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1/27 THIS DAY IN HISTORY: ANDRE THE GIANT PASSES AWAY, PWINSIDER.COM IS BORN AND MUCH MORE

By Mike Johnson on 2013-01-27 08:00:00

January 27th

On this day in history in ....

1904 - Frank Gotch defeats Tom Jenkins in Bellingham, Washington to win the American Heavyweight Title, ending Jenkins' second reign.

1916 - Joe Stecher defeats The Masked Marvel to retain the World Heavyweight Title in two straight falls at Madison Square Garden in New York City, New York. The Masked Marvel unmasked as Mort Henderson.

1936 - George Dussette defeats The Great Mephisto to win the Midwest Wrestling Association World Light Heavyweight Title in Detroit, Michigan.

1945 - Bert Assirati defeat Michael O'Leary for the British Heavyweight Title in Manchester, England.

1947 - Danny McShain wins his eighth World Light Heavyweight Title in Hollywood, California, ending Martino Angelo's second reign.

1954 - Oyama Kato defeated Frankie Talaber in Mansfield, Ohio to win the Midwest Wrestling Association World Junior Heavyweight Title, ending Talaber's ninth reign.

1960 - Hard Boiled Haggerty and Bill Savage defeat Lord James Blears and Jerry Gordet for the NWA Hawaii Tag Team Title in Honolulu, Hawaii.

1960 - Bobby and Don Fields defeat The Corsicans (Jean and Joe) in Mobile, Alabama to win the Gulf Coast NWA Southern Tag Team Title, beginning their second reign.

1965 - Fred Blassie and Tarzan Tyler defeat Eddie Graham and Sam Steamboat to win the Florida NWA World Tag Team Title in Jacksonville, Florida, ending Graham and Steamboat's second reign.

1967 - Paul Jones and Pepper Martin defeat Tony Borne and Moondog Mayne for the NWA Pacific Northwest Tag Team Title.

1969 - The WWWF holds an event at Madison Square Garden in New York City, New York. The results:
- The Jamaica Kid and Joey Russell defeated Billy the Kid and Cowboy Bradley in a two-out-of-three falls match.
- Lou Albano defeated Ron Sanders.
- Tony Altimore defeated Bob Harmon.
- Johnny Rodz defeated Carlos Colon.
- Bull Ramos defeated Louis Cerdan.
- Spiros Arion and Baron Mikel Scicluna fought to a draw.
- Haystacks Calhoun defeated The Sheik by disqualification, after The Sheik took a camera away from a ringside photographer and smashed it on the mat. While Sheik was leaving the arena a small riot broke out in the crowd, with an elderly woman getting trampled in the process. This resulted in The Sheik being banned from Madison Square Garden.
- Killer Kowalski and Gorilla Monsoon defeated Victor Rivera and WWWF World Heavyweight Champion Bruno Sammartino in three falls in a two-out-of-three falls match.

1972 - Omar Atlas and Danny Little Bear defeat Yasu Fuji and Chati Yokouchi to win the Central States NWA North American Tag Team Title in Kansas City, Kansas.

1972 - Boris Malenko wins the NWA Florida Brass Knuckles Title for the seventh time, defeating Bobby Duncum in Tampa, Florida, ending his second reign.

1973 - The Sheik defeats Bobo Brazil for the Detroit NWA United States Heavyweight Title in Detroit, Michigan, to begin his fourth reign and end Brazil's sixth.

1976 - Rufus R. Jones and Wahoo McDaniel defeat Gene and Ole Anderson in Columbia, South Carolina for the Mid-Atlantic NWA World Tag Team Title.

1976 - Bob Orton, Jr. and Bob Roop defeat Eddie and Mike Graham to win the NWA Florida Tag Team Title in Tampa, Florida.

1980 - Bobby Eaton and George Gulas defeat The Blond Bombers (Larry Latham and Wayne Farris) to win the NWA Mid-America Tag Team Title in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

1981 - Roddy Piper defeats Ric Flair for the NWA United States Heavyweight Title in Raleigh, North Carolina, ending Flair's fifth reign. As a result, Piper's NWA Television Title was vacated. Piper held that title since defeating The Masked Superstar in Richmond, Virginia on November 1.

1984 - Mocho Cota defeats Americo Rocca for the NWA World Welterweight Title in Mexico City, Mexico, ending Rocca's second reign.

1985 - The WWF held an event at Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto, Ontario. The results were:
- Moondog Rex defeated Rick McGraw.
- George Wells defeated René Goulet.
- Jim Neidhart defeated Chief Jay Strongbow.
- Angelo Mosca, Jr. defeated Nick DeCarlo.
- WWF Tag Team Champion Barry Windham defeated The Iron Sheik.
- Nikolai Volkoff defeated WWF Tag Team Champion Mike Rotundo.
- The Spoiler defeated Bret Hart.
- Tony Atlas and Jimmy Snuka vs. Bob Orton, Jr. and Roddy Piper ended in a double-countout.

1985 - Eddie Gilbert defeats Jerry Lawler to win the AWA Southern Heavyweight Title in Memphis, Tennessee, ending Lawler's 31st reign.

1986 - The WWF holds an event at Madison Square Garden in New York City, New York with a sellout crowd of 20,225 fans. The results were:
- Danny Spivey pinned René Goulet after a bulldog.
- Iron Mike Sharpe vs. George Wells ended in a draw.
- Ted Arcidi defeated Tiger Chung Lee by submission with a bearhug.
- Paul Orndorff defeated Big John Studd (with Bobby Heenan) by disqualification, when Heenan interfered as Orndorff attempted to bodyslam Studd.
- Terry Funk (with Jimmy Hart) pinned Scott McGhee after blocking a top rope attack by lifting his knees. Funk branded McGhee after the match.
- Randy Savage (with Miss Elizabeth) defeated WWF Champion Hulk Hogan by countout after Hogan hit one of the ringpost shoulder-first, when Elizabeth kept blocking Hogan from ramming Savage into the post. Hogan locked Savage in a bearhug after the match, with other wrestlers and officials having to break it up.
- Pedro Morales pinned Moondog Spot with a reverse roll-up.
- Sivi Afi pinned Ron Shaw with a flying bodypress.
- Adrian Adonis defeated The Junkyard Dog by disqualification.
- George Steele defeated Barry O by submission with a flying hammerlock.
- WWF Tag Team Champions Brutus Beefcake and Greg Valentine (with Johnny V) defeated The British Bulldogs (Davey Boy Smith and The Dynamite Kid (with Lou Albano)), when Beefcake pinned Dynamite after Johnny V interfered and reversed Dynamite's pin attempt, putting Beefcake on top for the cover.

1986 - Al Madril and Magnificent Zulu defeat American Force (Paul Diamond and Shawn Michaels) for the Texas All-Star Wrestling Texas Tag Team Title in San Antonio, Texas, ending American Force's second reign. The same day, in a fictitious title change, Austin Idol defeats Big Bubba (Fred Ottman) to win the TASW USA Heavyweight Title in Ponce, Puerto Rico. Ottman had actually left Texas All-Star for Florida.

1987 - The Midnight Rockers (Marty Jannetty and Shawn Michaels) defeat Buddy Rose and Doug Somers in St. Paul, Minnesota to win the AWA World Tag Team Title.

1987 - El Symbolo defeats Solar II for the vacant Mexican National Welterweight Title. Fuerza Guerrera had vacated the title in August 1986 when he left CMLL.

1990 - The WWF's 25th edition of Saturday Night's Main Event airs on NBC, earning an 11.1 rating. The show was taped January 3 in Chattanooga, Tennessee at the UTC Arena. The results:
- Randy Savage (with Sensational Sherri) pinned Jim Duggan, after Sensational Sherri grabbed Duggan's leg during a suplex into the ring.
- WWF Champion Hulk Hogan and WWF Intercontinental Champion The Ultimate Warrior defeated The Genius and Mr. Perfect, when Hogan pinned Genius after the Legdrop, following Warrior's press slam. After the match, the Warrior accidentally clotheslined Hogan after Hogan grabbed him from behind as Warrior was fighting off Perfect and The Genius, with them having a shoving match as a result.
- Jake Roberts defeated Greg Valentine by disqualification after Ted DiBiase interfered.
- Dusty Rhodes (with Sapphire) and Rick Rude (Bobby Heenan) fought to a double-countout. Both managers had been ejected from ringside during the match, with Sapphire returning to a ringside seat after buying a ticket.
- Dino Bravo (with Earthquake) pinned Ronnie Garvin, when Bravo reversed a top-rope crossbody into a pin. Earthquake attacked Garvin after the match, with Garvin being taken from the ring on a stretcher.

1990 - Eddie Watts defeats Super Medico I for the WWC World Junior Heavyweight Title in Guaynabo, Puerto Rico.

1990 - The Southern Rockers (Steve Doll and Rex King) win their fourth NWA Pacific Northwest Tag Team Title in Portland, Oregon, defeating Brian Adams and The Grappler.

1991 - The Universal Wrestling Association holds its 16th Anniversary Show at El Toreo in Naucalpan, Mexico. The results:
- Fantasma and Los Cowboys (Silver King and El Texano) defeated Black Power, Khaos and Scorpio.
- El Engendro, Baby Face and El Signo defeated UWA World Trios Champions Los Villanos (I, IV and V) in two straight falls in a two-out-of-three falls match.
- UWA World Welterweight Champion El Hijo del Santo, Enrique Vera and WWF Light Heavyweight Champion Villano III defeated Negro Casas, Fishman, and Killer.
- UWA World Heavyweight Champion Canek, Dos Caras and Mil Máscaras defeated The Wild Samoans (Samu, Fatu and Kokina (Yokozuna))

1992 - The WWF tapes the 30th edition of Saturday Night's Main Event, which aired on February 8 on FOX, at the Municipal Coliseum in Lubbock, Texas. The results:
- WWF Intercontinental Champion Roddy Piper pinned The Mountie to retain the title, after using Mountie's shockstick on him. The Mountie had tried to shock Piper with it, but couldn't because Piper had a rubber vest on under his T-shirt. Before the match, it was announced that Bret Hart would face the Intercontinental Champion for the title at WrestleMania VIII on April 5.
- Hulk Hogan (with Brutus Beefcake) and Sid Justice defeated The Undertaker (with Paul Bearer) and WWF Champion Ric Flair (with Mr. Perfect) by disqualification), when Flair pushed the referee down as Hogan was being double teamed, moments after Justice walked out on his partner.
- Jim Duggan and Sgt. Slaughter defeated The Beverly Brothers (Beau and Blake (with The Genius)), when Duggan pinned Blake after a running clothesline after Slaughter hit Blake with The Genius' scroll.
- Randy Savage pinned Jake Roberts after the flying elbowdrop.

