1/24 Powell’s WWE Royal Rumble Kickoff Show coverage – Tag match qualifier for two spots in the Royal Rumble match

By Jason Powell

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WWE Royal Rumble 2016 Kickoff Show
Aired live on WWE Network
Orlando, Florida at Amway Center

The Kickoff show hosts were Renee Young, Corey Graves, Booker T, and Jerry Lawler.

Powell’s POV: For those who missed it, Lawler said he would be on the Kickoff Show because the Raw broadcast team is calling the actual pay-per-view. Mauro Ranallo said he will be living tweeting from backstage. What a shame.

Rich Brennan checked in from the social media lounge (a/k/a masturbation den) and said The Social Outcasts will be answering social media questions later in the show… Young set up the stats video… The hosts spoke about Roman Reigns being the first entrant…

Young set up a flashback of the 2011 Rumble match won by Alberto Del Rio, the 2012 Royal Rumble won by Sheamus…

Backstage, League of Nations (minus Lana) spoke around their table about crushing in singles matches and then competing in the Rumble match. Sheamus said it’s every man for himself, but Reigns stole his title and he’s taking it back. Sheamus said one of them will walk out of the match as the new champion…

Powell’s POV: There are better cable access talk show sets than the one WWE uses for League of Nations.

The panel spoke about who would win the U.S. Title match. Booker picked Kalisto. Lawler said Booker hasn’t made a correct prediction since Ric Flair was voted most promising newcomer. Funny…

Footage aired of Shawn Michaels winning the 1995 Rumble match, and Vince McMahon winning the 1999 Rumble match… A video package focussed on the Dean Ambrose vs. Kevin Owens feud…

Backstage, JoJo tried to interview Kevin Owens, who took it over and said he’s going to win the U.S. Title and then find a way to enter the Royal Rumble match. “How? Because I’m Kevin Owens, that’s how,” he said. Owens spoke about how the Last Man Standing match and how the rules allow him to do what he’s wanted to do to Ambrose all along. Owens boasted that he beat John Cena in his first WWE match, and now he’s going to make history in his first Royal Rumble match. He said he will make history by walking out with two titles. “This is the Kevin Owens Show,” Owens concluded…

Powell’s POV: A really good promo by Owens that should have aired on Raw or even Smackdown.

1. The Dudley Boyz vs. Mark Henry and Jack Swagger vs. The Ascension vs. Darren Young and Damien Sandow in a four-way qualifier for the Royal Rumble match. The broadcast team of Michael Cole, JBL, and Byron Saxton checked in. Eden Stiles handled the ring announcing for the match. Sandow got a great ovation from the live crowd. Young wore knee pads that matched the color of Sandow’s trunks.

There was an early spot where the teams all ended up in the ring together and bickered, which was the cue for the commercial break. The WWE Network commercial focussed on the Stone Cold Podcast, the adult-oriented WWE animated show, and the Edge & Christian show. Plus, they hyped Fastlane and WrestleMania.

Back to the match, they were back to having two men in the ring. Saxton said D-Von has never been in a Royal Rumble match. Late in the match, the Dudleys performed the Whassup spot on Young, then hit 3D on Viktor. Swagger pulled Bubba off Victor and held him while Henry splashed Bubba. Henry pinned Bubba to win the match. Henry and Swagger shook hands afterward…

Mark Henry & Jack Swagger beat The Ascension, Darren Young & Damien Sandow, and The Dudley Boyz in a four-way in 8:00 to qualify for the Royal Rumble match.

Powell’s POV: I thought we might see Henry and Swagger come to blows afterward to establish that it’s every man for himself now that their match is over. Bubba was pinned, but it felt like the Dudleys were protected given that they would have won the match had Bubba not been pulled away by Swagger.

The broadcast team discussed the match and then went backstage to where the Social Outcasts answer social media questions… More past Rumble match highlights were shown… Young set up a video package for the Divas Championship match… The panel discuss the Divas match…

The hosts delivered final thoughts and made their Rumble match predictions while they ran the Rumble countdown clock and had the buzzer sound a few times. Lawler said you’re an idiot if you’re paying your cable company for the pay-per-view. A shot aired of the WrestleMania sign in the rafters to close the show…

Powell’s POV: Way to insult the paying audience, King. That seems more idiotic to me than anything. Anyway, join me on the main page for live coverage of the Royal Rumble.


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