Welcome to Ringside News live coverage of the 2019 Royal Rumble event!
Tonight’s show features the two iconic Royal Rumble matches, one between 30 men, the other with 30 women. As always, it’s really anyone’s guess who will come out in either match. Obviously there are frontrunners in each category but my money is on Seth Rollins and Becky Lynch, in their respective Rumble matches. Although Braun Strowman was announced today as being John Cena’s replacement in the match, which surely puts him as a high contender as well. Let us know who you think will come out on top in each match!
Speaking of Lynch, she faces Asuka tonight for the SmackDown Live Women’s Championship. Needless to say, I think Lynch will lose by hook or crook, then enter the women’s Rumble and win the whole darn thing. That would in turn set-up a three-way at ‘Mania between Lynch, Rousey, and Charlotte. Or, and no-one is calling this one, perhaps Ronda loses to Sasha thanks to interference from Lynch, then she wins the Rumble and challenges Lynch, who beats Asuka. There are lots of ways to get to this match at ‘Mania, and tonight should be the catalyst.
Also happening tonight is Finn Balor Vs. Brock Lesnar in a David Vs. Goliath match-up, and AJ Styles Vs. Daniel Bryan. These are the two Championship matches tonight and they’re sure to be barn-burners but entirely different match types, which is exactly what one wants in a huge PPV like this and from the two different brands.
There’s also Shane McMahon & The Miz Vs. The Bar, a Cruiserweight Fatal 4-Way match between Buddy Murphy, Hideo Itami, Akira Tozawa, and Kalisto, and Rusev Vs. Shinsuke Nakamura for the United States Championship. As you can tell, it’s a huge card, it’s going to be many hours long, and we’re ready to dive in with the Kick-Off Show at 5 PM EST!
That’s the preview for tonight’s show. Let us know what matches you’re excited for and who you want to win, by downloading the Ringside News app and following us on Instagram. Enjoy the show!
The Royal Rumble kick-off show begins with the panel of The Coach, Beth Phoenix – in Phoenix, Arizona – Booker T, and Jerry Lawler. The panel run-down the entire card.
They cut to Charly Caruso and JBL, standing on the ramp. The show a hype video for Sasha Banks Vs. Ronda Rousey for the WWE Championship. JBL says Ronda coming in the way she has, rubbed some of the current Superstars the wrong way. JBL says both women are great wrestlers, but he thinks the difference will be Ronda’s strength. Back with the panel, Coach asks what they think will happen. Phoenix says there is no doubt that Ronda has blown the doors off and she is an incredible athlete, but she’s known Banks since she was 16 and she thinks she is hungrier. Lawler says he is surprised by Phoenix’s prediction, because he thinks Ronda will be far too much for Banks. Booker T says he agrees and thinks Ronda has more than proven herself time and again.
Coming up on the Kick-Off Show, Rusev Vs. Shinsuke Nakamura for the United States Championship, as well as the Fatal 4-Way for the Cruiserweight Championship. We see Mandy Rose and Sonya Devile backstage, and Rose says she is more than a pretty face, killer body, gorgeous smile, and incredible hair. She admits to trying to trick Jimmy Uso into chasing her. She wants to win the Rumble and become famous, and have that face everywhere. Sonya Deville tightens her hair and says it’s time to square up. Then Rose says it’s nice to know at least one woman in the match will have her back, but Deville says “until she doesn’t”.
— WWE (@WWE) January 27, 2019
It’s announced that Scott Dawson of The Revival and Rezar of Author’s of Pain will have to team together, and if they win, both their respective teams will get title shots down the line. We get one of those statistics video about the Rumble, which explains the rules of the match and reveals some stats – like there have been 1010 competitors in Rumble history, while only 26 have won the match.
Discussing the women’s Rumble match, Coach reckons Charlotte Flair will be a front-runner, considering she didn’t compete last year. Booker agrees but says a betting man should put his money on Nia Jax. Coach asks Beth Phoenix what it was like to prepare for the match. She says so much of it is up to chance, there’s only so much training you can do in regards to strength and conditioning. Just then she’s interrupted by R-Truth and Carmella. Truth says that he and Carmella are both #30 in their Rumble matches, and Carmella says, after they win, they will have the biggest dance break yet at WrestleMania. Coach asks Carmella if she has an advantage, and she reminds them that she is money, that they should be betting on her.The fans behind them call for a dance break, so they give them one.
We see an interview with Alexa Bliss backstage, in which she said she’s very excited to get back in the ring, and she can’t wait to be in the Rumble for the first time. We then see Samoa Joe sitting backstage, and he says his eyes do not lie; they tell a story about a man filled with anger, rage, and no conscience. He has the perfect combination of size and speed, and will not be moved by anyone. He says he will destroy all opponents, including Randy Orton, who attacked him on SmackDown Live. He says his eyes tell the story of a man built to win the Royal Rumble.
There’s a hype video for Finn Balor Vs. Brock Lesnar, then the panel discuss the big match. Booker says Finn Balor is incredible and he will show it tonight. Lawler says that he doesn’t know anyone who would relish the chance to face Brock Lesnar, however the price is big. Coach asks Beth if Brock will overlook Balor tonight, to which she says Balor has the heart of a lion. That said, she doesn’t think Brock overlooks anyone, he just eats them alive.