1993 - The legendary Andre the Giant passes away from congestive heart failure, due to a tumor on his pituitary gland causing it to produce excess growth hormone, a condition known as acromegaly. Andre died in his sleep in a Paris, France hotel room, where he was in town for his father's funeral. He was born Andre Rene Roussimoff in Coulmmiers, France on May 19, 1946, and was trained by former World Heavyweight Champion Edouard Carpentier in the late 1960s. Andre made his WWWF debut on October 24, 1972 in White Plains, New York, teaming with WWWF World Champion Pedro Morales against WWWF Tag Team Champions Prof. Tanaka and Mr. Fuji. He also won the WWF World Title in 1988 in a controversial match which ended with Andre giving the title to Ted DiBiase, which was later disallowed. Andre's last match in the WWF came on April 13, 1990 at the Tokyo Dome in Tokyo, Japan, before 53,742 fans. The event was called the Wrestling Summit, and featured wrestlers from the WWF as well as All Japan and New Japan Pro Wrestling. Andre teamed with Giant Baba to defeat WWF Tag Team Champions Demolition (Ax and Smash) in a non-title match, when Andre pinned Smash with an elbowdrop.

Posthumously, Andre the Giant was the first wrestler inducted to the WWE Hall of Fame in 1993.

1994 - WCW holds Clash of the Champions XXVI at the Centroplex in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The live show got a 3.5 rating on TBS. The results:
- Marcus Bagwell and 2 Cold Scorpio defeated Pretty Wonderful (Paul Orndorff and Paul Roma), when Bagwell pinned Roma.
- Ron Simmons pinned Ice Train.
- Brian Pillman pinned Robert Parker in a "loser wears a chicken suit" match.
- Cactus Jack and Maxx Payne defeated WCW World Tag Team Champions The Nasty Boys (Brian Knobbs and Jerry Sags) in a non-title match, when Cactus pinned Knobbs.
- WCW World Television Champion Lord Steven Regal fought Dustin Rhodes to a 15-minute time-limit draw to retain the title.
- Sting and WCW World Heavyweight Champion Ric Flair defeated Rick Rude and Vader in an elimination match. Flair and Vader were both counted out, and Sting pinned Rude to win.

1996 - ECW held an event at the ECW Arena in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The results were:
- Hack Myers defeated Mr. Hughes.
- Judge Dread defeated The Blue Meanie.
- Buh Buh Ray and Dances with Dudley defeted Axl Rotten and J.T. Smith.
- The Headhunters defeated The Bad Crew.
- ECW World Television Champion 2 Cold Scorpio defeted El Puerto Ricano to retain the title.
- The Gangstas (Mustapha Saed and New Jack) defeated The Pitbulls.
- Sabu defeated Rob Van Dam by disqualfiication.
- ECW World Tag Team Champions Cactus Jack and Mikey Whipwreck defeated Shane Douglas and Tommy Dreamer to retain the title.
- Raven defeated ECW World Heavyweight Champion The Sandman to win the title, ending Sandman's third reign.

1996 - Inferno and Michelle Starr defeat The Billionaire Boys' Club (Johnny Canuck and Mike Starr) for the West Coast Championship Wrestling International Tag Team Title in Cloverdale, British Columbia.

1997 - In this week of the Monday Night War, WCW Monday Nitro's 3.6 rating defeated WWF Monday Night RAW's 2.2 rating.

WWF Monday Night RAW was taped on January 20 in Beaumont, Texas at the Beaumont Civic Center. The results were:
- Crush pinned Ahmed Johnson.
- WWF Tag Team Champion Davey Boy Smith defeated Doug Furnas.
- The Godwinns (Henry and Phineas) defeated Mankind and Vader by countout.

WCW Monday Nitro was live from Veterans Memorial Auditorium in Des Moines, Iowa. The results:
- The Steiner Brothers (Rick and Scott) defeated The Faces of Fear (The Barbarian and Meng).
- The Giant defeated Roadblock.
- Jeff Jarrett defeated WCW United States Heavyweight Champion Eddy Guerrero by disqualification.
- Ultimo Dragon defeated Billy Pearl.
- Lex Luger defeated Ron Powers.
- Arn Anderson and Steve McMichael defeated The Amazing French Canadians (Jacques Rougeau and Carl Oulette).
- WCW World Tag Team Champions The Outsiders (Scott Hall and Kevin Nash) defeated Ace Darling and Devon Storm.
- Kevin Sullivan defeated Joe Gomez.
- Dean Malenko defeated Jerry Flynn.
- Hugh Morrus defeated Chris Benoit.
- The Giant defeated WCW World Heavyweight Champion Hulk Hogan by disqualification.

1998 - The Tennessee Volunteers (Steven Dunn and Reno Riggins) defeat Shane Eden and The Thrillbilly for the Music City Wrestling Southern Tag Team Title in Nashville, Tennessee.

1999 - The masked Borkcin Brothers defeat David C. and Damaja to win the OVW Southern Tag Team Title in Jeffersonville, Indiana. The team unmasked after the match as The Lords of the Ring (Rob Conway and Nick Dinsmore). This began their seventh reign.

1999 - Julie Starr wins her second British Women's Title in Norwich, England, defeating Sweet Saraya.

2000 - Bad Boy Basil defeats J.D. Dempsey in a tournament final in Santa Ana, California to win the vacant UPW Heavyweight Title. The title had been stripped from Mike Bell on January 9.

2001 - The WWF holds an event at Madison Square Garden in New York City, New York with 19,448 fans attending. The results were:
- Too Cool (Grandmaster Sexay and Scotty 2 Hotty) defeated The Right to Censor (Bull Buchanan and The Goodfather).
- WWF Women's Champion Ivory defeated Molly Holly, after Steven Richards interfered.
- WWF Hardcore Champion Raven pinned Steve Blackman after a DDT on a chair.
- Billy Gunn defeated Steven Richards.
- WWF Tag Team Champions The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray and D-Von) defeated The Acolytes (Bradshaw and Faarooq) and The Hardy Boyz (Matt and Jeff) in an elimination match.
- WWF Champion Kurt Angle pinned WWF Intercontinental Champion Chris Jericho.
- Perry Saturn pinned K-Kwik.
- Hardcore Holly defeated Albert.
- WWF European Champion Test pinned Christian.
- Steve Austin, Kane, The Rock and The Undertaker defeated Chris Benoit, Haku, Rikishi and Triple H, when Rock pinned Benoit.

2001 - Carlos Colon defeats The One Man Gang for the WWC Hardcore Title in Carolina, Puerto Rico, beginning his second reign.

2001 - Big Dick Dudley defeats Chris Candido and Sabu in a three-way match for the vacant NWA Jersey Hardcore Title in Toms River, New Jersey. Crowbar had vacated the title in November.

2001 - RodRageous (Rodney of the Mean Street Posse) defeats Bulldog Raines in Memphis, Tennessee to win the Power Pro Wrestling Television Title.

2001 - Powerhouse Hughes defeats Pittsburgh Wrestling League Triple Jeopardy Champion Super Mantis and Pro Wrestling eXpress Television Champion Scott Venom in a three-way match in McKeesport, Pennsylvania to win both titles. At the same show, Homicide defeats Guido Corleone for the PWX Heavyweight Title.

2003 - The WWE held a live RAW at Allstate Arena in Rosemont, Illinois, which earned a 4.1 rating on SpikeTV. The February 2 edition of Sunday Night Heat was taped as well. The results:
Dark matches:
- Johnny Stamboli pinned Chad Collyer after a powerslam.
- Sean O'Haire pinned Michael Shane after a crucifix powerbomb.
Sunday Night Heat:
- Goldust pinned Steven Richards after a powerslam.
- 3-Minute Warning (Rosey and Jamal) defeated Ken Anderson and Andy Sealo, when Jamal got the pin after a Samoan drop.
- Christian pinned Maven after the Unprettier.
- Spike Dudley pinned Rico with a roll-up.
RAW:
- Booker T pinned Jeff Hardy with a sunset flip.
- D'Lo Brown (with Theodore Long) pinned The Hurricane with the Sky High.
- WWE Women's Champion Victoria (with Steven Richards) pinned Trish Stratus on the floor in a Chicago Street Fight, after Richards prevented Trish's bulldog off the apron by pushing her off and into the ring barrier. After the match, Jazz made her return, running to the ring and attacking Trish.
- World Tag Team Champions William Regal and Lance Storm defeated The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray and D-Von) in a Tables match, after 3-Minute Warning, Rico and Spike Dudley all interfered. Regal and Storm won the match after 3-Minute Warning powerbombed Bubba Ray Dudley through a table.
- Fresh off their Tough Enough III victories which occurred the previous Thursday night, Matt Cappotelli and John Hennigan fought to a no contest when Christopher Nowinski came out and threw Al Snow, who was at ringside and ran down Cappotelli and Hennigan on the mic before Tommy Dreamer chased Nowinski out of the ring with his Singapore cane, but then laid out Cappotelli and Hennigan with it.
- Batista and World Heavyweight Champion Triple H (with Ric Flair and Randy Orton) defeated Kane and Rob Van Dam, when Batista pinned RVD with the Batista Bomb. Kane had ran out of the arena after being unmasked.

2004 – A switch is flipped and hello world, here we are!  On this day, PWInsider.com went live and online!  On behalf of everyone past and present who has made this site what it is, we humbly thank each and every single one of you.

2006 - Ring of Honor holds "Tag Wars 2006" at the Montgomery County Fairgrounds in Dayton, Ohio. The event featured the 2006 Trios Tournament. The results were:
- Shane Hagadorn defeated Rhett Titus.
- Lotus defeated Crazy J.
- Smash Bradley, Marco Cordova and Jayson Reign defeated The Dempsey Brothers and Pelle Primeau.
- In a Trios Tournament semifinal match, Jimmy Yang and Generation Next (Jack Evans and Matt Sydal) defeat Adam Pearce and Lacey's Angels (B.J. Whitmer and Jimmy Jacobs (with Lacey)).
- In a Trios Tournament semifinal match, The Embassy (Abyss, Alex Shelley and Jimmy Rave (with Prince Nana)) defeat Jay Furt, Sal Rinauro and Tony Mamaluke.
- Claudio Castagnoli defeated Chad Collyer. During the match, CZW wrestlers Chris Hero and Necro Butcher appeared in the audience and began to heckle the wrestlers.
- Ace Steel vs. Sterling James Keenan ended in a no contest after Steel stopped wrestling after the continuous heckling from Hero and Necro. He got on the microphone and began to yell at the two, telling Hero he wasn't good enough to wrestle in ROH and saying Necro Butcher was nothing but a "garbage wrestler". Hero and Necro jumped over the guard, resulting in a massive brawl as the ROH locker room emptied and dragged them from the arena. During the melee backstage, ROH Commissioner Jim Cornette got one of his teeth knocked out by an unknown assailant. Cornette went to the ring and cut a heated promo on Combat Zone Wrestling, saying it was full of nothing but garbage wrestlers, and challenged CZW to a fight at the ECW Arena on March 11.
- ROH Pure Champion Nigel McGuinness defeated Delirious.
- Low Ki defeated Christopher Daniels (with Allison Danger).
- In the Trios Tournament finals, The Embassy (Abyss, Alex Shelley and Jimmy Rave (with Prince Nana)) defeated Jimmy Yang and Generation Next (Jack Evans and Matt Sydal) to win the tournament.
- ROH Tag Team Champions Austin Aries and Roderick Strong defeated Jay Lethal and ROH World Champion Bryan Danielson to retain the title.

