This past Sunday was the 2015 Royal Rumble. The annual pay-per-view event took place at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It was the 28th annual Royal Rumble event and the first to air on the WWE Network. Overall the event was excellent. World Wrestling Entertainment did an amazing job of promoting and building up the pay-per-view. The triple threat match between John Cena, Seth Rollins, and the reigning and defending WWE World Heavyweight Champion Brock Lesnar certainly delivered. However the Royal Rumble match itself ended up being a huge disappointment. Most fans understood the end result would likely be either Daniel Bryan or Roman Reigns emerging victorious and there were the fair share of wildcards in the match. There was Bray Wyatt, Dean Ambrose, Dolph Ziggler, and the constant swirling rumors of a returning Randy Orton, even late rumors of The Rock being a possible surprise entrant. Unfortunately the WWE chose to continue force-feeding us Roman Reigns, having him come out of the Royal Rumble victorious, primed to headline WrestleMania 31.
The reaction of the fans at the Royal Rumble was worse than the reaction at last year’s Royal Rumble when Batista won. In the first half of the Rumble after Daniel Bryan was eliminated, the crowd repeatedly chanted his name for the rest of the match while booing the majority of the other participants as they made their entrance into the match. After Dolph Ziggler, Bray Wyatt, and Dean Ambrose were eliminated the crowd became even more disappointed going as far as chanting “we want refunds” and "bulls***.” When Roman Reigns emerged victorious, the crowd was so mad, even The Rock’s endorsement was unable to stop them from booing.
When the event came to a conclusion #CancelWWENetwork became the top Twitter trend worldwide. Multiple sources even reported the WWE Network online cancellation crashed as a result.
In response to Roman Reigns winning and the understandable backlash occurring, what follows is a list of the top 10 reasons why he shouldn’t have won the Royal Rumble.
10 2014 Royal Rumble
At the 2014 Royal Rumble, the WWE had Batista win the Rumble. The crowd response was beyond negative. All the fans in attendance voiced their opinions by booing Batista continuously while also cheering for Daniel Bryan (who competed earlier in the event but not in the actual Rumble). The backlash from the event was so bad that it was covered by various major news outlets and reported as one of the worst Royal Rumbles.
9 Believe That
Believability is a very important and vital factor in an exciting wrestling match. The fans need to actually believe that either party has a real chance of winning otherwise what’s the point of even having a match in the first place?
8 Greener Than Chlorophyll
In professional wrestling, the term “green” refers to a wrestler that is inexperienced. Moreover, it refers to a wrestler who is in the early stages of their career and as a result may be prone to making rookie mistakes. Roman Reigns signed a developmental deal with WWE in July 2010 and made his debut in September of the same year. He didn’t make his main roster debut until November of 2012 as a part of The Shield.
7 Suffering Succotash
6 "Superstar" Of The Year
5 More Qualified Competitors
After Daniel Bryan was eliminated in the first half of the Rumble it was blatantly clear (as disappointing as it is) that the WWE was likely going to have Reigns win the entire thing. However there were a slew of other participants that were not only more qualified but would have also resulted in a much greater response.
Dolph Ziggler came in as the last entrant in the Royal Rumble this year and (although he’s not my first choice) would have been a very viable and acceptable choice to win the Rumble especially after his amazing showing at Survivor Series.
Dean Ambrose would have also been a great victor for the Rumble as he’s had a stellar year, really gotten over with the fans, and has shown no signs of slowing down. Furthermore, both of these participants have all the skills to have succeeded in that situation and position.
4 Bray Wyatt
3 Alternative Main Event
Maybe the plan all along was to have Roman Reigns go over in the Royal Rumble. However if that was the case, why would the WWE not execute things in a way that would at least get the fans invested? Bottom line, most people do not want to see Roman Reigns versus Brock Lesnar. The match is not even appealing to me as I struggle to type it out, but if the plan was to always have Roman Reigns go over, wouldn’t a triple threat match between the three former Shield members in the main event of WrestleMania 31 been more exciting?
2 Daniel Bryan
1 Past Mistakes
Let’s take a look back at the Royal Rumble Winners from the last four years. There was Sheamus in 2012, John Cena in 2013, Dave Batista in 2014, and now Roman Reigns in 2015. That is four years of bad choices. Honestly the backlash from the 2014 Royal Rumble alone should have been enough of a reason for WWE to really evaluate who they were going to have win the Royal Rumble and why. This was the first Royal Rumble to air on the WWE Network and the beginning of the Road to WrestleMania, so one would assume that it is detrimental to their business to promote early excitement for their biggest event of the year. Unfortunately it seems we all just must be putting too much faith into the creative team and/or the powers that be.
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