Edge is back! Edge is back! Can you tell I’m excited about that? According to The Man I nearly burst his eardrum with my shriek when I heard Edge’s theme music, but then he was pretty stoked too. We’re huge Edge fans and have both missed his presence these last few months and are glad to see him back in the ring, though I hope his return is because he’s truly ready and he didn’t rush himself to be back in time for the Road to Wrestlemania which officially kicked off tonight.
Christan b. Ezekial Jackson to retain the ECW title
Decent match, but I expect nothing less from Christian, who seems to be incapable of having a bad match, no matter who the opponent is. It’s one of the many reasons I think Christian is wasted on ECW, he really is one of the best performers in the WWE, and Jackson did a good job matching him. Not the most exciting match I’ve ever seen, but a good opener.
The Miz b. MVP to retain the US title
This was the surprise match of the night and it was ok, though I don’t get why it was a surprise. The Miz and MVP are talented enough that if it was advertised, it just would have built the hype for the Royal Rumble. Definitely a strong match and considering their interaction in the actual rumble, this won’t be the last time we see these two go at it, in fact I’m going to go on the record now and predict a Wrestlemania match for these two. If booked properly, it could be incredible, since there promos and in-ring chemistry up to this point have been phenomenal.
Side note- Does anyone else think the Teddy Long promo is a hint that the guest host concept is about to come to an end? The fact that at PPVs, it’s the Smackdown GM who has final say didn’t seem in Raw’s best interests and I expect that to be addressed in the weeks to come.
Mickie James b. Michelle McCool for the Women’s Championship
Either tomorrow or Tuesday, I’m going to have a whole post commenting about the Piggy James storyline and my issues with it, but for now… Well, I’m not sure this could really be qualified as a match, but given how bad most diva matches are, I consider that a blessing. I’m just glad that the Piggy James storyline seems to have come to an end.
Seamus b. Randy Orton to retain the WWE title
An okay match, though I really thought Orton would win, but for storyline purposes, the ending made more sense. After months of hinting, it seems that The Legacy split is truly amongst us. What I found most compelling about the whole thing is how torn Ted DiBiase appeared when it came down to his mentor and his tag team partner, he did end up siding with Cody and abandoned Orton in the ring after Seamus knocked him out, but from the way he kept glancing back at the ring, you could see he was torn about the decision and that is definitely the right way for the WWE to play it, no question about it.
The Undertaker b. Rey Mysterio to retain the World Heavy-Weight title
This was the weakest match of the night for me, maybe because I don’t really enjoy watching either man wrestle. It wasn’t a bad match, but it wasn’t great either.
The Royal Rumble
Well, Edge is back and he won the Rumble, so all right is in my world and in my opinion it was the perfect end to the Rumble. I enjoyed the Rumble. I liked that CM Punk was accompanied to the ring by Serena, so glad that she joined the Straight-Edge Society full-time because I think she’s super-talented. She’s also really hot, even with the shaved yet. Punk’s preaching between opponents was awesome and he was definitely highlighted through the first half of the rumble. I was surprised to see Triple H eliminated so early, but I wasn’t unhappy about it since I really didn’t want him to win. I like that Shawn Michaels was the one to eliminate him and Michaels’ breakdown after his elimination. Edge eliminating Jericho worked for me too, since it makes sense that Edge would come back gunning for Jericho, who has spent the last several months bad-mouthing him. Beth Phoenix’s entrance in the Royal Rumble was a surprise, since I think the only other woman to ever be in the Rumble was Chyna, but a welcome one. I love Beth Phoenix and I love that she’s a strong, capable wrestler who can hold her own with the men. Carlito seemed to get a nice little bit of exposure in the match, giving off a number of Back-stabbers before his elimination, which is a nice change.
All in all, it was a good match, with most people getting a good amount of exposure, though I’m not happy about Matt Hardy’s super-short exit, since I think he’s the most underused wrestler in the WWE. Still, for the most part the Rumble did a good job at touching at everyone, story line seeds were planted in some cases and moving forward in others, all leading to one place: Phoenix Arizona and Wrestlemania XXVI.
Other notes, The Big Show/Jericho promo was hilarious, I love how they’re playing the end of the bromance and hinting at a The Miz/The Big Show tag team. All the backstage action tonight was great, the Legacy interaction, the Jericho/Show moment, DX laying things on the line, it was all good, compelling storyline, the best we’ve seen from the WWE in a while. Probably since last ‘Mania season. If I was asked to pick the one thing I love best about the Road to Wrestlemania, I’d have to say it’s the fact that the WWE writing takes it up several notches from the drivel they normally give us. The Road to Wrestlemania officially kicked off tonight and I, for one, am pumped!