for his surprise return at #27, and he quickly gets Adam Cole out. Rey goes on to have a nice run, too.

-Rollins and Reigns work together to powerbomb Miz out of the ring, and then Roman whips Seth over the top. Seth gives a little look that reads “Yeah, I guess you’ve owed me that for three years now. Fair enough”.

-Dolph Ziggler with a “return” at #30 after abdicating the United States title and walking off Smackdown Live a few weeks before this show. Other than eliminating Goldust, though, he doesn’t really mean much here, and Balor knocks him off the apron in a minute or two.

-There is a little “old vs new” face-off, as Rey, Cena, and Orton square off against Balor, Shinsuke, and Roman. In the most WWE thing ever, all three of the “new guard” superstars eat the finishers of the old stand-bys.

The Final Four is another little delineation, this time along the lines of “Establishment vs Fans’ Choice” with Balor and Nakamura working against Cena and Reigns. Wait, didn’t John and Roman have a pretty vitriolic feud in 2017? Why  were they working together? Come on!

-Finn Balor lasts from the opening of the match to the Final Four, but does not win it. I thought that would be a more prestigious group of men who have done that historically, but it’s actually happened fairly frequently (especially in the last few years). Finn joins Backlund in 1993, Bulldog in 1995, Austin 1999, HHH in 2006, Ziggler in 2013, CM Punk in 2014, Reigns in 2016, and Jericho in 2017 as the men who lasted so long and came so close.

-Shinsuke Nakamura ends up winning the whole thing, ultimately tossing Roman Reigns. And the fans are thrilled! But here’s the thing: It doesn’t matter because Roman is STILL going to be the main event WrestleMania this year. Eh. At least WWE sent the Rumble fans home happy this year.

-After winning the Rumble, Nakamura announces he is going to target AJ Styles at this year’s Wrestlemania because sometimes—just sometimes—we CAN have nice things.

BUT WAIT! THAT’S NOT ALL!


The Participants
1. Sasha Banks
2. Becky Lynch
3. Sarah Logan
4. Mandy Rose
5. Lita
6. Kairi Sane
7. Tamina
8. Dana Brooke
9. Torrie Wilson
10. Sonya Deville
11. Liv Morgan
12. Molly Holly
13. Lana
14. Michelle McCool
15. Ruby Riott
16. Vickie Guerrero
17. Carmella
18. Natalya
19. Kelly Kelly
20. Naomi
21. Jacqueline
22. Nia Jax
23. Ember Moon
24. Beth Phoenix
25. Asuka
26. Mickie James
27.  Nikki Bella
28. Brie Bella
29. Bayley
30. Trish Stratus


Final Four
4. Sasha Banks (eliminated by the Bella Twins)
3. Brie Bella (eliminated by Nikki Bella)
2. Nikki Bella (eliminated by Asuka)
1. Asuka


-I have to be honest… when the women’s Rumble was the main event, I thought “Oh god damn it, Rousey is definitely winning this”.

-Stephanie McMahon is out on commentary for this match, and—this may prove unpopular and get some angry comments—but she’s not particularly egregious here. She actually adds some good points throughout, notes things commentary isn’t looking at, and isn’t too self-congratulatory or obnoxious.

-Corey Graves is, like, Jerry Lawler levels of skeevy when it comes to Mandy Rose. I mean, he’s not screaming about body parts or anything, but he says things like “I just want to see Mandy Rose doing anything ever, honestly”.

-A not-nearly-still-in-her-physical-prime Lita comes out at #5, but let’s face it: she needed to be in this match somewhere, so who cares? She has a #TimesUp sash (or belt or something) on, too, so good for her. Lita also has the names of several female stars who passed on before this Rumble could be realized, and Cole rattles off some names. He does not mention Chyna, however, but Stephanie does for him. So a posthumous Hall of Fame nod seems likely this year…

-In case you were curious, Michael Cole either thinks Kairi Sane’s gimmick is yachting or that pirates cruise around in yachts because he mentions something about her yacht-based persona.

-Then again, he also refers to a simple dodge that Lita performs to avoid a Tamina superkick as “those Matrix-like moves” because he apparently forgot that was Trish’s thing? Not a good night even by his standards. Maybe this is why I found Steph more palatable.

-Kairi is dumped far too early by Dana Brooke. I would like to have seen her get some kind of run considering they went in enough on her to give her the Mae Young Classic crown.

-Molly hits a flipping rana onto Sasha Banks, causing Corey Graves to note that “if that doesn’t earn a You Still Got It chant, I don’t know what will”. Unfortunately, no such chant materializes.

-Lana has some of that Rusev rub, and the Rusev Day chants are back!

-Michelle McCool goes on an absolute tear, getting Liv Morgan, Sonya Deville, Molly Holly, and Lana all out before the next entrant even gets counted in.

-I have to be honest… all the legends that came out for this match, and my first mark-out moment of this Rumble was for Vickie Guerrero. I forgot how much I missed her. She annoys everyone left in the ring into working together to get her out, but hey… the was always Vickie’s role. She salvages some dignity by clubbing Carmella with the Money In The Bank briefcase as Carmella was making her way to the ring.

