Before I give you the recap of tonight's Royal Rumble, let me just say that I am insulted to be a Wrestling Writer, a Wrestling Fan and an Old School Wrestling Fanatic. The reason: The WWE didn't go forward with their quest to raise the bar in their battle with TNA...they barely met the bar tonight.
But don't take my word for it. See how the WWE responded to TNA's Cross The Line Motto.
Matt Hardy vs. Jack Swagger (Get Your Swag On!)
Swagger doesn’t show any signs of wanting to compete early as he dodges punches and sprints in between the ropes every chance he gets. Swagger sprints outside, but Hardy levels him with a hard right hand before throwing him back into the ring. Swagger tries to buy himself some time by staying outside the ring to try to slow down the momentum of Hardy.
Back in the ring, Swagger finally shows some physicality with a reverse arm lock, but Hardy fights out and goes for the Twist of Fate only to opt for the clothesline-bulldog combination instead. Swagger manages to get his composure back by launching Hardy off the top rope to the outside. Back in the ring, Swagger has a vicious armbar applied, but Hardy counters and delivers a clothesline to break the hold.
Hardy fights back, and despite having only one arm, Hardy puts the pressure on Swagger. Swagger manages to fight back and lands a belly to belly followed by an arm breaker on the former ECW Champion. Swagger puts Hardy up top, but Hardy fights back and lands a moonsault only to get a two count. Swagger fights back and launches Hardy into the steel post followed by the Swagger Bomb to get the pin and retain the ECW Championship.
In the back, Randy Orton arrives to arena…and everyone wastes no time in showing their silent disdain for the Legend Killer’s actions this past Monday on RAW.
WWE Women’s Championship Melina vs. Beth Phoenix (Retribution Comes Full Circle)
WWE Women’s Championship
Melina vs. Beth Phoenix (Retribution Comes Full Circle)
Phoenix shows her brute strength right off the bat. After Melina battles out of the Rag Diva Shake, she applies an armbar. But Phoenix’s strength continues to be on display as she launches Melina off her shoulders followed by Diva Bump in the corner. Following a two count, Phoenix applies a knee submission on Melina’s surgically repaired knee.
After Melina broke free, Phoenix uses Melina’s own leg to kick her in the back of the head.
Phoenix shows off the strength once again with a Gorilla Press, but Melina fights out and rolls up Phoenix. After a two count, Melina lands a face buster. Phoenix goes for the Glamaslam, but Melina turns it into a roll up to pick up the win and become the new WWE Women’s Champion for the third time. In the ring, Beth has a look of disbelief as Santino rolls out of the ring.
In the back, JBL promises that after tonight, Shawn Michaels will be paid in full…and that if he wins the gold tonight, Shawn will be in the Royal Rumble Match tonight. As JBL leaves, Shawn turns and locks eyes with The Undertaker who tells him one simple thing: “Sometimes, it’s hell to get into heaven.”
World Heavyweight Championship JBL w/Shawn Michaels vs. John Cena (Judgment Day Comes For HBK)
World Heavyweight Championship
JBL w/Shawn Michaels vs. John Cena (Judgment Day Comes For HBK)
With Shawn Michaels in his corner, a confident JBL prepares for the fight of his career. Both men exchange the upper hand. Cena delivers an elbow, but JBL slides out of the ring and whispers something into the ear of his “puppet.” In the corner, JBL lands a series of hard punches and a stiff boot to finish. But Cena fights back with a face buster followed by a Throwback.
JBL again, rolls out of the ring, but this time, Cena gives chase and prepares to deliver a quick punch. But Layfield ducks, Cena pulls back on the punch and JBL capitalizes with a clubbing blow to Cena’s back. Bradshaw hits a clothesline followed a series of elbow drops. Cena tries to fight back but gets caught in a sideslam from JBL.
Cena is tossed to the outside, and JBL launches him into the steel steps before rolling him back in to get the cover. JBL continues the pressure. JBL goes for a Superplex, but Cena fights out, lands some punches of his own followed by the Beantown Leg Drop. As Cena tries to get some momentum back, JBL hit’s the big boot, but Cena fights back and lands a set of shoulder blocks followed by the Spinner Bomb and the 5-Knuckle Shuffle.
Despite being booted by JBL, Cena locks in the STFU, but thanks to Shawn Michaels, Cena breaks the hold and goes to confront Shawn. As Cena comes back in, JBL lands the Clothesline From Hell…but miraculously, Cena kicks out of it! JBL goes for the big boot, but hits the referee instead. Shawn finally gets into the ring and prepares for Sweet chin Music on Cena…only to land it on JBL before doing it on Cena.
Shawn then lays JBL on top of Cena and walks away from the ring. Another referee sprints down to make the count, but somehow Cena kicks out of Sweet Chin Music. JBL tries to land another Clothesline From Hell, but Cena counters and lands the FU to get the win and remain The World Heavyweight Champion!
WWE Championship Edge vs. Jeff Hardy (The End…Or The Beginning?)
Edge vs. Jeff Hardy (The End…Or The Beginning?)