2006 - Mammoth Sasaki and Shadow WX defeat Abdullah Kobayashi and Daisuke Sekimoto to win the Big Japan Pro Wrestling Tag Team Title in Kawasaki, Japan.

2006 - Sweet Daddy Devastation defeats Juggernaut in Vancouver, British Columbia for the ECCW Heavyweight Title, ending Juggernaut's sixth reign.

2007 - MsChif defeats Christie Ricci for the NWA World Women's Title in Lebanon, Tennessee. At the same show, Motley and 187 defeat Will Owens and Nick Roberts to win the NWA Top Rope Southern Tag Team Title, and Doug Harrison defeats Jason James for the NWA Top Rope Junior Heavyweight Title.

2007 - Hiram Tua wins his second IWA Hardcore Title in Bayamón, Puerto Rico, ending Angel's fourth reign.

2007 - Danny Eckos and Sean Royal defeat Billy Bax and Rob Eckos for the ECWA Tag Team Title in Newark, Delaware, ending Bax and Eckos' second reign.

2007 - The Latin Tornado wins his third House of Pain Wrestling Federation Heavyweight Title in Hagerstown, Maryland, defeating Professor Egon Ecton.

2007 - Bobby Bonecrusher defeats Blade Walker in Orlando, Florida to win the NWA South Atlantic Heavyweight Title.

2007 - The Texas Outlaw defeated Eric Shred for the New World Wrestling United States Title in Worcester, Massachusetts.

2008 – WWE holds the Royal Rumble in Madison Square Garden in NYC on PPV.  Richard Trionfo filed the following PPV report:

Welcome to the first pay per view from the WWE for the year 2008 as they present the Royal Rumble. This year’s event comes to you from Madison Square Garden in New York City. Tonight, we will find out who will earn a spot in the main event at Wrestlemania 24, which will come to you from Orlando, Florida. We might also be witnessing the final WWE wrestling match for Ric Flair because of Vince McMahon’s ‘Win or you are fired’ edict? Will Edge continue to dominate the Smackdown brand with the help of his ‘girlfriend’ Vickie Guerrero, ECW Champion Chavo Guerrero, and his protégés Zach Ryder and Curt Hawkins or will Rey Mysterio win the World Title? Will Jeff Hardy get revenge on Randy Orton for what Orton did to Matt Hardy and win the WWE Title? Who will be the first two in the Royal Rumble match? Who will be the final man to enter with the ‘lucky’ number 30?

Make sure to check out all of the coverage on PWInsider.com including the audio shows about the past Royal Rumbles, the Royal Rumble Tip Sheet, and the numerous audio shows recapping tonight’s pay per view on the site.

The matches announced for tonight’s show:
Royal Rumble Match featuring:
The Undertaker
Triple H
Ken Kennedy
Shawn Michaels
Batista
Tommy Dreamer
Hornswoggle
Shelton Benjamin
Santino Marella
Mick Foley
Umaga
Snitsky
Kane
Finlay
Jamie Noble
Chuck Palumbo
Cody Rhodes
Great Khali
John Morrison
The Miz
Hardcore Holly
Carlito
Mark Henry
Big Daddy V
CM Punk

WWE Title Match: Randy Orton versus Jeff Hardy
World Heavyweight Title Match: Edge versus Rey Mysterio
Career Threatening Match: Ric Flair versus Montel Vontavious Porter
Chris Jericho versus John Bradshaw Layfield

Tonight’s coverage starts with the Royal Rumble commercial. Jack Korpela hosts the Free For All for the Royal Rumble. Jack mentions the Royal Rumble match and what is on the line in the match. We then see the video packages that aired for Randy Orton and Jeff Hardy in the last few weeks. We see a video package for the Chris Jericho/John Bradshaw Layfield match. We next saw the excellent buildup for the Montel Vontavious Porter/Ric Flair match. It was then time to take a look at the final non-Rumble match announced for the pay per view, Edge versus Rey Mysterio. We then see the excellent video package that aired this week about the history of the Royal Rumble match by the numbers.

The pay per view begins with the start of the Royal Rumble subway commercial that has aired for the last few weeks and then we see a montage of the Royal Rumble graphics. We see a video package of the winners of the Royal Rumble match.

Michael Cole welcomes us to the Royal Rumble in HD and talks about how we are starting on the Road to Wrestlemania XXIV.

On the way to the ring, Michael Cole mentions Ric Flair’s first match over thirty-five years ago as he walks to the ring.

Ric Flair gets on the mic before the match and he says that it has been an honor to wrestle all of these years in Madison Square Garden. There is no place like it in the world and he agrees with everyone who says that. His first match in MSG was in March 1976 before most of the people in the building were born. The level of respect that the fans have paid him over the years is unbelievable. As Flair continues to talk, he is interrupted by Montel Vontavious Porter’s music and Porter comes to the ring.

Match Number One: Ric Flair versus Montel Vontavious Porter in a Career Threatening Match
Your referee is “Little Naytchâ€Â Charles Robinson. Before they lock up Flair struts and woooos for the crowd. Porter with a side head lock and shoulder tackle. Flair woooos at Porter. They lock up again and Porter backs Flair into the corner and he gives a clean break but continues to show little respect for Flair. Flair with an arm bar and hammer lock and Porter makes it to the corner. Porter slaps Flair but Flair chops and punches Porter around the ring. Flair with a shoulder tackle but Porter with a drop toe hold and then he sets for the boot to the head and he connects. Porter with a swinging neck breaker for a near fall. Porter with punches to Flair’s head. Flair with a chop but Porter with a punch and snap mare into an arm bar. Porter with an Irish whip but he charges into an elbow and Porter is clipped by Flair. Flair with more chops but Porter with a side head lock and Flair with an atomic drop. Porter with an elbow and punches in the corner. Flair with a chop but Porter with punches. Porter with a running boot into the corner and Porter thinks he got the three count but the referee says that he did not get the three count because Flair had his foot on the ropes. While Porter argues with the referee, Flair with a near fall with a rollup. Porter with a butterfly suplex for a near fall.

Porter puts Flair on the top turnbuckle and he hits a superplex for a near fall. Flair with more chops and then he Irish whips Porter into the corner but they bump heads and both men are down. The referee starts to count out both men but they each get back to their feet. Flair with a kick and chop. Flair with an inside cradle for a two count. Flair then gets another two count with a backslide. Flair with chops and punches to Porter. Porter with a jawbreaker and then he tries for the Playmaker but Flair gets out of the hold and he puts Porter in the Figure Four Leg lock and Porter taps out.
Winner: Ric Flair

After the match, Montel Vontavious Porter follows the referee to the back and argues with him while Flair celebrates in the ring. Flair lets out a woooo for the fans.

I thought this was a good match, but I wish they would have gotten a little more time. I think they can have a better match while it was definitely a good opening match. I liked the false finish. I wonder if Porter will bring up the whole Charles Robinson/Ric Flair situation and demand a rematch.

Vince is in his office with Hornswoggle and Vince talks about how Flair appears to be lucky. Vince talks about the luck of the Irish and his grandfather and father. Vince talks about his entire family, and his bastard son. Vince reminds Hornswoggle that it is every man for themselves and that Hornswoggle cannot even trust Finlay. Vince tells Hornswoggle that he is expected to win.

Finlay enters the office and Vince tells Finlay what he said to Hornswoggle about not trusting anyone. Vince tells Finlay that he cannot trust Hornswoggle either. Hornswoggle hugs Finlay and then they leave the office together.

Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler talk about the media coverage in New York for the Royal Rumble. Jim Ross introduces the newest member of the announce team and Jim Ross mentions the XFL. We go to Mike Adamle.

Mike is at ringside and he says that he was here for Flair’s first match in Madison Square Garden in 1976. Mike talks about the electricity and then he segues into the issues between Chris Jericho and John Bradshaw Layfield. We go to the video package.

Match Number Two: Chris Jericho versus John Bradshaw Layfield
Jericho and Bradshaw stare each other down before locking up and Jericho backs Bradshaw into the corner and he gives a clean break but the referee holds him back. They lock up again and Jericho is forced into a clean break by the referee. Bradshaw backs into the ropes and the referee pulls Jericho away again. Bradshaw with punches to Jericho while Jericho is preoccupied. Jericho with a flying forearm and take down followed by punches. Bradshaw sends Jericho to the floor but Jericho returns and he punches Bradshaw followed by a series of kicks to the midsection. Bradshaw misses a clothesline and Jericho applies the Walls of Jericho but Bradshaw gets to the ropes immediately and then goes to the floor. Jericho with a baseball slide that takes Bradshaw down outside the ring. Jericho slams Bradshaw’s head into the exposed ringside barrier. Jericho tries for a suplex but Bradshaw blocks it. Jericho sends Bradshaw into the ring apron and then the ring steps as he works on Bradshaw’s back. Bradshaw with a hot shot to a charging Jericho and both men are down.

Bradshaw is the first man to return to his feet and then he connects with a short arm clothesline. Bradshaw hits another short arm clothesline and then he chokes Jericho on the bottom rope. Bradshaw catapults Jericho’s throat into the middle rope. Bradshaw continues to use the ropes as he chokes Jericho with them. Bradshaw with punches in the corner as Jericho slumps in the corner. Jericho fights back with punches of his own but Bradshaw applies the sleeper as he takes Jericho down to the mat. Jericho gets out of the hold and he clotheslines Bradshaw. Bradshaw with a big boot to Jericho and then he sends Jericho shoulder first into the ring post.

Jericho goes to the floor and Jericho is bleeding as Bradshaw kicks Jericho in the head and then he punches Jericho. They return to the ring and Bradshaw maintains control as he peppers Jericho with kicks and punches. The referee tries to pull Bradshaw out of the way but Bradshaw continues to punch Jericho. Jericho with a forearm and shoulder tackle to Bradshaw. Jericho with a bulldog and drop kick followed by an elbow drop. Jericho with the Lionsault. Jericho clotheslines Bradshaw over the top rope to the floor and the battle continues on the floor. Bradshaw sends Jericho into the ECW announce table and then Jericho rearranges the announce table. Jericho hits Bradshaw in the head with a steel chair and the referee calls for the bell.
Winner: John Bradshaw Layfield by disqualification

After the match, Jericho throws the chair at Bradshaw and then he punches Bradshaw. Jericho gets a cable to return the favor on Bradshaw and he chokes Bradshaw and then uses the ring ropes for more leverage. Jericho gets on the ECW announce table and then he lets go but then he goes for the cable one more time before heading to the back.

Lillian Garcia announces the result of the match and the crowd shows their disapproval.

I thought this match was okay but the problem is that the one image that I will remember was the bulldog that did not connect and Bradshaw going down anyway. I don’t know if I want to see another match between the two, but this was one of Jericho’s better performances during his return.

Ashley Massaro is walking in the back and she knocks on Maria’s locker room door. Santino comes out says that Maria cannot talk now because she is getting ready for the first High Definition Kiss Cam. Santino says that Maria cannot say no to anything or anyone. Ashley suggests that is the reason why Maria is still with Santino. Santino tells Ashley that Maria is not interested in her or the ‘Boobie Magazine.’ Santino then says that he wishes that he could vote her out of the WWE just like they did on Survivor.

