Previously at “TLC“…WWE emerged from its slump of crappy PPV’s and provided an exciting show that saw Roman Reigns FINALLY win over a hostile crowd when he snapped and destroyed everyone in sight. While the New Day, Charlotte and Alberto del Rio retained their belts, Ambrose scored the Intercontinental Championship! But most importantly, WWE programming started getting good!…for awhile…
Stephanie opens the show, but only gets a few words out before Roman arrives. They have a pretty cool exchange, where Stephanie slaps the hell out of him and reveals that her Father is coming. The first official match is ‘Dolph Ziggler Vs Ambrose‘ and it’s a very good match, with the implication that Ziggler is going to get involved in the title scene. ‘Bo Dallas Vs R-Truth‘ was actually pretty enjoyable, although I wasn’t upset when Vince McMahon interrupted them and ordered them out of the ring. Vince is such a great heel and he really goes old school in talking down Roman Reigns, even threatening to fight Roman, but Sheamus comes out first. This was a great segment, although I groaned at the ‘shriveled prunes’ line (is this going to be a reoccurring thing with Roman?). Vince oddly seems to have a more dangerous presence than Triple H, but Roman held his ground (until he got kicked in the nuts). The Wyatt Family have a rematch with the ECW originals and if it’s anywhere near as hilarious as their last bout, I shall be pleased. But shockingly, this was a genuinely good battle and even more shockingly, Rowan scored the pin. Seriously though, there were plenty of awesome moments here and the pacing was lightening fast. The New Day, Lucha Dragons and Usos have a bait-and-switch segment that went on for too long and made the babyfaces look bad. ‘Charlotte and Becky Vs Brie and Fox‘ bored me, although nothing about it stood out as terrible. ‘Sheamus Vs Roman Reigns‘ was an excellent main event. The action was impressive and they successfully made Roman a true underdog. It was a very emotional moment for him and the crowd. This was easily the best RAW in at least a month and was an excellent show.
Stephanie opens the show again, building up the Slammy’s, but Roman Reigns interrupts her and I found it odd that Roman ponders whether Stephanie is planning a trap, even though he wasn’t invited to the ring. Nevertheless, Roman’s trolling of Stephanie was very entertaining. Stephanie losing her temper over it was golden. They do the Slammy for ‘breakout star of the year‘ and Neville wins, which pisses off Kevin Owens. A brawl between Owens and Ziggler ensues, which is cool, but made Neville look like a pussy for leaving. ‘Kane Vs Bray‘ quickly turns into ‘Kane, Dudleyz and Dreamer Vs the Wyatt Family’. Decent match with some impressive moves, but I feel the Wyatt/ECW originals angle should be over by now. Heyman announces the OMG moment of the year Slammy, which Kalisto wins. Next we have ‘Owens Vs Ziggler‘, which was a very good bout. Seth Rollins wins the ‘superstar of the year‘ slammy and it was nice seeing him again. I liked that he played his heel role without deflating the crowds enthusiasm (as they WANTED to cheer for him). Mark Henry presents the next Slammy and despite his blatant face pandering, he gets minimal reaction. Cena wins, which got a major cheer, which turned to boos when it was revealed that he wasn’t even there. ‘New Day Vs Usos‘ was good. R-Truth presents the ‘Diva of the Year‘ Slammy, which he mistakenly attributes to Paige. In reality, the winner is Nikki, proving that the Slammy’s are phony. Nikki cuts a very babyface-ish promo and hugs Paige before they leave. Odd. The Miz announces the ‘This is Awesome‘ slammy and does some good troll baiting, although the lack of the winners was annoying. Flair presents the match of the year, which went to ‘Lesnar Vs Taker‘ at “Hell in a Cell“. Paul Heyman accepts the award in his place and the fans are a little annoyed. These awards are stupid because they’re obviously fixed, but the winners are rarely there to accept! Finally, the main event is ‘Sheamus vs Ambrose‘ in a steel cage. Good Main Event, although the show as a whole was pretty average due to the disappointing Slammy segments.
