Segunda Caida

Phil Schneider, Eric Ritz, Matt D and occasional guests write about pro wrestling. Follow us @segundacaida

Sunday, January 25, 2015

2015 WWE Royal Rumble Live Blog

ER: Well, this show doesn't look that good on paper, but Rumble has been my favorite "big" WWE match since I was a kid so I always go in with unrealistic hopes. I'll do my not-normally-necessary skim through of the kickoff show. I really love Renee Young's short haircut. Looks awesome. Byron Saxton looks like he's animated.

1. The New Day (Big E & Kofi Kingston w/ Xavier Woods) vs. Cesaro, Tyson Kidd

ER: Well this match would have been much more promising if they had dropped Rose and Kofi. But a 6 man is a pretty hard thing to mess up so we'll see. I haven't seen The New Day as a team before, but I like that their gear looks like a coordinated Christian rock band. I'd like to see promo photos of them on a beach, all facing different directions, one of them with arms lifted towards the heavens. Boy has anybody's stock dropped more than Cesaro's over the last calendar year? He's one of my favorites but teaming with Kidd and Rose (two guys who would be non-shocking future endeavors) on the pre-show is just brutal. And hey I just realized that the match is actually Cesaro/Kidd vs. Kofi/E. I'm gonna go ahead and edit that match description, but leave in my opening remarks so I sound like a doofus. This was a pretty forgettable match with a nice little finishing stretch. Cesaro threw some nice boots and hit a nice uppercut on Kofi leading to the pin, Big E got some nice moments with a massive belly to belly and his cool spear through the ropes. Kofi's offense still can't crack an egg. Crowd was actually really hot for this match, which is a good sign going into the show.

ER: I always actually dig the Royal Rumble by the numbers segment they introduced a few years ago. Though this year when it went "38: Number of participants who are WWE Hall of Famers" they showed a bunch of dead guys, so it made me wonder what the number of deceased participants all time.  Also a lot of dead guys when they were talking about the largest Rumble participants. Also made me remember that every year until I knew better I would always pick the fattest or largest guy to win. Stupid kid.

2. New Age Outlaws vs. The Ascension

ER: I have not seen a whole lot of the Ascension, couple of squash matches. The look like a couple of goons from The Guild of Calamitous Intent. Viktor in particular could make a really convincing cosplay Monarch. Like he could probably get his picture on Buzzfeed or something. Viktor locks on a chin lock 2 minutes in, but then follows it up with a nice fist drop so my heart is torn but neutral. Road Dogg looks like he gassed pretty hard. Really the final stretch when Gunn tagged in was pretty fun. But this was 5 minutes and basically wouldn't even stand out on an episode of Raw. All that goodwill the crowd was giving the kickoff match appears to have dried up. Hmmmm.

ER: Annnnnd my feed cut out. "Error. Cannot play video at this time. Please try again later." I do not have a weak internet connection. But this has happened to me literally every PPV I've tried to watch on the Network.

3. Usos vs. The Miz & Damien Mizdow

ER: Mizdow is really, really over which was something that I wouldn't have actually predicted. I also couldn't really get into this match. Maybe I'm in a grumpy mood or something. I just don't really care for the Mizdow tag team, and would rather see The Usos against practically any other team. The Mizdow stunt double spots don't really have much legs with me, especially in a match that could have actually been good. Miz also rarely interests me. I don't like much of his offense, and for the most part he also takes offense poorly. Miz set up a lot of Uso offense really lazily in this. Half the Usos moves seemed to be "foot gets caught, Uso spun around, ends up kicking Miz on the way back around." Pretty flat overall. This is looking like a horrible Sunday night decision so far. If I wanted to blow an evening I could at least watch The Doll Squad or something.

ER: I was amused by Jamie and Joey's poor read while playing WWE Immortals (is that like WoW but with WWE guys?).

4. Bella Twins vs. Paige & Natalya

ER: I really enjoyed the first 2-3 minutes of this. Things kind of went to hell when the crowd started singing and Brie blew a reverse somethingorother driver. I always enjoy Nikki Bella and think she's underrated as a worker. Always does nice kicks to the stomach, throws nasty back elbows, has surprisingly good timing a lot of the time. But yeah this was pretty much 3 good minutes and then 5 minutes of sputtering to a finish. I liked Brie's running Brie Mode knee, but Nattie wasn't a very engaging person to watch take a beating for half a match. And I'm still not sure what Paige is.

