5 Royal Rumble 2022 Moments That Actually Ruled [Wrasslin’ For Lunch]
Well, that was a big wet bag of shit. The 2022 edition of the Royal Rumble was one of the WWE’s biggest failures in recent memory. And this is coming from a company that put a belt on The Miz last year, only to have him eaten by zombies. One thing that has always been guaranteed in sports entertainment is that that no matter how bad the company is doing, the Royal Rumble is always tolerable, if not fun. Last night, that guarantee was broken. Watching the Men’s Rumble was an outright chore. Out of the 30 competitors, only 9 were actual singles wrestlers. Out of those 9, two of them were Omos and Austin Theory. There were no surprises, no big returns, no forbidden doors, no skeewoahs and honestly, no fun. On top of that, the outcome of the Men’s Rumble was telegraphed from a mile away. As for the Women’s Rumble, well, it was won by a transphobic anti-vaxxer that believes Sandy Hook never happened.
As expected, the Internet Wrestling Community has been set ablaze over the last 24 hours (much like the Wrestlemania sign that caught fire multiple times throughout the show). Just countless threads and comments about just how poor that show was. It has gotten to the point where we are all drowning in our own negativity. What we need to remember is that it wasn’t all snoozes and groans. Some cool things actually happened at the Premium Live Event that will forever be overshadowed by AJ Styles getting eliminated by Madcap Moss. Here’s 5 of the memories that we should clutch onto when we’re laying awake at night, wondering what went wrong:
1) Johnny Knoxville’s Shibata Forearm
You can’t have a Royal Rumble without at least one joke entry. From Drew Carey to Roddy Piper, they always seem to waste at least one spot on somebody that doesn’t stand a chance. This year was no exception when Johnny Knoxville entered the rumble at number 9. While we all waited for Sami Zayn to eliminate him, we didn’t really expect him to do much offensively. That was, until AJ Styles dared him to give it his best shot. Knoxville delivered a forearm to the chest with so much power, it wouldn’t made any Young Lion wince and crumple to the ground. But before we could crown him the new king of strong style, AJ promptly beat his ass and everyone took turns doing finishers on him. But for a brief moment, the Jackass star turned some heads.
2) The Shield Entrance
In his rivalry with Seth Rollins, we were treated to a more vulnerable Roman Reigns. After spending over 500 days in “God Mode”, finally, a challenger came along that knew how to get into his head. Although the matchup was Top Heel vs Top Heel, you couldn’t help but to root for Seth’s crazy ass and the mind games he was playing. This came to a head last night when Seth recreated The Shield entrance, calling back to their former stable. A friend once told me that I made him “feel nostalgic for a time that I never knew” and this entrance did the same for me. You don’t need to be steeped in WWE lore to feel the power of that entrance. It was just plain fun to watch.
3) The Return Of Ivory
In speaking of nostalgia, I never thought I would be happy to hear the Right To Censor alarms. What was once the most scathing, annoying entrance “music” of all time has now made me raise my arms in the air and rejoice in pure glee. Ivory came out, microphone in hand and did nothing but chide the other women in the ring. She didn’t lose a beat or her microphone while Rhea Ripley promptly eliminated her. I honestly hope she sticks around and occasionally pops up to give wrestlers shit. At 60 years young, her voice has become grandmotherly, but her appearance hasn’t aged a day since she was teaming with Steven Richards. At first I thought it was a hologram. Ivory has found the fountain of youth. Or she’s a cyborg. Neither would surprise me.
4) Bad Bunny Had The Time Of His Life
The other “joke entry” in the rumble actually ended up being the most exciting entry. Bad Bunny entered at number 27 and he did so with guns ablazing. He was actually trying to win which is so much more than you can say about a majority of the entries. He swiftly eliminated Sheamus and Dolph Ziggler with the help of Rey Mysterio. But then he knew better not to trust anybody in a rumble and turned on Mysterio. He then hit his now-signature Canadian Destroyer with ease and spent a good chunk of time hugging the ropes in the corner. He was just so happy to be there and it showed. This dude went out there, lived his boyhood fantasy and remembered all the rules and tricks of the rumble in the process. And honestly, I kinda wish he would’ve won over Brock. He deserves is just as much as any other part timer.
5) Cameron Coming Out To “Somebody Call My Momma”
I know I’m in the minority on this one. I just so happens that my favorite Royal Rumble moment was in 2004:
In the middle of a heated rumble, Ernest “The Cat” Miller came out and did a song and dance. To make the moment even better, Tazz sang along. It’s one of those moments that transcends Royal Rumbles. It’s just one of those things that always cheer me up when I’m feeling low. And last night, Cameron entered the Women’s Rumble to the same music. While that was her actual entrance music back in the day, I couldn’t help but laugh my ass off at the perceived homage.
And I’m sure there’s others that I’m forgetting. My point is, even in one of the worst shows of all time, I was still able to muster joy out of it. And at large, we should all try a little bit harder to find positive things to say. Because at the end of the day, wrestling is wrestling and wrestling is good. It’s really damn good.