— WWE Network (@WWENetwork) January 27, 2019
They cut back to JBL and Charly Caruso to discuss the SmackDown Live Championship match. JBL says AJ Styles is this generations’ Shawn Michaels. And in Daniel Bryan he has an opponent who can match him in every aspect. JBL likens this to Steamboat Vs. Flair! After a video package for the match, JBL says he doesn’t know who this Daniel Bryan is. He says Bryan doesn’t care about the fans chanting for him anymore, and tonight’s match is a coin flip, but he thinks Bryan will win. We see a video of Bryan from earlier today, where he’s sitting in the stadium by himself. He says soon, the stadium will be filled with fans, cheering for AJ Styles, but those fans live empty lives. He says they fill themselves with meaningless social media likes, toxins, and more. He holds up the Chase Field Burger, which is full of pork, onions, and cheese, and topped with mac and cheese wedges. He says the burger is empty calories, just like their lives. And those fans won’t be satisfied after eating that burger, so they will try to live vicariously through AJ Styles, but he can’t wait to destroy it – then he stomps on the burger.
It’s time for in-ring action. The entrance to the ring is ground level, because this is a baseball stadium, and it’s shaped like an L towards the ring, quite unique. We’re starting things off with Chad Gable and Bobby Roode – during their entrance a cameraman fell over.
Chad Gable & Bobby Roode Vs. Scott Dawson & Rezar W/Drake Maverick
Scott Dawson and Bobby Roode start things off. Dawson takes a side headlock but Roode shoots him off. Dawson looks for a hip toss but Roode prevents it and tags Gable. They hit a double team Poetry In Motion/monkey flip combo on Dawson. Gable rolls-up Dawson for a near-fall, then the two exchange pin attempts in a rather messy sequence. Gable looks for a dropkick but Dawson grabs the ropes to avoid it, then tags Rezar.
Dawson hits Gable with a catapult into Rezar, who chokeslams him. Rezar puts Gable over the ropes and hits some crossface forearms. Dawson tags himself in and Rezar isn’t happy. Dawson tries to ground Gable and slow the pace as he applies a headlock. The fans will Gable to his feet and he hits a sunset flip on Dawson, but not before the latter could tag Rezar.
— WWE Universe (@WWEUniverse) January 27, 2019
One half of AOP pounds on Gable. He whips him chest-first into the ring post and headbutts him before tagging Dawson back in. Dawson hits a snap suplex for a two count. Dawson and Gable exchange shots in the middle, before accidentally colliding. Rezar tags in again and lifts Gable for another chokeslam but Gable reverses into an armbar over the top rope. Gable finally makes the tag to Roode, who comes in hot with clotheslines, a shoulder tackle to Rezar, and a spinebuster to Dawson. Gable hits Rezar with a blockbuster, but Dawson rolls-him up with the tights for a near-fall. Rezar grabs holds of Roode and Dawson looks for a dropkick but he inadvertently hits Rezar! Gable and Roode then shove Rezar out of the ring and the Tag Champions hit their neckbreaker/moonsault finish on Dawson for the pinfall.
Winners: Chad Gable & Bobby Roode
Lio Rush and Bobby Lashley interrupt Charly Caruso and JBL. Rush asks them if they know what it’s like to be almight, what it’s like to be Champions. He reminds JBL that Lashley beat him for the US title some years ago. He says this is Lashley’s time and they walk off.
Next up for discussion is Asuka Vs. Becky Lynch for the SmackDown Live Women’s Championship. JBl says Asuka proved herself in losing last year and bouncing back the way she has done. Caruso says the odds are in Becky’s favour and JBL says momentum is everything and Lynch has that.
WWE Hall of Famer, Shawn Michaels, and David Otunga have joined the Kick-Off Show. Coach asks HBK what it takes to win, to which he says he has no idea. He says everything has changed. Back then he had been in the ring with everyone, now you don’t even know who’s coming out. He jokes that he has never been one for thinking much.
WWE United States Championship Match
(C) Rusev W/Lana Vs. Shinsuke Nakamura
The match gets underway and Rusev scoops Nakamura and slams him into the corner, delivering repeated shoulder tackles. He then kicks Nakamura down for a one count. Rusev drops an elbow on Nakamura, then a second, and scores another one count. Rusev hits the Artist with a suplex, and a second, before clotheslining him from the ring.
Rusev comes out and tries to toss Nakamura into the steel steps but he jumps on top of the steps, then leaps off and knees Rusev in the head. Nakamura tosses Rusev into the barricade, before getting him on the apron and delivering a running knee. Back inside the ring, Nakamura chokes Rusev in the corner with Bad Vibrations, before setting Rusev on the top turnbuckle and hitting a running knee for a two count.
