Wednesday 5 July 2017

WWE Royal Rumble 2005 Review

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Hello and welcome to another edition of Seanomaniac Wrestling Reviews, the only wrestling review series on the internet that needs a win more badly than Bray Wyatt. WWE’s Royal Rumble 2005, the beginning of the build to Wrestlemania 21. A change of the guard with the likes of Edge, Cen and Batista making their marks on the industry, a pivotal pay per view that would shape the WWE for years to come. The big matches tonight are JBL vs Kurt Angle vs Big Show for the WWE Championship, Randy Orton vs Triple H for the World Heavyweight Championship and of course, the royal rumble match itself. 2005 was not off to a great start with New Year’s Revolution but can that all change with The Royal Rumble? Let’s find out!

Opening Promo

Simple stuff with past shots of Royal Rumble matches including a tag team battle royal from Wrestlemania 14. A narrator speaks about the history, the legacy, the possible championship opportunities. However, nothing about the matches on the card, nothing about the world championship matches so I am going to be calling this promo package a poor one.

Edge vs Shawn Michaels

Edge feels Shawn Michaels cost him the World Heavyweight Championship at New Year’s Revolution, Michaels was cost the World Heavyweight Championship at Taboo Tuesday so we have two men with problems and they are going at it tonight to settle the score. Edge tries to attack Michaels as he enters the ring, Michaels is too quick. Right hands, back drop and a clothesline, Edge is on the floor. Lock-up, Edge shoves back Michaels. Chops by Michaels as Edge misses a right hand, Edge meets the top turnbuckle with his face. Huge chop from Michaels, Irish whip and Edge counters for a swinging neckbreaker. Right hands by Edge, slap by Michaels and he follows up with right hands.

Eye poke by Edge, Lou Thesz Press by Michaels. Edge is dumped to the floor, Edge dodges a baseball slide and nails Micheals with an Edge O Matic on the floor. Edge nails a big baseball slide, Edge pummels Michaels in the corner. Hard Irish whip by Edge, more stomps from Edge. Elbow to the face, Michaels chops back at Edge, Michaels tries a hurricanrana but Edge nails a powerbomb for a close two. Rear-naked choke with a bodyscissors by Edge, Michaels rolls out of the hold before Edge transitions into a reverse chinlock. Michaels elbows out, chops by HBK before Edge pulls down Michaels by the hair. Edge poses like Michaels before pulling Michaels down by the hair again. Michaels is rammed into the turnbuckle, hard Irish whip by Edge. Michaels elevates Edge to the apron but Edge hotshots Michaels.

Michaels dodges a crossbody from Edge, Oklahoma roll for two. Edge recovers and boots Michaels for a two-count. Another hair-pull by Edge, Edge’s back suplex goes wrong as Michaels counters with a float-over for two. Michaels is blind-sided with a huge clothesline, reverse chinlock by Edge. Michaels escapes, forearm shots followed by chops. High knee by Michaels and a Polish hammer, inverted atomic drop and a right hand floors Edge. Another inverted atomic drop, Michaels chops Edge in the corner before ten punching Edge. Edge tries to shake off Michaels, sunset flip by Michaels for two. Michaels catapults Edge into the top turnbuckle, roll-up for two. Edge powders and tries leaving the arena, Michaels chases Edge saying there is no way my friend.

Michaels chops Edge on the floor, the referee argues with Michaels to get back in the ring, Edge takes advantage as Michaels is struck with a Spear. Michaels makes it in at nine much to Edge’s dismay. Edge is feeling it, mocking Michaels’ Sweet Chin Music. Spear by Edge and Michaels kicks out at two and a half. Edge has Michaels on the top rope, Michaels knocks Edge down with a huge headbutt. Michaels looks to the crowd for inspiration, huge elbow drop by Michaels.

Michaels pulls himself up in the corner, feeding off the energy of the crowd. Sweet Chin Music is calling Edge’s name, Edge counters for an electric chair drop for two. Edge Irish whips Michaels, Michaels tries a sunset flip but Edge counters for The Edgeacator. Michaels makes it to the ropes after much struggling, small package by Michaels for two. Michaels goes for an O Connor roll, Edge reverses and uses the ropes for leverage.