I have not been the biggest fan of Santino Marella, but when he can take shots at Ashley Massaro, I like him more every day.

We return to Cole and Coach and we are now 63 days from Wrestlemania. It is time for the Rey Mysterio/Edge match and we go to the video package.

Match Number Three: Edge versus Rey Mysterio for the World Heavyweight Title

Before Rey comes to the ring, Vickie Guerrero is wheeled to the ring in her wheelchair by Teddy Long. The Curt Hawkins and Zach Ryder come to ringside as Cole and Coach wonder if there are ulterior motives.

Edge pushes Rey into the corner as the match begins. They lock up and Edge with an arm bar and he works on Rey’s wrist. Rey with forearms and then he hits a springboard head scissors. They lock up again and Edge with a side head lock and shoulder tackle. Rey with a single leg trip and a drop kick for a near fall. Rey with another near fall and Edge backs into the ropes to slow things down. Edge with a kick and punch to Rey. Rey ducks through Edge’s legs but Edge throws Rey out of the ring. Rey tries to get back in but Edge with a baseball slide. Hawkins and Ryder approach Rey while the referee was distracted, but the referee sees them before they can attack Rey and Hawkins and Ryder are sent to the back by the referee.

Rey with a head scissors that sends Edge into the ropes and Edge goes to the floor when Rey sets for a 619. Rey hits a pescado onto Edge. Rey with a springboard seated senton when they return to the ring for a near fall. Rey with a kick and chop. Edge sends Rey into the turnbuckles but Rey lands on the middle turnbuckle. Edge with a kick to the leg and Rey goes down. Rey goes to the floor and Edge goes after him. Edge with a kick to the leg and then he rolls Rey back into the ring. Edge works on Rey’s leg. Edge with a single leg Boston crab on Rey after Rey could not stay on his feet when Edge Irish whipped him. Rey with a kick to get out of the hold. Rey with an enzuigiri and Edge falls into the ropes. Rey tries for the 619 but Rey was too slow and Edge hits a power slam for a near fall. Edge with an ankle lock and then he goes to the knee. Rey with a kick to the head. Edge kicks Rey in the leg after the referee checks on Rey’s knee. Rey cannot get up and then he goes for the knee brace.

Rey kicks Edge in the knee but Rey with a bulldog off a wheelbarrow move and both men are down. Rey with chops and kicks as he continues to hobble in the ring. Edge with a sunset flip but Rey rolls through with a kick for a near fall. We see Vickie applaud Edge’s escape from the near fall. Edge with an Irish whip into the corner but Edge charges into a boot. Rey with a senton counter out of a potential power bomb attempt by Edge. Rey goes to the apron and then he goes up top but Edge punches Rey. Rey with forearms that knock Edge off the top turnbuckle and Rey with a double stomp for a two count. Rey with a rana that sends Edge out of the ring. Rey slides under the bottom rope and hits a DDT on the floor. Rey rolls Edge back into the ring and Edge kicks out at two. Edge with a boot to a charging Mysterio. Edge sets for the spear but Rey moves when Edge approaches. Rey with a head scissors that sends Edge into the ropes. Rey with a 619 and then Rey goes up for a splash and Vickie pulls the referee out of position. Rey sends Edge into the ropes again when Edge tries for a spear while Vickie argues with the referee. Vickie takes the impact of the 619 and then when Rey tries for a springboard move but Edge with a spear for the three count.
Winner: Edge

After the match, Edge, Hawkins, and Ryder check on Vickie outside the ring along with the referee.

I liked the ring introductions because as Michael Cole said, it gave a big fight feel. I don’t know if it was the ‘missed’ moves by Rey but the crowd quickly went from mixed to clearly in favor of Edge. I thought this was a really good match. I do not like the fact that many of Rey’s big matches involve him hobbling around the ring because of his knee, but he can hit every high impact maneuver with no problem. The DDT by Rey on the floor was an impressive move.

Ric Flair is in the locker room and Ken Kennedy applauds Flair as he comes out of the shower. Kennedy gives Flair a woooo. Kennedy says that after he wins the Royal Rumble tonight, that since he will have so much time on his hands until Wrestlemania . . .

Kennedy is interrupted by Shawn Michaels’s arrival. He says that he will see Flair and Michaels later. Michaels talks about how a trash talking blonde with a catchphrase will never work. Flair tells Michaels that nobody will beat him in his quest for the title. Batista and Hunter enter the locker room as well and Michaels says that it has gotten a little awkward. Hunter says that tonight, the best man will win and Michaels tries to separate Batista and Hunter. Michaels says that the best man will win wearing the new Shawn Michaels shirt. Hunter says that he hates shilling. Michaels gives Flair his shirt.

We see Jeff Hardy and Randy Orton in the back getting ready for their match.

Maria comes out for the Royal Rumble kiss cam. Ashley comes out and she tells Maria that she got a call from Hugh Hefner and says that Hugh wanted to know if Maria wanted to pose for Playboy. Santino Marella comes out with someone under a black tarp. Santino says that the answer is no. Nobody wants to see Maria with no clothes on. He tells her not to listen to the fans because they have nothing to cheer about. Santino mentions the Mets and Yankees and then makes reference to the mosquitoes in Cleveland. He calls them chokers. He says the Knicks and Rangers are not good enough to choke. Santino says that the only team the fans can cheer for play in New Jersey. The crowd starts a “Let’s Go Giantsâ€Â chant. Santino says that nobody cares about the Giants. Ashley tells Santino that this is not a decision for Santino to make, it is for Maria to make. Maria hesitates and then she asks the fans if they want to see her pose for Playboy. Santino says the fans are sheep and they will cheer for hepatitis if someone asks for it. Santino has a special present for Ashley. Since the fans like to see the boobies, we see Big Dick Johnson with a Patriots tattoo across his chest and a cut off Brady shirt. Ashley slaps and hits Big Dick Johnson with rubber chickens.

We see a Wrestlemania commercial with a Baywatch theme and Kelly is the lifeguard who saves the man in the water. When it was time for mouth to mouth, Kelly is replaced by Mae Young.

Mike Adamle talks about Jeff Hardy’s quest to win the title and how he will do anything to make history. It is time for the Jeff Hardy and Randy Orton video packages.

Match Number Four: Jeff Hardy versus Randy Orton for the WWE Title
The referee gives his final instructions before the bell rings. Hardy and Orton lock up and they fight around the ring in the collar and elbow tie up. Orton with a clean break but Hardy pushes Orton. Orton with a side head lock but Hardy with a shoulder tackle. Hardy with a side head lock and take down. Orton tries for a few rollups while Orton tries to get out of the side head lock. Orton gets Hardy into a head scissors while Hardy maintains the side head lock. Orton gets out of the hold. Hardy with a reverse atomic drop followed by a leg drop and drop kick for a near fall. Orton with a knee to the midsection and then he slams Hardy’s head into the turnbuckle followed by punches. Orton tries to rile up the Hardy fans in the crowd. Hardy with a kick to Orton and then Orton is clotheslined over the top rope to the floor. Hardy with a baseball slide that sends Orton into the ringside barrier and Orton is down. The referee starts his count and then Hardy with a pescado onto Orton. Orton grabs his belt and he heads towards the entrance but Hardy stops him. They return to the ring and Orton with a standing drop kick when Hardy tries for a springboard move from the apron and Hardy goes to the floor and he hits the apron. Orton goes out after Hardy and hits a suplex on the floor. Orton rolls Hardy back into the ring and gets a two count. Orton with a kick to Hardy and then he stomps on Hardy before choking him. Orton with a series of knee drops for a near fall. Hardy tries to get back to his feet and Orton helps him up before connecting with a forearm. Hardy with a series of kicks and then he sends Orton over the top rope to the floor. Hardy goes to the apron and hits a flying clothesline from the apron.

Hardy rolls Orton back into the ring and he gets a near fall. Hardy with an Irish whip and then he charges into the corner but Orton moves out of the way and Hardy goes shoulder first into the ring post. Orton with a body scissors and reverse chin lock. Hardy returns to his feet but Orton with a power slam for a two count. Orton returns to the reverse chin lock. Hardy and Orton with forearms to the back but Hardy hits a leaping clothesline and both men are down. Hardy with punches to Orton and a running forearm and clothesline followed by an elbow. Hardy backs Orton into the corner and then he hits Whisper in the Wind but can only get a two count. Hardy with a mule kick and he sends Orton into the corner and Hardy with the delayed baseball slide in the corner. Hardy goes up top but Orton rolls to the apron. Hardy hits a missile drop kick that knocks Orton off the apron. Hardy goes up top again and hits a moonsault onto Orton on the floor. The referee checks on both men.

Hardy rolls Orton back in and Hardy returns to the ring. Hardy gets his second wind and he waits for Orton for the Twist of Fate but Orton counters and he hits the RKO for the three count.
Winner: Randy Orton

I thought this was a good match and there was definitely a big time feel to the match as it started. Both men gave everything in the match. I do not mind that Orton won the match, but I hope they will meet again at Wrestlemania because like everyone on the site has said, to not give Hardy a run at the top would be a mistake. The RKO out of nowhere was a good touch and it was interesting because it happened just as it appeared that Hardy was going to take control of the match.

We see Jeff Hardy in the ring as he realizes that he fell short but then he salutes the crowd and he gets an ovation for his performance.

Joey Styles and Tazz make their show debut as they talk about the result of the WWE Title Match. Joey talks about the Royal Rumble match. Tazz points out that the last seven winners have won the main event at Wrestlemania. We go to the excellent Royal Rumble Match by the Numbers video package.

Match Number Five: Royal Rumble Match
Entrant Number One: Undertaker and Entrant Number Two: Shawn Michaels
Taker is ready to punch Michaels but Michaels moves and he chops Taker. Taker with an Irish whip and Michaels with the Michaels flip. Taker with a vertical choke of Michaels and Michaels is sent into the corner. Taker with punches and head butts in the corner. Taker Irish whips Michaels and Michaels lands on the top turnbuckle and Taker kicks him. Taker goes for a big boot into the corner but Michaels moves out of the way and Taker goes to the apron. Taker grabs a charging Michaels but the throat and returns to the ring. Taker with a big boot to Michaels.

Entrant Number Three: Santino Marella. Michaels with Sweet Chin Music from Michaels and then Taker eliminates Marella. Michaels tries to eliminate Taker but Taker stays in. Taker goes Old School but Michaels tosses Taker across the ring. Michaels with a reverse atomic drop and chops followed by another reverse atomic drop and chop. Michaels with a flying forearm and kip up. Entrant Number Four: Great Khali. Taker with a choke slam to Michaels. Taker punches Khali as Khali enters the ring. Khali with the chop to the top of the head. Khali slams Taker’s head into the corner and he connects with kicks in the corner. Khali punches Taker but Taker responds with punches of his own. Khali sets for a choke slam but Taker grabs Khali by the throat. Khali backs Taker against the ropes but misses the chop. Taker eliminates Khali and Michaels tries to eliminate Taker again. Michaels goes up in the corner but Taker tries for the Last Ride. Taker and Michaels go to the apron. Entrant Number Five: Bob Holly. Holly goes after Taker and Taker punches Holly and then works him over in the corner. Holly with punches to Taker but Taker with a big boot. Michaels tries to eliminate Taker again but Taker gets Michaels on his shoulders. Michaels holds on to the ropes and Holly kicks Taker. Michaels with chops to Holly and Holly responds with chops of his own. Entrant Number Six: John Morrison. Morrison goes after Taker, Michaels, and Holly. Morrison avoids Taker when his back is not turned. Michaels tries to eliminate Morrison but Morrison rolls back in. Michaels slams Morrison while Taker chokes Holly. Michaels goes up top for the elbow drop and then he sets up for Sweet Chin Music and Morrison blocks it. Entrant Number Seven: Tommy Dreamer.