As Hardy comes out, he shows a little reluctance in making his usual pyro entrance. After the fireworks go off without a hitch, Hardy waits in the ring for his opponent. But Vickie Guerrero comes out and makes the match a No Disqualification Match…why am I not surprised? Edge then enters the Joe with his nephew in law Chavo “Gopher” Guerrero in tow.
As the ref rings the bell, Jeff goes on the assault early and often. Edge bolts to the outside and gets brief control. Jeff is sent to the outside, but pulls a fast one on Edge with a quick dropkick followed by a diving splash off the apron. Back in the ring, Hardy tries to keep control, but thanks to Chavo, Edge gets a quick breather. Edge regains control with a baseball slide and takes the fight to the outside. After landing a Tri-Branded Head Smash on the champion, Edge rolls him back into the ring and continues the punishment.
Hardy tries to get some momentum going, but he gets dropped with a clothesline. Edge decides not to rush into it but gets caught anyway with a Donkey Kick. Hardy tries to get momentum once more but gets nailed with a dropkick from Edge. Edge jumps out of the ring and grabs some chairs, but as he goes back into the ring, Hardy bounces back up and lands a huge spear followed by a springboard over the top rope onto an unsuspecting Edge.
Hardy counters a suplex attempt into a Twist of Fate on the apron. He then returns the favor with a Tri-Branded Head Smash of his own. He takes apart the RAW table and pulls out a ladder from under the ring. As Hardy goes up top, Chavo goes up to prevent the Swanton only to get dropped on his own. Hardy takes out Edge and places Chavo on the table. Jeff jumps off the ladder and sends Chavo through the RAW Table via the Guerrero Frog Splash. Back in the ring, Hardy focuses his attention on Edge.
Hardy counters a head smash into a Whisper in the Wind, but Edge recovers and lands the Edgecution…only to get a two count. Edge goes up top, blocks a boot, but gets caught with a small package. Hardy recovers and lands the Facebuster. As Hardy goes up top for the Swanton, but Edge drops him into the exposed turnbuckle. Shockingly enough, Hardy kicks out after hitting it. Edge looks to uncoil but gets caught by the Twist of Fate.
Vickie intervenes once more and keeps the ref from making the three count. But Matt Hardy comes down and looks to help his brother. As Matt hands Jeff a chair, he turns around and drops his brother instead. A reluctant Edge grabs the pin and regains the WWE Championship. As Edge continues to celebrate his victory, Matt walks away, and Jeff staggers to his feet to be carried out by officials.
At No Way Out, both the WWE and World Heavyweight Championships will be defended…in The Elimination Chamber!
At No Way Out, both the WWE and World Heavyweight Championships will be defended…in The Elimination Chamber!
In the back, Randy Orton is having a few choice words with Chris Jericho before the Royal Rumble.
The Royal Rumble #1) Rey Mysterio (RAW) #2) John Morrison (ECW) #3) Carlito (SmackDown) #4) MVP (SmackDown) #5) The Great Khali (SmackDown) #6) Vladimir Kozlov (SmackDown) #7) Triple H (SmackDown) #8 ) Randy Orton (RAW)* #9) Cryme Tyme (RAW) #10) Ted DiBiase (RAW) #11) Chris Jericho (RAW) #12) Mike Knox (RAW) #13) The Miz (ECW) #14) Finlay (ECW) #15) Cody Rhodes (RAW) #16) The Undertaker (SmackDown) #17) Goldust (RAW) #18) CM Punk (RAW) #19) Mark Henry (ECW) #20) Shelton Benjamin (SmackDown) #21) William Regal (RAW) #22) Kofi Kingston (RAW) #23) Kane (RAW) #24) R-Truth (SmackDown) #25) Rob Van Dam (ECW) #26) The Brian Kendrick (SmackDown) #27) Dolph Ziggler (RAW) #28) Santino Marella (RAW) #29) “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan (RAW) #30) Big Show (SmackDown) *--Royal Rumble Winner
The Royal Rumble
#1) Rey Mysterio (RAW)
#2) John Morrison (ECW)
#3) Carlito (SmackDown)
#4) MVP (SmackDown)
#5) The Great Khali (SmackDown)
#6) Vladimir Kozlov (SmackDown)
#7) Triple H (SmackDown)
#8 ) Randy Orton (RAW)*
#9) Cryme Tyme (RAW)
#10) Ted DiBiase (RAW)
#11) Chris Jericho (RAW)
#12) Mike Knox (RAW)
#13) The Miz (ECW)
#14) Finlay (ECW)
#15) Cody Rhodes (RAW)
#16) The Undertaker (SmackDown)
#17) Goldust (RAW)
#18) CM Punk (RAW)
#19) Mark Henry (ECW)
#20) Shelton Benjamin (SmackDown)
#21) William Regal (RAW)
#22) Kofi Kingston (RAW)
#23) Kane (RAW)
#24) R-Truth (SmackDown)
#25) Rob Van Dam (ECW)
#26) The Brian Kendrick (SmackDown)
#27) Dolph Ziggler (RAW)
#28) Santino Marella (RAW)
#29) “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan (RAW)
#30) Big Show (SmackDown)
*--Royal Rumble Winner
Mysterio draws #1 once again and Morrison draws #2 this year. Morrison tries to bully Mysterio, but the 2006 Rumble winner shows no fear as he takes the fight to The Shaman of Stupidity. Mysterio fights his way back into the ring and lands huge head scissors takeover on Morrison. As the clock hits zero, SmackDown gets its first entrant with the arrival of Carlito. Carlito avoids the elimination with a beautiful springboard splash on Morrison. The three men battle it out as the clock hits zero and MVP sprints in and goes on the offensive on all three men.