Good opening match from Edge and Michaels, Edge’s shock at winning the match is great stuff. I thought there was a lot of well-crafted spots like the Spear on the floor leading to the possible count-out, Edge mocking Michaels was good stuff too with Edge starting to make his first tentative steps into the main event scene. Edge looked like he belonged in there and I enjoyed this match a lot.

Winner: Edge over Shawn Michaels via Roll-Up!

Eddie Guerrero & Ric Flair choose numbers!/Heidenreich and Snitsky bond!

Ric Flair and Eddie Guerrero draw numbers, Eddie is disappointed while Ric Flair is very happy with the number. Eddie hugs Flair which leads to Flair celebrating and showing off his number. Flair shows his number to Christy Hemme, Torrie Wilson, Theodore Long and Eric Bischoff. The four are confused leading to Flair checking his number and realizing that Eddie stole Flair’s number. One of my favourite segments of all-time, the pay-off later is great too. Heidenreich is terrified of caskets, Snitsky has a plan and it gets very awkward.

Heidenreich vs Undertaker (Casket Match)

This feud continues for no reason, Undertaker soundly whooped Heidenreich’s ass at Survivor Series. For whatever reason, the feud was stretched out with Heidenreich costing Undertaker the WWE Championship for a second time at Armageddon. Thankfully, the casket match will be the last match in this rather poor feud. Druids and ominous eerie chanting takes place, Heidenreich is terrified of caskets, not a good sign for the monster.

Side headlock by Taker, Taker drags Heidenreich towards the casket. Heidenreich backs away, wriggling free. Armdrags by Taker, side headlock by Heidenreich. Shoulder block by Heidenreich, Taker trips the leg of Heidenreich. Single leg Boston crab by Taker, Heidenreich slides out of the ring and walks away. Taker gives chase, knee by Taker. Irish whip but Heidenreich reverses and Taker hits the casket hard. Heidenreich bounces Taker’s head off the casket, right hands by Heidenreich. Heidenreich chokes Taker which leads to The Deadman countering for a triangle choke. Heidenreich begins to fade, Snitsky comes out and stomps the crap out of Taker.

Clothesline by Snitsky, double suplex by Heidenreich & Snitsky. Taker is dragged towards the casket, Kane is in the casket. Kane starts beating the crap out of Heidenreich and Snitsky, Kane clotheslines Snitsky to the floor. The two brawl to the back, Heidenreich begins pushing the casket away from the ring. Heidenreich Irish whips Taker into the steel steps, Heidenreich jabs and strikes Taker. Heidenreich uses the casket to ram the face of Taker, Heidenreich applies a cobra clutch to choke out The Deadman. Taker is rolled into the casket but Heidenreich cannot close the lid. Taker is back, Hedenreich’s head is stuck in the casket and Taker delivers a leg drop onto the casket.

Undertaker goes for a Chokeslam but Heidenreich headbutts his way out of the hold. Taker runs into a Sidewalk Slam, Heidenreich pins Taker but there are no pins. Taker is rolled into the casket again, Heidenreich is grabbed by the throat by The Deadman. Slugfest with Taker winning the war, huge DDT by The Phenom. Chokeslam by Taker, Tombstone Piledriver and Heidenreich is rolled into the casket.

Not bad ladies and gentlemen, it was quite enjoyable for such a simple match and considered that one of the workers was Heidenreich. Enjoyed the Kane spot a lot, rising from the casket. Only those two could pull that off and get away from it, curious to see how Undertaker fares with Randy Orton because that’s where people saw Undertaker pull out great match after great match.

Winner: The Undertaker over Heidenreich!

Eddie Guerrero/Theodore Long/Evolution Segment

Eddie Guerrero surrenders his number back to Ric Flair. Theodore makes another discovery, finding out that Eddie also stole Flair’s wallet. Flair freaks out. Batista and Triple H have issues over whether Batista should get his number or listen to The Game’s plans. They were about to come to blows but Ric Flair saves the day.

Christian/Tyson Tomko & Eric Bischoff Segment

Captain Charisma pulls his number, celebrating as he picks a good number. In comes John Cena, Christian talks trash to Cena about rapping and freestyling. Christian raps while Cena watches on, Cena retorts and destroys Christian’s ego, ruining his night.

