Sunday, January 27, 2013

LIVE Royal Rumble thoughts - January 27, 2013

10:54 - Quite honestly, I was okay with that booking.  Sure, in a perfect world, Punk woulda retained and we woulda avoided Rock/Cena II, but since that was inevitable this was a fine way to go.  Giving Punk the teased victory made him look like less of a loser in the end.  Rock cutting off McMahon from his announcement that he was going to strip Punk of the title made him look like a hero.  I knew Punk would have to lose the title eventually, and let's not forget that he got to hold the gold for 434 days -- during a period that there were MANY excuses to take the championship off of him.

So no, I am not upset Punk lost the title.  The only thing that upsets me is that after over 400 days as WWE Champion, the title story for WrestleMania is being shifted to Rock/Cena.  It just kinda sucks that he gets relegated to a lesser story, after holding the championship for that long.

10:41 - Wow, I'm legitimately shocked.  Still 20 minutes....swerve?

10:40 - I'm guessing this is a tease.  Rock still wins.

10:37 - Always sucks when an unforeseen catastrophe blows a spot.  Nothing Rock or Punk could have done about the table collapsing.

10:33 - Guarantee you that Bret Hart is backstage talking about how terrible Rock's Sharpshooter is.

10:21 - Punk tidying up the Spanish announce table just after Rock teased using it was a great subtle heel move.  Awesome.

10:20 - We do have some new gear for Punk, which is cool.  Although the white background on the shin pads is curious, when that doesn't appear elsewhere.

10:19 - Punk getting right in Rock's face with the title was great.

10:15 - Wow, surprisingly amateur moment when the camera equipment flew into the shot.

10:14 - IF this is Punk's last night as champion, I'm sad he's not wearing the championship around his waist.  Heyman holding the title works for his promos, but for his matches I prefer when he wears it.

10:01 - So Cena wins....and while I'm okay with that, the ending sequence was extraordinarily underwhelming.  It's like these two were tripping over each other as they ran towards the ropes.  I'm wondering if they should have ended it with Cena and Sheamus or Cena and Orton, though, only because I don't think anybody thought Ryback would be in either title match at WrestleMania.

I am going to change my earlier prediction, though.  I think WWE views Cena's win as a "happy ending."  If they were going to have Punk beat Rock, they would have done that match before the Rumble.  I see Rock winning the WWE Championship tonight.

9:59 - Cool elimination for Sheamus.  Down to Ryback and Cena.  I'm guessing Cena.

9:57 - I'm not dying to see any of these three win, but this is a pretty epic final three.  Cena, Sheamus, Ryback.

9:55 - The final five are just who you'd expect them to be.  A lot of possibilities here.

9:54 - You could tell Jericho was going to get eliminated when he started hitting all of his greatest hits.

9:50 - Sin Cara was a bit of an underwhelming return, only because his music isn't something that strikes an immediate chord.  He would've been a better choice for an earlier appearance.  And hey, look at this Bo Dallas push we're getting.

9:49 - So there's still Ryback.  Is there another "shocker" to come?

9:45 - The stuff with Kane and Daniel Bryan was great.  By the way, is JBL having a stroke or something?  He's making a lot of really strange mistakes.

9:40 - Okay, Antonio Cesaro is now one of my OTHER new favorite wrestlers.  He, too, is debuting a new pair of trunks, different from the ones he wore earlier in the night.

9:37 - Only 10 guys left, and no Daniel Bryan, Kane, Randy Orton, Cesaro, and Ryback yet.  Am I missing anybody else?

9:33 - I kinda love that Godfather's music never stopped playing from his entrance, elimination, and exit.

9:31 - I know there are a lot of traditionalists out there who don't like the Kofi Kingston stuff, but I think it's awesome and fun.  And it was especially good since, after all that work, he ends up getting eliminated anyway.  Question, though:  Why not just slide the chair back to the ring?

9:28 - And there goes my "pick."  Bye Brodus.

9:27 - Okay, one of my guesses are right.  Rey Mysterio with a surprise return.

9:25 - Brodus Clay.  Don't think I'm winning.

9:24 - Alright, who ever draws #13 is my pick to win, according to the contest that WrestleChat is doing.  Let's see who it is.

9:22 - Does not look like Sheamus is wearing new gear.  Which is weak.

9:19 - Goldust trying to eliminate Titus O'Neil.  Perhaps to get back at him for that whole firing thing.

9:17 - Cody doing the drop to the ground uppercut was cool, too.

9:16 - GOLDUST!  I actually considered him as a possibility but didn't mention it.  Would be cool to see him and Cody go at it.

9:13 - Santino bit was pretty funny.  Plus it allows them to finally have an elimination.  These "90 seconds" are flying by, though.

9:10 - The always creative Kofi Kingston comes in wearing some awesome new old school Batman inspired attire.  Love it.

