Was a Disappointing Royal Rumble just Part of the Process?
The Road to Wrestlemania 30 in New Orleans on April 6th began over the weekend with the 2014 Royal Rumble, but the WWE may have to clear up a little traffic jam on the highway if the crowd displeasure in Pittsburgh over the results and hundreds of millions of negative tweets are any indication.
After 55 minutes of rumbling, Batista eliminated Roman Reigns of The Shield to capture his second Royal Rumble win and will headline Wrestlemania 30 when he takes on whoever the WWE World Heavyweight Champion is. Begin outrage. The crowd on hand at the Consol Energy Center was about as hostile as Pittsburgh Penguins fans with the Philadelphia Flyers in town.
It wasn’t so much that the Royal Rumble match was bad — and it was. The whole pay-per-view was very underwhelming with the exception of the Daniel Bryan/Bray Wyatt match. The Brock Lesnar/Big Show match (that I was kind of confused about) turned into a 15 minute steel chair beating. The WWE WHC (World Heavyweight Champion) match between Randy Orton and John Cena was paced poorly and fans absolutely hated it.
Batista winning the rumble match was just the licorice flavored frosting on top of a horrible tasting cake. Never mind that there was “conspiracies” over why he won. (Apparently he and Triple H are “real good friends”.) Fan favorite Daniel Bryan wasn’t even in the Royal Rumble match. Kevin Nash was. (Why?) John Bradshaw Leyfield — an announcer and former competitor — was. (Why?) Last night on Raw, it was revealed (through some clever writing, I might add) that Bryan was refused entry into the Royal Rumble match because Triple H and Stephanie McMahon “were concerned about the health of their stars”.
Nice recovery, WWE writers.
Depending on how old you are, you have an understanding when you watch wrestling. (SPOILER ALERT!!!) WWE is scripted. They have a team of writers who play out every plot line and every event. Every Raw is scripted. Every pay-per-view is scripted. I’ve never understood how far in advance these things are scripted, so I’m sure there are contingency plans in place if and when something goes terribly, horribly wrong — like the 2014 Royal Rumble.
Daniel Bryan wasn’t in the Royal Rumble match, sure, but there is one more pay-per-view event before Wrestlemania — the Elimination Chamber on February 23rd at the Target Center in Minnesota. We’re on the gold-paved road that leads to the best event of the year in sports entertainment. This is where the writers can smooth the bumpy road that the 2014 Royal Rumble seems to have left everyone on.
For example, what if Daniel Bryan were to win the Elimination Chamber match versus Randy Orton and four other guys to win the belt and headline Wrestlemania against Batista? That’s unlikely but possible. My personal angle would involve Bryan somehow getting into a triple-threat match at Wrestlemania 30 against Batista and Randy Orton — both of whom are hand-picked Triple H guys. For months, we’ve heard the (scripted) narrative that Triple H doesn’t think Bryan can be an “A-player” in the WWE because he’s not what a typical champion looks like. What better way for Bryan to prove otherwise (by it being written in) than on the biggest wrestling stage against two guys that are Triple H’s vision for a champion?
A situation like that cures all ills, and it would be the biggest story of the wrestling year — more than when Daniel Bryan originally won the title at SummerSlam last year. So before you go out and tweet or email WWE about your personal displeasure over what has happened in the last 48 hours, understand something. The WWE and its team of writers are well aware of Bryan’s meteoric rise to popularity and stardom in the WWE and with the WWE Universe.
The WWE kept Bryan out of the Royal Rumble match, but there’s absolutely no way they can leave him out of the main event at Wrestlemania 30. He’ll be in it, somehow. Whether he’s the champion going in or he’s a challenger in some capacity, the Flying Goat will be in. Wrestlemania 29 left a bad taste in people’s mouths last year, and the WWE can’t afford to make it two straight. They know leaving him out will cause even more vitriol, anger and disappointment than they’ve already experienced over the last year or so.
Trust the process, wrestling fans. Things will work out. It will be written in to make sure of it.
YES! YES! YES!
(Follow me on Twitter @AdioBRoyster)