By Jason Powell, Prowrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
WWE Greatest Royal Rumble
Aired live on April 27, 2018 on WWE Network and pay-per-view
Jeddah, Saudi Arabia at King Abdullah Sports City Stadium
The event opened with the Saudi Arabian national anthem followed by the United States national anthem. Both were taped instrumental versions… A video package aired… Pyro shot off on the stage and around the top of the stadium…
The broadcast team of Michael Cole, Corey Graves, and Byron Saxton checked in from ringside. They showed the Greatest Royal Rumble trophy that will be awarded to the winner of the Rumble match. Graves mentioned the 2030 plan and cultural diversity, and Cole said they will talk about it throughout the evening…
1. Triple H vs. John Cena. No motorcycles for Hunter’s entrance, as he simple walked to the ring. Graves said Hunter and Cena requested to open the show because they wanted to be first on a show of such magnitude. Cena had a bunch of boys and girls dressed in his attire on the stage. He received the pyro treatment. A fan held up a “Jeddah is too sweet” sign. Funny.
There was an early test of strength. Cole said it harkened back to the days of Bruno Sammartino. Hunter kicked Cena to break the test of strength. Hunter mocked him with a “you can’t see me” gesture, which got a rise out of the crowd. Hunter looked to the crowd and drew boos, so he gave them a “you can’t see me” gesture as well.
At 8:00, Cena started a comeback and did the “you can’t see me” to Hunter, who cut him off with a side suplex. Hunter delivered a “you can’t see me” and a crotch chop. At 9:30, Cena ran Triple H into the ring post and then rolled him back inside the ring. Cena went up top and leapt, but Hunter caught him with a powerbomb and picked up a near fall. Cena came back with an STF at 10:55. He gave up the hold only to have Hunter perform a spinebuster for a two count.
At 12:25, Cena hit a Five Knuckle Shuffle and followed up with an Attitude Adjustment for a good near fall. Triple H came back with a Pedigree for another near fall at 14:00. Cena applied an STF. Hunter countered into his own STF, but Cena powered him up with an AA and then performed a slingshot into the corner before hitting another AA and scoring the pin…
John Cena pinned Triple H in 15:45.
After the match, Cena took the mic and said it was an honor and a privilege to be on the show. He said that no matter what was going on in his universe, there was no way he would miss the show. He thanked the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for going above and beyond with their hospitality. Cena told the crowd to enjoy the rest of the night. He dropped the mic and slapped hands with fans as he headed up the ramp…
Powell’s POV: A fine match with a very receptive crowd. It’s fun to hear the live crowd react to a lot of the old school basics they did early. The shots of the super excited kids in the crowd are especially fun.
The dual brand pay-per-view commercial aired…
2. Cedric Alexander vs. Kalisto for the WWE Cruiserweight Championship. Cole noted that the Saudi Arabian broadcast team was joining them live for the first time. The trio checked in from their table, which is next to Cole and company. The broadcast team said this was the first singles match between the two. Kalisto performed a wild springboard off the middle rope and hit a huracanrana on Alexander on the floor. Alexander came back with a nice flip dive at 2:40.
Cole noted that there was a different configuration on the floor at ringside. He said there was a space reserved for the Saudi royal family. Alexander caught Kalisto with a great dropkick at 4:10. Kalisto performed a nice tornado DDT for a near fall at 6:15. At 8:45, Kalisto performed a Seated Springboard Splash Fly from the top rope for a near fall.
Cedric Alexander defeated Kalisto in 10:15 to retain the WWE Cruiserweight Championship.
Powell’s POV: It was hard to tell if the live crowd had much familiarity with these guys based on their reaction. The kids liked Kalisto’s “lucha, lucha, lucha” bit the first couple of times he did it, but he seemed to run it into the ground based on the lack of reaction the last time he did it. The fans seemed to appreciate the athleticism, but they didn’t see the wrestlers as stars. Even so, Alexander and Kalisto worked really hard and there were some really cool spots in the match.
3. Matt Hardy and Bray Wyatt vs. Sheamus and Cesaro for the vacant Raw Tag Titles. Wyatt’s entrance received the firefly treatment from the Saudi fans. Hardy and Cesaro went back and forth with “delete” and “The Bar” taunts. At 8:10, Sheamus set up for a Brogue Kick on Wyatt, who went into the crabwalk postiion. Wyatt ended up hitting Sister Abigail. Hardy tagged in and he and Wyatt hit the elevated Twist of Fate on Sheamus. Hardy pinned Sheamus for the win…
Matt Hardy and Bray Wyatt defeated Sheamus and Cesaro in 8:50 to win the vacant Raw Tag Titles.
