This week, I pretty much had no choice but to cover Royal Rumble thoughts. These comments are taken from CB’s Royal Rumble Snapshot Recap, The Smart Rant For Royal Rumble by Scott Keith, 10 Thoughts On Royal Rumble by Kelly Floyd, Kyle’s Files by Kyle Fitta, and No Chance by Joel Leonard.
Joel Leonard: Again we have what is supposed to be one of the most important titles getting pushed to the opening match of the show. I know that the Rumble match presents a unique situation, but this just continues the trend that is undermining the supposed integrity of the World Heavyweight Champion.
Blair: The World Heavyweight Title has been the B Title in WWE for some time now, but given recent events, and how much attention is generally paid to it… it’s now basically the ECW Title. Not the good one, either. The SyFy ECW Title.
Joel Leonard: They went for some intense pulling of heartstrings in the John Cena promo.
Blair: You know what, I actually half-enjoyed that video package. Not so much the music, but let’s face it, kids are not going to abandon John Cena as long as he’s a babyface. I don’t think the video package was necessarily designed to try to win people over for Cena as much as I think it was designed to remind the people that DO like him that he’s still a big hero. And remind people that DON’T like him that he still has plenty of supporters.
Joel Leonard: Entrants #1 and #2 last year were CM Punk and Daniel Bryan, both of who are defending major titles at the same event one year later. So, Anybody feeling bold enough to call Miz and Alex Riley for the title defenders at the 2013 Royal Rumble?
Blair: Yeah. Anyone?
Joel Leonard: Had this been any other match all of the silly bits may have annoyed me but because it was the Rumble, I knew that more “serious wrestlers” would be out later and there was no real risk of Rodriguez actually getting a main event shot at WrestleMania, so I enjoyed it for what it was.
Blair: Okay, this is tremendous. Way too many nerds bitch about silly stuff in the Rumble. The fucking thing is over an hour long, and comedy bits help slow things down and relax the crowd. I’m not sure last Sunday’s Rumble needed it per se, but they didn’t have a lot else planned. This is good advice. Enjoy Rumble comedy for what it is, because usually it’s a lot better than all the other “comedy” that WWE attempts.
Joel Leonard: Who’s responsible for making me think that Khali had retired?
Blair: I’m sure that whoever it was must have been playing a joke on you, because there’s no concept of “retirement” in professional wrestling. No one retires in wrestling. They get crippled or die. Take a look at Ric Flair. If he has his way, they’ll be doing the wrestling version of Weekend At Bernie’s with his corpse.
Joel Leonard: It was no Spider-man jump/The Floor is Lava/Balancing act back to the ring spot that Morrison had last year.
Blair: You’re right. It was better.
Joel Leonard: But it was close enough.
Joel Leonard: Both this year and last year, wrestlers who had matches earlier in the night were given slots in the Rumble. I always wonder why they would do this.
Blair: So that wrestlers who competed earlier who don’t have a World Title could still have a shot at winning one?
Joel Leonard: Theoretically Ziggler could have potentially been champion when he entered the Rumble. So what would happen if he wins?
Blair: Then he wouldn’t have entered the Royal Rumble and they would have used someone else.
Joel Leonard: Go after the Heavyweight Championship as well, and have a title Unification match?
Blair: Yes. Or that. Although I’m pretty certain they’re not just going to unify titles because Dolph Ziggler says so.
Joel Leonard: Or can he choose to go after his own title and then just spend WrestleMania holding his belt and giggling in the corner of the ring?
Blair: Yes, he can totally do that.
Also, CM Punk really did quit and walk out with the belt last year, all those people really did get lost on an island in the South Pacific, and I personally voted for David Palmer myself.
See that? In my answer I dropped one wrestling reference and TWO pop culture references.
Maybe I should start a pop culture column? Oooh, that would be SCARY.
Joel Leonard: WWE put every single announcer in the Rumble. And it’s not that I hated the fact that these guys were taking up valuable Rumble slots. I wasn’t crazy about it but I didn’t mind. No the problem with this is that once all three of them had been eliminated they spent the rest of the time on the mic talking about their brief entrants and hardly even mentioned the fact that there was a major match going on right in front of them for the rest of the night.
