1/30 Powell's WWE Royal Rumble PPV results and review: 40-Man Royal Rumble match, The Miz vs. Randy Orton for the WWE Championship, Edge vs. Dolph Ziggler for the World Hvt. Championship, Natalya vs. LayCool for the Divas Championship
Jan 30, 2011 - 10:00 PM
By Jason Powell
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WWE Raw on the USA Network
Live from San Jose, California at the HP Pavilion
[Q1] The show opened with the annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. tribute video. It concluded with a graphic that read "Long Live The Dream"... Michael Cole introduced the show briefly. Vickie Guerrero chimed in with an Excuse Me. She walked arm and arm with Paul Heyman onto the stage and down the ramp.
Vickie said doing the right thing isn't always the same as doing the popular thing, especially when it comes to The Rock. Heyman introduced himself. The crowd booed. Vickie smiled and golf clapped for him. Heyman said he was with Vickie as a show of unity and solidarity.
Heyman said The Rock defamed the character of Vickie and himself. Heyman said Vickie was the best and sexiest general manager of this show and any other television show. Vickie introduced footage to show just how atrocious Rock's behavior was. Heyman didn't want to see it. Footage aired of Rock singing that Heyman hasn't seen his penis in years.
Back live, Heyman said it's one thing to pick a fight with him because Rock has to answer to C.M. Punk in six days, but to pick a fight with a poor, defenseless widow like Vickie is vile and contemptible. Heyman had the footage of Rock singing to Vickie last week.
Powell's POV: I was surprised to hear Heyman refer to Vickie as a widow. That's something that never seems to come up with her character.
Heyman consoled a flustered Vickie, who then said Rock won't be doing that again this week. She said that while The Rock is in San Jose, she has officially banned him from entering her arena. She said that if he enters the building he will be arrested by the San Jose police. A crew member approached Vickie to tell her that Rock has arrived.
Powell's POV: You knew they wouldn't leave people thinking Rock would not appear for very long.
Rock was shown backstage with a trio of indy wrestlers in bad cop suits, er, San Jose's finest. Rock told them that he knows they have a job to do, but nothing is going to stop him from electrifying the people tonight. One of the cops apologized and said they would have to arrest him if he entered the arena.
Rock said the cops should arrest Punk. He said Punk is like Manti Te'o only he doesn't have an imaginary girlfriend, he has an imaginary nut sack. Rock said Heyman should be arrested for not wearing a bra. Rock told the cops to ask Vickie what her intestines look like, because if she thought he wouldn't appear in front of the people she must have her head up her ass. Rock said it's not a question of if, it's a matter of when he appears in front of the people.
Vickie said that if Rock enters her arena, the only thing he'll be singing is Jailhouse Rock. Heyman told the crowd that was clever. "If you smell what the Vicki is cooking," Vickie closed with...
At ringside, Cole and Jerry Lawler spoke. Cole said Vickie Guerrero has decreed that there will be a Beat the Clock Challenge. He said six superstars would compete and the person with the fastest time will choose what number he enters the Rumble at on Sunday. They also hyped Randy Orton vs. Antonio Cesaro... [C]
Powell's POV: I assume they are having six matches with six wrestlers who have a shot at winning and six who are just along for the ride. I'm never big on that aspect of the Beat the Clock Challenge, so hopefully it's three matches with all six wrestlers having the same opportunity. Rock was too over the top in that segment. Rock is normally cooler than everyone else. Yelling about the silly banishment was a little odd.
[Q2] Cole hyped that John Cena would address the WWE fans about the Royal Rumble match...
1. Antonio Cesaro vs. Randy Orton in a Beat the Cock Challenge match. Cole said both wrestlers will be trying to win the match as quickly as possible. Nice. Cesaro applied his usual headlock despite the match stipulation. Orton escaped the hold and was getting the better of Cesaro heading into the break. [C]
Powell's POV: It's nice to see that the wrestlers in the BTCC are all trying to win the match as quickly as possible. However, Orton and Cesaro must have missed the memo. There was no sense of urgency prior to the break. It felt like a standard match.
After the break, the action was more intense, as Cesaro shoved Orton off the top rope and then went to ringside quickly to get him back in the ring. Lawler noted that the sense of urgency had picked up as Cesaro went for a second and then a third cover that Orton kicked out of. Cesaro locked in a chin lock and Lawler said he disagreed with the strategy considering the nature of the match.
Orton came back and went for a hanging DDT, but Cesaro avoided it and got a two count. Cesaro threw Orton into the air and caught him with the awesome uppercut for a good near fall. Cesaro ran Orton through the ropes and into the ring post. They ended up at ringside and Cesaro rolled Orton back inside the ring. When Cesaro returned, Orton dropped him with the RKO and got the pin...