Powell’s POV: I guess we’ll never know if Sheamus and Cesaro would have headed back to Raw if they won the match as they claimed on Tuesday’s Smackdown. Hardy and Wyatt still don’t feel like a hot pairing. Hopefully Matt will be given a chance to get creative to make this work.
A video package set up the U.S. Title match…
4. Jeff Hardy vs. Jinder Mahal (w/Sunil Singh) for the U.S. Championship. Singh was booed by some when he introduced Mahal from the stage. There was a bad Whisper in the Wind spot with Hardy not hitting Mahal, who bumped anyway. Hardy performed a Twist of Fate and then followed up with a Swanton for the clean win…
Jeff Hardy defeated Jinder Mahal (w/Sunil Singh) in 6:10 to retain the U.S. Championship.
Powell’s POV: A rough outing. It’s disappointing because they had a strong match on Raw when Jeff beat Mahal for the title. That Whisper in the Wind spot was incredible. Mahal had his back to Hardy when he performed the move and turned to see him land on the mat. With no contact whatsoever, Mahal took a bump.
John Cena’s Make A Wish ad aired…
Cole and Graves spoke at their table, then sent it to Saxton, who was with the Kickoff Show panel, which set up a Saudi Arabian government propaganda video. The panel spoke about how great they’d been treated and how good the food was.
Powell’s POV: Wow. I guess that’s what $20 million will buy you. By the way, I believe they are filling some time on the broadcast during prayer time.
Backstage, Mike Rome interviewed Chris Jericho, who called Kevin Owens a stupid idiot. He hyped the Rumble match and said it could be his night. Rome noted that Jericho has been gone for a while and he’s not Tom Phillips. Jericho said he’s been away for seven months, but he knows his name. He put him and a bunch of production people, including WWE creative team member Ed Koskey, on the list…
5. “Bludgeon Brothers” Luke Harper and Erick Rowan vs. Jimmy Uso and Jey Uso for the Smackdown Tag Titles. Saxton rejoined the team in time for the match and said teams who were moved to Raw in the Superstar Shakeup were happy to be away from the Bludgeon Brothers. The Usos hit several superkicks. Jey performed a top rope splash on Harper for a near fall. The Bludgeon Brothers came back and hit a double powerbomb on Jimmy and got the win…
Bludgeon Brothers defeated The Usos in 5:05 to retain the Smackdown Tag Titles.
Powell’s POV: The Usos got more of a hope spot, but this was essentially more of the same. I’m happy they are pushing Harper and Rowan, but I’ve reached a point where I want to see them positioned as being less dominant. The Usos have really lost their edge during his feud and having Naomi run out to save her husband on Smackdown didn’t help that cause.
A WWE Backlash ad aired and then a video package set up the Intercontinental Championship match…
6. Seth Rollins vs. The Miz vs. Samoa Joe vs. Finn Balor in a four-way ladder match for the Intercontinental Championship. Miz’s entrance received pyro. Miz made a play to work together with Joe around 6:40, which led to Joe punching him. Joe slammed Balor on a ladder, then set it up in the corner and tossed Rollins into it. Joe picked up the ladder and hit Miz with it.
The Miz had a run of offense around 11:00. Balor ended up hitting him with a Coup de Grace around 13:00. Joe applied the Coquina Clutch on Balor, who rolled out of it and double stomped him. Graves explained Joe’s strategy of trying to take out an opponent by putting him to sleep. Joe made a play for the belt, but Balor knocked the ladder over. Balor set up the ladder and went for the title, but Rollins springboarded onto the ladder and tore it down before Balor could get to it…
Seth Rollins defeated The Miz, Samoa Joe, and Finn Balor in a four-way ladder match in 15:05 to retain the Intercontinental Championship.
Powell’s POV: A good match with a nice finish. Balor suffered a cut around his right eye, and Rollins has a big ladder rung scrape on his chest.
A video package focussed on the WWE tryouts that were held in Saudi Arabia in the week leading up to the event…
Mike Rome stood in the ring with four prospects from the tryouts and introduced them by the names of Nassir, Hussein, Monsoour, and Jeddah’s own Fisal. He asked them to speak about their experience. Hussein spoke in English and then in his native language and received cheers from the crowd. Monsoour said they were once kids with a dream and now that dream has come true. He said they hope to represent their country as the first WWE wrestler from the Kingdom.