Vince McMahon starts things off by calling out Roman Reigns and they have some back and forth banter, only for the crowd to start chanting for Daniel Bryan and CM Punk. McMahon starts saying some oddly racist things that completely deflate the crowd and Roman gently pushes him, which Vince sells like he’s broken his neck. Stephanie comes out with some Police Officers and what follows is me being confused. Why wouldn’t they arrest Roman Reigns? They seem awfully eager to arrest Stephanie instead, even though she’s not even coming across as THAT angry. Wouldn’t it make more sense if they arrested her for attacking Tom Phillips last week? They still keep telling her to calm down, even though she has done as requested and is trying to calm her Father down. Eventually Vince gets himself arrested, which the crowd enjoyed, but I thought this entire segment felt forced and awkward. ‘Owens Vs Neville‘ ended really quickly, but resulted in an awesome segment where Owens destroyed Neville (that clothesline, ouch!). Ambrose comes to the rescue and this bit was pretty intense. The New Day have a very funny segment, which leads to a match (Kalisto Vs Kofi), although I was paying more attention to Byron (?) saying that “This (TLC) was Kalisto’s coming out party“. There are some really awesome displays of athleticism in this match and it’s a shame that the crowd sounds indifferent. This was a good bout and it made the Lucha Dragons look more relevant than they have in a long time. Because Sin Cara stopped the New Day from cheating, Xavier challenges him…to a match with Big E. It’s pretty fun, until Sin Cara looked like he legitimately got hurt and the crowd shows their concern with dueling ‘Cena’ chants. Nevertheless, it continues and Sin Cara won my respect when he actually got Big E on his shoulders, despite his apparent injury. I’m ready for a Lucha Dragons push. Hopefully the crowd gets behind them.
Rusev, Sheamus and Barrett take on the Usos and Ambrose, which didn’t click with me. Shouldn’t the League of Nations be focusing more on Roman Reigns? I did like how Owens destroyed Ambrose afterwards though. Cena makes his return and I love his bizarre relationship with the crowds. Sometimes they cheer, sometimes they boo and sometimes both, but Cena plays off of them very well and the end result is a highly entertaining segment. Eventually the League comes out and del Rio holds his own on the mic, leading to a Title match between the two. This was a good match, much better than their PPV bout, although the ending was a little predictable. The Usos run in to make the save and fail, before Roman Reigns arrives to conquer the League on his own. Just when you think that’s the end of the show, Vince McMahon shows up and sets up a title match for next week. While this show started off awkwardly, it got better to the point of being enjoyable.
The New Day open the show to troll the audience, prompting the Lucha Dragons to come out and pander. They then challenge all three of the New Day, but since Sin Cara is injured, the Dudleyz are Kalisto’s teammates. It was a good match, highlighting everyones strengths while seriously putting Kalisto over. He looked fantastic. Er, in the back-room, I think Becky Lynch just referenced an old Adam Sandler movie…okay…atleastit’snotGrownUps2…Goldust and Breeze have a mediocre match, which ends with Breeze and Summer announcing their…breakup? Odd…There is a kind of amusing back-stage segment where Bo Dallas encounters Curtis Axel, but when Ziggler shows up and acts like a complete douchebaag, it sort of spoiled things. The Usos take on Strowman and Harper in a pretty good match. ‘Naomi and Tamina Vs Brie and Fox‘ was boring and the audience was dead. To be fair, I have no idea who I’m supposed to root for. Plus, Brie is used more than Fox. Oi…’Dolph Ziggler Vs Bo Dallas‘ was alright, although I didn’t like the finish. The main event is ‘Roman Reigns and Ambrose Vs Kevin Owens and Sheamus‘. It’s a solid match with a fairly intense finish. Overall, this episode was decent. Nothing spectacular, but easy to watch.
