Review for WWE Royal Rumble 2019

7 / 10

Royal Rumble 2019

Royal Rumble. Sigh. The Royal Rumble used to be my favourite PPV. I would wait all year for it and no matter how bad the year had been I could always guarantee the Rumble being the best thing. However, slowly, but surely WWE have chipped away at my favourite PPV with so many awful winners and moments I couldn’t remember the last time I was happy with the winner. Last year there was a glimmer of hope with the wins of Shinsuke Nakamura and Asuka, but as soon as they won they became almost afterthoughts.

So now we get to this year and I am still unsure what I feel overall. I’m pleased with the results, just not so much with the aftermath.

WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championship match between The Bar against The Miz and Shane McMahon was a good match if a little bizarre due to the ending. I have no issue with it, but definitely not one I would watch again. I was surprised by the outcome and was hoping more would come from it.

I was in two minds when it came to Asuka against Becky Lynch for the WWE SmackDown Women's Championship. I love both and didn’t want either to lose, but I couldn’t help but admit that I love The Man persona of Becky Lynch and she has been on fire. A great match between the two. Same can be said for the WWE Raw Women's Championship match between Ronda Rousey against Sasha Banks. It was a pretty good match and though I am not a huge fan of The Boss, she was great at getting the best out of Rousey. It was obvious how the match was ending, but it was still a great showing from both.

Who would have thought that WWE could make me boo Daniel Bryan? Putting his WWE Championship against AJ Styles this had some great back and forth and was definitely (on the main card at least) the best match. My only issue is that the match didn’t feel as special as their previous encounters and though an average Bryan/Styles match is still better than anything else, it still didn’t have the memorable moments I expected.

WWE Universal Championship pitted Brock Lesnar against Finn Bálor in quite possibly one of the most disappointing matches I have ever seen. The reason being that WWE did what they seem to always do these days… give us hope. If WWE could just listen to that crowd they would hear people begging for Finn Balor to get back the belt he never actually lost, to get that push he deserved and in this match it looked like he might do it. There was so many points in this match when I was stunned and convinced that The Beast was going to be bested and we might actually see our Universal Champion for more than a few times a year… BUT NOOOOOO!!!! One move, one slip and then it is over. Thankyou WWE for another disappointing performance and we shall see the Universal Championship in a few months then.

Both Men's and Women’s Royal Rumble match were pretty entertaining and I am glad that last year was not just a one-off. I was happy with both victors and the matches ended with me having a huge smile on my face. This was two years in a row where I was actually happy with the outcome and so I am not going to say anything regarding that.

Highlights for the Men’s, apart from the obvious Kofi saving himself moment, was of course the opening with Elias and Jeff Jarrett which was amazing, the appearance of Nia Jax which was bizarre to say the least and the ending which was just pitch perfect.

Highlights for the Women’s were few and far between. This did not feel as special as last year’s and the reliance on the NXT Women’s roster meant that I did not know half of the people involved. The thing about the Rumble lately (seen in the Men’s one) was the surprise reappearances of older stars which made you pop. Saying that, the appearance of Becky Lynch taking Lana’s spot was great and the whole ending was just perfect again. This was the perfect way to give Becky Lynch that push she so deserves.

Kickoff Show includes three extra matches. Bobby Roode and Chad Gable against Scott Dawson and Rezar was an odd match. The teams felt like they had been cobbled together (mainly because they were) and sometimes this works, but this just felt awkward and like filler. I can understand why it was on the Kickoff show. The Fatal four-way match for the WWE Cruiserweight Championship between champion Buddy Murphy against Akira Tozawa, Hideo Itami and Kalisto was fabulous and it is such a shame that the Cruiserweight match always seems to be relegated to the pre-show and really should have been given the time and opportunity to shine as they do here. Finally, we have the US Championship match between Rusev and Shinsuke Nakamura. This match did not feel special. It is surprising to think that a year before Shinsuke was a Number 1 Contender and Rusev was riding high with the Rusev Day gimmick and now both are fine, just nothing special.

Royal Rumble 2019 was a topsy turvy PPV. Finally, the actual match was back to being the highlight of my year and I have to thank WWE for this. The women did well in their matches and Bryan/Styles are always great. It is just a shame that they let me down with dethroning Lesnar and giving me that hope throughout for a very disappointing match. That being said the Kickoff match for the Cruiserweight Championship is fantastic and I really enjoyed this PPV. If you want to see some great Rumble moments and two worthy winners, then this is definitely one to catch.

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