2005 Royal Rumble
Match 1 – Edge Vs Shawn Michaels – Nice story behind this match. Edge returned in 04, was getting booed despite being a babyface and whatnot. He slowly starts to get pissed off by it, then the shit hits the fan at Taboo Tuesday when fans voted for HBK over him to face HHH for the WHC. Then at NYR inside the elimination chamber, HBK was the referee and superkicked Edge (after Edge attacked him I think) and counted the 3 to eliminate him. So Edge feels that the fans turned on him AND HBK screwed him out of the title twice, so he wants revenge. After all the build it’s a shame this one was never really viewed as a BIG match, though it probably should have been. Being at the RR doesn’t help either as I never really see it as being the PPV for big grudge matches, or at least I haven’t since something like 2002 onwards. Edge does a pretty great job controlling the match. He’s got the crazy edge to him, but not the “spasm in the corner” kind of crazy he would get to that was terrible. I like how he uses HBK’s hair to counter a HBK comeback, then just because he’s a bit of a prick, he uses the hair about 4 times in a row to aid him in hitting moves though he didn’t need to. Then he mocks HBK’s pose. Shawn’s comeback is… pretty poor tbh. But Edge puts a stop to it with a SPEAR on the floor. Follows it up with a SPEAR in the ring… and HBK kicks out lol. Edge’s gets a little more crazy and tries for a high risk move, a superplex, but HBK knocks him off the ropes, lands the elbow, then begins to set up Sweet Chin Music! COUNTER INTO THE ELECTRIC CHAIR. EDUCATION! I miss that submission hold. Remember in like 02-03 and a bunch of guys on SD started using new submission holds? Edge with the Education, Brock with the BROCK LOCK and Eddie with the Lasso from El Paso? Those were awesome. Plus you already had Benoit with the Crossface and Angle with the Ankle Lock. Basically any of the top or high mid card guys had multiple ways to win and it really helped get over the awesome “competition” period on SD at the time. Edge wins using the ropes for leverage. Good match. ***1/4.
Bischoff and Long backstage with a tumbler so wrestlers can draw their own numbers. Flair and Guerrero draw their numbers. Flair is dancing for job at his, Eddie looks horrified. So he steals Flairs! He shows his number off, and they are baffled as to why he is so excited! GUERRERO STOLE MY NUMBER!
Heidenreich backstage talking about how he hates caskets. Gene Snitsky shows up. He doesn’t like caskets either. But they like each other.
Match 2 – The Undertaker Vs Heidenreich – Casket match time! Heidenreich has screwed Undertaker out of the title on a couple of occasions, and they had a legit GREAT match at Survivor Series where Undertaker put over Heidenreich in a huge way. Now it’s time to settle their feud in Undertaker’s signature match. Well one of them anyway. Heidenreich isn’t afraid of Undertaker, but he IS afraid of caskets (as is all of Undertaker’s opponents lol). Undertaker uses basic holds like an arm bar and a headlock, and he keeps edging Heidenreich over to the casket just to mess with his mind. Awesome stuff. Credit to Heidenreich too for playing his part really well. Heidenreich throws some pretty good punches, similar style to Undertaker. He pummels Undertaker in the corner then talks shit to him, then tries to throw another punch, but Undertaker catches the arm and counters with a TRIANGLE CHOKE. Fuck yeah, awesome shit. Heidenreich is fading… and Snitsky shows up! Double team time. They begin to drag Undertaker to the casket, the referees open it up… and it’s KANE! KANE IS IN THE CASKET! He’s feuding with Snitsky so it makes sense… though he and Undertaker never exactly made up lol. Kane and Snitsky take their fight to the crowd and then backstage, leaving Undertaker to continue this match one on one. I remember the rumours of a tag match at WM to end these two feuds. Thankfully we didn’t get it. Not that I necessarily think it would have sucked, but because we got the incredible Undertaker/Orton match and Kane did one hell of a job in the Money in the Bank Ladder Match. LMAO at the spot where Heidenreich runs the casket into The Undertaker. Undertaker is pretty much UNDER THE RING and the casket just bounces off the ring apron. LMAO at Undertaker trying to punch Heidenreich in the fact while he’s in the casket. Ends up decking the middle rope the first time. HOLY SHIT, apron legdrop to Heidenreich, with Heidenreich’s head trapped in the casket! Just like Survivor Series, Heidenreich takes all of this punishment and STILL comes back. Whips Undertaker into the turnbuckle and the sound its makes made me think they broke part of the ring lol. Man, Heidenreich looked REALLY GOOD in these matches with ‘Taker. Sure, he’s in there with one of THE best ever, but he did his part for sure and he did it real well. Shame Heidenreich never went anywhere after this, and looked terrible with everything he did. Undertaker of course wins. Great match, surprised even me because I never thought this was particularly good. ***1/2.