— WWE Universe (@WWEUniverse) January 27, 2019
Nakamura delivers a knee to the head of Rusev, before applying a front headlock. Rusev gets up and throws Nakamura off, before catching him with a dropkick. Rusev lands some right hands and a fallaway slam. He then tackles Nakamura and hits a spin kick for a two count. Rusev stomps in the corner, wanting The Accolade but Nakamura rolls to the outside. Rusev runs for a suicide dive but Nakamura kicks him before he can dive through the ropes. Rusev catches Nakamura with a kick to the head but the former Champion follows up with several axe kicks. Nakamura looks for Kinshasa but Rusev floors him with a double axe handle. Rusev hits the Machka Kick, then a swing slam but Nakamura transitions into an armbar. Rusev tries to fight out but Nakamura switches to a triangle. Rusev stands up and suplexes Nakamura to break the submission.
Both men are down but it’s Rusev who gets to his feet first. He tosses Nakamura to the corner and lifts him up top. Rusev climbs up but Nakamura slips down and trips him up, before hitting Landslide for a near-fall. Nakamura goes to the corner and starts untying the turnbuckle pad, so Lana gets on the apron and yells that he is cheating. Nakamaura gets in her face and Rusev accidentally knocks her from the apron. Rusev is horrified by what he did, staring at his wife while leaning on the ropes, so Nakamura connects with Kinshasa to the back of the head and scores the win!
Winner and New United States Champion: Shinsuke Nakamura
Nakamura is once again the United States Champion!
— WWE (@WWE) January 27, 2019
We’re back with the panel, less than 40 minutes from the show, and they discuss the men’s Rumble again. They discuss the significance of Braun Strowman replacing John Cena tonight. Nikki Cross cuts a promo backstage, in which she says nobody know who will win the women’s Rumble match, but she knows.
We get a video package of highlights from last night’s incredible NXT TakeOver. They announce that next Sunday, during the Super Bowl, they will air NXT Half Time Heat on the WWE Network. That show will see Aleister Black, Velveteen Dream, and Ricochet face Adam Cole, Johnny Gargano, and Tommaso Ciampa!
Fatal 4-Way Match
(C) Buddy Murphy Vs. Hideo Itami Vs. Kalisto Vs. Akira Tozawa
The bell rings and we have a Mexican stand-off. Itami rolls from the ring, allowing the other three to bicker in the ring. They exchange pin attempts, and Murphy uses his power to toss them around. Tozawa applies a tilt-a-whirl-armbar but he too gets thrown off my Murphy. Kalisto catches Murphy with a hurricanrana, then Tozawa dropkicks him off the apron.
Kalisto attempts to senton onto Murphy on the floor, but the Champion catches him in mid-air for a suplex. Itami gets back in the ring and stands with his arms folded, waiting for Murphy to join him. As he does, Itami clips him with a forearm, then they hit snapmares and kicks to each other, before Itami floors Murphy with a slap.
Itami stands on the middle rope to try and suplex Kalisto into the ring but Murphy grabs Kalisto on the outside for a powerbomb, but Tozawa suicide dives through Itami’s legs to knock Kalisto off of Murphy’s shoulders, which also sent Murphy into the barricade. Crazy spot. Kalisto is lying on the apron and monkey flips Tozawa up into the air and he lands flush on Murphy on the floor!
— 205Live (@WWE205Live) January 27, 2019
Kalisto is the first back into the ring to take on Itami and he hits him with a springboard spinning headbutt, followed by a rolling fireman’s carry for a near-fall. Murphy lawn-darts Kalisto into Itami in the corner, then Tozawa hits a missile dropkick to Murphy. Snap back suplex, followed by a shining wizard from Tozawa for a near-fall. Tozawa catches Itami with a weird hurricanrana that planted him face-first on the mat. Then follows-up with a suicide dive. Meanwhile Murphy back body drops Kalisto over the ropes and onto both of them, before hitting a huge tope of his own onto all three of them. Murphy is in charge.
Kalisto is the first back into the ring and he spikes Murphy with a hurricanrana as he was getting back into the ring. Kalisto takes to the top rope but Murphy grabs him and hits a huge sit-out powerbomb for another near-fall. Tozawa hits a crossbody to Murphy, but he rolls through and lifts him up onto his shoulders. However Tozawa hits a reverse frankensteiner. Itami tries to capitalise and pin the Champion but Kalisto hits him with Salida Del Sol for a two count!
— 205Live (@WWE205Live) January 27, 2019
All four men get to their feet and exchange shots in the middle of the ring. All of them get knocked down with huge kicks at some point, with Murphy taking out Tozawa and Kalisto with leaping knees. He hits Itami with two, then hits Murphy’s Law for the win!
Winner: Buddy Murphy
We see Drew McIntyre backstage and he says every man will tell you he would endure any pain to become cemented in history. They lie. He, on the other-hand, has hurt a lot of men on his journey to the top. He asks where Ziggler is, where Kurt Angle, The Shield, or John Cena are, implying he took them out. He says he is the King of the Raw jungle.
The panel rundown the entire card once more before we head to the official Royal Rumble show. Shawn Michaels predicts Drew McIntyre as the winner, Otunga reckons Bobby Lashley will come out on top, and Beth Phoenix says she thinks Natalya will win the women’s Rumble. And that’s it for the kick-off show!