(WWE Championship Match) JBL © vs Kurt Angle vs The Big Show

No promo package to hype this match? That sucks, I don’t really have any backstory to add to this match. Big Show and Angle had been feuding on Smackdown, Show had beaten Angle at every turn so I guess this is just an easy way to have a championship match. JBL and Angle are walking gingerly due to a last man standing match they had on Smackdown three days before. JBL wants Angle to double team Show with him but Angle is happy to watch JBL get crushed by Show.

Shoulder block and headbutt by Show, make it two. Huge chest slap by Show, hard Irish whip by Show. JBL tries a crossbody, scoop slam and elbow by Show. Angle comes in and is shook off, headbutts by Show. Hard Irish whip for Angle, JBL chops Show but Show suplexes JBL. Big boot for Angle, Angle & JBL are clotheslined to the floor. Show headbutts his opponents and swats them down like flies before placing the steel steps beside the announce table and clearing the wreckage away. Show motions for a Chokeslam through the table, Angle low blows Show and whacks Show with a monitor from the announce table, Show crashes through the announce table. Angle jumps JBL, knees and right hands to the champion.

JBL clubs Angle in the ring, armdrag and armbar by Angle. Angle takes down JBL for a keylock, Angle stomps on the arm of the champion. JBL recovers for a right hand, corner clothesline by JBL. JBL misses a corner splash, German suplex by Angle. JBL uses the ropes to survive and not take another, elbows by JBL. Clothesline From Hell is ducked, German suplex by Angle. The straps are down, Angle Slam is blocked. Big boot by JBL, two for JBL. Show is up, Show clotheslines Angle & JBL. Headbutts and clotheslines for everyone, scoop slams. Angle is slammed onto JBL, JBL is whipped into Angle. Show crushes both, double clothesline by Show. Show measures for a double Chokeslam, Angle and JBL combine to escape and chop down Show.

JBL eats a German suplex, Angle steals the pin on Show but it only gets a two. Angle Slam on Show, JBL boots Angle out of the ring. Show kicks out at two, JBL measures for a Clothesline From Hell, Show Chokeslams JBL. Cover and JBL places his foot on the ropes, Show measures JBL on the floor. Show spears JBL through the barricade, Angle has a steel chair in the ring. Angle is using his body to cover the chair, Angle walks Show with the chair before Show flapjacks Angle for a two count. The Basham brothers help JBL while Jindrak & Luther Reigns double team Show. Show batters Reigns and Jindrak up the ramp. Clothesline From Hell on Angle and JBL retains his championship.

Very fun match, Big Show always delivers when it comes to triple threat matches. Whether it be this one or the other featuring the likes of Lesnar, Angle, Cena and Punk, Show manages to deliver a good performance every time. It played to everyone strengths, everyone looked good in the match and you had JBL continue to weasel his out of losing the championship. Building heat for the eventual moment where JBL is dethroned.

Winner: JBL over The Big Show & Kurt Angle over Clothesline From Hell!

Batista & Carlito/Evolution become banned from ringside!

Carlito tries persuading Batista to sign the petition to have Theodore Long removed as general manager on Smackdown. Batista refuses so Carlito takes a big bite out of his apple, Batista squares up to Carlito and Carlito thinks better of spitting in The Animal’s face. Batista gets his number for the rumble while Bischoff bans Evolution from ringside for Triple H’s title defence.

(WWE World Heavyweight Championship Match) Randy Orton vs Triple H©

Speaking of feuds that refuse to die, we have Orton vs Triple H. Orton as a babyface failed due to bad booking on the part of The WWE and Orton doing the opposite of what made him popular with WWE fans. The cockiness was not full-on, Orton was tamed and made out to be a white meat babyface which was not working unfortunately for The Legend Killer.

Triple H holds up his championship and talks trash, side headlock by Orton. Big shoulder block and a backslide for two. Right hands by Orton, hard Irish whip and a back drop. Triple H slips out of an RKO and takes a breather, Orton rams Triple H into the ring apron. Triple H runs into a dropkick, right hands and stomps by Orton. Triple H knees Orton, Triple H slugs it out with the challenger. Ten punches by The Cerebral Assassin, Orton reverses with a flapjack on the top turnbuckle. Orton tries the RKO but Triple H dumps Orton over the top and to the floor, should have clutched his supposed injured leg, it would help the story of the match.