Blair: Right. Because there was just SO much going on at the time.
Joel Leonard: Yea, I’m excited Kharma’s back. I don’t know what she’s going to do since Beth Phoenix and Natalya pretty much took her gimmick when she got pregnant, but I’m excited.
Blair: Beth Phoenix and Natalya’s gimmick was morphing into a single giant black woman who could kill half the entire male roster?
Joel Leonard: What was most impressive about the end of the Rumble this year was how good of a match Jericho and Sheamus were having at the end. Filled with lots of near eliminations and close calls on both of them, plus lots of investment from the crowd. It was just about as good a singles match as any of the earlier matches on the card tonight.
Blair: You know what, as bad as this Shaemus thing is going to flop, and as funny as it will be when it does, no one was more surprised than me at how much these two volleyed (volley’d? Whatever.) at the end, and how good it was. Most things with Jericho are pretty good like this, but Shaemus pulled his weight too. Credit where it’s due.
Really though, Shaemus? Fucking Shaemus? Ha.
Mike Gojira: The same can be said for # 30 with Big Show, although they could say Henry was still unconscious or something.
Blair: Or still making his way through the backstage area.
Ryan Alarie: With the announcers, my only question was that how could Cole be shocked by their entries when they were wearing their tights the entire PPV (heck, Booker was apparently not wearing pants).
Blair: HAHAHAHAHA. That’s fucking awesome. Is this true? If so, hilarious.
Kyle Fitta: If you compare Punk’s first run as champion to Daniel Bryan’s run, you can see the difference I am talking about. Punk won matches in fluky ways and never was allowed to look better than his opponents as a babyface, which made him look weak as a champion and made him less over. Meanwhile, Bryan is cheating and winning in cheap ways but it’s making him more of a credible (heel) champion and more over.
Blair: I could not agree with you more. I actually felt like that first Punk run was going to lead to a heel turn, which I think could have worked.
Kyle Fitta: Why would two people who hate each other want to try to wrestle and pin each other?
Blair: Wait, what? That’s what it’s about, like 90% of the time. They don’t know how to do that “this is in the spirit of competition thing” very well or very often anymore.
Kyle Fitta: So, why aren’t these two just trying to kill each other?
Blair: Because manslaughter is illegal.
Kyle Fitta: Wouldn’t that be the true thing that Kane and Cena would be trying to accomplish instead of a meaningless pinfall that means nothing?
Blair: No. John Cena rises above hate.
Kyle Fitta: I believe that this stupid angle for McIntrye isn’t going to help him or anyone out at all. He has talent and now they’re wasting it.
Blair: Fuck Drew McIntyre. The guy is Lance Storm levels of boring.
Kyle Fitta: The comedy presented by Foley, Santino, and especially Richardo Rodriguez was gold.
Blair: It was GOLD, Jerry. GOLD!!!
Kelly Floyd: I’m really curious as to why we keep throwing Henry and Show into stipulation matches.
Blair: Have you ever seen them wrestle in matches WITHOUT stipulations? Unless Big Show is breaking the ring, wearing a sumo thong or doing top rope elbows, there’s not much fun to be had.
Kelly Floyd: It feels like they need a stipulation to take away from the fact that neither really packs more than a giant set of biceps.
Blair: And giant, fat, disgusting asses.
Kelly Floyd: The booty pop that Eve seems to always be doing now infuriates me. It goes to show that the Divas aren’t just a set of tits…they have asses, too!
Blair: Kelly, you are our only female columnist that I’m aware of. We are very lucky to have your female viewpoint on here, and we website count on you to deliver an accurate female perspective. You have a responsibility to the women who read this site. All of them. All 6 of them.
So you, above everyone else, REALLY should know that if you’re looking for decent women’s wrestling, you’re not going to find it in WWE.
Kelly Floyd: It is really cool to see Zack swimming in this big ocean. I love the guy; he’s really silly and entertaining. But I’ve always kind of wondered how he would fare in a serious feud. But, going head to head with the super serious Kane has proven him worthy, in my own opinion. He’s making it work and selling the angle. He finds new ways to prove himself, and I’m on board!