Shawn and Ariya Daivari made their entrance and waved an Iranian flag. They were booed as heels. Ariya mocked the trainees by asking if they are what you call athletes in Saudi Arabia. He said real athletes come from Iran, which received the loudest boos of the night. Ariya shoved Monsoour, who shoved him back and knocked him down. Fisal punched Shawn, then Nassir scooped up Shawn and slammed him. Hussein threw Shawn over the top rope. The four natives trainees played to the crowd and were cheered…
A “Something Else to Wrestle” ad aired and then the broadcast team plugged it… A video package set up the WWE Championship match…
7. AJ Styles vs. Shinsuke Nakamura for the WWE Championship. Greg Hamilton delivered the in-ring introductions for the title match. Nakamura controlled the early offense. Styles performed an inverted facebuster. The crowd started singing the ole song as Styles went on the offensive. Styles applied a Calf Crusher at 8:30. Nakamura reached the ropes to break it.
Nakamura battled back and performed a double knee lift to the gut while he had Styles lying on the top rope. The fans chanted for AJ Styles. The wrestlers traded forearms with the fans doing the “yah/boo” bit in favor of Styles. Nakamura went for a cross arm breaker at 11:45, but Styles blocked it and rolled onto him for a two count. Styles followed up with a Pele kick.
Nakamura avoided a top rope move by Styles, who landed on his feet and stopped short of hitting the referee. While Styles was facing the ref, Nakamura caught him with a low blow. They ended up at ringside where Styles tackled Nakamura and they both tumbled over the Saudi broadcast able. Both wrestlers were counted out. There were some boos. They kept fighting at ringside and Styles knocked Nakamura into the timekeepers area and struck him with a chair. Styles ended up leaving Nakamura lying and then went back to the ring and posed with his title belt to cheers…
AJ Styles fought Shinsuke Nakamura to a double count-out in 14:25.
Powell’s POV: A good match with the weak finish. The live crowd was the great unknown going into the show in terms of how knowledgeable and passionate they would be. They have been excitable throughout the night and they seemed up for this match. I assume the count-out finish means they will add a rematch for WWE Backlash and I wouldn’t be surprised if we see a title change. Nakamura is off to a good start as a heel.
A video package set up the casket match…
8. Undertaker vs. Rusev (w/Aiden English) in a casket match. Aiden English came out and sang to introduce Rusev. He asked the crowd what day it was and there was a loud “Rusev Day” response. Cole said it was the first casket match in over three years and he said it’s been a decade since Undertaker was involved in a casket match. Taker had his usual great entrance. The bell rang and Taker looked at the casket. They opened the casket and Rusev fled to ringside.
Rusev returned to the ring and then went to ringside again. Taker followed this time and hit Rusev, who rolled back inside the ring and attacked Taker once he followed. Taker tossed Rusev into the corner and threw several punches at him. At 3:45, Taker slammed Rusev’s head into Cole’s broadcast table. Taker set him up in the ring and dropped the leg on him.
Taker called for the casket to be opened. He rolled Rusev inside, but English held the lid. Taker went to ringside, causing English to run up the ramp while Rusev rolled back inside the ring. Rusev caught Taker with a Machka kick. They traded punches and got the “yay/boo” response again. Taker got the better of it. Rusev came right back with a nice spinning heel kick.
Rusev applied the Accolade at 7:20 and then released it while Cole said Taker was down and out. Taker sat up while Rusev face facing the casket. When he turned around, Taker went for a chokeslam, but Rusev slipped away. They traded punches again. Taker ended up chokeslamming Rusev at 8:35.
Taker rolled Rusev into the casket. English ran in. Taker grabbed him and chokeslammed him. Taker took out English with a Tombstone piledriver and then placed him inside the casket with Rusev. Taker closed the casket to win the match. Pyro shot off as Taker posed in the ring…
Undertaker defeated Rusev in a casket match in 9:40.