Orton meets the steel steps hard, Orton rolls into the ring and The Game stomps all over and chokes the challenger. Orton blocks Triple H with a boot out of the corner, right hands by The Legend Killer. Triple H chop blocks the knee of Orton, Orton’s leg is wrapped around the ringpost. Another huge chop block, elbow by Triple H. The Game wrenches on the knee of Orton, small package by Orton for two. Figure four by Triple H, Orton edges himself towards the ropes but Triple H drags back the challenger to the centre of the ring. Orton turns the pressure over to Triple H, Triple H grabs the ropes to break the hold. The Game smacks Orton’s leg off the ring apron, Orton shoves off The Game which leads to Triple H tumbling over the announce table.

Backbreaker by Orton, right hands by the challenger. Neckbreaker by Orton for two, another neckbreaker for two. Orton lowers his head off an Irish whip, boot by Triple H. Orton nails a powerslam for two, Triple H turns the tide for an inverted atomic drop. Triple H is yanked off the top rope by Orton, Orton climbs to the top turnbuckle. Crossbody for two, facebuster by Triple H. Pedigree is blocked for a catapult, Triple H avoids The RKO for a high running knee. Two for the champion, Pedigree is blocked for a clothesline, two for Orton. Triple H begs for mercy, uppercuts, lefts and rights by Orton. Triple H is using the ropes to stand, Triple H avoids a DDT, Orton lays on the mat with a bloody lip.

Orton appears to have a concussion, Triple H clotheslines Orton into the referee. The Game stomps the head of Orton, Triple H has a sledgehammer. Orton lures in Triple H, The Game smashes his face off the ringpost. Orton picks up the sledgehammer, Triple H clotheslines Orton before he can use the hammer. Pedigree by Triple H and The Game is still your champion.

Not a fan of this match, Orton’s whole babyface run was an issue and a blunder from WWE. The kneework done by The Game did not play into the finish or matter when all was said and done. Therefore, the first half of this match was entirely pointless, you also have Orton struggling to get over as a tough babyface since the turn and what do you do? You have him give himself a concussion which leads to the finish, I am sorry but they did not pull this off in a way that made Orton look good. Thank God Orton turned it all around by turning heel and feuding with The Undertaker.

Winner: Triple H over Randy Orton via Pedigree!

JBL Celebration

Theodore Long ruins JBL’s time by announcing that JBL will be facing Big Show at the next pay per view, there will be no outside interference and the match will be a barbed wire steel cage match. Another great segment backstage, this show was fantastic in this sense.

Royal Rumble Match

Thirty men will compete for the chance to main event Wrestlemania, two men begin with participants entering at timed intervals. Eliminations occur when a superstar is tossed over the top rope and both feet hit the floor. I will divide this into blocks of 5 to make it easy for you, the people who will read this and myself when I read it back.

Entrants 1 to 5

We kick it off with Eddie Guerrero and Chris Benoit, lock-up with Benoit pushing back Eddie. Eddie and Benoit clean break, armdrag by Benoit. Side headlock by Eddie, armbar by Eddie. Number three is Daniel Puder, Puder asks for the microphone. Puder tells the fans they will witness history, Benoit and Eddie look at Puder before beating the piss out of the boy. Double suplex by Eddie & Benoit, back suplex by Benoit. Three Amigos by Eddie, number four is Hardcore Holly.

Puder is screaming out in pain when Holly sprints down to the ring. Holly chops Puder over and over, Eddie wants to hear who has louder chops, Hardcore or Benoit. Puder’s chest is red, Holly kicks Puder in the dick. Alabama Slam by Holly, Puder is tossed to the floor. Number five is Hurricane, Benoit and Eddie throw out Hardcore.

Daniel Puder has been eliminated by Hardcore Holly!

Hardcore Holly has been eliminated by Benoit & Guerrero!

Entrants 6 to 10

Hurricane is back dropped to the floor by Latino Heat after an assist from Chris Benoit.

Hurricane has been eliminated by Eddie Guerrero!