Dreamer punches Michaels and then he goes after Taker. Dreamer clotheslines Morrison and then he runs into a boot from Taker. Michaels tries to suplex Morrison over the top rope to the floor and Morrison is on the apron but he is able to get back into the ring. Morrison with a European uppercut to Holly. Morrison tries to eliminate Holly and Morrison tries to get rid of Morrison as well. Entrant Number Eight: Batista. Batista with a spinebuster to Dreamer followed by clotheslines to Holly and Michaels. Batista with a back body drop to Morrison. Taker and Batista square off but Dreamer tries for a DDT on Batista but Batista eliminates Dreamer. Holly tries to eliminate Michaels but Michaels gets off the turnbuckle. Morrison gets speared by Batista. Taker with boots to Batista and then he chokes him in the corner. Michaels tries to get rid of Holly.

Entrant Number Nine: Hornswoggle. Hornswoggle sees Taker in the center of the ring and he freezes. Hornswoggle goes under the ring. Batista with a spear to Taker and then he tries to eliminate Taker. Holly chops Morrison while Taker works over Batista. Holly with a suplex to Morrison and Michaels chops Holly. Holly with a back body drop to Michaels and then he clotheslines Michaels to the apron and Michaels returns to the ring. Entrant Number Ten: Chuck Palumbo. Chuck goes after Batista with chops and punches. He punches Michaels and Holly as well. Palumbo punches and chops Michaels. Holly chokes Batista in the ropes. Morrison is able to save himself. Taker backs Palumbo into the corner and he head butts Palumbo. Michaels tries to eliminate Morrison in the corner but Morrison with a head scissors.

Entrant Number Eleven: Jamie Noble. Noble has his ribs taped and he goes after Palumbo. Noble with kicks and punches to Palumbo as he works over Palumbo in the corner. Palumbo sends Noble to the apron and then Palumbo with a boot to the ribs to eliminate Noble. Taker with a back elbow to Palumbo. Batista with shoulders to Holly in the corner. The medical staff checks on Noble outside the ring. Entrant Number Twelve: CM Punk. Punk with a running boot to Palumbo, Michaels and Morrison. Taker grabs Punk but the throat but Punk with kicks. Punk tries for a bulldog on Michaels but Taker with a clothesline to Punk. Palumbo tries to eliminate Punk but Punk sends Palumbo to the apron and Punk with a running knee to eliminate Palumbo. Michaels tires to suplex Punk to the floor but Punk blocks it. Entrant Number Thirteen: Cody Rhodes. Rhodes goes after Punk and sends him to the apron. Rhodes goes after Taker and punches him. Taker grabs Rhodes by the throat but Rhodes with a punch and drop kick. Batista with a back body drop to Michaels. Taker with an Irish whip to Rhodes. Entrant Number Fourteen: Umaga. Umaga with clotheslines to everyone but Holly who chops Umaga. Umaga sends Holly over the top rope to eliminate him. Umaga works over Batista in the corner. Umaga with a running butt splash into the corner. Rhodes tries to eliminate Michaels but Shawn returns to the ring from the apron. Morrison and Rhodes exchange punches, forearms, and chops. Entrant Number Fifteen: Gene Snitsky. Snitsky goes after Morrison and Punk before turning his attention to Michaels and Rhodes. Snitsky with a short arm clothesline to Rhodes and a punch to Morrison. Snitsky with boots to Morrison. Rhodes sends Snitsky over the top but he stays on the apron and Punk cannot help Rhodes. Morrison puts Michaels on the top rope but Michaels punches Morrison. Morrison punches Punk as the former ECW champions battle.

Entrant Number Sixteen: Mike Mizanin. Morrison and Mizanin work over Punk as Taker tries to eliminate Umaga. Entrant Number Seventeen: Shelton Benjamin. Benjamin jumps to the turnbuckle and tries to eliminate Mizanin and Morrison. Benjamin goes after Punk but then Michaels with Sweet Chin Music that eliminates Benjamin. Snitsky with a running clothesline into the corner. Entrant Number Eighteen: Jimmy Snuka Snuka with chops to Morrison and Punk followed by Michaels. Snuka with a head butt to Taker. Snuka with a chop to Snitsky and Mizanin. Snuka with a head butt to Mizanin. Snuka with a chop to Batista. Entrant Number Nineteen: Roddy Piper. Everyone waits for Piper to enter the ring and he wants a piece of Snuka. Piper punches Snuka but Snuka does not feel it. Snuka with a chop to Piper but Piper with a thumb to the eye. Snuka and Piper battle and everyone else returns to what they were doing. Entrant Number Twenty: Kane. Rhodes and Snitsky continue to battle. Kane eliminates Piper followed by Snuka. Kane with punches around and then he choke slams Mizanin. Kane works over Umaga with uppercuts and elbows in the corner. Rhodes with an elbow to the midsection of John Morrison. Taker sets for a choke slam on Kane but then he sees Michaels. Umaga hits Taker from behind. Entrant Number Twenty-One: Carlito. Carlito goes after Rhodes and then he works his way around the ring. Michaels rolls back in one more time. Carlito tries for a back elbow but Punk and Morrison catch him. Carlito uses the ropes. Carlito hits a lungblower on Punk but Rhodes with a bulldog on Carlito.

Entrant Number Twenty-Two: Mick Foley. Foley goes after Kane and Morrison as he enters the ring and then he works his way into everyone who comes after him. Foley with a DDT on Kane but Umaga with a Samoan drop on Taker. Snitsky with a boot to Taker followed by a side slam. Morrison with a jumping side kick to Foley. As the bodies are strewn on the mat, it is time for Entrant Number Twenty-Three: Ken Kennedy. Kennedy goes after Rhodes and he hits the running boot on Rhodes. Kennedy with a flatliner on Mizanin and Punk. Taker sits up and Kennedy with a kick. Kennedy stands over Taker and Taker grabs him by the throat and hits a choke slam on Kennedy. Taker sends Morrison into Snitsky and then he hits a splash in the corner on both of them. Taker with a chop to Morrison. Entrant Number Twenty-Four: Big Daddy V. Taker pushes Snitsky over the top rope and then Michaels eliminates Taker but Kennedy eliminates Michaels right after that. Taker and Snitsky fight outside the ring. Taker hits a leg drop on Snitsky on the announce table. Carlito sends Mizanin to the apron. Rhodes holds on and he tries to skin the cat but Kennedy tries to eliminate him again. Rhodes and Kennedy make it back in. Entrant Number Twenty-Five: Mark Henry. Big Daddy V with head butts to Punk. Kane and Henry battle in the ring and Henry with a shoulder block. Hornswoggle comes out from under the ring and he pulls Mizanin to the floor to eliminate him. Hornswoggle returns to his hiding place under the ring. Big Daddy V tries to eliminate Kennedy and Morrison. Entrant Number Twenty-Six: Chavo Guerrero. Chavo and Punk battle in the ring and they exchange punches. Morrison is eliminated by Kane. Carlito chops Rhodes but Umaga chops Carlito. Carlito is sent to the apron but he returns to the ring. Henry tries to eliminate Rhodes and Hornswoggle tries to eliminate Rhodes but Henry pulls Hornswoggle in. Henry and Big Daddy V surround Hornswoggle and Finlay comes out with the shillelagh to make the save. Finlay takes Hornswoggle to the back with him. Kane with a boot to Kennedy but Kennedy punches Kane while Henry holds him. Carlito goes to the apron but rolls back in. We are told that Finlay has been disqualified. Entrant Number Twenty-Eight: Elijah Burke. Burke goes after Chavo. Batista is on the floor but they do not know if he has been eliminated. Chavo is sent to the apron but Chavo eliminates Punk. Big Daddy V with a sit out power bomb on Kane. We see that Batista rolled under the bottom rope after a Samoan Spike. Entrant Number Twenty-Nine: Triple H. Hunter comes in and he eliminates Cody Rhodes.

Hunter with a jawbreaker to Big Daddy V and then he eliminates Big Daddy V. Hunter with a jawbreaker to Umaga and then he punches Foley. Hunter and Foley exchange punches and then Hunter eliminates Foley and Burke when Hunter sends Foley into Burke. Hunter slams Umaga into the turnbuckles and then he punches Umaga. Umaga misses a splash into the corner and then he sends Umaga into the top of the ring post. Hunter with a Pedigree to Umaga. Entrant Number Thirty: John Cena

Everyone in the ring is in shock that Cena is in the match. Cena has some words for Hunter. Henry attacks Hunter from behind. Foley has been eliminated. Cena with a flying shoulder tackle to Henry and then he eliminates Carlito, Chavo, and Henry. Hunter and Cena get ready for their meeting in the ring and they get nose to nose. Hunter punches Cena but Cena punches back. Cena with a kick to Hunter but Hunter with a spinebuster. Umaga with an uppercut to Hunter. Umaga sets for the Samoan Spike but Batista with a spear. Batista eliminates Kennedy. Batista eliminates Umaga with a clothesline. Kane grabs Batista and Hunter but they escape and eliminate Kane.

We are down to the final three and it is Triple H, John Cena, and Batista. Batista gives the thumbs down to Cena and Hunter. Cena says that he can’t see either of them. Hunter decides to give each of them a crotch chop. The battle is on as all three men battle. Batista with a back elbow to Cena and a clothesline to Hunter in the corner and another clothesline. Cena punches Batista and Hunter joins in. Batista with a double clothesline. Batista charges into a boot but Batista with a spinebuster to Cena. Batista with a spinebuster to Hunter. Batista tries for the Batista Bomb on Cena but Cena with a back body drop. Hunter eliminates Batista.

We are down to the final two and it is John Cena and Triple H. Hunter points to the Wrestlemania XXIV sign and so does Cena. Hunter with a kick and punch but Cena with punches of his own. Hunter punches and the crowd cheers while Cena punches and the crowd boos. Cena with a Blue Thunder Bomb and then it is time for the Five Knuckle Shuffle and he hits it. Cena sets for the FU and he gets Hunter up but Hunter gets out of the hold. Cena and Hunter each hit clotheslines and both men are down. Cena gets Hunter up for the FU and they are by the ropes. Hunter gets back to his feet and he hits a DDT on Cena. Hunter tries to eliminate Cena but Cena holds on to the top rope. Cena with another attempt for an FU. Hunter gets out of the hold but Cena eliminates Hunter with an FU to win the match.
Winner: John Cena

Lawler and Ross wonder which title Cena will go after at Wrestlemania as they go to credits.