Blair: Well get ready, because it looks like that boat has more holes than a cheese grater now. This entire thing has made Zack look like a huge bitch who needs Cena to save him. While it has given him screen time, it’s failed to deliver him credibility that he desperately needed at the start of this push. If I were him, I’d be pissed. After all he did to get himself over with NO support from WWE.
Kelly Floyd: Can someone explain to me why they threw Brodus Clay into a match simply to squash his opponent in seconds?
Blair: Because that’s what they’ve been doing for weeks now?
Kelly Floyd: The PPV ended about fifteen minutes early…they couldn’t just squeeze in an extra minute or two to make the dancing buffoon look strong against the recently rehired McIntyre who can’t even beat Santino?
Blair: Make him look strong? He beat Drew with NO effort. What purpose would a few extra minutes have served? You really wanted to see him beat up Drew for another 15 minutes? THAT’S the match you would have extended?
Kelly Floyd: I have to admit, I about fell over when Socko and The Cobra faced off. Gold.
Blair: That’s TWO Kenny Banya’s for the Santino / Foley bit!
Kelly Floyd: Speaking of returns…is The Undertaker ever coming back?
Blair: Undertaker shouldn’t be working a lot anymore. He’s not far from a cripple these days.
Kelly Floyd: Call me crazy, but I just thought at least one of those three spots could have gone to pretty much anyone else.
Blair: I actually think they did it because they DIDN’T have anyone else. Cole, Lawler and Booker all probably got better responses than a guy like JTG or Tyler Reks or whoever would.
Kelly Floyd: Though I would have loved to see Jericho win it, who better than Sheamus?
Blair: How about Jericho?
Kelly Floyd: I think it’s great that recent winners have been somewhat newer, getting a chance to sink or swim at Wrestlemania.
Blair: So far, most of them have sunk. Miz and Del Rio are good examples. Shaemus will be the next one.
Mike Gojira: (To Kelly) Well until I get a Booty Pop from you, Eve trumps all.
Victor: The bar I was in went nuts for Kharma. Best moment of the night.
Blair: You watched Royal Rumble in a lesbian bar? Awesome.
Scott Keith: They’ve gotta let Henry sit out for a couple of months or else he’s gonna be done for good by Wrestlemania.
Blair: NO MARK HENRY AT WRESTLEMANIA?!?!
You mean it’ll be just like almost all those other WrestleMania’s they’ve had in the 15 years that he’s been with the company?
Scott Keith: Man, whose dog did Riley run over?
Blair: You mean when he was drunk driving in 2010?
Scott Keith: I just don’t get this whole thing where they find their decent prospects and then job them out of existence in a weird self-fulfilling prophecy.
Blair: It’s usually because their decent prospects turn out to be less than decent.
Scott Keith: Kofi Kingston gets tossed by the Miz, but lands on his HANDS and does a handstand to the stairs to save himself. That got, I shit you not, a near-standing ovation from the movie theatre.
Blair: I believe that.
Scott Keith: Sheamus getting the unpredictable win with the Brogue Kick to eliminate Jericho. I don’t see him in the title match by Wrestlemania somehow.
Blair: Haven’t you been paying attention! Shaemus is the future! He’ll be main-eventing WrestleMania with Wade Barrett in 2013!
CB: Henry’s injury must have really affected some of the planning.
Blair: You mean you were deprived of the chance to see all those awesome moves that Mark Henry normally does?
CB: Does Sheamus moving into a main event slot at WrestleMania really excite the fans as much as Jericho would have?
Blair: How dare you doubt Irish Crimson’s ability to draw a WrestleMania buy-rate with his main-event slot. He’s a cornerstone!
CB: On a personal note, congratulations to Sheamus for winning his first Royal Rumble.
Blair: Do you know Shaemus personally?
Well, I guess that’s about it! I had fun reading all the Royal Rumble columns, so thanks to the other writers for doing them. That Rumble was interesting to say the least.
Everyone have a good weekend. I’ll be in my trailer.
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