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Martial Arts, Review, Wrestling

Was It REALLY The Greatest?: Ranking The Greatest Royal Rumble

So the Greatest Royal Rumble has come and gone with the WWE squeaking by with one “minor” cultural issue (which is less than I would have expected given their track record). With a 50-man rumble, and 7 title defenses, was the GRR worthy of being called “the greatest”?

Highs

Daniel Bryan is always entertaining and always amazing. His lasting over an hour in the Rumble and breaking the Rumble record was a nice acknowledgement of his skills. And unlike other wrestlers who have broken the 60-minute mark, Bryan spent a lot of his time in the thick of the action rather than on the sidelines.

The Ladder Match was highly entertaining, although like the previous title defense, the battle felt cheapened by the fact that two of the superstars were from SmackDown rather than Raw, where the ICC title belongs. The match for the vacant Raw titles falls under this category as well: entertaining, but we all knew how it would end.

Lows

Styles and Nakamura’s match ending in a double countout felt rather insulting, as one would expect both seasoned veterans to be aware of their situation more. If felt like a concession to have neither superstar lose, but rather than providing a satisfying cliffhanger, it felt like we were cheated out of a solid conclusion.

The Bludgeon Brothers versus the Usos barely even feels like it deserves to be called a match. Don’t get me wrong: I love a good beatdown fight between monsters and glorified cruiserweights, but this match is guilty of one of the deadliest sins in pro-wrestling: it was boring.

Verdict

Unfortunately, this was far from the “greatest”. Like I said earlier, it’s like a fun sketch that Marvel would release in between movies, rather than a proper movie event in itself.

Martial Arts, Wrestling

Preparing For Greatness: My Title Predictions For The Greatest Royal Rumble

It was recently announced that the WWE would be flying some of its greatest talents to Saudi Arabia to have a show with a card that would feature the largest Royal Rumble match to date, as well as have 7 title defense matches. Billed as the Greatest Royal Rumble, the event has a lot of promise.

Given the number of title defenses, a lot can happen over the course of the event. Here are my predictions for the so-called Greatest Royal Rumble:

No titles are changing hands

In terms of where the Greatest Royal Rumble ranks in the WWE storylines, I would say that it’s like the cute YouTube videos that Marvel has in between their movies: cute, and fun to watch but probably has no impact on the Marvel Cinematic Universe as a whole. That being said, don’t expect any titles to change hands.

Expect a lot of filler in the Royal Rumble

Even when staging the normal 30-man Royal Rumble, the WWE has a hard time filling all 30 slots with quality entries. A large number of entries are filler, providing cheap gags, getting eliminated almost right away, or making the ring look full before getting eliminated with little fanfare.

Now if the WWE has a hard time doing this for 30 slots, can you imagine the filler they’ll have for 50 slots, especially on a Pay Per View event that probably won’t figure into the WWE storylines? Expect the winner to be someone who they feel needs a push, but don’t expect it to affect storylines.

People will cheer Cena

While most pro wrestling fans have Cena-nuff of Big Match John, reports suggest that fans overseas still enjoy seeing him. Reports suggest that a lot of kids will be watching as well, and for some reason, kids still love John Cena. It’s like a law of the universe. The sun rises in the east, it sets in the west, and kids love Cena.

What are your predictions for the Greatest Royal Rumble?

Martial Arts, WrestleMania, Wrestling

WrestleMania Fallout: Did This Year’s ‘Mania Live Up To The Hype?

Almost 2 whole weeks ago, WrestleMania went down in New Orleans. Now this is a yearly event, and THE most anticipated WWE event each year for most. Now, one of the best gauges of how good a ‘Mania was, is how long people are still talking about it and how much it impacts the storylines of the coming year. This year’s ‘Mania definitely had its ups and downs as all events do, but the question remains: did it live up to the hype?

Highs

There were some definite highs in terms of wrestling action. The Triple Threat for the Intercontinental Title was definitely one. So was the return of Daniel Bryan in an incredible tag team match up with Shane McMahon against Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn. Of course, the Nakamura versus Styles match was a solid high point. The US Title match, while not amazing, was entertaining at the very least.

Some of the highs were marred however.  Both the Triple Threat and the Fatal Four Way were title matches, but they featured superstars who, based on rumors and confirmed the following week, were being moved as part of the shakeup. This really cheapened the value of the fight as obviously, belts weren’t going to move between brands.

Lows

Wow. When WrestleMania 34 had lows, it hit really, really low. Once again, the talents of Sheamus and Cesaro were wasted on what was pretty much a joke match, given that 1) Sheamus and Cesaro were being moved to SmackDown so there was no point in them winning the Raw belts, and 2) they lost to Braun Strowman and a 10-year old.

The main event was a match for a major title featuring two superstars who practically nobody cared about. All the efforts to build up Roman Reigns as a character the crowd could get behind were wasted. Throw in an Undertaker versus Cena match that completely ruined ‘Taker’s retirement last year, and showcased skills that would only impress a child, it was a low, low point indeed.

Verdict

Not the best WrestleMania, but also not the worst one to date. But in my honest opinion, WrestleMania 34 didn’t live up to the hype they built up for it.