Randy Orton defeated Antonio Cesaro in a Beat the Clock Challenge in 11:36.
Powell's POV: It was refreshing to hear Lawler do more than giggle and tell jokes. He actually acknowledged the flawed logic and talked about the strategy of the match. I don't know if he came up with that on his own or if it was fed to him through the headsets, but I hope we hear more of that from The King either way. He was also quick to soften the blow for Cesaro losing by saying that he simply took his eye off Orton for three seconds and it cost him.
[Q3] The announcers set up the WWE Hall of Fame video for Mick Foley that included numerous career highlights and closed with Rock telling him he's a Hall of Famer last week...
A video showcased The Shield and featured camcorder footage of them talking. It concluded with the words "Believe in The Shield...we're just getting started"... [C]
Powell's POV: It's nice to see something from The Shield. I still feel the sit-down interview they did was much more effective than the camcorder style promos.
A graphic touted WWE's followers on Facebook and noted that John Cena led the way...
2. Big Show vs. Zack Ryder. Highlights aired of Alberto Del Rio's title win. Brad Maddox hopped the guardrail and sat in on commentary. "Hi, guys," Maddox said. Lawler told him not to scare him like that because he has a heart condition. Cole pointed out that Maddox doesn't work for the company and was escorted out when he did this on Main Event. Show finished off Ryder with a knockout punch. Show knelt on Ryder to pin him.
Maddox said he had a few other job opportunities he needed to check out. He left the same way he arrived. Show took the mic and said he wanted to give fans a preview of his Last Man Standing match. He put his foot on Ryder and counted to five, then got pissed at the crowd and said he's not playing around...
Big Show defeated Zack Ryder in 0:45.
The announcers hyped Ryback vs. Heath Slater for after the break...
Powell's POV: Good use of Maddox in that everyone in the world knew the outcome of the Show vs. Ryder match, yet the added commotion of Maddox forcing his way onto commentary kept things interesting.
[Q4] [C] Backstage, Heyman was on the telephone telling someone that there was no way Rock was getting inside the building. He was interrupted by Brad Maddox and his cameraman. Maddox hung up the phone and said that just like a young Heyman, there's nothing he won't do to keep his dreams alive.
Heyman said he admires Maddox's ambition and respects his initiative. Heyman said he's a big enough man to admit when he's wrong. He told Heyman to stick with him and he'd make his dreams come true. Heyman shook his hand and then mugged for the camera with Maddox. Heyman got back on the phone when Maddox left...
Powell's POV: An interesting development. I assume Heyman is setting up Maddox for disaster, but I'm curious to see where it goes.
3. Ryback vs. Heath Slater (w/Jinder Mahal, Drew McIntyre). Ryback hit a spinebuster and then a Meathook Clothesline. He followed up with a clothesline on McIntyre on the ring apron and then dragged Mahal into the ring and threw him at McIntyre. Ryback Shellshocked Slater and pinned him...
Ryback pinned Heath Slater in 1:15.
After the match, Ryback took the mic and said, "Damn, my job is fun." He noted that Sunday is his first Royal Rumble match. He said it's a match he was made for and a match he will thrive on. He said it will lead him to the main event of WrestleMania. Ryback started a Feed Me More chant...
Backstage, Rock told the cops that they've been doing this for an hour and he needs to get to the people. He said the people spent their hard-earned dollar to see him. He said they know what it's like when he comes out. He said it's a lifetime experience. He told them to listen closely as 15,000 people chanted his name. The fans chanted Rocky.
One of the cops spoke up and said he had tickets for the show. He said his wife and kid was in the arena. Vickie Guerrero entered the picture and wanted Rock arrested. One of the cops said Rock wasn't breaking any laws as long as he was in that area. Vickie said their superior said they would do what she says or be suspended. Vickie told Rock that C.M. Punk will be inside the ring addressing the people next.
Vickie said she might have a change of heart if Rock apologizes. Rock said there are two problems. One, he's going to get in the people's ring tonight on his terms. Two, "bitch, you still look horrible tonight." Vickie stormed off. Rock asked the policemen who they serve and then said he had an idea... [C]
An ad aired for Raw Roulette next week...
Powell's POV: WWE is in Las Vegas next week, so they go back to the roulette gimmick. I'm so happy I don't live in a city known for gambling. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy gambling and I love Vegas, but I would hate to suffer through a crappy roulette theme every time WWE brought a television show to my city.
[Q5] C.M. Punk and Paul Heyman headed to the ring for a promo.