I thought this was a good Royal Rumble match and went about 52 minutes. I did not expect to see Cena return. It was interesting to see who filled in the final spots (Elijah Burke, Jimmy Snuka, Roddy Piper, John Cena, and Chavo Guerrero). If Chavo had won the match, could he challenge himself and not have to worry about an opponent at Mania? I think it was a good thing to have Cena’s return be a surprise because I think if the fans in the Garden knew he was coming out, it would have affected the reaction to his entrance and music. Someone in the chat room was talking about the return of Cena and if it will affect Hardy getting the title from Orton. I thought there were a number of interesting spots and while there was nothing that is going to be memorable for years, it was a solid match. I wish that it would have been Howard Finkel (with the old MSG microphones) instead of Michael Buffer

Overall Pay Per View Thoughts
I thought this was a decent pay per view. It will probably not be the best one of the year, but it will not be the worst one of the year. I thought there were a few spots during the show that would have looked better on HD because I saw some wrestlers punching off the screen on my non-HD television. The best match of the night (non-Rumble match) was Edge and Rey. I thought the weakest match of the night was the Bradshaw/Jericho match but it was because I had low expectations compared to the other three matches (non-Rumble). Flair/Porter would have been better if it was a longer match but it made me want to see them wrestle again on pay per view and be given twenty minutes. I thought the crowd at the Garden was great throughout the night and made a decent pay per view even better on television.

2009 - On Larry King Live, Mickey Rourke and Chris Jericho both appeared to promote Rourke's appearance at Wrestlemania XXV.  Rourke discussed his comeback and said the highlight of the experience was that the wrestling community had embraced the film, bringing up Ric Flair and Vince McMahon in particular.

Jericho appeared via satellite and said that Rourke did a great job and "made no mistakes" in his role of Randy the Ram.  Jericho said the film made a nice representation of the minor leagues and what it's like on the way up and the way down, but not what Jericho does in WWE.  He said Rourke made a mistake calling him out on the red carpet of the SAG Awards.  Jericho said there's a difference between playing a wrestler and being one in real life.  He said Rourke got some bad advice and his story would end differently if they stepped in the ring.

Rourke said "he may have put his foot in his mouth."  Rourke said wrestling was Jericho's world and he wouldn't step into it but could take Jericho in a "boxing match or a bare fisted match."  Jericho smirked and said Rourke should be careful what he wishes for because he may just get it.  Rourke said he was going to take the high road and said that he respected Jericho.  Jericho responded saying that he wasn't going to do that and didn't respect Rourke.  He warned Rourke that he might think he knows the wrestling world but he really doesn't.

Jericho closed out saying, "I'll be seeing you, Mister Rourke.  I'll be seeing you."

2009 – WWE broadcast ECW on Sci Fi.  Richard Trionfo filed the following TV report:

 

On Sunday night, we saw Jack Swagger successfully defend his title against Matt Hardy. Did the loss cause Matt to turn on his brother later in the night? What will Matt say about the chair shot that caused a bit of a frenzy on a certain person’s MySpace page? Who will be the next to challenge the man from Oklahoma?

We are live on tape from Cleveland, Ohio and your announcers are Matt ‘Can I point to the Wrestlemania Sign’ Striker and Todd ‘Triple Crown’ Grisham.

Teddy Long comes out and he is walking like Vince McMahon to the ring. Teddy says that it was a historic Royal Rumble on Sunday involving a member of the ECW roster. Time for the video package about the Royal Rumble. This one features a look at what Matt Hardy did to his brother and the catatonic look on his face.

Teddy says that as a result of what we just saw, Matt asked for his release from ECW and requested to be a part of Smackdown. Teddy says that is okay and he wishes Matt good luck. Teddy says that we have a great show and the Boogeyman is in action.

Before we get that action, Jack Swagger comes to the ring. Jack takes the mic and he smiles before telling Teddy that he is right. The show is great because of the new face of the franchise. That will be celebrated tonight. We will have the official championship celebration for the new ECW Champion, Jack Swagger.

Jack’s music is interrupted by the Boogeyman’s music as he emerges from Hornswoggle’s house under the ring.

We go to commercial.

We are back and it is time to take a look back to the start of Wrestlemania.

The Boogeyman is still in the ring as he gets ready for his match.

Ricky Ortiz gets on the mic and he tells Boogeyman that he does not need to eat worms to get people behind them. He needs a Ricky O Rally Towel.

Match Number One: Boogeyman versus Ricky Ortiz
Boogeyman punches Ricky and then he clotheslines Ricky over the top rope to the floor. Ricky goes to the back and this match kind of never happened.

Teddy Long is in his office and Jack enters. Jack says that someone stole his title belt. Teddy asks him if he misplaced it. Jack says that he laid it down for a few seconds and it is gone. Jack wants Teddy to help him, but Teddy tells Jack to ask Tiffany.

We go to commercial.

We are back and we are reminded that the other two brand’s titles will be defended in the Elimination Chamber at No Way Out while the ECW Title might be defended.

Match Number One: Paul Burchill with Katie Lea versus Fit Finlay
They lock up and Finlay with a side head lock and a shoulder tackle. Finlay pulls Burchill to the mat by his hair and then he hits a European uppercut followed by a boot to the solar plexus. Finlay with another European uppercut and a forearm across the chest. Finlay with another European uppercut and elbow to the head. Burchill with a kick to the chest followed by a clothesline. Burchill with a knee drop and a front face lock. Burchill with a clothesline in the corner followed by a reverse chin lock. Finlay with a knee but Burchill with a back elbow and boot. Burchill with an arm bar and chin lock followed by a knee to the midsection. Burchill with an Irish whip followed by knees to the back. Hornswoggle comes out from under the ring to bother Katie and that draws Burchill out of the ring. Finlay uses his ‘son’s’ distraction to hit a baseball slide and then he slams Burchill’s head into the announce table. Finlay with a series of clotheslines followed by a seated splash for a near fall. Finlay with a rolling fireman’s carry slam followed by a back body drop. Finlay hits the Celtic Cross for the three count.
Winner: Fit Finlay

Ricky Ortiz is in the back talking to Tiffany and Tiffany is glad that Ricky didn’t get the worms. Jack Swagger arrives and he tells Tiffany that she is going to help him find his title belt. We go to commercial.

We are back with the trailer to 12 Rounds, the prequel to Buck Woodward’s Orange Sash: The Marine 3.

Mark Henry is walking in the back with Tony Atlas. Jack Swagger stops them and wants to know where his belt is. Mark asks Jack if he thinks he took the belt. Mark wonders what Jack would do if he really took it. Mark and Tony walk away and Jack wonders where Scooby and Shaggy are. We go to commercial.

We are back and the Barry O Moments return.

It is time for the Raw Rebound.

Match Number Two: Mark Henry with Tony Atlas versus Tommy Dreamer
They lock up and Henry sends Dreamer to the mat. Dreamer with punches but Henry pushes him away. Dreamer with kicks as well followed by more punches. Henry misses a charge into the corner and Dreamer tries for a schoolboy, but Henry does not go down and Henry drops down onto Dreamer’s arm. Henry works on the arm and then he puts Dreamer in a hammer lock and sends Dreamer into the turnbuckles. Henry with a head butt and then he turns the arm in positions it probably should not go. Henry with a body block and Dreamer goes down again. Henry works on the arm one more time and he kicks Dreamer in the back. Dreamer punches Henry and Henry sends Dreamer to the mat one more time. Henry gets a near fall and he puts Dreamer in a hammer lock and Henry adds pressure. Dreamer with a jawbreaker and Henry releases the hold. Henry with a kick to the chest followed by punches and a slam. Henry misses an elbow drop when Dreamer moves. Dreamer with a drop kick to Henry. Dreamer goes into the corner and he kicks Henry as Mark charges. Dreamer with a clothesline from the second turnbuckle for a near fall. Dreamer with a drop kick to the knee and Henry is staggered. Dreamer with another drop kick to the knee but Henry is in the corner. Dreamer with the drop kick to a seated Henry and then Dreamer goes to the turnbuckles again. Henry catches Dreamer and Henry with the standing power slam for the three count.
Winner: Mark Henry

Jack and Tiffany are with Teddy and they say that they have been everywhere. Jack wants to know what Teddy is going to do. Teddy tells Jack that they are going to go to the ring to get his title belt back.

We go to the Wrestlemania 21 recap with the commercials and the debut of Money in the Bank.

We are back and we are less than 10 weeks away from Wrestlemania 25.

Jack Swagger is in the ring and he is pouting. Teddy says that he feels like a third grade teacher more than a General Manager. Teddy tells the rapscallion to bring out the belt. Teddy says that there will be no harm and no foul, but if it is not brought out, that person will face disciplinary action.

Jack says that this is lame. He says that he is the face of the organization and he wants his title back.

Fit Finlay comes out but he only has a mic with him as he walks to the ring. Finlay tells Jack that he might know who has it. He has a good idea. Finlay goes to SwoggleVille and he brings out Hornswoggle and the he has the belt. Finlay tells him to give the belt back and be a good ‘adult who grunts’. Finlay tells Jack, Teddy, and random blonde that his son gets into things that he shouldn’t do. Jack tells Hornswoggle not to put his grubby fingers on it again. Finlay tells Jack that if he wanted Jack’s title, he would take it off him, not get his son to take it. Jack questions Finlay’s parenting skills. Hornswoggle gives the belt to Jack and Jack pushes Hornswoggle down. Finlay hits Swagger and then he hits the champion with the title belt. Finlay hands the belt to Teddy Long and then they leave the ring.

2010 - Rob Terry defeated Eric Young to become the new TNA Global Champion at a house show in Cardiff, Wales.

2010 - Chris Jericho and Gregory Helms were arrested in Kenton County, KY around 5 a.m. by the Erlanger (KY) Police Department. Both men were charged with Alcohol Intoxication In A Public Place. They were both bonded out in a little more than an hour. Kenton County is close to Cincinnati, OH, where WWE taped Smackdown the previous evening.

2011 – TNA ran Glasgow, Scotland.  Michael Prentice filed the following live report:

*X-Division champ Kaz defeated Shannon Moore, Chris Sabin and Mark Harkins.

*Mickie James and angelina love defeated Madison Rayne and Tara.

*Jeff Jarrett defeated Lionheart with Greg Hempil as the special referee after a guitar shot.

*TNA Tag Team champions Beer Money with Ric Flair defeated The British Invasion. Money played babyfaces.

*Dixie Carter came out and talked up Impact on Challenge TV.

*Matt Morgan defeated the Pope. Didn't like this match.

*TNA champion Ken Anderson and Rob Van Dam defeated the Hardys.

A guy proposed to his girlfriend when Jeremy Borash went into the crowd.

They were pushing Impact's move to Challenge TV all night.

 

2011 – WWE broadcast Superstars.  Richard Trionfo filed the following TV report:

We start off this week with the Smackdown brand and your announcers are Matt Striker and Jack Korpela.

Match Number One: Trent Barreta versus Tyler Reks

They lock up and Reks backs Trent into the corner and he gives Trent a clean break. Trent puts Tyler in the corner but does not do anything. Trent with a side head lock but Reks sends Trent to the mat. Tyler sends Trent to the mat and Trent responds with a slap and forearm. Tyler goes to the floor. He returns and sends Trent into the turnbuckles. Trent with a European uppercut but Tyler with a knee and then he hits a gutbuster out of a dominator position. Tyler with elbow drops and then he connects with a knee drop and gets a near fall.