Powell’s POV: This was more entertaining than Undertaker vs. John Cena at WrestleMania and over three times longer. Taker performed his signature spots and that’s all it took to please the crowd. And at this point in his career, I think fans everywhere will be satisfied to see him work that style if he continues to make occasional appearances. In fact, I’ve said for several years now that Taker could tone it down. My thought was that it was simply a matter of booking him against the type of opponent that fans wouldn’t expect him to have a classic with and they would be happy to see him simply perform the signature spots. They didn’t do that by booking him against Cena at WrestleMania, but it looks like we’ve reached that point for Taker, which is a good thing.
A video package set up the WWE Universal Championship match…
9. Brock Lesnar (w/Paul Heyman) vs. Roman Reigns in a cage match for the WWE Universal Championship. Cole asked Graves if this was a must win situation for Reigns. Graves said he believes so and you can only lose to the same man so many times before you’re defeated inside. Reigns had pyro as part of his entrance, as did Lesnar, who received a big pop. Cole noted that Lesnar had never been beaten in a cage match. Greg Hamilton delivered the introductions from the floor as both wrestlers and the referee stood inside the cage. Reigns received a favorable reaction, though not as loud as the pop that Lesnar received during his entrance. Heyman took the mic and introduced Lesnar.
Lesnar opened with four German suplexes while Graves spoke about how Lesnar had the number of Reigns. Lesnar performed an F5 on Reigns, then looked down at him and smiled. Lesnar hoisted up Reigns for another F5, but Reigns slipped away and hit him with three straight Superman Punches. Reigns charged for a spear. Lesnar caught him and hoisted him up. Reigns freed himself and then tried to escape the cage, but Lesnar caught him and dragged him back inside. Samoa Joe was shown watching the match on a backstage monitor while Cole plugged his WWE Backlash match with Reigns.
Reigns speared Lesnar just before 5:00. Reigns followed up with a second spear. Lesnar struggled to get to his feet. Reigns ran the ropes and speared him for a third time. Reigns covered Lesnar for a two count at 5:45. Reigns called for the ringside referee to open the door. Reigns tried to leave, but Heyman slammed the door on his head while Cole reminded viewers that there were no disqualifications. Lesnar hoisted up Reigns for an F5 for a good near fall.
Heyman slid a chair inside the ring. Lesnar removed his fighting gloves and picked up the chair. Reigns speared Lesnar and got another two count at 7:35. Reigns picked up the chair and smiled before striking Lesnar over the back with it several times. Reigns connected with another Superman Punch. Reigns let out the war cry and then speared Lesnar, who was up against the cage. The cage broke and both men tumbled to ringside. Lesnar’s back hit first so he was named the winner…
Brock Lesnar defeated Roman Reigns in a cage match in 9:15 to retain the WWE Universal Championship.
Powell’s POV: If this were a legit sport then a case could be made for Reigns winning since Lesnar landed on the cage wall while Reigns rolled off and technically hit the floor first. Anyway, you can complain about the limited moves used, but they created some decent drama this time around. I was actually hoping they would just get this over with and hold the Reigns coronation, but instead they dragged it out in a way that calls for yet another rematch. Even though I enjoyed the match, I’m so ready for this program to end.
AJ Styles vs. Shinsuke Nakamura for the WWE Championship was officially announced for the WWE Backlash event. The broadcast team hyped the previously advertised matches… It was also revealed that the winner of the Greatest Royal Rumble match will receive an ugly green title belt to go along with the trophy… A WWE Network ad aired. The upcoming WWE 24 documentaries appear to be on AJ Styles and The Hardys…
10. The 50-Man Royal Rumble match. The entrances will occur every 90 seconds. The first and second entrants were Daniel Bryan and Dolph Ziggler. The third entrant was Sin Cara. Ziggler eliminated Sin Cara at 3:10. The fourth entrant was Curtis Axel, who had his own entrance theme. The fifth entrant was Mark Henry, who received a strong reaction. Henry eliminated Axel at 5:50.
The sixth entrant was Mike Kanellis, who turned around and reached for the hand of Maria, who obviously wasn’t there. Kanellis was immediately eliminated by Henry at 6:50. Cole immediately questioned if it was a record. The seventh entrant was Hiroki Sumi. Cole said he heard rumors that he would there. He said he competed in sumo wrestling and had 294 wins in his career and was two pounds shy of 400 pounds. Henry eliminated Sumi at 9:00. Ziggler and Bryan eliminated Henry a couple seconds later.
