WWE Flashback - 2011 WWE Royal Rumble: 40-Man Royal Rumble match, The Miz vs. Randy Orton for the WWE Championship, Edge vs. Dolph Ziggler for the World Hvt. Championship
The following is Jason Powell's review of the January 30, 2011 WWE Royal Rumble pay-per-view. Check back tonight for Jason Powell and Chris Shore's live coverage reviews of 2013 WWE Royal Rumble. Dot Net Members can look forward to the exclusive audio review after the show. Join us on the ad-free version of the website by signing up now via the Dot Net Members' Signup Page.
By Jason Powell
Aired live on pay-per-view
Boston, Mass. at TD Garden
The show opened with a video that focussed on the Royal Rumble match...
Powell's POV: The dark match result is on the main page. Plus, Dot Net correspondent George writes that it appears the Edge vs. Dolph Ziggler match will open the show.
Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler, and Matt Striker are on commentary. Edge was introduced for the opening match. The announcers narrated videos from Friday's show. Vickie Guerrero came out and mocked Edge over the fact that she's banned the spear and that Dolph Ziggler will win the title if he does. Vickie introduced Dolph...
1. Edge pinned Dolph Ziggler (w/Vickie Guerrero) for the World Hvt. Championship in 20:45. Tony Chimel handled the in-ring introductions for the championship match. There are "We Hate Sign Guy" signs in the crowd. Hell, maybe he'll be in the Rumble match. Slow start to the match with a flat live crowd. The action and the crowd picked up when Edge took the fight to ringside.
Back inside the ring, Ziggler took control of the offense and the crowd settled in again. They really came to life when Ziggler applied a headlock in the middle of the ring. Okay, not really, the crowd didn't care about that either.
There was a great moment when Edge flew off the top and Dolph countered a cross body block into a pin for a good near fall. An audible "Let's go Ziggler" chant broke out at 13:30. At 14:00, Edge applied a leg lock. Ziggler sold it heavily and reached the ropes to break the hold.
At 14:45, Ziggler hit the Fameasser for a near fall. Edge came back with a big boot to Dolph's head at 15:45. Edge went to the corner and set up for the spear before he remembered that he couldn't use it. Dolph applied a sleeper, but Edge countered with a DDT.
Edge went for the cover and had the pin, but Vickie pulled the referee out of the ring. Dolph charged at Edge, who moved. Dolph stopped short of hitting Vickie. Edge rolled up Dolph for a near fall. Vickie stood on the ramp and jawed at Edge. Kelly Kelly ran out and attacked Vickie Guerrero. Dolph hit the Zig Zag on Edge for another excellent near fall.
At 18:30, Ziggler applied the sleeper hold. Edge eventually swung and struck the referee in the process. Vickie and the referee were both down and Kelly was watching on from the ramp as Edge got to his feet. He went to the corner for the spear. Edge nailed the spear at 20:00.
The referee slowly came to. Edge lied on the mat along with Ziggler as if he was also weary. Funny. Edge hit the Unprettier on Ziggler and scored the clean pin. Vickie threw a fit at ringside after the match as one of her fake eyelashes dangled.
Powell's POV: The first five minutes or so were really flat, but the match built nicely once they kicked into second gear. The crowd reacted accordingly and were into the finish. There were some Dolph fans in the crowd, but Edge was the more over of the two. It's interesting that Edge used Christian's finisher. Will we finally get a real feud between them? By the way, Striker called the move the Unprettier rather than the Killswitch.
A video noted that we're 63 days away from WrestleMania 27... A Miz and Randy Orton video aired...
Backstage, Josh Mathews said The Miz requested time before his title match to address the WWE fans. Miz cut a brief and serious promo with Alex Riley at his side...
Orton made his entrance. The crowd popped initially, but wasn't so hot as he posed on the ropes. They warmed up during the Edge vs. Ziggler match, but it looks like this crowd will make the crew work for their applause. Miz and Riley made their entrance as Cole played cheerleader at the announcers' table...
2. The Miz (w/Alex Riley) defeated Randy Orton to retain the WWE Championship in 19:50. The wrestlers traded offense during the first nine minutes of the match. Miz caught Orton with a big boot to the head and then went to the top rope, but Orton stopped him and superplexed him for a near fall.
Striker asked cheerleader Cole if Miz has a weakness. Cole said it's kindness. He also openly yelled for A-Ri to do something when Orton covered Miz after the superplex. Orton hit some signature spots on Miz, but when he went for the DDT off the ropes, Miz backdropped him and went on the offensive. Miz scored some near falls.