Tyler with a kick to the ribs and then he stands on Trent’s chest. Tyler with a seated abdominal stretch. Trent with punches and forearms but Tyler with a kick to the midsection. Tyler with a gourdbuster and gets a near fall. Tyler with a boot to the head and a knee to the back as he puts Trent in a chin lock with his knee in the chest. Trent gets to his feet and Tyler with a forearm to the back.

Tyler sends Barreta into the turnbuckles and then hits a forearm. Reks pulls Trent into the ring post with a version of a bow and arrow as he works on the ribs. Trent kicks Tyler as he returns to the ring and then Trent hits a drop kick to Reks and both men are down. Trent with an enzuigiri and Reks goes down. Trent with a running elbow into the corner followed by a running clothesline and Trent gets a near fall.

Trent misses the running knee. Reks misses a suplex and Trent lands on his feet. Trent with a flying knee and he gets a near fall. Trent goes to the apron and tries for a springboard move and Reks kicks the ropes and Trent goes down. Reks hits the Burning Hammer for the three count.

Winner: Tyler Reks

We take a look back at NXT with footage from the Fatal Four Way when Brodus Clay changed pros.

We go to commercial.

We are back and it is time for the Raw three-quarters of this week’s Superstars and your announcers are Josh Mathews and Scott Stanford.

Before our next match Zack Ryder gets on the mic and he says that they deserved a better reaction. He says that they are the two most overlooked superstars in the WWE. Zack gives everyone a chance to give them a better reaction.

Primo says that if the people don’t want to appreciate them, they don’t care about the people. He says that they deserve to be on Raw.

Zack says that after they win, they are going to go to the clubs.

Match Number Two: Primo and Zack Ryder versus Yoshi Tatsu and David Hart Smith

Ryder and Smith start things off and Smith pushes Ryder away. Smith with an arm drag into a cover but Ryder rolls through. Smith with a front face lock on Smith and he rolls through and gets a near fall. Smith with an arm drag but Ryder with a head scissors. Smith escapes and gives Ryder another arm drag into an arm bar.

Yoshi tags in and he goes up top and chops Ryder’s arm. Yoshi with a chop and he gets a near fall. Ryder with a knee and forearm to the back. Primo tags in and Yoshi with a drop toe hold and a La Magistral for a near fall. Yoshi with a Japanese arm drag followed by another arm drag into an arm bar. Smith tags back in and they hit a double kick and double chop. Smith with an Irish whip and belly-to-belly suplex for a near fall.

Yoshi tags in and he kicks Primo before working on the arm. Smith is tagged back in and Smith hits a suplex and gets a near fall. Smith gets another near fall. Primo goes to the floor and then he gets back on the apron but Smith kicks Primo off with a running boot.

We go to commercial.

We are back and Primo has Smith in a reverse chin lock so that means that momentum shifted during the break. We see Ryder sending Smith into the ringside barrier during the commercial break. Primo kicks Smith in the corner and then Ryder gets in a few shots while Primo deals with the referee. Ryder is tagged back in and he punches Smith. Ryder with a snap mare and a drop kick to the back of the head for a near fall.

Ryder tries for a neck breaker but Smith counters with a back slide. Ryder with a leg drop and he gets a near fall. Ryder with a reverse chin lock on Smith. Smith punches Ryder but Ryder with a back elbow and he keeps control of the match. Primo gets tagged in and he hits a diving head butt while Ryder holds Smith. Primo with punches and then Smith gets in some punches. Primo tags Ryder back in and Ryder with kicks to the back.

Ryder slaps Smith in the head and punches him. Ryder runs Smith into the corner and tags Primo back in. Primo sends Ryder into the corner with a forearm and it connects on Smith. Primo with a suplex and he gets a near fall. Ryder tags back in and he punches Smith and connects with a head butt. Smith with a Saito suplex and both men are down.

Smith crawls to his corner and Yoshi and Primo tag in. Yoshi with chops and a drop kick followed by a back body drop. Yoshi with kicks to Primo and then he hits a Shining Wizard for a near fall. Yoshi goes up top and Primo is having trouble getting up but Yoshi is able to hit the spinning heel kick from the turnbuckles. Smith tries to power bomb Ryder but Primo sends them to the floor. Primo with a lungblower on Yoshi for the three count.

Winners: Zack Ryder and Primo

We go to commercial.

We have a video package for Dolph Ziggler.

It is time for the Royal Rumble By The Numbers Video Package.

It is time to run through the card for the Royal Rumble.

Match Number Three: R Truth versus Tyson Kidd

Truth wants to know ‘what’s up’ as the bell rings and then he dances and does a split in the center of the ring. Kidd does not look impressed. They lock up and Kidd works on the wrist. Truth with a reversal but Kidd backs Truth into the corner. The referee separates both men for a clean break. Truth wants to know ‘what’s up’ one more time. Kidd with a side head lock take down and he is impressed with what he just did.

Kidd with a shoulder tackle and he wants to know what is up with that. They lock up and Truth with a waist lock. Kidd with a hammer lock but Truth with a side head lock. Truth with a shoulder tackle and he dances some more. Kidd with a kick to the midsection followed by an elbow to the head. Kidd kicks Truth in the midsection as he backs him into the corner. Kidd with an Irish whip but Truth floats over and hits the hip toss and then clotheslines Kidd and both men go over the top rope to the floor as we go to commercial.

We are back and Kidd with a reverse chin lock as he leans back to add more pressure. Truth tries to get back to his feet. We see footage from the commercial break when Kidd hits a leg drop on Truth while Truth was hanging into the ring from the apron. Truth gets back to his feet and he punches Kidd. Kidd with an elbow to the midsection followed by a snap mare and drop kick to the back of the head and gets a near fall.

Kidd chokes Truth in the ropes and then he drop kicks Truth from the apron. Kidd with an elbow to the chest and then he returns to the reverse chin lock. Truth punches Kidd but Kidd with a back kick. Truth with a flapjack to Kidd and Kidd holds his ribs so momentum may have shifted to Truth. Truth with punches and clotheslines to Kidd followed by a suplex into a stunner and gets a near fall when Kidd gets a hold of the rope. Truth pulls Kidd into the center of the ring and can only get a near fall. Kidd with a back heel kick and drop kick to the head and he gets another near fall.

Kidd sets for the Sharpshooter but Truth kicks Kidd to the floor. Kidd with an elbow from the apron and then he tries for a rollup from the apron. Truth with a near fall after a rollup. Truth hits the What’s Up for the three count.

Winner: R Truth

2011 – TNA broadcast Impact.  Stu Carapola filed the following TV report:

We open with a recap of last week's ongoing situation between Kurt Angle and Jeff & Karen Jarrett, culminating with Immortal beating Kurt down and then Abyss coming out of the entranceway and collapsing with Janice buried in his back, and then Crimson coming out to warn Immortal that they're coming.

We head to the Impact Zone as Kurt Angle makes his way to the ring to address the crowd, telling us that he came out here to speak with the Jarretts in peace and put their heat behind them. Instead, the Jarretts decided to dig at Kurt's wounds and make it personal even though he didn't want to go down that road. Angle said he'd retire if he lost at Bound For Glory and he hasn't wrestled since, but Jeff Jarrett's forcing his hand and making him do what a man has to do. Angle is the best in the world and when he comes to a crossroads, he looks to the fans because they're the best in the world, and he wants to know how many of them want to see Kurt Angle in the ring one more time to beat the living (beep) out of Jeff Jarrett? Okay, we knew this was coming: Eric Bischoff comes out with his gang and says he's tired of listening to Angle trying to con the people into getting him back on the roster. Bischoff says he's retired and tells him to raise horses or play golf or something because his wrestling days are over, but if he wants an ass kicking, then he came to the right place. Bischoff sends Immortal down to the ring and they beat Angle down in the ring by virtue of their overwhelming numbers as Flair, Bischoff, and the Jarretts watch from the top of the ramp. Suddenly, Crimson runs in and clears out the ring with a baseball bat, and Flair says he doesn't care what his story is because next week, they're going to stick They up their own asses. He tells Angle that if he wants to wrestle again, Flair's lifted the ban and he's got Jeff Jarrett tonight. The Jarretts freak out on Flair, but Flair tells them to relax because Angle and his dumbass partner have Jarrett, and Beer Money, and Kazarian, and Gunner & Muffin (whose names Flair doesn't seem to know), and Rob Terry.

After commercial, we go to Eric Bischoff and Ric Flair in the office where Bischoff is chewing Flair out for letting Angle back in after how hard they worked to manipulate Angle into putting himself in retirement. Flair says that he's not drinking the Kool Aid and promises that Angle's going down tonight.

Tonight: Dixie Carter will address the fans and Ken Anderson will face Matt Hardy!

Now let's head to the ring for our opening match...

Elimination Match: Sarita, Madison Rayne & Tara vs Mickie James, Angelina Love & Velvet Sky

Winter grabs Angelina on her way to the ring to try and keep her from going out there without her, and Angelina finally lays down the law and says that Velvet is her BFF and Winter will have to deal with it. The Beautiful People leave and Winter throws a fit and starts banging on the walls and screaming. The match starts out as a pier six brawl with all the girls fighting it out in the ring. Mickie and Madison go to the floor, as do Velvet and Sarata, and they leave Tara alone in the ring with Angelina as the legal participants. Tara's still selling the elbow so Angelina twists the arm with a wristlock but Tara kicks Angelina and tags out to Madison. Angelina goes through her as well and tags to Mickie, but Madison runs and tags Sarita in and the two of them do a chain wrestling sequence until Mickie tags out to Velvet, and Velvet now beats Sarita up, sweeping the legs and then hitting a diving dropkick, but Sarita counters a flying headscissors into a backbreaker. Velvet gets a straitjacket drop and goes for the cover, but Madison comes in and nails Velvet and holds her so Madison can nail Velvet with the loaded glove but Velvet moves and Madison nearly nails Sarita but stops at the last second. Velvet sends Madison to the floor but Sarita gets a rollup to eliminate Velvet and then all hell breaks loose in the ring and Mickie somehow knocks Madison out with her own glove to eliminate her, and then Sarita immediately cradles Mickie and eliminates her as well. So now we're down to a 2-on-1 with Angelina by herself against both Sarita and Tara as we go to commercial.

We come back and Angelina nails Sarita with a leg lariat for 2 as we take a moment for an instant replay to see that Madison knocked herself out by falling on her own glove right before she got eliminated. Speaking of head trauma, we continue our break in the action to look backstage at Velvet Sky writhing around on the floor holding her head. Now why would she be doing that? Angelina continues to hold her own against both heels until Tara nails Angelina with her elbow brace and Sarita covers for 2. Tara and Sarita now tag in and out on Angelina and continue to work her over with Tara continuing to sell her elbow on every single move she performs on Angelina. Angelina suddenly hit the Botox Injection out of nowhere on Tara to eliminate her and then Sarita comes right in with an O'Connor Roll and then Angelina reverses to one of her own for the come from behind victory.