Number six is Kenzo Suzuki, chops and suplexes follow for Suzuki. Suzuki chops back at Benoit, Eddie saves Benoit and the two double team Suzuki. Back suplex by Eddie, Benoit tries eliminating Eddie but Eddie hangs on. Number seven is Edge, Edge Spears Eddie in the corner. Edge attacks everything that moves, Benoit and Edge square off with Benoit clotheslining Edge down. Suzuki jumps Benoit, number eight is Rey Mysterio. Mysterio attacks everything that moves, great bulldogs and dropkicks all around. Suzuki is headscissored over by The Master of The 619.

Kenzo Suzuki has been eliminated by Rey Mysterio!

Number nine is Shelton Benjamin, a lot of big stars in the ring now. Eddie tries eliminating Benoit but nothing comes of it. Headscissors by Mysterio on Benjamin, here comes Booker T at number ten. Booker T hammers Edge, spinning heel kick for Edge. Benoit knees Eddie, Benjamin and Mysterio square off. Bischoff is here to cheer on Raw superstars, no sign of Theodore Long.

Entrants 11 to 15

Jericho is number eleven, here comes Theodore Long. Number twelve is Luther Reigns, we have a stare-down featuring Raw against Smackdown. Crowd pops huge for it, I like it too. Number thirteen is Muhammad Hassan, Hassan walks to the ring and everyone stops, Hassan is not welcome in the rumble. Everyone beats the piss out of Hassan in another good spot, Hassan eats a 619. Hassan is dumped to the floor by everyone.

Muhammad Hassan has been eliminated by Everyone!

Number fourteen is Orlando Jordan, everyone is pairing off in the corners. Benjamin has Jericho on the apron, number fifteen is Scotty Too Hotty. Scotty dances for ages which leads to Hassan assaulting Scotty from behind, Scotty has terrible luck when it comes to battle royals. Edge is almost eliminated by Benjamin but Edge holds on to survive.

Entrants 16 to 20

Sixteen is Charlie Haas, Booker nails Haas immediately. Booker clotheslines Luther Reigns to the floor and back drops Orlando Jordan out of the ring. Booker pays for it as Mysterio kicks out Booker with Eddie’s help.

Orlando Jordan/Luther Reigns have been eliminated by Booker T!

Booker T has been eliminated by Rey Mysterio!

Number seventeen is Rene Dupree, Dupree goes after Mysterio. Haas and Benjamin reunite for some old tag team offense, it does not last long with Edge shoving Benjamin to the floor after a missed splash.

Shelton Benjamin has been eliminated by Edge!

Number eighteen is Simon Dean, Dean brings out his back and warms up on the floor before entering the ring. Eddie is dumped out randomly by Edge, no build up whatsoever, what happened there?

Eddie Guerrero has been eliminated by Edge!

Michaels is in at number nineteen, Simon Dean finally enters the ring and within seconds, Michaels clotheslines Simon Dean right over the top rope.

Simon Dean has been eliminated by Shawn Michaels!

Edge corners Mysterio, Mysterio slides away. Shawn Michaels back drops Charlie Haas over the top rope.

Charlie Haas has been eliminated by Shawn Michaels!

Angle comes in at twenty, Angle walks through everyone in the ring, German suplexes for all and Angle Slams until Shawn Michaels stands before Angle. Michaels avoids The Angle Slam and Angle eats a Sweet Chin Music over the top rope.

Kurt Angle has been eliminated by Shawn Michaels!

Entrants 21 to 25

The Coach is in at number twenty-one, Coach slowly walks into the ring and hits Benoit. Coach hides in the corner, Coach holds onto the bottom rope for dear life. Mysterio and Jericho are on the apron, nothing comes of it. Mark Jindrak is number twenty-two, Kurt Angle re-enters the ring and eliminates Shawn Michaels, wiping out HBK with the steel steps.

Shawn Michaels has been eliminated by Kurt Angle!

Number twenty-three is Viscera, Viscera slams Mysterio. Number twenty-four is Paul London, Dupree attempts The French Tickler before Jericho tosses out Rene.

Rene Dupree has been eliminated by Chris Jericho!

Number twenty-five is John Cena, Cena goes after the big Viscera. Cena clubs out Viscera and elevates Viscera to the floor.

