Sunday 25th January may not be a date that most people will mark in their calendars or diaries – but for WWE fans 25th January was the date for the 28th Royal Rumble event. ‘The Rumble’ event promised to be a good one with the returning Daniel Bryan one of the entrants for this years event, who bullishly declared his intentions to win the event.
To the extreme disappointment of the vast majority of fans who made the journey to Philadelphia to watch the Royal Rumble, the event was won by Roman Reigns, all be it with a ‘little help from a friend’ – much to the disappointment of some of the ‘WWE Universe’. Interest faded soon after the realisation Daniel Bryan wasn’t going to win the event.
Not even the new of other entrants including Reigns’ former Shield partner Dean Ambrose, Dolph Ziggler; Ryback could brighten the very dim mood in Philadelphia. Ryback and Ziggler who only just got their jobs back after an ongoing spat with the ‘authority’,were seen as potentially ‘dark horses’ in this event.
Bray Wyatt’s achievements of staying in the event for 40 minutes – and managing to eliminate nine opponents, almost went unnoticed – such was the frustration of the WWE universe were feeling.
A few old faces were drafted to capture fans imagination such as Bubba Ray Dudley, who replicated the legendary ‘3D’ move, sadly on this occasion ‘Devon didn’t get the table’ . A further ‘blast from the past’ saw three time WCW champion Diamond Dallas page enter the fray – but it seemed quite clear that the WWE got the script wrong on this occasion, well in the WWE fans’ opinion anyway.
After seeing the eliminations of ‘popular faces’ such as Ryback, Ziggler,Daniel Bryan and a four second elimination of Titus O’Neil – the number of wrestlers were soon down to ‘four’.
Two of those ‘four’ were veterans record breaking Kane, who now has the most Royal Rumble eliminations of opponents to his name and 10 time entrant of the event Big Show. Both men had been really talking up their chances of winning the event, none more than ‘Show’. The worlds largest athlete came unannounced at the Raw reunion a couple of weeks ago to make clear his bemusement after a panel of Sean Michael’s and Rick Flair declared other wrestlers – and not the Big Show as wrestlers who could win the WWE event.
The other two men were former ‘Shield Brethren’ Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose. The duo are still very much on the same page – but not in the three man mean machine team that is the shield, due to Seth Rollins defecting to the Authority as we know.
The trio in the peak of their Shield days, were notorious for obliterating what ever was in their path- this however was a different proposition against the authority duo of Big Show and Kane. With the odds seeming to be against them, Ambrose and Reigns bravely went about their task.
The ‘task at hand’ though was a difficult one – and a bit to much, well for Ambrose at least. The lunatic fringe was eliminated, which ultimately left Roman Reigns in a handicap match – if you can put it that way. As the ‘winning line’ got closer so did the friction between Kane and Big Show. Both men though however, against all odds would be eliminated by Roman Reigns.
In the heat of battle it appeared Reigns has bettered last years performance of runner up to win the Royal Rumble – but not yet, as more drama was yet to unfold. Kane and Big Show who were both eliminated, much to their annoyance, decided to exact their revenge on Roman Reigns. Reigns was subjected to a beat down from The Big Red Machine and Big Show.
With Reigns having no one to turn to it seemed pretty bleak for the former Shield member. The Royal Rumble which might go down as one of the more disappointing Rumbles in recent times , was boosted -all be it slightly by the appearance of the Brahma Bull- the peoples champion the Rock!
The Rock’s cousin Roman Reigns was in need of help – and in the form of the 10 time WWE champion, Reigns got it. The Rock came to his cousins aid and very quickly went about attacking Big Show and Kane. A few signature moves such as the Rock Bottom, and the laying of ‘the Smack Down’ followed – but the legendary ‘peoples elbow’ on Kane capped of the Rocks cameo appearance.
With Kane and Big Show ‘out of the way’ Roman Reigns thought he could celebrate – but that wasn’t to be the case … just yet.
Back came ‘Russian brute’ Rusev into. Rusev who is currently the United States champion, wasn’t actually knocked over the top rope so hadn’t been eliminated. Reigns who was feeling battered and bruised this point after The Big Show and Kane beatdown, had to find the energy to overcome the adopted Russian fighter, who is surely the last person you want to face after a Kane and Big Show beat down.
Reigns though wasn’t to be denied, and a spear to Rusev allowed Reigns to push his man over the top rope to win the Royal Rumble, much to the delight of Roman Reigns’ fans.
This Royal Rumble event might not go down in history as the one of the best Royal Rumble events due to Daniel Bryan not winning – but Roman Reigns won’t worry about that to much. A headlining world heavyweight title fight at Wrestle-mania against ‘The Beast In Carnet’ Brock Lesnar now awaits Roman Reigns.