Winner: Angelina Love

We go backstage to Kurt Angle, who's talking to somebody on the phone and saying they need to speed up the process and he needs them here. Who was Kurt talking to? Maybe we'll find out...after this commercial!

Matt Hardy's backstage talking about how Ken Anderson got lucky and he thinks that saying his name twice is stupid, and his purpose tonight is to make sure that Anderson doesn't even make it to next Thursday and he's going to do it for his brother thanks to the cold blood flowing through his icy veins.

Frankie Kazarian joins us on commentary for our next match...

X-Division #1 Contender's Tournament: Amazing Red vs Max Buck vs Chris Sabin

Seems like this is the first of three qualifying matches for a final three way to determine the #1 contender to the X Division Title, and each man gives prematch comments talking about how they're going to win this match and then become X Division Champion. Chris Sabin clears the ring and then Red comes in and do a fast paced exchange ending in the indy stalemate. Max comes in and tosses Sabin and then he goes after Red and works him over in the corner, but misses a charge and Red clears him out with a flying headscissors and then goes for a dive, but Sabin cuts him off with a clothesline for 2 and then springs out of the corner and hits a dive on Max on the floor. Sabin springboard into the ring and gets a thumb in the eye from Max, who then tosses Red and rolls Sabin up for 2. Buck with a cartwheel dropkick for 2 and then gets a chinlock as we see Jeremy choking Red on the floor with his boot. Red breaks free and comes in with a double missile dropkick and a tilt-a-whirl DDT for 2. Red goes for a springboard something but Sabin catches him and Rolls The Dice off the top rope for 2 and Max gets a Victory Dog on Sabin for 2. Red hits Code Red on Sabin, but Jeremy jumps on the apron to distract the referee and keep him from making the count. Red nails Jeremy and then goes up top, but Jeremy yanks him down and crotches him on the top rope, allowing Max to hit a top rope DDT for the win.

Winner: Max Buck

Karen Jarrett walks in on Jeff and asks what he's doing and Jeff says he's getting ready for his match. Karen says Kurt was on the phone calling for backup, but Jarrett says he was probably just on the phone looking for protein bars and tells Karen to loosen him up.

Jeff Hardy is backstage, and looks like he's been sleeping on a park bench all week. AND HE'S WALKING!

The Beautiful People are backstage and Velvet Sky is telling Angelina that Winter knocked her out while Angelina was in the ring. Angelina asked if she was sure it was Winter and not Sarita since Sarita's a crazy Mexican. Angelina's words, not mine. Velvet is convinced it was Winter and she storms out.

We go to a video package looking back at the rise of Ken Anderson: Babyface Asshole, Jeff Hardy's turn to the Dark Side, and Anderson's World Title victory at Genesis, followed by Anderson talking about how he could crap a better looking World Title belt than the one Jeff Hardy created.

Speaking of Jeff Hardy, he (or a homeless man who looks just like him) comes strolling out to the ring to let the fans know that he is troubled by them because he's been destroying himself for years for them, but they're just a bunch of marks who don't care about him. Turning at Bound For Glory was the smartest thing he ever did because he is TNA, and now he wants to address the asshole becuase they're all a bunch of assholes. Ken Anderson beat him at Genesis but he's seven days away from his rematch, and when he gets his title back he's going to shove that moment up all their asses. Now Ken Anderson's music hits, and the WWE Divas Champion himself comes out to the ring to have a word with Mr Hardy. Anderson says Hardy sure does bitch a lot, and he thought he knew that the only things that matter in this business are Ws and Ls, and he's got a big W. He also notes that it has Hardy's face on it, and that's because he took it from Hardy. Hardy looks really angry. It's all about that belt, and next week he's going to continue being the Total Nonstop Action, Total Nonstop Asshole World Champion...Champion.

Crimson is backstage saying he was here for his brother Red and he always will be, but he was given a very lucrative offer he couldn't refuse, and next week we'll find out what They have planned. We then look at what Crimson did to Abyss last week, and we discover that Abyss has suffered nerve damage to his spine and will be out indefinitely.

Velvet Sky comes out to the ring holding the back of her head, calls Winter a bitch, and tells her she can't come to TNA and just break up the Beautiful People, she can't show up out of nowhere and attack her from behind, and if Angelina won't take care of her ass, she will, and she tells Winter to get in the ring with her right now. Winter comes out to the ring and Velvet goes out to the floor and attacks her, ramming her into the apron over and over and then into the guardrail. Velvet lays in kicks and chops and Winter bails into the ring but Velvet follows her in and bashes her head into the mat as she screams at Winter that Angelina is her partner, not Winter's. Suddenly Winter screams in Velvet's face and Velvet freezes, giving Winter the opening to take her down and try to rip Velvet's head off. Finally Angelina comes into the ring and pulls Winter off of Velvet, and Angelina tells her to get out of the ring as Velvet stands there sneering at Velvet before suddenly breaking into a smile as she backs her way up the ramp. Angelina tries to help Velvet out of the ring but Velvet breaks away from her and storms off to the back.

The Pope is backstage, and he's...WALKING!

We're back from commercial, and the Pope is out to address the Congregation. A few weeks ago, Pope allowed his emotions to get the best of him and he may have said some stuff he shouldn't have, and he's out here right now to do what none of us would ever do: he's going to lead by example and confess. So many people watching this are sitting next to someone they can't stand and act like everything's great, then wait for them to leave and stab them in the back, there's people who are going to finish watching Impact and get to bed and they know they're sleeping with the enemy, but they do it for the kids. But as the Pope, he's bigger and better than that, and he's better than all the fans, and he's going to kneel down and say right now to Samoa Joe...Joe...I don't like you, I don't like who you are, I don't like what you stand for, and asks who goes around in modern society saying "I'm gonna kill you", who sits in the crowd chanting "Joe's gonna kill you", and he's not going to bother with him because there's no hope and he can't work wonders. But what he can do is give a member of his Congregation the chance next week to follow Pope's lead and come onto Confession With The Pope and confess their faults, and he's going to do what he's always done and change this world one smile at a time. Pope has spoken.

We go back to Immortal's locker room as Flair gives his crew (and Eric Young, who is at the meeting for some reason) a pep talk and tells Rob Terry that he looks like a million dollars, but is nobody until he grinds someone. Gold medals don't matter in their world, and he tells Immortal to go get them. Immortal storms out the door to take care of business as Flair asks Young who the hell he is, and Young holds up the Legends/Global/TV Title belt and says he's the champion. Flair said he's no champion because that's a piece of crap that they threw out, and then he throws Young out of their locker room.

We see a video package looking back at the announcement that Hulk Hogan was coming on board at TNA, and everything that has happened since then, culminating in Hogan and Bischoff stealing the company from Dixie and Immortal running rampant over TNA, and then Dixie presenting the injunction on Thanksgiving night. We then go out to Mike Tenay and Taz, who have Dixie Carter on the phone and ask her for her thoughts on next week's ruling on the legal proceedings regarding the status of the company. She says she's confident that things will work out in her favor and her attorneys have assured her that she'll be back in control after next week. We then go to Eric Bischoff, who says that she's been drinking her own Kool Aid for so long that she can't tell the difference between Kool Aid and scotch. Two things will happen next week: Jeff Hardy will regain the WWE Divas Title, and Hulk Hogan will prevail in the lawsuit and everything will be as they should be with Immortal in control. Bischoff also puts the They thing in the same category as the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus: there is no They.

Ken Anderson is backstage, and he's...WALKING! Matt Hardy's backstage as well, and he's...CONVULSING!

Time for our next match...

Matt Hardy vs WWE Divas Champion Ken Anderson

They tie up and Matt uses his overwhelming mass to drive Anderson to the corner, but Anderson comes out fighting and Matt tries to climb the corner, but can't seem to make it to the top rope so he takes Anderson's arm and snaps it across the top rope, then hits a single arm DDT for 2. Hardy works the wristlock and slams the elbow over his shoulder and then repeatedly rams Anderson's shoulder into the ringpost several times until the referee stands in the way to prevent further damage. Hardy works the hammerlock and takes Anderson down to the mat, but Anderson makes it to his feet and fights his way free and runs over Hardy with a clothesline, running elbow, and neckbreaker for 2. Anderson picks Hardy up for a fireman's carry but can't seem to support his weight, and Hardy slips out and hits a Death Valley Driver for 2 and then goes for the Twist Of Hate, but Anderson slips out and, with a Herculean effort, picks Hardy back up and (very quickly) delivers a Finlay Roll for 2. Anderson goes for the Mic Check but Hardy blocks and hits the Side Effect for 2, but goes for an arrogant cover and Anderson rolls Hardy to his back for 3.

Winner: Ken Anderson

Anderson goes to leave but Jeff Hardy runs out of the back and nails Anderson, then rolls him into the ring and the Hardys beat Anderson down 2-on-1. Rob Van Dam's music hits and he comes running out to make the save and spinkicks Matt as Jeff bails out the second he sees RVD and heads for the hills.

Kurt Angle & Crimson are WALKING backstage, and Angle tells Crimson not to worry, because they won't be alone out there. We're at commercial.

It's main event time!

Kurt Angle & Crimson vs Jeff Jarrett, Frankie Kazarian, Rob Terry, AJ Styles, Beer Money, Gunner & Muffin

I always love when the main event starts at 10:56, that's when I know I'm in for a real quality match. Styles is out in street clothes, and Jeff Jarrett is nowhere to be seen. Roode and Crimson start and Roode drives Crimson to the corner and unloads with boots and rights and beats Crimson down in the corner, but Crimson comes back with a leaping clothesline off the ropes and a Falcon Arrow suplex for 2. Crimson tags Angle in but Roode takes Angle to the corner and tags Kazarian in, and Angle catches him with a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker so Kazarian tags out to Storm and they jockey for position until Angle gets an overhead belly-to-belly suplex and then takes out the entire Immortal team on the apron. Storm with a lungblower from behind and Flair nearly topples over the top rope yelling at Angle, but Storm goes for a superkick and Angle ducks so Storm hits the referee. Angle hits the Angle Slam on Storm, but now the entire group start to beat Angle and Crimson down, and now Jeff Jarrett comes out with his full entrance with music and pyro. He tells the rest of Immortal to back off and he waits for Angle to get to his feet and goes for a punch, but Angle ducks and hits a German Suplex so Immortal all bum rush Angle and beat him down again as Jarrett eggs them on. Jarrett finally hits the Stroke and Jackson James slides in to count 3.

Winners: Jeff Jarrett, Frankie Kazarian, Rob Terry, AJ Styles, Beer Money, Gunner & Muffin

Karen gives Jeff a big kiss as Immortal celebrates. They continue beating Angle down even after the match, and suddenly Matt Morgan's music hits and he comes into the ring to make the save and he gets swarmed and overwhelmed by the numbers, too. Suddenly, the lights go out and the sirens hit, and when they come back up, Scott Steiner is in the ring with a lead pipe and he clears Immortal out. Immortal backs up the rampway in fear as Steiner stands there swearing at them and daring them to come back and fight him. Steiner turns to Angle and they share a smile and a nod as we go off the air.

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