They went to ringside at one point and Miz took advantage thanks to help from a Riley distraction. Back inside the ring at 18:30, Orton performed the DDT off the ropes. Orton struck the Viper's Pose. Nexus members David Otunga, Husky Harris, Michael McGillicutty, and Mason Ryan came out.
Orton threw Riley over the ropes and onto the Nexus members and the referee. With the ref bumped, C.M. Punk hit the ring from the other side and hit the GTS on Orton. Miz made the cover and the ref returned to make the three count. Cole celebrated like a giddy school girl. Funny...
An Elimination Chamber video played. The show takes place February 20...
Powell's POV: It looks like we're building toward Punk vs. Orton at WrestleMania. That's just speculation, but it makes sense given the finish of the last match. Good title matches tonight. I never really bought into the possibility of Orton winning the title simply because the hype wasn't really there on television.
At ringside, the announcers mentioned that Cody Rhodes is out of the Rumble match and questioned whether he'll be ready for the Elimination Chamber. Backstage, Todd Grisham held up a piece of Cody Rhodes stationary (hilarious) and read a note from Rhodes that blamed Rey Mysterio for his inability to compete in the Rumble match due to a broken nose...
A video showed various fans delivering their pick for the Royal Rumble match winner...
Ring introductions for the Divas match took place. There was more excitement during a Pro Bowl time out than there was when LayCool entered to zero heat. The crowd was a little kinder to Natalya. Just as the bell was about to ring, the anonymous general manager email chime sounded.
Cole stood up and said on behalf of the GM that he would not allow both members of LayCool to hold the title. Therefore, the handicap match is off, and it's a four-way match with Eve added. Cue the crickets for Eve...
3. Eve defeated Natalya, Michelle McCool, and Layla in a four-way match to win the Divas Championship in 5:20. Early in the match, LayCool cleared the ring and then had a staredown amongst one another. It didn't really go anywhere. Natalya had Eve and Layla in a double Sharpshooter, but McCool blasted her with a kick to break it up.
Later in the match, McCool accidentally caught Layla with a kick. She immediately apologized. In the end, Eve hit a moonsault on Layla and pinned her. The ref counted that pin and missed that McCool rolled up Natalya and had her pinned. Eve cried on the stage after the match. She appeared to be the only person in arena that cared...
Powell's POV The announcers didn't seem to know what was going on. I'm not sure if they were playing into the double pin, but it seemed like none of them knew the match was over. Either way, the crowd didn't care when Eve was introduced and they didn't care when she won. Strange choice. I have no idea why she was so emotional.
Backstage, Josh Mathews was interviewing Daniel Bryan and Gail Kim when The Bellas showed up and gave them flowers. They apologized and said they make a good couple. Things got catty quickly. A pull apart ensued. Cole called Bryan an idiot, a dork, and a goof...
Another WrestleMania 27 video aired... The announcers hyped the Elimination Chamber at ringside and Cole continued to boast about The Miz... The Royal Rumble stat video aired...
Powell's POV: It's Royal Rumble time. It doesn't appear that we'll not getting any unadvertised matches, which is fine with me. The two World Title matches were entertaining, but everything just felt less important than the Rumble. I'm curious to see if Orton and/or Ziggler enter the match. I'd be surprised if Orton didn't enter to go for revenge on Nexus tonight.
The first entrant in the match was C.M. Punk. Um, shouldn't he have traded that number with one of his minions? The No. 2 entrant was apparently a member of The Corre. All four of them came out and surrounded the ring. They eventually entered the ring and attacked Punk. Nexus ran out and there was a big brawl.
The anonymous general manager's email chime sounded. Cole stood at the podium and said the general manager "is ordering you to restore order." Cole said Punk is the only person in the ring who should be there. He ordered everyone else to the back or they would be out of the Rumble. They all complied. I guess no one from The Corre was No. 2.
4. Alberto Del Rio won the Royal Rumble match in 70:10. Punk was the first entrant. The second entrant was Daniel Bryan. And we're officially underway. Striker said the internet is loving this matchup. "Who cares about the internet?" Cole responded. Funny. After 90 seconds of action, Justin Gabriel was the No. 3 entrant.
Justin Gabriel was the first man eliminated around 2:30. He missed the 450 Splash on Punk and then Bryan suplexed him over the top for the elimination.
The No. 4 entrant was Zack Ryder. He didn't last long, as Bryan hip tossed him over the top rope at 3:55. The No. 5 entrant was William Regal. The No. 6 entrant was Ted DiBiase. Maryse followed him out, but headed backstage after making a brief appearance on the stage.
Powell's POV: Best buddy comment on the Rumble thus far? "Why did I bet $600,000 on Zack Ryder?!?" - Pooch.