Stephanie McMahon tries to open RAW, but she only gets a few steps out before she’s interrupted by Roman Reigns- making me wonder which poor employee is about to get fired for intentionally stopping her music to start his. He tells her to go away and calls out Vince, but she says he isn’t here yet. Their banter didn’t really work for me, partially as I don’t like “I’ve got to provide for my family” themed promos, but it seemed to me like Roman and Stephanie were speaking too softly. Maybe they were attempting to convey tranquil fury and failing, or maybe they had colds. ‘Neville Vs Kevin Owens, with Ambrose on commentary‘ was a good, intense battle and I thought Ambrose getting vengeance was satisfying. ‘Charlotte Vs Becky Lynch‘ was a fun, athletically driven bout that finally cemented Charlotte’s heel turn. Excellent segment, where the crowd reacted accordingly. ‘Big Show Vs Ryback‘ was interrupted by the Wyatt Family, who attacked both. While I thought some of Show’s offensive to the Wyatt Family looked soft, I did get excited when he had a showdown with Braun. One thing I will say about the buildup to the Royal Rumble is they’re focusing on the competition between the performers. Ryback and Big Show apparently had a confrontation over the event last week and now the Wyatt’s are getting involved with both men. It should make a lot of the confrontations during the Rumble more personal, presuming they don’t screw it up (again). The New Day have a boastful promo that I found to be lame…the audience was dead during these attempts to be funny. This does lead to the return of Jericho, although this segment was more awkward than amusing. Was it just me or did Jericho look embarrassed by some of his dialogue? After announcing his return for the Rumble, he just…leaves, I guess…and now we have a rematch between the New Day and the Dudleyz/Kalisto. This was technically fine, but I struggled getting into it and the crowd seemed a little indifferent too. ‘Sheamus Vs Roman Reigns‘ was good, although there were a few issues I had with it. Roman Reign attacking everyone did not always seem very…facey? I also thought it was strange how he practically no sold two brogue kicks. Nevertheless, the main event was still exciting and the Royal Rumble announcement was a big deal. Roman has to defend his championship IN the Rumble event itself.
John Cena opens the show and puts over the USA Network, before calling out Alberto del Rio and challenging him to another Title Match. Del Rio says no and Cena introduces Kalisto as his opponent. The match was pretty fun, but Cena’s presence occasionally distracted the crowd and it was odd seeing del Rio pump everyone up at the expense of Kalisto. MizTV segment is next, but the Miz is interrupted by the New Day. This continues with Ziggler, Neville, Goldust and R-Truth coming out, trying to outtalk each-other. Nothing stands out until Truth attempts to redo the joke that he won the slammy for (it’s no longer funny), but this leads to a 4 vs 4 ‘faces vs heels‘. It’s fine, but feels very irrelevant and cheapens both Ziggler and the New Day for simply being there. ‘Charlotte Vs Becky‘ for the Diva’s Championship was about as good as their last bout. The main event is ‘Kevin Owens Vs Ambrose‘ for the IC Title, which was a intense, story driven battle. I loved how you could see the animosity between the two men and felt that they really wanted to kill each-other. The finish was predictable, but the post-match clash was exciting and brutal (that product placement though…). This Smackdown was mostly just average, but the high points did impress me and I always love when the Main Event is the best segment of the show.
Everyone participating in the Royal Rumble event stands alongside the entrance, just as Vince and Stephanie arrive and hype up the PPV. At first, I thought the Wyatts were about to do something awesome, but then they just stand around. Roman Reigns retorts, but this was all very underwhelming, leading to ‘Sheamus Vs Ambrose‘. This was a good opening match, although the finish played it safe. Paul Heyman tries to convince the McMahon’s to give Lesnar an automatic spot at Wrestlemania and fails, which I think could’ve been snappier, but I like the idea. Jericho cuts a promo and the New Day retorts and…God damn it…how is a Jericho/New Day program the worst angle on television?? This is SO annoying and forced! The crowd seems very uninterested too. The Usos arrive and things don’t get any better. What does ‘Back of the Bus brothers‘ mean? Because that sounds like it has racist connotations, although I’m sure that wasn’t Jerichos intent. The match itself was decent though and I liked seeing Jericho chase Xavier around. JBL announces that Sting will be inducted in the hall of fame (groovy!) and Kalisto does a decent interview backstage. Kalisto’s rematch with del Rio for the U.S Championship was excellent and actually seemed to get Kalisto over with the crowd. Del Rio also got strong reactions, but this was probably their best work together. I’m wary of the decision to put the belt on him this quickly, but we’ll see what happens. The Main Event is ‘Roman Vs All‘- meaning, most of the heels in the company- and I didn’t see the point. For the most part, it’s just ‘Roman Vs Owens‘ with all the heels loitering about until they get involved towards the ending. Roman is overcome by the odds, but Lesnar shows up and does what he couldn’t. I understand what they’re going for, but all this did is take away momentum from Roman Reigns. With that said, I did like how the heels fight back against Lesnar, with Sheamus even getting some good shots in. Considering that the show was built around Roman though, it seems odd that they would make Lesnar significantly cooler than the #1 babyface. Not much of a RAW, although I really did like the U.S Championship bout.
