This week we have the Royal Rumble fallout. Including The Authority’s announcement about the end of the Royal Rumble. Let’s see how it goes.
Opening Segment – The Authority, Roman Reigns, Daniel Bryan, Seth Rollins
This was great, and set the pace for the rest of the night. Triple H takes shots at the Superbowl, and the #CancelNFLNetwork trending. They through tongue and cheek addressed all of the internet criticism of the Royal Rumble. The Authority threatens to strip Reigns of his Mania match. Bryan comes out and claims he deserves a title match. Rollins wants a match as well. Authority suggests Rollins vs Bryan and the winner face Reigns at Fast Lane for the right to be in the Main Event as Mania. Reigns agrees to this since he will face everyone. Match is set. I don’t buy this… there was nothing to be gained by Reigns agreeing to this match. It was odd to see the WWE responding to this much to the internet reaction to the Rumble, and that is the theme of the night going forward.
Big Show defeats Roman Reigns
This was about par for the course for these two guys. But J&J security and Seth Rollins at ringside were able to keep this more interesting. This worked as “punishment” for Reigns, and helped elevate Rollins. I don’t think it did any damage to anyone and it set up what will go down during the main event.
Backstage – Triple H and Steph
This was a classic moment where they admit they didn’t have the power to change the Wrestlemania match, and how they manipulated the entire situation. This was a great moment with the exception that they did it in the interview area and they showed the people in the arena watching it. This should have been backstage next to a road boxand more of a hidden cam moment. It being obviously filmed made them seem like less of masterminds.
In Ring Segment – Curtis Axle and Dean Ambrose
Curtis Axle comes down and rants about not being eliminated (more endorsement of the internet fans.) He demands his title shot. Ambrose shows up and tosses Axle over the top rope, declaring him eliminated. Dean talks about all the great champions, and decides he wants to be IC Champ and challenges Wade Barrett, even dropping his catch phrase. Axle shows back up and gets laid out again. This segment in my mind was Ambrose was the voice of the internet, which was kind of interesting to see.
The Ascension defeat Goldust and Stardust
This was a quick match, but it showed The Ascension being strong and in the end take the win with a variant of the “Fall of Man”. Post match Stardust is in upset. After a break we find Stardust still upset backstage. Goldust can’t get through to him. He calls him Cody, and Stardust tweaks even further and storms off. I think this was great match it sets up The Ascension to move on to further teams, and it sets up the Goldust vs Cody Rhodes match that has been teased for years.
In-Ring Segment – Cena, Eric Rowan, Ryback and Dolph Ziggler
Cena celebrates these guys are back on RAW. (Cue internet debate: Is Cena elevating these guys or are they making Cena relevant?) Stephanie interrupts and sets more matches.
Ryback defeats Luke Harper
This is how a big man/monster match should go. This was fun to see, and both guys look better coming out of it. It didn’t advance anything. I don’t know what they have planned for these guys, but they both came out looking good.
Cesaro defeats Jimmy Uso
This was a great back and forth match. With Jay, Naomi, Kidd and Natalya at ring side, I expected this to be a cluster. But everyone had their moments to shine but did not take away from the match. In the end Jimmy went for a splash off the top rope and Cesaro popped up to his feet and connected amazing European uppercut, for the win. I am hoping Kidd and Cesaro go on and take the tag title from The Usos at Fast Lane and a match with The Ascension at Mania.
Backstage Segment – Miz and Sandow
Miz fires Sandow from being his Stunt Double and makes him his personal assistant. This is laying the ground work for their break up. If they keep on with this slow burn until Mania I think it will be amazing.
Backstage Segment – Rowan and Cena
Rowan thanks Cena. Rowan thanks Cena for helping him being able to look at himself in the mirror. This promo came off very odd and didn’t do much for either guy.
Bray Wyatt defeats Dolph Ziggler
This was a five star match. I was blown away by this match. It was Bray being a dominant figure and Ziggler being resilient. In the end there was a bit more monster in Bray. I think both of them coming out looking better than they did going in.
Backstage Segment – Triple H, Steph, Rollins
Rollins can’t believe they would take a chance of Bryan winning. The Authority say they are not taking any chances. They also bring up Orton, so I expect him to return soon.
Paige defeats Alicia Fox
This match was one of the better Diva’s matches in the last few months. But for the love of all that is holy please keep the Bella Twins off commentary. With both of them you have five people on commentary is too much. They also can’t keep the focus on the in ring match when they are on commentary. Post match Alicia Fox cheap shots Paige and then the Bella sprayed her with what they called “tanner” but it looked a lot more like spray paint to me. This sets up Paige vs Nikki, but it felt like a sloppy set up to me.
Sin Cara defeats The Miz
This match was lots of Mizdow being told not to Stunt Double for him. This continues to the break up. I hope this is a slow burn until Mania. But I am starting to worry that it will be Fast Lane instead.
Rusev vs Rowan – No Contest
Rusev attacks Rowan before the match and lays him out. Lana plays a movie hyping Rusev after referencing the Oscars. This was just shameless promotion trying to latch onto Oscar buzz. But It did work well to build more hype for Rusev vs Cena so I give it a pass.
Daniel Bryan defeats Seth Rollins – Winner faces Roman Reigns at Fast Lane
This was another five star match. Great back and forth action. J&J security as well as the Big Show at ring side. J&J and Show interfere. Reigns shows up and takes out Big Show and Joey Mercury. Then Reigns cheap shots Rollins, and then Bryan hits the running knee for the win. This was a good match I was surprised to see Bryan get the win here. I was expecting Rollins vs Reigns at Fast Lane with the former shield members facing off. Where does this leave Rollins and the MiTB briefcase is the question.
I really enjoyed this weeks show. I am guessing this is what happens when you have two weeks to plan out a weekly show. I thought it was solid top to bottom, and didn’t hit any major snags while watching.
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