Tributes to “Mean” Gene Okerlund from Twitter are shown.
They have a 10 bell salute for “Mean” Gene Okerlund. You could hear a pin drop throughout it.
Hulk Hogan’s music hits, and the WWE Hall of Famer and legend makes his way to the ring to a huge ovation. Hogan does his trademark poses in the ring before throwing the boas aside. A loud “Hogan” chant picks up. Hogan says, “Well let me tell you something, brother…” Hogan lifts up his sunglasses and says he came out wide open in character because that’s exactly the way “Mean” Gene would have wanted it. “Mean” Gene loved entertaining and loved entertaining everyone here in the WWE Universe. We’re going to take a look at some of his greatest moments.
— WWE (@WWE) January 8, 2019
After the video, the crowd is chanting, “Mean Gene.” Hogan says Okerlund was one of a kind. Hogan can speak for the WWE Universe, the superstars, and anyone that’s ever watched him: “Mean Gene, I love you brother.” Being in the ring without “Mean” Gene is odd, but he’s not far away. Hogan says, “I love you, Mean Gene. I miss you.” A “Thank you, Mean Gene” chant picks up. Hogan goes into a trademark promo talking to “Mean” Gene about having the angels singing Tutti Frutti. Okerlund is probably putting a tag match together with “Macho Man” Randy Savage and The Ultimate Warrior versus “Rowdy” Roddy Piper and Mr. Perfect with André The Giant as the guest referee. And he’s also probably breaking up a fight between Gorilla Monsoon and Bobby “The Brain” Heenan. Hogan says he hears the weights clanging and banging, but warns Gene he doesn’t need to get so swole. He’s only got Mae Young and Moolah to choose from – that got a good laugh. Finally, Hogan has one question to ask all the maniacs in heaven: “What’cha gonna do when Mean Gene-O-Mania runs wild on you, brother?” Hogan drops the mic and poses in the ring. Thankfully, we end the segment on a shot of Mene Gene’s graphic on the tron.
We’re back and it’s time for tag team Championship action! The lumberjacks are surrounding the ring and out come The Revival!
— WWE (@WWE) January 8, 2019
WWE Tag Team Championships
(C) Roode & Gable Vs. The Revival
Bobby Roode will start the match against Dash Wilder. They lock up, Roode shoots Dash into the ropes, and Wilder shoulder blocks him down for a one count. They trade holds before Roode applies a side headlock. Wilder whips him off, but Roode catches him with a Glorious DDT attempt. Wilder gets out and leaves the ring, but Slater and Rhyno put him back in the ring. Scott Dawson tags in, but Roode takes him down.
Chad Gable tags in, but Dawson connects with an elbow to take him down. Gable gets out of a suplex and rolls him up for a two count. Gable quickly leaps to the second rope and dives off with a cross-body block for a two count. Wilder tags in while Gable hits Dawson with a move. Roode and Gable knock The Revival out of the ring. The lumberjacks get The Revival back in the ring, so Roode and Gable knock them out of the ring again. Roode then gives Gable a back body drop out of the ring onto The Revival.
Roode and Gable get them in the ring, but The Revival soon gets the advantage. Dawson gives Gable a nice front suplex onto the top rope, sending him out of the ring. Dawson gets him in the ring for a two count and we head to the commercials.
We come back from the break to see Gable take Wilder down with an arm drag. Roode tags in and hits a pair of clotheslines on Wilder. Dawson then blind tags in while Roode hits Wilder with a back body drop. Roode hits Dawson with a belly-to-belly overhead suplex and slams Wilder. Roode wildly takes The Ascension out. Roode hits Dawson with a spinebuster for a near fall.
Roode and Gable go for the neckbreaker/moonsault combo, but Dawson gets out. Gable hits a moonsault and lifts Dawson. They hit a German Suplex/Blockbuster combo, but Wilder (just barely) breaks it up. Gable hits a rolling German Suplex on Dawson, but Wilder tags in. Wilder comes off the top rope and splashes Gable for a near fall.
Dash is tossed over the ropes, so Dawson jumps over Gable with a sunset flip pin attempt. Gable and him trade odd pin attempts that don’t really click. They’re standing back to back, arms linked, when Dash comes running back in but he gets flipped over the ropes by both of them. Roode pulls him from the apron and he crashes to the floor. Meanwhile Dawson rolls-up Gable but Roode reaches through the ropes and pushes them to reverse the pin. Gable scores the three count but Dawson’s foot was beneath the bottom rope!
Winners: Gable & Roode
Gable and Roode celebrate their win as they walk up the ramp with the belts. Meanwhile The Revival are not happy and attempt to explain to the referee what happened.
Still to come, Seth Rollins Vs. Dean Ambrose in a Falls Count Anywhere Match, but up next it’s Baron Corbin Vs. Elias.