Backstage again, and Teddy is trying to get Eddie to give back Flair’s number. Evolution show up to get it back. Eddie reluctantly gives it back… but turns out he still has his wallet too lol. TENSION between HHH and Batista. This feud was really fucking well done.
Christian getting ready to pick his number. He’s trying to get Bischoff to reveal some people’s numbers. Teddy Long gets back and Christian mentions how he just signed a petition to get him kicked off Raw! Cena shows up for his number. The beginning to their feud that would kinda happen after WM but not quite because they threw Jericho into it and made it all about those two. CHRISTIAN RAPS.
Match 3 – JBL Vs Kurt Angle Vs The Big Show – Triple threat match for the WWE title! JBL and Angle selling injures from their LMS match on SD just 3 days ago. I should look that match up, don’t remember anything about it. Show and JBL start the match, and with JBL hurt Big Show can dominate him, all the while Angle who is also hurt stands on the outside and watches on before making his move to prevent a possible pin. Fun “Big Show Vs The World” stuff early on as he’s the freshest man, making him the biggest threat for the title. Show attempts to Chokeslam JBL from the steel steps through the announce table, but Angle hits a low blow, then nails the giant with a monitor and Show falls back through the table himself! Now Angle and JBL can fight one on one and continue their match from SD and not have to worry about the 7ft monster for the time being. Show eventually gets back into this thing and he’s PISSED. Guy looks unstoppable, until Angle clips his knee while JBL lands a Clothesline from Hell! Even then he’s back up to his feet moments later, only to get Angle Slammed. BIG SHOW DRIVING BRADSHAW THROUGH THE BARRICADE! JBL is pretty much dead. Show just has to finish off Angle and he’ll be the NEW champion! THE CABINET show up to check on JBL, while Angle’s boys show up to take out Big Show. While all this is going on, JBL lands a Clothesline from Hell on Angle and survives with his WWE Title! This is a TON of fun. Always loved it. Nothing has changed. One of the great triple threat matches. ***3/4.
Carlito wants Batista to sign the petition to get rid of Teddy Long. He isn’t going to sign it, so Carlito teases spitting in his face. Batista threatens him and he swallows for a change haha. Batista continues to pick his number, while Bischoff and Teddy argue about shit. Bischoff bans Evolution from ringside for the WHC match so the Raw title match isn’t a mess of interference like SD’s!
