It was a good night to be a previous UFC champion at a quite predictable and largely underwhelming Royal Rumble that felt like the opposite of all the things the function was meant to be.
Ronda Rousey returned from a nearly 3-yr hiatus to earn the women’s Royal Rumble and Brock Lesnar, who shed the WWE championship before in the evening, entered the men’s match at No. 30 and punched his ticket to WrestleMania at The Dome at America’s Middle in St. Louis on Saturday night time.
The Royal Rumble made use of to be about new stars ascending to get their WrestleMania probability and or more mature talent finishing journeys to mountain top rated for the to start with time. On Saturday evening, WWE experienced two founded primary eventers — and possibly portion-timers — acquire Royal Rumbles they certainly did not require to in get to get their respective match at WrestleMania at AT&T Stadium in April. It was all section of a night that just seemed to be missing its usual attraction. At the very least the doorway is nonetheless open for Bianca Belair and Big E to be in title matches at Mania.
Below are five takeaways from the 2022 Royal Rumble:
Lesnar is no lengthier the WWE champion, but he’s a now a two-time Royal Rumble winner and on a collision class with Universal champ Roman Reigns at Mania.
The moment the former UFC heavyweight champion entered the match it felt like a forgone summary he’d be the winner. WWE did give us Lesnar and a returning Drew McIntyre as the last two in a callback to the 2019 rumble and the Beast strike Undesirable Bunny with an F5. It was section of a solid finish to a mostly anti-climatic match — the largest shock entrant was Shane McMahon.
Omos appeared outstanding, removing a few people today and offering a chop to Ricochet that sounded like it would caved his upper body. It took 6 adult males, together with a traveling Types – his former tag workforce husband or wife – to get rid of the significant 7-footer.
Johnny Knoxville’s look in the Royal Rumble was much less ha-ha than predicted. The ridiculously dressed “Jackass Forever” star took down Sami Zayn, took a flurry of strikes from A.J. Types and a Frog Splash from Montez Ford. It was his storyline nemesis Zayn who eliminated him in a speedy, fun section. He was not the only superstar entrant has Negative Bunny entered at No. 27 and eliminated Sheamus and hit a Canadian destroyer on Riddle. He proceeds to look like a feasible wrestler when he’s in the ring.
WWE did not give us Rey and Dominik Mysterio in the ring together immediately after constructing up some prospective father-son drama in the leadup. A single of the most important shockers could have been Mad Cap Moss removing No. 1 entrant Types. They at some point received theirs as McIntyre — who has a legit neck injuries — eliminated each Moss and Delighted Corbin, who took him out in storyline at Working day 1. Maybe the most significant shock of all was Kofi Kingston was not ready to nail his yearly remain-in the Rumble place as his toes strike the ground when he was pushed from the best rope. It was symbolic of a match that just seemed to pass up the mark. The place was Finn Balor?
The women’s Royal Rumble match felt very rushed — but it was nevertheless greater than the men’s outing simply because it did inform some stories. It did provide 1 of the winners people today ended up hoping for when Rousey returned at No. 28 to in the end do away with SmackDown women’s champion Charlotte Aptitude to punch her ticket to a likely match between the two at WrestleMania.
Effortless moments were being hardly ever specified a opportunity and others weren’t offered a time to breathe. Sasha Financial institutions entered as No. 1 in whole Sailor Moon garb, but was eradicated extremely, extremely, promptly by Queen Zelina suitable prior to Belair entered the match at No. 8 – substantially to the chagrin of the group. The two previous WrestleMania headliners had been denied a moment in the ring.
Sonya Deville came down at No. 11 in her jacket so she couldn’t be attacked, but went to the commentary desk and not into the ring until finally she arrived in to reduce a returning Cameron, Naomi’s former Funkadactyls mate. Naomi, who has had her troubles with Deville given that August, was up coming and speedily eliminated her. Deville did occur back to pull Naomi off the arpon to get her out of the match, but anything occurred so speedy.
The crowd was not invested in this match for prolonged stretches, specially after Banks was removed. Exterior of a few moments from Belair and Rhea Ripley, it felt like handful of performers were seriously showcased or given storylines to create off of.
Effects Knockouts winner Mickie James did come by the “forbidden door” with the belt around her midsection and her “Hardcore Country” concept to a big pop. Nikki A.S.H. arrived from the other facet of the ring to check out to reduce previous tag lover Ripley, who experienced a few option words and phrases for her under her breath. Nikki afterwards attacked Mighty Molly prior to she entered the ring mainly because there can only be one particular superhero and rapidly eradicated her. The Bellas spoiled a Riott Squad reunion following Sarah Logan returned soon after a prolonged hiatus from WWE.