The eighth entrant was Viktor of The Ascension. Viktor was eliminated by Bryan at 10:20. The ninth entrant was Kofi Kingston. The fans popped for the New Day entrance music. The tenth entrant was Tony Nese, who is clearly the new favorite to win (or something). The 11th entrant was Dash Wilder of The Revival. He performed a nice backbreaker on Nese. The 12th entrant was Hornswoggle, who received a favorable reaction. Hornswoggle helped eliminate Wilder at 14:45.
Hornswoggle performed a Samoan drop on Kingston. He went up top for his Tadpole Splash, but Ziggler superkicked him. Graves said Hornswoggle was 3’9 and 420 pounds. Hornswoggle was eliminated by Nese. Cole called Nese a party pooper. Fortunately, Graves was there to essentially call him a tool. The 13th entrant was Primo. The 14th entrant was Xaiver Woods. He came out blowing the trombone. Cole said he couldn’t believe Francesca made an appearance.
Powell’s POV: Well, she is the only female on the show.
Nese tried to dance with Woods and Kingston. They picked him up and acted like it was part of the dancing and he went along with it. Nese was eliminated by Kingston and Woods at 19:25. The 15th entrant was Bo Dallas, who came out to his old Bolieve theme. The 16th entrant was Kurt Angle, who received one of the bigger pops of the night. Some fans sang the “you suck” part. Dallas and Primo were both eliminated by Angle around 21:30. Ziggler superkicked Angle. Ziggler was eliminated by Angle at 21:45.
The 17th entrant was Scott Dawson of The Revival. The 18th entrant was Goldust, who received a good reaction. Cole said this was Goldust’s 13th Rumble and only Kane at 17 has been in more Rumble matches. The 19th entrant was Konnor of The Ascension. The 20th entrant was Elias. Cole geeked out when Elias strummed his guitar. Elias asked who wants to walk with Elias as he walked to the ring. He said over 60,000 fans came to see him. He had them fill in the Walk With Elias line and they did so loudly.
“Elias is universal,” he said. Elias teased singing a song, then raced in and pushed Kingston, Woods, and Konnor over the top rope to eliminate them at 27:35. The 21st entrant was Luke Gallows. Angle applied the ankle lock on Bryan and performed an Angle Slam. Angle was eliminated by Elias at 29:20. Rhyno was the 22nd entrant. Cole noted that Bryan had been in the match for 30 minutes and the record is held by Rey Mysterio at 62 minutes.
The 23rd entrant was Drew Gulak. Cole said Gulak told him the first match he ever won in his career was a battle royal. The 24th entrant was Tucker Knight from the Heavy Machinery tag team. Gulak put Knight in a sleeper. Knight walked to the ropes before flinging him over. Gulak was eliminated by Knight at 32:40.
The 25th entrant was Bobby Roode. Elias and Roode fought one another. Goldust went after Roode, only to be dropkicked off the apron second later. Goldust was eliminated by Roode at 34:10. Dawson was eliminated by himself (I missed the spot, but that’s how the broadcast team described it). The 26th entrant was Fandango. The 27th entrant was Chad Gable.
The 28th entrant was Rey Mysterio, who received a good reaction. Cole acted stunned. Graves told him if he had looked at the promotional material then he would have known. Mysterio used a huracanrana to eliminate Gallows at 37:30. Mysterio also hit a cool DDT on Gable. The 29th entrant was Mojo Rawley. Fandango was eliminated by Rawley at 38:35.
The 30th entrant was Tyler Breeze, who crossed paths with Fandango as he was walking up the ramp. Fandango came back to ringside. Breeze went after Rawley, who eliminated Fandango. When Rawley fought back, Breeze leapt into the arms of Fandango and then got back in the ring. Breeze was eliminated by Rawley at 40:35. The 31st entrant was Big E, who brought pancakes with him and threw them at Knight. Knight was eliminated by Big E at 42:15.
The 32nd entrant was Karl Anderson, who hit Roode with a nice spinebuster. Entrant 33 was Apollo Crews, who performed a standing moonsault on Gable. Gable was eliminated by Crews at 44:15. The 34th entrant was Roderick Strong from NXT. Strong performed the gutbuster on E. Rhyno was eliminated by Strong at 46:15.
The 35th entrant was Randy Orton, who received a big reaction. Crews leapt off the top rope and was hit with an RKO on the way down. Orton eliminated Anderson, Rawley, and then Crews around 47:40. The 36th entrant was Heath Slater. The 37th entrant was Babatunde from NXT. They noted that he’s a former football player who once played for the Minnesota Vikings (he played in a few preseason games in 2015).