We’re back and the pop Superstar, Elias, is in the ring and he plays a riff and talks about his 2018. Elias started weeping uncontrollably thinking about the level of stardom he reached. Elias dropped a debut album and sold out Madison Square Garden. Elias has sold out places all around the world. It has all brought him here tonight to Orlando. There is a universal truth that follows him around everywhere. WWE stands for Walk With Elias. Elias says that fires him up. If you thought 2018 was great, it’s nothing compared to what he’s got lined up for 2019. On January 27, he’ll walk into Chase Field, enter and win the Royal Rumble.
Elias says he has enjoyed his own successes, but has also enjoyed the failures of Baron Corbin, which earns a pop from the crowd. It wasn’t long ago that this guy was on top of the world. Now look at him: his life is a joke. He says he hasn’t forgotten all the times Corbin has wronged him. In fact, he wrote a song about it but, of course, he’s cut off.
Baron Corbin comes out to the stage to cut him off. The crowd loudly boos him. Corbin says they can’t handle another mind numbing performance. The people have no idea what it’s like to have a job as respected and high stress as being the General Manager of Monday Night RAW. After everything he did, he should have everyone’s respect and admiration. They don’t understand, so they disrespect him. Corbin is sure they’d like him to go away, but he won’t. Corbin is entering the Royal Rumble and will win. Elias tells Corbin to do everyone a favour and shut his mouth, and now it’s time
Elias vs. Baron Corbin
Elias applies a waistlock, but Corbin powers him to the corner. Elias chops him back and hits a mule kick. Elias then clotheslines him out of the ring and hits a baseball slide. Elias goes to the top rope and dives off to the floor onto Corbin!
We come back from the break to see Corbin knock Elias out of the ring and pose. Corbin drives Elias into the barricade and puts him in the ring. Elias fights out of the corner and whips him, but Corbin does his out and in clothesline for a near fall. Corbin tells the referee that he sucks. Corbin beats Elias down while the crowd chants, “You got fired.” He doesn’t look pleased. Corbin takes to the top rope, and jumps off but Elias knees him in the face.
Elias hits a running forearm to Baron. Corbin then reverses a whip to the corner, but Elias bounces right back out with a clothesline. Elias wildly punches him down before trying for an electric chair. Corbin gets out, but Elias hits a neckbreaker. Elias goes to the top rope, but Corbin moves. Corbin sends Elias into the referee, but he puts the brakes on. Corbin tosses Elias shoulder-first into the ring post and hits End of Days for the win.
Winner: Baron Corbin
We see Dean Ambrose angrily pacing backstage. Ambrose asks what the world is coming to. Ambrose never liked 6-man tags. Ambrose is the only man he trusts. He’s the moral compass and the last line of defense against Seth Rollins. Ambrose says he isn’t having fun or enjoying himself. It hurts him to hurt Seth. Ambrose did what he had to do to bring back balance to the WWE. Ambrose won’t let Rollins get the Intercontinental Championship back. It ends tonight. Ambrose will burn Rollins down.
Paul Heyman knocks on Brock Lesnar’s door. They’ll be out, next.
The Monster Among Men’s music hits, and Braun Strowman makes his way to the ring. Strowman grabs a microphone, but then gives it back and tears his shirt off – to which the fans cheer. Paul Heyman and Brock Lesnar appear on the titantron. Heyman introduces himself and Brock Lesnar. Heyman says he knows Strowman was brought up in his household as a monster, but he’ll give him an education. Heyman knows how much money they’ve spent to hype up Lesnar in the ring with his Royal Rumble victim. Heyman says they need to understand “Card Subject To Change.” That change is for Strowman’s benefit. He says if Lesnar came down to the ring to get those hands, he wouldn’t have a victim at the Royal Rumble. Strowman would be destroyed. No need to thank him or Lesnar, and the Champion just smiles at that one.
— WWE (@WWE) January 8, 2019
Strowman says, “Hey, Beastie Boy. I’m waiting. I’m standing in the ring waiting for you.” Lesnar and Heyman look unimpressed. Strowman challenges Lesnar to get in the ring. Heyman asks if that’s the best he’s got. Strowman asks if Heyman’s ass gets jealous of his mouth with all the crap that comes out of it. All he’s heard is Lesnar doesn’t want to go face-to-face with the Monster Among Men. Strowman says Lesnar is hiding like a coward. If Lesnar came down right now, he’s not making it to the Royal Rumble. Everyone knows what happens when you Get These Hands. Lesnar says he’s going to see what he’s got to say. Heyman starts to panic.
Lesnar makes his way to down to the ring and circles the squared circle, while staring down Braun. Rather than get in though, he turns and walks back up the ramp. Brock laughs as he joins Heyman on the stage and takes his belt again. Strowman shouts at him and says he will be Champion after the Royal Rumble. Well, that was…disappointing.
Still to come, the debut of Alexa Bliss’ new talk show, as well as Seth Rollins Vs. Dean Ambrose in a Falls Count Anywhere match.