1 interesting moment was the return of Ivory in her Appropriate to Censor attire, chatting about wanting to thoroughly clean factors up in WWE ahead of being quickly eliminated by Ripley. Lita and Charlotte Aptitude had a good encounter-to-face trade. While it was enjoyment to see a selection of the legends, acquiring not one particular performer arrive up from NXT feels egregious.
Even with all that, WWE obtained the moment it hoped for with Rousey, who came out in all black with “Baddest” throughout her chest as a substitute of her typical “Rowdy Roddy” Piper encouraged gear. The former Uncooked women’s winner seemed superior, pulling off a very wild arm bar over the major rope with Belair and even bought to crew up with buddy Shayna Baszler, who was in the final 4 with her and Flair.
Like almost everything in this match, Rousey and Flair’s conversation for the finish consisted of The Queen lacking a kick and Rousey flipping her in excess of the top rope to a roar from the group. Anticipate these two to most likely fulfill again at WrestleMania, even with Becky Lynch retaining the Uncooked women’s title versus Doudrop in a pretty strong match. They explained to the story of Significant Time Becky needed to pull out every single cease to conquer Doudrop, employing a Manhandle Slam from the second rope to protected the 1-2-3.
Seth Rollins versus Roman Reigns experienced all the things but a quality finish
Rollins wonderfully continued the head online games, coming into the ring to The Shield’s new music and dressed in entire Protect garb and even sent a Protect bomb to Reigns through the announce table. He and most of the audience assumed he had Reigns defeat immediately after a Buckle Bomb and then a Stomp, but the Tribal Main was just able to get his arm up in time. The frantic paces turned methodical in Reigns’ favor until eventually Rollins countered a spear with a Pedigree top to an additional late kickout from the Head of the Desk. There was a tiny bit of a Batman-Joker experience to this tale with Rollins laughing at Reigns each time he ought to have been crushed down.
This remarkable match was booked to an very uncomfortable and anti-climactic finish. Reigns put Rollins in the guillotine choke. The challenger was capable to get around the ropes and appeared to have handed out right before thoroughly reaching them. Referee Charles Robinson lifted Rollins’ hand and it grabbed the gown as it fell back again down. Reigns refused to crack the maintain and missing the match through disqualification, but retained his title.
The Universal winner then snapped, beating Rollins down with chair shot soon after chair shot – which include a symbolic just one to the back again – as he was closely booed. I understand the tale WWE is seeking to tell here, Reigns’ “God Mode” isn’t as powerful as it as soon as was and Rollins deserved the beating for his conceitedness and earlier steps. Reigns blamed Rollins for not permitting him consider the keep off. Nonetheless, WWE’s lack of ability and reluctance to reserve clean up or decisive finishes in huge fork out-per–view matches is brain boggling and the group there enable them hear it.
Bobby Lashley 1, Brock Lesnar — many thanks to Roman Reigns and Paul Heyman.
Lesnar and Lashley’s prolonged-awaited clash started with a German suplex contest which introduced out a great seem of appreciation from The Beast just after he went traveling the initial time. Lashley, who missed Lesnar going by way of the barricade in a contact back again to Working day 1, strike his opponent with two spears right before Lesnar turned the tide to consider him to Suplex Town. When Lesnar went for the F5 the 1st time, Lashley countered with the Hurt Lock – but backed his opponent into the referee. He then hit the official though offering an F5. Lesnar experienced Lashley pinned but no 1 to depend to three, so WWE guarded him a little bit.
Then it happened. Reigns delivered a spear to Lesnar out of nowhere and was presented the WWE championship by Heyman. He smashed Lesnar in excess of the head with it and still left with his Particular Counsel back again at his side. Lashley crawled on to Lesnar and pinned him to be reunited with the WWE championship soon after shedding it to Major E in September. The Heyman switch was most likely the end to the match Reigns and Lesnar were being supposed to have at Working day 1 before the Tribal Chief contracted COVID-19. Lashley is probably headed to defending his title inside Elimination Chamber or facing its winner next. WWE has some time now to determine it out.
Grit beats It
This blended tag match was generally almost everything we assumed it would be. Maryse running from Beth Phoenix and The Miz performing every little thing he could to secure her. They even experienced Maryse strike Phoenix with the brick she made use of on Raw, so there was some tale continuity right here.
What wasn’t expected and was refreshed was allowing the gentlemen and females get actual physical with each and every other as normally as they did. Phoenix ability bombed The Miz and just one level and Maryese strike a top-rope hurricanrana on Edge. There was even a stage where it appeared like the It Few could earn immediately after Miz hit Edge with a Skull Crushing Finale. As a substitute it finished with Edge and Phoenix hitting a double spear to Miz and then equally providing simultaneous Glam Slams and pins for the 1-2-3. Let us hope this isn’t the previous we have noticed in excess of Phoenix for a although.
Biggest Winner: Roman Reigns
Most important Loser: Sasha Banks
Finest Match: Seth Rollins vs. Roman Reigns