The No. 7 entrant in the Rumble was John Morrison, who got a strong reaction. Cole is throwing out a lot of good statistical information. Regal bumped Morrison off the ring apron, but Morrison caught himself on the guardrail without letting his feet touch the floor. Regal was eliminated (pretty sure it was by DiBiase).
Morrison leapt from the rail onto the ring steps. Morrison kicked the eliminated Regal in the head and then reentered the match. The No. 8 entrant was Yoshi Tatsu.
Powell's POV: Awesome spot with Morrison. It made that silly backstage Parkour video on Raw worthwhile.
The No. 9 entrant was Husky Harris, who ran out and stuck his ass in Punk's face. Actually, he was serving as Punk's bodyguard by shielding him from the other competitors. The No. 10 entrant was Chavo Guerrero.
The No. 11 entrant is Mark Henry. Here come some eliminations. Henry eliminated Chavo at 14:50. Henry followed up by eliminating Tatsu at 15:30. JTG was the No. 12 entrant. He was followed by the No. 13 entrant Michael McGillicutty, who quickly eliminated JTG with a dropkick at 18:00.
Harris and McGillicutty eliminated Ted DiBiase at 19:00 with a double backdrop. The No. 14 entrant was Chris Masters, who applied the Master Lock to Punk and tried to eliminate him, but one of the Nexus members broke it up. The No. 15 entrant was David Otunga.
At 20:55, Punk eliminated Daniel Bryan. Nexus follwed up by eliminating Masters just seconds late. They also ganged up on Morrison and eliminated him from the match at 21:25. Boo! The Nexus eliminated Mark Henry at 21:50.
The No. 16 entrant in the Rumble was Tyler Reks, who came out to the same sounds of silence that greeted Eve's title win. The only other entrants were Nexus members Punk, McGillicutty, Harris, and Otunga. The Nexus quickly eliminated Reks.
Powell's POV: Dot Net's official Rumble statistician Jon Lopuch just told me that Nexus members have eliminated seven consecutive wrestlers.
The No. 17 entrant in the Rumble match was Vladimir Kozlov. Nexus roughed him up, and then Punk eliminated Kozlov around 24:30. Punk sat down in the ring and hammed it up while waiting for the time to expire.
The 18th entrant was R-Truth. The Nexus roughed up Truth. Punk nailed Truth with a knee in the corner and then yelled, "What's up?" Funny. Punk bulldogged Truth and then Truth was tossed over the top.
The 19th entrant was The Great Khali. Punk looked terrified and wanted his minions to go after the giant. Khali eliminated Husky Harris at 27:25.
The No. 20 entrant was Mason Ryan, who ran to the ring and traded shots with Khali. Although Khali got the better of the punch exchange, Ryan ducked one attempt and then pushed Khali over the top rope to eliminate him at 28:30.
The No. 21 entrant was Booker T, who came out to his babyface music. Booker got a huge pop. He wore his regular gear (no sign of King Booker). Booker hit some of his signature offense on Nexus. He paused and looked to the crowd, which popped big for his Spinaroonie.
Booker was on the verge of eliminating Punk when Ryan stopped him. Ryan eliminated Booker T at 31:00. The crowd booed when Booker was eliminated. "We're going to WrestleMania," Punk boasted.
Powell's POV: Fun nostalgia with Booker. The live crowd ate it up. That reaction should lead to a contract with WWE or TNA.
The No. 22 entrant was John Cena. He eliminated Ryan quickly, and then double clotheslined Otunga and McGillicutty (for those keeping score, Otunga hit before McGillicutty). Cena and Punk were the only entrants at this point in the match.
The No. 23 entrant was Hornswoggle, who did the rolling wrists bit that Punk does. Punk blasted Horny with a kick and then went back to work on Cena. Punk had Cena up on his shoulders, but Cena reversed it and dumped Punk at 35:20. Boo! Cena went over to Hornswoggle and helped him up.
The No. 24 entrant was Tyson Kidd. Horny performed a tilt-a-whirl head scissos on Kidd. He also performed an Attitude Adjustment. Yes, Kidd took an Attitude Adjustment from Hornswoggle. Kidd was eliminated by Cena at 37:10.
The No. 25 entrant in was Heath Slater. Cena roughed him up. The camera cut away just as Hornswoggle was about to hit the Tadpole splash. Cena dumped Slater at 38:45.
The No. 26 entrant was Kofi Kingston. He battled Cena and survived the 90 seconds.
The No. 27 entrant was Jack Swagger. The announcers said the No. 27 entrant has won the most Rumble matches. I'm guessing it won't be the No. 27 year, though.
