Sunday, January 28th in San Antonio, TX
* Show starts off with highlights from the past twenty years of the Royal Rumble, followed by a run down of tonight’s card.
* Pyro goes off welcoming us to the 20th annual Royal Rumble. Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler are ringside. Cole and JBL are in the Smackdown booth. Tazz and Joey Styles are ringside to call the ECW action.
(1) MNM (with Melina) vs. The Hardy Boyz. Before the match, they showed highlights of the Armageddon PPV where Joey Mercury was injured in the ladder match. The match starts off with Matt Hardy and Joey Nitro. JR points out that Matt Hardy and Joey Mercury are Smackdown superstars. Fans start an early “Hardys” chant. Referee Jack Doan is the official in this opening match. It took Melina less than four minutes before she does her first irritating scream. She followed it a short time later. I just noticed a V.K.M. sign. Hmm, I wonder how long before they spot it. Whisper in the wind by Jeff Hardy, but Mercury broke up a pinfall attempt. The Hardy’s do a double off the top rope spot, but Nitro got his knees up to block Jeff’s manuever. Fans are pretty flat thus far, as this match isn’t on the level of their December to Dismember match. JR notes that some 16,000 fans have sold out the Royal Rumble event in San Antonio. Nice bulldog into a clothesline by Matt knocked both MNM members down. Poetry in motion by the Hardys! Twist of fate by Matt followed by a Jeff Hardy senton bomb on Nitro wins the match for the Hardy Boyz at 15:27.
* Backstage, Teddy Long and Coach have the tumbler with all the numbers for tonight’s Royal Rumble. Kelly Kelly is the official tumbler. Edge comes in follwed by Randy Orton. Rated RKO draw their numbers. Edge says he’ll show him his if he shows him his. King Booker and Queen Sharmell come in, and Booker says ‘tell me you just didn’t say that.’
* Tazz and Styles talk about the ECW title match, and they show highlights from the ECW show building up this match.
(2) ECW World Heavyweight title match: Bobby Lashley vs. Test. Lashley hit a vertical suplex, but Test gained the upper hand by ramming the ECW champions head into the ring post. Mickie Hensen is the referee for this contest. As you would expect, this match has little heat. Lashley tried a lift Test, but his “injured” shoulder wouldn’t allow it. Test hit a big boot, but Lashley kicked out. Lashley wins via countout at 7:11 when Test just walked away from the ring. Fans booed the decision. Lashley went after Test, and brought him back into the ring to hit a running powerslam. Lame match, lame finish.
* Backstage, a doctor examines John Cena. Vince McMahon comes in. Vince asks if Cena wants to forfeit, and Cena says no chance. Vince says he can’t SEE Cena as WWE champion after tonight, nor the last man standing.
* JBL and Michael Cole talked about the World title match and showed a video package hyping the match.
(3) World title match: Batista vs. Mr. Kennedy. Before the match, Kennedy on the mic said he is going to be the new world champion. Nick Patrick is the referee. As Patrick held up the world title belt, Kennedy starred it down. As the two brawled outside the ring, Kennedy rammed Batista’s knee into the ring steps. Thus during the match, Kennedy continued to work on Batista’s knee. Kennedy attempted a modified figure four, but Batista wouldn’t submit. Kennedy put Batista in the half Boston crab, but again, Batista wouldn’t submit. Batista hit a spinbuster, but couldn’t follow it up. Kennedy blocked the Batista bomb, and knocked down the referee. Low blow by Kennedy, but Patrick was down. Kennedy tried to cover him, but Batista kicked out a 2 1/2. Fans chanted “Kennedy.” Batista bomb and Batista wins at 10:30 to retain the World title. After the match, Batista continued to sell his “knee injury.” JBL cried that Kennedy was robbed. Batista left the ring limping away.
* Backstage, Ariel tells Kevin Thorn its in the cards. The midget comes in and bangs on the tumbler, and draws a number. Coach tells him he hopes its not a small number. The midget attacks the Coach, but The Great Khali walks in. Khali grabs three number balls, but Coach tells him he can only have one, and drops the other two balls. Kelly picks them up and says these are the biggest balls she has ever held. Ron Simmons comes in and says “damn.”
* Promo for Wrestlemania 23 aires. Its 63 days until Wrestlemania. The rock band Saliva is shown sitting ring side. They look like they could join forces with Kevin Thorn. They perform the Wrestlemania theme song.
* JR and King talked about the WWE title match. They showed a video highlight package to hype the match.