Main Event (1/12/2016): Mark Henry opens with a boring promo about how he’s going to win the Rumble, until the Ascension arrive to make a slightly less boring promo and attack. Swagger saves the day, so I presume this will be the Main Event? ‘Fandango Vs Stardust‘ was decent, although some of the psychology felt wasted. ‘Tamina Vs Fox‘ is an odd little matchup that actually was well done by both ladies, although the dead crowd killed its momentum. Who is the babyface? Who is the heel? Why are the commentators more interested in putting the Charlotte/Becky storyline over during this match? The Main Event- Mark Henry, Swagger Vs The Ascension- was fine and the Show was ultimately OK.
Ambrose starts off the show, calling out a no showing Kevin Owens and announcing that they’re doing a Last Man Standing match at the PPV. His reaction to finding out that he can get a drum roll going was funny. Sheamus shows up and tries talking him down, although I found his line delivery to be slow paced and awkward. Kevin Owens finally appears and cuts his own promo before they team up on Ambrose. Neville saves the day though and outside of Sheamus, the segment was entertaining. ‘The Dudleyz Vs the Wyatts‘ was surprisingly entertaining, considering I’m sick of this matchup. Sandow, Swagger, Goldust, and Ryder take on Bo Dallas, Axel, Slater and Rose and…now I’m pissed. This is Sandow’s return to TV after being MIA for so long? Bullsh!t! And weren’t these heels ‘babyfaces’ last week? Ugh…The match was fine, but the awful booking surrounding everyone and the dead crowd upstaged the technical quality. ‘Kalisto Vs del Rio for the U.S Belt‘ was very good, but Kalisto losing so quickly through submission is only adding credibility to the belief that his victory was a fluke, even if Barrett helped. NOT a good way to get someone over. Jerry the King Lawler’s commentary was so annoying that I considered muting the match. ‘Becky Vs Brie‘ was pretty forgettable. The show closes with ‘Owens and Sheamus Vs Ambrose and Neville‘ and it was pretty good! The show was average though.
Roman Reigns opens things by calling out Lesnar, prompting Jericho to show up and propose that he appear on his Highlight Reel segment with Lesnar. Roman accepts, but then the League of Nations arrive and Sheamus cuts a horrible promo. Alberto del Rio and Rusev do a much better job on the mic, making me feel bad for poor underused Barrett (he’s the BEST talker on the League and he doesn’t say anything!?). This leads to Jericho declaring a match between Reigns and Rusev, with Jericho being the Guest Referee (he has the power to make matches?). To be honest, this bit didn’t quite click. The match was good, but the storytelling was absurd. Why would the League of Nations listen to Jericho when he banishes them from the ring, who has no executive power? Why did Roman Reigns seem perfectly cool with Jericho, who had screwed him over last time they shared the ring? Back-stage, Stephanie confronts Jericho for doing the match and in traditional Stephanie fashion, she verbally emasculates him. Is it just me, or does Jericho seem…indifferent so far? His comical banter with anyone lacks fire or creativity. Next up we have ‘Dudleyz and Ryback Vs the Wyatt Family‘ was pretty solid, moving quickly enough while emphasizing the unity of the Wyatts. Back-stage, Stephanie draws attention to the stupidity of the opening debacle, which only reminds me of the stupidity of the opening debacle…Vince and Steph have a segment where they do a draw to see who the #1 entrant of the Royal Rumble will be- Roman, in an obviously fixed outcome. While the awkwardness was a bit amusing, it just went on for too long. At least this makes sense from a story perspective.
‘Becky Vs Tamina‘ was solid, and Becky cuts a passionate promo and plays to Ric’s ego to get a Title match at the PPV- this was really good stuff. ‘Kalisto and Ambrose Vs Alberto del Rio and Sheamus with Owens on commentary‘ was also good, although Owens stole the show by verbally making Byron his bitch. ‘Big E Vs Jay Uso‘ was fine, if a little underwhelming. The Main Event is the Highlight Reel and Jericho’s attempts to pump it up still feel rather unenthusiastic. Paul Heyman puts some fire into the confrontation though with his epic promo though. Jericho’s retorts made me roll my eyes, as they can be summed up as “What if it’s down between Brock and myself? What if I throw him over?“. Er, and what if Heath Slater did that? What’s your point? As Heyman pointed out before, Jericho’s last confrontation with Brock did not go well for him. I’m beginning to suspect that Jericho’s lackluster delivery is because he knows he’s being given crap to work with. Brock arrives and Roman interrupts his entrance with his own…fighting ensues and Roman does WAY too much damage to Lesnar- causing people to boo. The League of Nations comes out and attacks both, but Lesnar conquers them before eating another spear. Suddenly, the Wyatts appear and destroy both Reigns and Lesnar (too much selling!). Nevertheless, at least the finale was entertaining enough and it was cool seeing the Wyatts as a credible threat. Everyone is busy fighting each-other, but the Wyatts stand together. Yet this show was pretty lackluster. Little stood out.