Viscera has been eliminated by John Cena!

Entrants 26 to 30

Snitsky is in at twenty-six, shoulder block on Benoit. London and Snitsky go at it in the middle of the ring, Snitsky shakes off London for one of the coolest eliminations you will ever see as Snitsky clotheslines London causing London to do a shooting star faceplant on the floor.

Paul London has been eliminated by Snitsky!

Number twenty-seven is Kane, Snitsky stomps on Kane. Kane nails a huge clothesline, Chokeslam for Edge and Benoit. Cena too and Jericho is not safe, Mysterio is a goner and Jindrak is eliminated.

Mark Jindrak has been eliminated by Kane!

Snitsky powerslams Kane, number twenty-eight is Batista. Batista pummels Snitsky, Snitsky is gone within seconds.

Snitsky has been eliminated by Batista!

Batista and Kane face-off, Batista Bomb by The Animal. Jericho is caught and pressed to the floor by Batista.

Chris Jericho has been eliminated by Batista!

Number twenty-nine is Christian, Christian goes after Cena due to Cena’s insults earlier. 619 on Kane, Cena FUs Kane to the floor.

Kane has been eliminated by Cena!

Cena and Mysterio discuss teaming up, number thirty is Ric Flair. Flair and Batista high-five, Coach eats a spinebuster from Batista. Flair dumps out Coach, Flair struts and high-fives The Animal.

Coach has been eliminated by Flair!

Christian is next on Batista’s list, spinebuster by Batista. Christian is military pressed onto Tomko, Benoit fights back but a spinebuster by Batista dumps out Benoit. Flair tries dumping out Batista, it does not work as Edge Spears Flair and that’s all for Flair.

Christian/Benoit have been eliminated by Batista!

Flair has been eliminated by Edge!

The last four are Mysterio, Edge, Batista and Cena. Edge Spears Batista and Cena before eating a 619, Edge dodges The West Coast Pop and elevates Mysterio to the apron. Spear by Edge and Mysterio is gone, Edge gets cocky and charges at Cena and Batista, the two dump Edge to the floor.

Mysterio has been eliminated by Edge!

Edge has been eliminated by Cena & Batista!

Big stare-down between the two rising stars, Cena has Batista for The FU but Batista holds onto the ropes. Batista looks for The Batista Bomb, they do it perfectly as both men splat off the floor at the same time. However, this was not the desired finish with Vince coming out to restart between the last two. Vince infamously tears both quads and sits in his ring, screaming his head off at everyone. The match is restarted, Batista Bomb is blocked. FU attempt, Batista spinebusters Cena and tosses out The Doctor of Thuganomics! Batista is going to Wrestlemania.

A very enjoyable rumble, one of the better ones in my opinion. You had some really good stuff, everyone loved Puder getting schooled by some of the stiffest chops I have ever heard. The Smackdown vs Raw showdown was a really nice touch, Hassan’s beatdown was good. The ring filled up with a lot of superstars but in a way, it made sense for once because you had a lot of top guys in the ring. At one point, it was Benoit, Eddie, Edge Cena, Michaels, Angle, Benjamin, Jericho, Kane and Batista. So, it was going to be difficult to take out those top guys in a manner that is believable and in a way that protects them. I can see why also that plans changed for the WWE moving forward in terms of who would be on Raw and who would be on Smackdown leading the brands. Batista was super over but Cena had a monster reaction too from the fans, they could have easily swung over. Overall, a really good rumble that maybe does not get as much love as it should but I enjoyed the hell out of it.

Winner: Batista over Everyone Else via Survival!

That was WWE’s Royal Rumble of 2005, a good show to kick off the big four and the road to Wrestlemania. It was like a coming out show in many ways, Edge scoring his first big win and Cena and Batista being the final two in the rumble. The Smackdown Championship match was a lot of fun as was the casket match, loved the Kane spot helping his brother, it just worked so well. The only knock was the Raw Championship match, I felt the story they told was abandoned halfway through as the leg was rendered a non-factor and it just hurt Orton even more with the way they were booking him. The Royal Rumble was great, it was a breeze to get through and barely any of it was dull, it was just action, cool moves and spots that made me laugh smile or freak out. Thanks for reading and remember: There’s always another night!

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