5. John Cena vs. Seth Rollins vs. Brock Lesnar

ER: Well this match was completely bonkers, and I completely loved all of it. Total show saver right here. Usually I hate 3 ways but Brock may just be the answer to this type of match as his offense is so destructive that it makes sense for guys to be out of the match for minutes at a time. There was so much great stuff in this. Lesnar basically wrestles a match the way somebody would win at King of the Coliseum. Match starts, immediately just starts throwing people as far as he can. I love it that John Cena is still powerless against his Germans. Cena always takes the Germans really great and seeing Brock toss him violently never gets old. Then you add in Brock double suplexing Noble and Mercury, Rollins taking suplexes in the most painful ways possible (jeez one of the Germans had to have jammed his shoulder). Brock is just an incredible personality to watch. I never want him to go away. Then they go and spectacularly take Brock out of the match by Rollins leaping a million feet to elbow drop him through an announce table. Brock obviously has freakish strength and it was on full display throughout, but he's also always been an incredible bumper, and not just bumper but always makes stuff look great. I'm not sure I've seen anybody make Rollins' curb stomp look as good as Brock made it look. I also love Brock being the one guy to just sell the AA as a standard back bump and just get up from it. This whole thing was a ridiculously fun blur of large men getting dumped on their heads. There were a bunch of great saves in this with my favorite being Lesnar emerging from his table to do a mighty deadlift German on Rollins. Loved all of this.

6. Royal Rumble Match

ER: Oh good, was hoping I would get to maximize my Miz viewing for the evening. R-Truth is #2. These two starting would lend creedence to somebody's "The Rumble is actually booked with guys drawing numbers out of a hat!" theory. If these two were main eventing Superstars it would seem like an off week. Bubba Ray Dudley is #3 and that's a fun surprise. Miz took the 3D nicely so I'll give him credit there. #4 is Luke Harper. Harper/Bubba Ray is a fun match up I never realized I wanted. BRD works a little light against Harper though so I am disappointed. He threw those Mick Foley punches where he kinda aims for above the forehead. #5 is Bray Wyatt. Miz, Truth and BRD are gone at this point. #6 is Curtis Axel and I can't imagine a quieter reaction. But apparently Rowan takes his spot which is very much better. #7 is The Boogeyman. Hey. How about that. One of the only men to not have a good match with Finlay. Wyatt stiffs him with a hard clothesline and is all alone. #8 is Sin Cara. I take back what I said about Axel's quiet elimination. Since Axel never made it to the ring does that mean he's still in this thing? Surprise finalist!!! #9 is Zack Ryder. Wow the WWE has a lot of guys I do not care about. #10 is Daniel Bryan so I do love he and Wyatt getting the ring to themselves.

#11 is Fandango. #12 is Tyson Kidd. Rachel points out the stupidity of Bryan putting Wyatt on the top rope to do a rana, instead of just pushing him off the top. #13 is Stardust. Crowd is pretty quiet even though Stardust comes in with a bunch of stiff shots. #14 is DDP who comes in throwing a bunch of Diamond Cutters. #15 is Rusev and I want him to go on a run. I dig Bryan doing his big dive as you really don't get many legal dives in the Rumble. And Bryan gets hilariously eliminated because HA! I guess they just really wanted Bryan chants the rest of the night. Even Rachel assumed Bryan was going all the way to the end, and she basically only watched Total Divas and doesn't know how booking works. #16 is Goldust. #17 is Kofi Kingston. Goldust looks awesome upon entering, hitting his powerslam on Rusev and getting into it with Cody. The Rumble is pretty much the only reason to keep Kofi around as it's basically the only time I find myself enjoying him. #18 is Adam Rose. Boy. This guy still has a job. Obama could use him as an example of just how much employment is on the rise. But his horribly named Rosebuds do get an awesome spot by catching Kofi's fall on a potential elimination. #19 is Roman Reigns. #20 is Big E. Rusev does his really fun cannonballs.

#21 is Mizdow. I do not care about their storyline. #22 is Jack Swagger. #23 is Ryback. #24 is Kane. #25 is Dean Ambrose. Good, we've had a bunch of people just milling about in there for a bit. #26 is Titus O'Neill. Looks like they were trying to do a "new quickest elimination" angle with Titus, but somebody botched something and Titus didn't go over cleanly, so they had to re-do it. Yeah, JBL immediately goes "Did he just break Santino's record!?" It would be amusing if Titus were booked to break it, and then accidentally/on purpose didn't go over properly. Getting eliminated in 4 seconds instead of the 1 he was booked for would be arguably the most amusing reason to get cut. #27 is Bad News Barrett. #28 is Cesaro. It makes me sad how audibly disappointed the crowd was when they figured out who it was. What did the poor guy do wrong? #29 is Big Show. #30 is Dolph Ziggler. I hope there was some dummy out there who wanted Rock. Are they really doing Reigns/Brock at Mania? They're doing Ambrose/Brock next month anyway, right? So that would be weird if Ambrose wins even though I would love that. Still time for Curtis Axel to make his triumphant return. Damn I wonder what cut Reign's mouth up. That's some good blood and nobody is really mentioning it. "Bullshit" chants starting, crowd is turning on Reigns to the shock of not one person. This is a horrible and totally predictable reaction to Reigns winning. And then Rock comes out and I'm pretty much not interested in Rock at this point. I would be interested in Rock/Rusev. That is about it. Wait Rusev is still in the match!? Oh. There he goes. Huh. Let's cut to the "Roman Reigns in the shot look at Wrestlemania sign" (they cut to that shot while I was in the middle of typing it). Man. Bryan didn't even get eliminated by any nefarious means or anything. Dude just wasn't good enough to hang.

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