Royal Rumble PREDICTIONS
- Dean Ambrose Vs Kevin Owens: Ambrose
- New Day Vs Usos: New Day
- Alberto del Rio Vs Kalisto: Alberto del Rio
- Charlotte Vs Becky: Becky
- Royal Rumble: Roman Reigns
ROYAL RUMBLE (2016)
(Kick-Off Match) Mark Henry/Jack Swagger Vs Dudleyz Vs Ascension Vs Damian Sandow/Darren Young– Whoever wins this match would be able to compete in the Royal Rumble, so naturally the team that garnered absolutely no reaction from the crowd (Henry, Swagger) would emerge victorious. Even the Ascension had some heat, probably because they were the only heels to boo. The action was passable (if underwhelming), but the only striking moment was when Sandow started getting incredible cheers, so naturally he had about 1 minute of in-ring time. The finish was a little awkward, as it looked like Mark Henry got confused as to who he was supposed to pin. I hope this bout isn’t foreshadowing the quality of this PPV, because while it wasn’t horrid, it utilized its talent very poorly and the wrong people came out on top. To be fair though, I can see why this team was chosen, as Henry and Swagger are usually booked as midcard singles competitors (the others are known for Tag Team work or low card). On another note: Did Darren Young and Titus O’Neil break up?
INTERCONTINENTAL CHAMPIONSHIP– Dean Ambrose Vs Kevin Owens: Now THIS was a match! While the story leading up to it had a few snafus, such as Ziggler stepping away from the feud for absolutely no reason and Neville playing the damsel in distress for some bizarre reason, this actually was a compelling storyline. From the opening bell, both men had one goal: Tear each-other apart. You feel their hatred, rage and passion, with the high impact spots being used to illustrate these intense feelings. Even though they didn’t follow through with some of the crazier ideas- double stacked tables, moonsaulting through chairs-, they were set up so perfectly that they magnified the suspense and made the match a little unpredictable. There were some creative touches as well, such as Ambrose wrapping a chair around Owens head and Owens rolling out of the ring in order to get up on his feet. Their verbal exchanges were cool too! Fast paced, intense, exciting- this match was pretty awesome.
TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP– The New Day Vs the Usos: This was a fun match, but I thought that the action inside of the ring was upstaged by Xavier Woods’ antics outside of the ring. I was laughing at his crowd working tactics, such as a (failed) attempt to get heat by refusing to play the trombone and his “Mortal Kombat” quotes. He’s so funny that the audience actually turns on the Uso Brothers and roots for the New Day! That’s not to say that what the opposing teams were doing in the ring was lackluster, it just wasn’t anything memorable. The pacing was swift and there were enough cool moments, but I think part of the issue is that this storyline was pretty weak. I can’t completely blame the WWE, because it was obvious that the Lucha Dragons were being set up to oppose the New Day, but Sin Cara’s injury forced some plan changes. This could’ve been an epic feud, but WWE seems to have lost interest in the Uso’s, who are just…there…Just another team to feed to the New Day, when not long ago they were the focal point of the division. Nevertheless, this was still an entertaining bout, even if the New Day perhaps were too entertaining to where it became hard to root against them.
UNITED STATES CHAMPIONSHIP: Alberto del Rio Vs Kalisto– This was a fun, exciting match but there were some noticeable botches and I can’t help but feel like the conclusion was a mistake. Alberto del Rio defeated John f@cking Cena with a f@cking kick to the side of his f@cking head and his reign is stopped by…Kalisto?! AGAIN!? Nevertheless, I did like their ‘David Vs Goliath‘-styled battle. There were some unconventional techniques that actually looked really good (except the sloppy moments) and del Rio was exceptional in his role as the bully. Kalisto worked well as the underdog babyface. As I said, it was fun but I think the wrong person came out on top.
