Royal Rumble 2019 Review


World Wrestling Entertainment put on the 32nd annual Royal Rumble on Sunday January 27, an event that didn’t live up to my expectations.

Before the main show began, there were three matches on the kickoff show in which I only found one to be entertaining. This match was a fatal four way match for the Cruiserweight Championship that finished with the champion Buddy Murphy retaining his title. The crowd at Chase Field in Phoenix, Arizona didn’t seem too excited However, if this match were put in front of an NXT or 205 Live audience it would have been the best match on the show.

Smackdown Women’s Championship: Asuka (C) defeats Becky Lynch   

The main show began with what was one of the best matches of the night and it featured many great moves. Lynch hit an exploder suplex off of the top rope while Asuka delivered a swinging neckbreaker to the floor on the outside of the ring. After multiple submission attempts, Asuka submitted Lynch with a modified version of the Asuka lock for the win.

Smackdown Tag Team Championship: Shane McMahon and The Miz defeat The Bar (C)

The next match was for the Smackdown Tag Team Championship between the challengers Shane McMahon and The Miz taking on The Bar(Sheamus and Cesaro). This contest was quite boring for the most part until the finish which featured a shooting star press diving body drop by 49-year-old McMahon onto Cesaro for the pinfall thus crowning new champions.

Raw Women’s Championship: Ronda Rousey (C) defeats Sasha Banks

The third bout on the main show was between Ronda Rousey and Sasha Banks for the Raw Women’s Championship and I found this to be the best match of the night. Rousey hurt her arm early in the contest when she unintentionally hit the ring post. Banks took advantage of this, however, it wasn’t enough as even after multiple submission maneuvers it was Rousey retaining her title after hitting Banks with the Piper’s Pit slam.

Becky Lynch wins the 30-women Royal Rumble match

The first of two Royal Rumble matches of the night I found lacked action and dragged on a bit too long. Still, the ending of the match was phenomenal as Lynch replaced an injured Lana and won the match last eliminating Charlotte Flair. This will give Lynch a title match at Wrestlemania 35 on April 7, 2019. Due to the crowd reaction of Lynch’s victory, I believe this match should’ve gone on last.

WWE Championship: Daniel Bryan (C) defeats AJ Styles

The finish of this match was terrible, which is unfortunate since the action in this bout was tremendous. Styles delivered the Styles Clash to Bryan and would’ve likely won if it weren’t for a returning Erick Rowan interfering and chokeslamming Styles. Bryan then pinned Styles for the victory.

Universal Championship: Brock Lesnar (C) defeats Finn Balor

The last championship match of the night was for the Universal title between champion Brock Lesnar taking on Finn Balor and while I was glad this wasn’t a quick squash match like ones we have seen from Lesnar in the past, the finish was still a disappointment. Balor hit his finishing move, the diving stomp Coup de Grace, on Lesnar and when it looked as if the title was going to change hands, Lesnar kicked out and put Balor in a Kimura lock submitting him for the victory. This was a great bout, however, with how Balor has been booked as of late they could have made him look a bit stronger.

Seth Rollins wins the 30-man Royal Rumble match

In a match that typically features a number of surprise entrants and returns, it was only Jeff Jarrett and Kurt Angle that fit into those categories.

The lowlight of the match was when Nia Jax took out R-Truth and entered herself into the match at number 30. Some may have found this entertaining, but I for one did not. The Women’s Division has been booked so strong in today’s WWE and I found it unnecessary and quite honestly tasteless from the booking side of things.

The contest ended when Seth Rollins eliminated Braun Strowman after curb stomping him off the apron. Rollins will get a title shot at Wrestlemania 35.

Overall, Royal Rumble 2019 was a bit of a mixed bag. There were highs and lows in each the men’s and women’s matches, but there are moments that are definitely worth a watch if you get the chance.