(4) WWE title match: John Cena vs. Umaga (with Estrada) in a last man standing match. Lilian Garcia that this match has no pin falls, no submissions, no count outs, no DQs – the loser will be unable to answer the 10 count, so we are not under TNA last man standing match rules. Cena has his ribs taped up to sell the “abdominal injury.” On the outside of the ring, Umaga rammed Cena into the ring steps. Cena and Umaga continued to brawl on the outside as there are no count outs. A stiff clothesline knocked the champion down, but Cena answered the ten count by referee Mike Chioda at seven. Umaga tossed in the ring steps, but Cena countered by throwing the steps back into Umaga’s face. Chioda started the ten count on the arena floor for Umaga. Umaga got up at six. Umaga applied the bear hug to work on Cena’s abdominal injury. Belly to belly suplex, as Chioda started another ten count. Umaga brought in the ring steps a second time, as Cena answered the count at eight. Fans chanted “we want tables.” Umaga placed the steps in one corner, and placed the champion against them. Umaga did a full run at Cena, but the champion moved. Cena got up and nailed the ring steps into Umaga. Chioda started another ten count, but Umaga answered it. Sidewalk slam by Umaga, as Cena continued to sell his “injury.” In the ring, Cena rammed Umaga into the ring steps. As Umaga laid flat on the steps, the referee started a ten count. Five knuckle shuffle by Cena. Cena attempted the FU, but couldn’t and drops Umaga, but in the fall, Cena hit his head on the ring steps, busting him wide open. Cena answered another ten count. Samoan drop by Umaga. Chioda started another count, as Umaga called for the Samoan Spike. Cena answers, and blocks the spike, but received a head butt. Cena rammed Umaga into the middle ring post. Cena grabbed a TV monitor, and slammed it into Umaga, which knocked him out. Chioda started to count. Umaga answered it, however. Umaga placed Cena on the Raw announce table. Umaga ran the announce tables, but Cena got up and Umaga crushed the announce table. As Umaga got up, Chioda counted to nine. Estrada pulled off the entire top rope. Cena got up and hit an FU, and wrapped the ring rope around Umaga via an STFU. Umaga is being choked out. Cena applied the STFU for a second time. Chioda started the count, but couldn’t answer. Cena wins at 23:09 to retain the title.
* Backstage, Coach and Teddy Long argued. Sandman drew his number, and drank a beer. “Like it mattered,” said Sandman of his number. Ric Flair drew his number. Kelly, Layla, and Brooke danced with Flair, who did his whooaa!
* At ringside, its Cole, JBL, and King, who apparently are going to call the Royal Rumble match. They showed the highlight package for the match.
(5) The Royal Rumble: 90 seconds intervals this year. (1) Ric Flair vs. (2) Finlay. It is Finlay’s first rumble. (3) Kenny Dykstra. (4) Matt Hardy. (5) Edge. Edge comes in and spears everyone, except for Hardy who hit a twist of fate on Edge. FLAIR ELIMINATED BY EDGE, KENNY THEN ELIMINATED BY EDGE. (6) Tommy Dreamer. (7) Sabu. Sabu set up a table on the arena floor. (8) Gregory Helms. Helms came in and went right after Hardy. (9) Shelton Benjamin. (10) Kane. DREAMER ELIMINATED BY KANE. SABU ELIMINATED THRU THE TABLE BY KANE. (11) CM Punk. (12) King Booker. HELMS ELIMINATED BY KING BOOKER. (13) Super Crazy. (14) Jeff Hardy, who started double teaming Finlay with his brother Matt. Poetry in motion on Kane! (15) The Sandman. Who came through the crowd with his kane. SANDMAN ELIMINATED BY KING BOOKER. (16) Randy Orton. THE HARDY BOYS HAVE BEEN ELIMINATED. (17) Chris Benoit. (18) Rob Van Dam. KING BOOKER ELIMINATED BY KANE. KING BOOKER THEN ELIMINATED KANE by re-entering the ring. (19) Viscera. Kane and Booker continued to brawl on the floor. (20) Johnny Nitro. (21) Kevin Thorn. (22) Hardcore Holly. (23) HBK. FINLAY ELIMINATED BY HBK. EVERYONE ELIMINATED VISCERA. HBK ELIMINATED BENJAMIN. (24) Chris Masters. NITRO ELIMINATED BY BENOIT. (25) Chavo Guerrero. BENOIT ELIMINATED THORN. (26) MVP. MASTERS ELIMINATED BY RVD. (27) Carlito. (28) The Great Khali. Khali came in and headbutted just about everybody in the ring, followed by chops. HARDCORE HOLLY ELIMINATED BY KHALI. (29) The Miz. MIZ ELIMINATED. RVD and PUNK ELIMINATED BY KHALI. CARLITO AND CHAVO ELIMINATED BY KHALI. (30) The Undertaker, who brawled with Khali. UNDERTAKER ELIMINATED KHALI. UNDERTAKER ELIMINATED MVP. Final four – Taker, Orton, Edge, HBK. RKO by Orton to HBK. Undertaker busted open by an Orton chair shot. Edge speared Taker as he went for a chokeslam on Orton. HBK ELIMINATED ORTON, THEN HBK ELIMINATED EDGE. Its down to HBK and Undertaker. Swinging neckbraker by HBK. Fans started the “HBK” chant. HBK drops the elbow from the top rope. Michaels calls fro the sweet chin music, but Undertaker blocks it with a chokeslam. THE UNDERTAKER ELIMINATED HBK BY BLOCKING SWEET CHIN MUSIC AND TOSSING MICHEALS OVER THE TOP ROPE AT 56:20. Undertaker eyed the Wrestlemania 23 sign in lights, dropping down to his knee.
|thumbs up – 55%
in the middle – 16%
thumbs down – 9%
didn’t see it – 19%
|MNM-Hardys – 6%
Test-Lashley – 1%
Batista-Kennedy – 2%
Cena-Umaga – 19%
Royal Rumble – 72%