The No. 28 entrant was King Sheamus. Hornswoggle went after Sheamus while everyone else was selling on the mat. Sheamus put Hornswoggle on the top rope, but Cena came to life and took out Sheamus. However, Sheamus recovered and eliminated Sheamus at 43:55. There is a God!
The No. 29 entrant was Rey Mysterio. He ended up eliminating Swagger with a 619 at 45:35.
The No. 30 entrant was Wade Barrett. He brawled with Cena.
The No. 31 entrant was Dolph Ziggler, who went to work on Sheamus in the corner initially. All of the babyfaces ganged up on Barrett on the other side of the ring. Ziggler helped him out. Ziggler and Barrett teamed up on Cena and the crowd came to life, but Mysterio stopped them.
The No. 32 entrant was Diesel. Kevin Nash came out in Diesel gear. He walked onto the stage to a big pop and put on a black glove. Did Madison Rayne give it to him? Okay, probably not. Diesel performed Snake Eyes on Kofi in the corner and then went to work on Ziggler.
Cena and Diesel squared off. Diesel took Cena down with a clothesline. Diesel drilled Sheamus with knees in the corner. So far, Nash has been able to rough up a few members of the WWE Youth Movement that he's so fond of.
The No. 33 entrant was Drew McIntyre, who shared a smile with Sheamus to show that they were unified. However, the live crowd was too busy chanting, "Let's go Diesel" to care.
The No. 34 entrant was Alex Riley, who came out to The Miz's music. Miz accompanied Riley to ringside. Meanwhile, the youth movement kicked Nash's ass, as Barrett eliminated Diesel at 52:30 to a chorus of boos. A good portion of fans continued to chant "Diesel." Miz joined the announcers on commentary.
The No. 35 entrant was Big Show. Here come some more eliminations. Show and Diesel crossed paths on the stage and had a brief visual exchange. WrestleMania 27? Show eliminated Dolph Ziggler at 54:50.
The No. 36 entrant was Ezekiel Jackson. As Jackson was coming to the ring, Show eliminated Drew McIntyre. However, Big Zeke eliminated Show at 55:35. The announcers put it over big and replayed Show's elimination.
The No. 37 entrant was Santino Marella. Santino went after Zeke, who scared the hell out of him by posing and yelling. Santino turned around and walked right into Sheamus's Brough Kick. The announcers put over Cena as the longest entrant with 25 minutes in.
The No. 38 entrant was Alberto Del Rio, who was given the full Ricardo Rodriguez treatment.
The No. 39 entrant was Randy Orton. Del Rio was still taking his sweet time getting to the ring when Orton's music played. Orton charged out and roughed up Del Rio at ringside. Orton rolled Del Rio inside the ring and hit the RKO. Orton eliminated Kingston and then Sheamus in rapid fire order around the 61:00.
The No. 40 entrant was Kane. Hunter who? Striker said Kane is approaching the record set by Shawn Michaels for most Rumble eliminations. Alex Riley was not in the ring and was nowhere to be found. Kane eliminated Zeke at 62:45.
Kane was eliminated by Mysterio around 63:20. However, Barrett eliminated Mysterio seconds later.
The last four men in the ring were Cena, Barrett, Orton, and Del Rio. The crowd was not on the edge of their seats. Orton and Cena teased their second showdown of the match. They traded shots and the live crowd was so quiet you'd think it was a WWE Superstars match.
Alex Riley ran out at 66:30. Cena went after him. Miz ran out and dumped Cena over the top rope to eliminate him. I've never been so happy to lose a Royal Rumble pool. Miz and Riley ran backstage, leaving Barrett, Del Rio, and Orton as the final three.
Del Rio and Barrett teamed up on Orton. Randy came back and eliminated Barrett. However, Del Rio eliminated Orton to seemingly win the match. However, Santino emerged from underneath the ring. Santino hit The Cobra on Del Rio. Santino tried to throw Del Rio over the top, but Alberto reversed it and eliminated Santino at 70:10 to win the Rumble.
Ricardo Rodriguez went nuts with his post-match announcement of Del Rio's win. Funny. The announcers questioned which title Del Rio would challenge for at WrestleMania 27. Pyro went off around the WrestleMania 27 sign as Del Rio smiled at it to close the show...
Powell's POV: I'm happy with Del Rio winning the match, but I was not blown away by the actual Rumble match. The Diesel and Booker surprises were fun and the match had its moments, but the action left plenty to be desired. The usual suspects stood out, and they didn't set up anything particularly new and exciting beyond Del Rio's win.
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