9:08 - Cody Rhodes has immediately become one of my favorite wrestlers because he changed his gear for his two different matches.  Macho Man WrestleMania 4 style, there!

9:07 - Odd that Jericho went his entire career with a tattoo (or a noticeable one, anyway), and upon retirement gets two big ones.

9:05 - Am I wrong, or does Chris Jericho look kinda strange?  Like, are his eyebrows missing or something?

9:04 - For what it's worth, the last time such a big deal was made out of somebody being punished with #1, it was with Chris Benoit....and it resulted in the biggest push of his career.

Oh, and CHRIS F'N JERICHO!!!!!  Awesome sauce.

9:02 - Well that confirms it, the Rumble match is up next.  Slightly disappointing, but that's fine.  Increases the chances of a Rock win, though.

9:00 - Looks like WWE did a fantastic job with the Royal Rumble Fest.  The Shooting Straight Panel looked particularly interesting.  They did a panel on the Montreal Screwjob, one with WCW guys, and another with the DX/Kliq crew.

8:55 - This goes in line with my discussion about how the brand extension is all but dead....but remember how, just a couple years back, Raw and Smackdown each had 15 entrants?  By the way, I'm wondering if they will air the Rumble match before Rock/Punk, since they put on the hype video.

8:50 - Glad to see Team Hell No retain, and thrilled that Daniel Bryan got to secure the win.  Fun match overall.

8:39 - Cody needs to stop wearing this black-with-purple-trim ring jacket with black and (color that isn't purple) attire.  Now, it's black and blue.  It looks like Daniel Bryan has reverted back to his pre-YES era dragon attire.

8:35 - Loved the old school backstage interviews with the Royal Rumble participants.  Reminds me of the old days with Hogan, Demolition, Jake Roberts, Randy Savage, and the rest.

8:33 - Since most of us have never even heard Big E Langston's voice, is anybody else wondering if that's his actual voice?  Or was he just doing some wacky interviewer voice?

8:28 - They stole that spot from Cena/Batista (where most fans bashed Cena for), but I was fine with it.  Del Rio looked tough for surviving the brutal beating that Big Show unleashed, and he managed to get some periods of offense as well.  Plus, since Del Rio is pretty fresh into his babyface run, it's natural for some of those sneaky heel tactics to slip in.

8:24 - It looks like Big Show's got a cut on his elbow.  I'm guessing it was a band aid.

8:22 - That was a NASTY landing that Del Rio took.  Also, what the crap is hanging from Big Show's elbow?

8:20 - You know what makes it even worse that the World Heavyweight Championship match wasn't included in the opening video?  The fact that the Last Man Standing premise fits PERFECTLY with the 10-second countdown theme they were using.

8:08 - Really awkward beginning with the Bret Hart skit after Big Show's entrance.  I have to say, though, that Bret Hart looks a lot better than he has in his prior appearances.  Yeah, he's gone pretty gray, but overall he looks livelier.  I still think it was a terrible decision to take the car away from ADR's entrance, but I'm happy he's got the white scarf on.

8:05 - Oh, and they get curtain jerker duty as well.  Here's hoping they (a) bring the car back into Del Rio's entrance, and (b) Del Rio wears either his red or white scarf.  NO BLACK SCARF!

8:03 - Loved seeing Punk get so much attention in the opening video, but the poor World Heavyweight Championship gets left out in the cold yet again.

7:59 - I've got my first beer open.  And damn, is this Royal Rumble ad TERRIBLE.  WWE usually does a fine enough job, but this is bad.  Made additionally awkward due to Cena's snarky smile at the end, in a restaurant full of people that don't think he'll win.

7:52 - Quite a decisive victory for Cesaro.  About 5 minutes until the show begins.

7:49 - I'm actually just now starting to find it somewhat ironic how Miz/Cesaro is one of the better built midcard championship feuds (it being one of the VERY few that isn't built on the premise of "challenger beats champion in a non-title match), yet it gets relegated to pre-show duty.

7:45 - Wow, Matt Striker is taking an extreme anti-Miz slant on his announcing.  And in a very curious manner, as well.  It's one thing to say that you don't like somebody's personality or actions, but to call them a crappy wrestler?  Who does that benefit?

7:42 - Looks like some new gear for Antonio Cesaro.  Bully for him!  Can't tell if Miz is.

7:32 - The show is officially purchased!  I'm now catching the YouTube Pre-Show, and what I've learned already:  Unfortunately, the Big Show is STILL wearing that god awful camouflage singlet.  It seems like he's now added military stripes to the sides, though.  Doesn't make it any better.

7:05 - We're about an hour away from the Royal Rumble.  I'm enjoying my pizza, getting ready to crack open a beer, and I thought you'd join me in a trip down memory lane by taking a look back at my LIVE Royal Rumble thoughts from LAST YEAR.  Enjoy!

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