Match 4 – Triple H Vs Randy Orton – WHC match. Urgh, not looking forward to this. HHH and Orton just have dreadful chemistry bad like, 2 matches. RKO COUNTERED. HHH counters it by sending him over the ropes. Orton thanks his lucky stars that his shoulder didn’t crumble. Trips goes after the shoulder following that move, by driving Orton into the steel steps. Then in the ring he goes after the knee. Odd that he switches up like that, but Orton apparently hurt the knee on Raw and has it taped up so HHH is just being the “cerebral assassin” and targeting the injured body part. LOL sign guy didn’t think this match was worth seeing, so he went for beer. So far I’ve been pleasantly surprised with this one. HHH has been good working over the legs, and Orton sold well and made a sweet comeback at one point with some great punches in the corner. His selling is dodgy though as he seems to mostly ignore his bad knee during said comeback. Orton gets his lip busted open from a sweeeeeet high knee. HHH keeps avoiding the RKO. Some more great punches form Orton. HHH sells them awesomely. HHH blocks a DDT and Orton goes CRASHING to the mat, and thus begins the “out of it” part of the match for Orton, and THIS is how I remember the match. Didn’t think there was so much stuff BEFORE it lol. Which makes me wonder how long is left and if it’s going to reaaaallly drag on. Time for THE GAME to slowly work over the head of his former Evolution team mate. The ref is down so HHH slowly goes for the sledgehammer, but gets sent face first into the ring post instead. Ha. Trips tries to use it again but notices the ref is stirring so he gets rid of it just in case. PEDIGREE instead. Orton is done. Huh, this match was… VERY DIFFERENT to how I remembered it. Did they have a Raw match like a week or two after this? If so maybe I remembered that match. Anywho, I thought this was great. Second best match these two ever had, not that that’s saying much lol. ***3/4.
Kurt Angle steals Nunzio’s number for the RR. Why didn’t Nunzio go tell Teddy Long about it? Speaking of, Long and Bischoff talking backstage again, this time about how good the Raw title match was. Long agrees and says it gave him a great idea. JBL and the Cabinet bust into the room celebrating, and Long informs him that at No Way Out, he’ll be defending the title against Big Show in the first ever BARBED WIRE STEEL CAGE MATCH! WHAT’S HE GONNA DO? EAT ME? I’M A WRESTLING GOD. I’M A GOD. I’M A WRESTLING GOD.
Match 5 – 30 Man Royal Rumble Match – #1 is Eddie Guerrero, the man who last year won Smackdown’s RR match to determine the #1 contender for NWO against Lesnar, where he WON the title! #2 is… Christ Benoit who won the RR last year from the #1 position and went on to WM to WIN the WHC! DANIEL PUDER. Tough Enough winner. He didn’t even live up to the likes of MAVEN. He basically gets set up by being in the ring against veterans who take RESPECT OF THE BUSINESS very seriously, and he gets knife edged chopped to SHIT from Benoit, Guerrero and then Hardcore Holly lol. Man, if only TAZZ could have been part of this match too lol. Eddie and Benoit work together to eliminate a few people, but at the same time try to take cheap shots with each other in an attempt to eliminate the other as well lol. DAT TILTAWHIRL BACKBREAKER ON REY BY EDDIE. Lol, Tazz thinks Booker T and HHH main evented WM last year. He’s already forgetting BENOIT. TAZZ SEES THE FUTURE! Bischoff and Long show up at ringside to cheer their guys on. Nice stuff all night between the two, putting over the brand extension and competition between the two, without getting into petty insults and shit. 4 Raw guys and 4 SD guys end up in the ring at the same time and they do the old Brand Split battle which is a cool moment. Then Muhammad Hassan comes out and both sides join forces to beat the crap out of him and eliminate him. HATERS. LOL SCOTTY 2 HOTTY continues his RR curse as he gets attacked by Hassan on his way to the ring. Ring starts to fill up with a bunch of nobodies. Eddie gets eliminated. Then HBK comes in and get rid of some of the trash. LMAO at Edge chasing after Rey, and Rey keeps escaping by rolling away or crawling through his legs. Edge gives up. ANGLE! SUPERKICK! NO MORE ANGLE! More jobbers enter. Angle returns and eliminates HBK then processed to beat him up. Beginning of their great feud leading into WM. LONDON AND SNITSKY. GOAT ELIMINATION? Good GOD at the pop for Batista. Batista and Cena the final 2. 1994 RR flashbacks. Vince tears both quads just to tell them to restart the match. BATISTA wins. Good Rumble, and like most things on this show, better than I remembered. ***3/4.