MVP lands the Drive By on Morrison and begins to concentrate on Mysterio. As the men battle, The Great Khali makes his way down to the ring as Entrant Number Five. Khali starts throwing guys around left to right. Khali dominates as Vladimir Kozlov makes his way to the ring. Kozlov takes out Khali on his own, then he takes out MVP and Carlito. As Kozlov takes down Mysterio, Triple H makes his way to the ring. The Game and The Mauler engage in a slugfest. But The Game lands The Facebuster, delivers a DX Chop and tosses Kozlov to the side. As Triple H battles Morrison, Randy Orton comes out to take his turn in the match.
As the battle continues, Cryme Tyme make their way to the ring. But JTG wins the coin toss (via two sided coin) and elects to run the gauntlet. Ted DiBiase sprints out to take his turn in the Rumble, and begins to focus on The Dirt Sheet, Cryme Tyme and Mysterio. The men battle it out as the eleventh man comes out, and it is…Chris Jericho! Jericho comes in and focuses on both members of Evolution. Everyone starts duking it out as Mike Knox sprints down and directs his assault towards Rey Mysterio. As the battle wages on, The Miz makes his appearance in the 2009 Rumble and beats up on JTG and Triple H. The World Tag Team Champions gang up on everyone.
Randy Orton has himself an RKO party before getting dropped with a Pedigree from Triple H. In the process, the World Tag Champs are sent packing, and Rey uses them to remain in the match. As Orton saves his Legacy teammate, Cody Rhodes makes his way down to help his other two Legacy teammates. Orton delivers a devastating RKO to Mysterio off the top rope. As the men battle, the lights go out, and in comes The Undertaker. The Deadman comes in and drops everyone before sending JTG packing. Goldust comes in and puts up a fight, but thanks to a quick RKO, Cody Rhodes eliminates his brother as CM Punk arrives to the party.
As Finlay battles Undertaker, Mark Henry comes in and adds to the carnage. As Henry drops The Game, Shelton Benjamin makes his way down and goes straight for RAW Superstars. Benjamin drops Henry as the next entrant prepares to make an appearance. William Regal comes in and goes straight after CM Punk after their epic battle last Monday night. In the process, Rey Mysterio eliminates Mark Henry. The Game almost gets eliminated as the newest entrant, Kofi Kingston, makes his Rumble debut. Kingston comes in gets dropped instantly as Benjamin gets dropped by a bloodied Deadman and eliminated in the process as Kane makes his way down to the ring. The Brothers of Destruction join forces and choke slam DiBiase straight to hell. Also, CM Punk eliminates William Regal as the countdown reaches zero and our 24th entrant, R-Truth makes his Rumble debut as well.
The Legacy tries to eliminate Kane but to no avail. The fight continues as the next entrant…ROB VAN DAM!
Kendrick comes in and eliminates Kofi Kingston, but Triple H takes him out as he celebrates. Punk and Van Dam battle left to right as Dolph Ziggler makes his debut and is quickly sent packing by The Big Red Monster. Orton tries to eliminate Van Dam as the countdown continues as Santino comes in and sets a new record for quickest time in the Royal Rumble with a :01 second appearance in this year’s Royal Rumble. The winner of the first Royal Rumble makes his 29th pick, which means that The Big Show owns the final spot in this year’s Royal Rumble. As Big Show makes his way down to the ring, everyone stops fighting and focuses on the World’s Largest Athlete.
Big Show comes in and eliminates the Big Show to start off. As The Legacy takes Undertaker, Big Show eliminates R-Truth and knocks out CM Punk in the process. Rey Mysterio and Mike Knox eliminate each other as Hornswoggle tries to help his father, Finlay. The ring starts to lose some weight (literally) as the count dwindles down with The Deadman and Big Show battle. Jericho eliminates Van Dam, but Undertaker eliminates Jericho. The Legacy eliminates Kane to drop the field to six. As Triple H and Big Show battle, The Legacy focus on The Undertaker.
The Deadman has his own choke slam party before he and Big Show battle on the outside. Orton eliminates Big Show and Show eliminates Taker. This prompts a fight between the giants to the crowd, and The Legacy is left in the ring with Triple H. Triple H fights back and takes out Rhodes and DiBiase, but Orton recovers and eliminates The Game. The 2009 Royal Rumble Winner is in a pathetic ending, Randy Orton.
Orton goes to Wrestlemania for a shot at becoming champion once again.