DIVA CHAMPIONSHIP: Charlotte Vs Becky Lynch– Before I get into the match itself, let me start by saying that this…probably had the most compelling writing of all these feuds. I enjoyed nearly everything surrounding this, from the use of RIc Flair, to Charlotte’s unpleasant attitude to Becky constantly getting screwed over. The promos, the matches and the developments have all been really good, so this might be the first time (on the Main Roster) when the women had the strongest storyline leading up to their PPV bout. But what about the match? It was excellent…only to waste that with a horrible finish. The whole point of Becky’s story arc was how she was prepared for Ric’s dirty tactics, only to fall right into a predictable trap. Would it have killed them to have Charlotte come up with her own shadowy strategy? This made her look stupid, which is a shame, as otherwise this was a great showcase of technique, grace, speed and even strength. Both women really excelled here and proved that even on the Main Roster, they could kick ass just as well as the men. I just wished that the ending was better…although Sasha arriving to clean house was epic.
WORLD HEAVY CHAMPIONSHIP ROYAL RUMBLE: Hmmmm…This Royal Rumble match is more akin to the 2014 disaster than the 2015 disaster- although it’s a lot better than both. While everyone took a dump on the 2014 Royal Rumble for Batista winning, they overlook that everything that proceeded it was a lot of fun- in contrast to 2015’s Royal Rumble, which just sucked. I thought the 2016 Rumble was exciting, briskly paced and with a few exceptions, utilized its talent very well. There were some important moments, such as the debut of AJ Styles- who had a cool showdown with Reigns- and Braun Strowman going over Kane, Big Show and Mark Henry rather quickly (his punches look horrid though). R-Truth took that overused joke he’s been working full circle and Lesnar destroyed the Wyatt Family before getting conquered himself…by the Wyatt family…I thought Jericho looked more credible than he has in awhile and even the Miz had an entertaining segment. Sami Zayn appeared and got revenge on Kevin Owens and I actually did appreciate the attention to continuity in parts- such as Cole reminding us that Ambrose got revenge on Jericho for what happened at “Night of Champions“. Of course, there was the surprise entrant Triple H- which for some reason, I did NOT predict. Not everything made me smile, as I thought the Social Outcasts were underused and Jack Swagger in particular was this years ‘bitch’. Sheamus never was given the opportunity to shine, even though according to the storyline, he was the main antagonist. Red herring (no pun intended) or not, he should’ve stood out a little bit more.
But the main problem was with how Roman Reigns was used. The fans immediately rejected him as soon as he made his entrance, probably because the crowd was unusually hostile, although his booking in the past 2 weeks didn’t do him any favors. The crowd also booed Titus and Ryback pretty intensely, so I think it had more to do with them than with the presentation of Reigns. Eventually the League of Nations jumps him and I found myself wondering why they didn’t put him back in the ring. Next we see him being escorted to the back, making me roll my eyes as everyone would predict his triumphant return. Meanwhile, the Wyatt Family takes over and Brock Lesnar arrives, with everyone except Bray taking each-other out. Roman doesn’t appear until AFTER this is over, having the unintentional effect of making him look a little cowardly. But worse, if he wins, it just won’t feel earned. He wasn’t even present when the difficulty level was at its highest! This is partially redeemed when Roman is surprisingly eliminated, leaving Triple H and Ambrose as the finalists. This pairing surprised me, but the victor did not. I’m not sure how I feel about Triple H being the champion once more, but we’ll see where it goes. I did enjoy the actual Rumble though, even if it suffered from a severe story problem.
Overall: “Royal Rumble (2016)” was mostly a success in this lowly internet jobbers eyes and I am thrilled to be breathing sighs of relief as I had begun to fear that the concept had grown stale over the years. Not everything was perfect, such as the infuriating finish to the excellent Diva’s bout and whoever thought it was a good idea to temporarily take Roman Reigns out of the rumble deserves to get speared. Seriously, that was f@cking stupid and made Vince/League of Nations look moronic for figuring that the guy who doesn’t go down easily will go down easily, Roman look cowardly for missing the most challenging segment and WWE look out-of-touch by relying on a boring cliche…BUT! BUT! BUT! Ignoring that bullsh!t, every match on the card was really good, with the majority even standing out as exceptional. I was fully invested, from beginning to end and I never thought the PPV ran out of steam. For all the problems involving Reigns, I thought the Royal Rumble match itself was entertaining. Will this be remembered as a classic show? No…but there’s nothing wrong with just being a good show. I’d even call it great if it weren’t for the story snafus.