-Kelly Kelly obviously hasn’t done her spinning flying head scissors spot in a WHILE, and struggles to nail Michelle McCool with it. But hey; it’s still better than I could do it.

-Jacqueline out at #21, looking OLD, and so I have to Google her age. She’s in her mid-50’s, so that makes sense, I guess. She was around in WWE in the 1990s, so this is 20 years after her prime.

-Nia Jax at #22, and I really thought she’d be #28-#30 for the whole Big Show “Oh my god how will anyone get her out she is so fresh” shtick. She cleans out some folks, but her effort to toss Naomi sees the glowing one end up on the guardrail instead. She finds a wheeled chair and gets herself back into the ring… but is then instantly pitched by Nia.

-Ember Moon out for #23, and she is selling the heck out of her arm from her NXT Takeover match against Shayna Baszler. Props to Ember; she really goes out of her way to take care of and cradle her injured limb while competing in the match. The arm plays into her elimination, too, when Asuka targets it to get Ember out.

-Beth Phoenix looks good here. I figured she might have lost some muscle mass since her heyday, but if she has, it doesn’t show. She ends up getting Jax up in a fireman’s carry and holds her there for several seconds. Afterwards, she has a short-lived reunion with Natalya before getting eliminated by her friend.

-Carmella shrieks a LOT in the later stages of the match, and I keep thinking Vickie Guerrero has returned.

-Trish Stratus ends up being #30, and really… who else could it have been (besides, you know…)? She’s even back to blonde, which I hadn’t seen in her last several appearances. Trish quickly ends up in a face-off with Mickie James because OF COURSE. Trish signs the number seven for reasons I don’t quite get, but at first, with the fingers up for the Two, I thought she was making a reference to Mickie’s infamous V from Wrestlemania 22.

-Sasha turns on Bayley to toss her when the hugger isn’t looking, and this starts a little heel stretch for The Boss for the rest of the match. Sasha seamlessly transitions into her old NXT persona here, and that is desperately what her character requires at this point in her main roster career. She gets Trish out and coordinates the Bellas to work with her against Asuka.

-I friggin’ love Asuka. I know I’m not breaking new ground here, but she’s a delight. Her facial expressions and mannerisms are god damn brilliant. I would watch her just be an asshole to people and mock them all day long. Her reactions to Ember and Sasha are both great. Male AND female, she’s in my top 5 on the planet right now.

-Asuka wins the Rumble (which was a foregone conclusion when Rousey wasn’t in it), but then Rousey pisses all over her moment by debuting while Asuka was considering which title to chase at ‘Mania. Listen, I’m not INHERENTLY anti-Rousey. I think she’s great, to be fair. If she’s going to stick around WWE, I’m excited to have her. I just really didn’t want her to win the Royal Rumble, and then I felt like her coming out took away from Asuka’s moment. Asuka vs Charlotte should be a money match, but I’m relatively sure WWE will go Rousey/Charlotte as the “big” match, and Asuka/Bliss as the undercard women’s title. It’s just not what I want personally.

 

FINAL RANKINGS

1. 2001 (Austin III) – 10/10

2. 2010 (Edge) – 9/10
3. 2004 (Benoit) – 9/10
4. 1992 (Flair) – 9/10

5. 2007 (The Undertaker) – 8/10
6. 1997 (Austin I) – 8/10
7. 1998 (Austin II) – 8/10

8. 2008 (Cena I) – 7/10
9. 2018 (Nakamura) - 7/10
10. 2002 (HHH I) – 7/10


11. 2016 (HHH II) – 6/10
12. 2005 (Batista I) – 6/10
13. 2017 (Orton II) - 6/10

14. 2003 (Lesnar) -5/10
15. 2018W (Asuka) - 5/10
16. 1989 (Studd) – 5/10
17. 1996 (Michaels II) – 5/10
18. 2011 (Del Rio) – 5/10
19. 1999 (McMahon) 5/10

20.  1993 (Yokozuna) – 4/10
21. 1990 (Hogan I) – 4/10
22. 1994 (Hart/Luger) – 4/10
23. 2013 (Cena II) – 4/10
24. 2009 (Orton I) – 4/10

25. 2012 (Sheamus) – 3/10
26. 1991 (Hogan II) – 3/10
27. 2014 (Batista II) – 3/10
28. 2006 (Mysterio) – 3/10
29. 2000 (The Rock) – 3/10

30. 1995 (Michaels I) – 2/10
31. 1988 (Duggan) – 2/10

32. 2015 (Reigns) – 1/10

Jabroniville

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Molly shockingly looks like she hasn't aged at all since her prime. Naomi's ass was utter perfection- that shot of her hand-walking the chair to the corner, with her butt sticking in the air... yowza.

Propeus The Fallen

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Dude of course Stephanie did good on commentary--do you Vince is going to yell at his daughter to say "Big Dawg" every ten seconds like he does Michael Cole?

And it's kind of weird because reviews of the Rumble have either been "one of the best in a long time" to "It stinks".