The 38th entrant was Baron Corbin. Roode was eliminated by Corbin at 51:20. Seconds later, Corbin eliminated Roode and then Strong. Entrant 39 was Titus O’Neil. He ran down the ramp and tripped on the pad at ringside and fell underneath the ring. Yes, really. Cole and Graves lost it laughing and for good reason. Cole said it may be the greatest thing he’s ever witnessed and it was replayed several times so you know Vince McMahon was loving it. The 40th entrant was Dan Matha from NXT.
The 41st entrant was Braun Strowman. Strowman eliminated Babatunde, Matha, and Slater in rapid fire order around 55:50. The 42nd entrant was Tye Dillinger (hey, the stupid ten joke is over). Strowman eliminated O’Neil at 56:45 and then eliminated Dillinger seconds later.
Mysterio was eliminated by Corbin, who was eliminated by Orton, who was eliminated by Elias. The 43rd entrant was Curt Hawkins, who ran up the ramp and was chased down by Strowman. Strowman eliminated Hawkins around 60:00.
The 44th entrant was Bobby Lashley. Elias was eliminated by Lashley at 61:35. Cole noted that Elias lasted over 35 minutes. Bryan, who had been down at ringside, returned to hit running dropkicks on Strowman and Lashley in opposite corners. The 45th entrant was Great Khali. The 45th entrant was Great Khali. The broadcast team noted that “poor ol’ Daniel Bryan” was in the ring with monsters. Strowman and Lashley teamed up to eliminate Khali at 63:50.
The 46th entrant was Kevin Owens, who performed cannonballs on all three opponents who were down in different corners. Cole noted that Bryan had been in the match for an hour and five minutes and had set the record for the longest stay in a Royal Rumble match. The 47th entrant was Shane McMahon, who received a good reaction. Cole noted that Shane had never been in a Rumble match.
Shane went right after Owens and worked him over, then put the boots to Lashley. Owens hit Shane from behind. Shane came back with a clunky DDT. Shane looked at Bryan, who had red welts on his chest and arm. They both delivered kicks to Owens. The 48th entrant was Shelton Benjamin, who entered the ring and took down Shane McMahon. Owens called for the other wrestlers to join him in trying to get rid of Strowman. The heels joined him in attacking Strowman.
The 49th entrant was Big Cass. Bryan went after him. There was an odd moment as Cass entered the ring and he was tripped by other wrestlers and he fell into Bryan. Shane went up top and nearly fell off, then performed the Coast 2 Coast once he regained his footing.
The 50th and final entrant in the match was Chris Jericho, who received a strong reaction. Owens and Jericho immediately fought. Benjamin was eliminated by Jericho at 72:40. Lashley performed a brainbuster on Cass. Bryan hit more running dropkicks on Lashley and Owens. Bryan pointed to Shane, who was on the top rope. Strowman cut off Shane and threw him from the top rope and through one of the broadcast tables to eliminate him at 74:40.
Strowman eliminated Owens and then Lashley. Strowman eliminated Owens and then Jericho. Bryan tried to eliminate Strowman, but he held on. They fought for a bit and then Cass caught Bryan with a big boot and eliminated him at 76:05. Cole noted again that it was a record breaking performance for Bryan. The broadcast team said the final two were Cass and Strowman. In the end, Strowman eliminated Cass to win the Rumble match…
Braun Strowman won the 50-man Royal Rumble in 77:20.
After the match, the King of Saudi Arabia and Vince McMahon entered the ring along with the trophy. The King was grinning from ear to ear as he presented the green title belt to Strowman, who held it up and celebrated while pyro shot off in the stadium and outside the stadium. Cole wrapped up the show as the celebration continued inside the ring. They aired a highlight video to end the broadcast…
Powell’s POV: Well, it was an oversized Rumble match. It was fun to see some of the NXT call-ups and I’m actually happy they didn’t go with Bryan as the winner if only because nothing was on the line. It made more sense to have Cass eliminate him in an attempt to heat up their feud. Overall, the show had its moments, but many of the big match finishes were house show like in nature. I will have more to say in my audio review later today.
The new edition of the Pro Wrestling Boom Podcast with Jason Powell and guest Todd Martin on his background, attending pro wrestling events in Japan, the NJPW G1 Tournament, why lucha libre companies haven't been as successful as NJPW in the United States, AEW optimism, covering pro wrestling and MMA, and more (68:57)...