The Rumble itself was very good, as it came down to the two guys I thought it should have come down to - the Undertaker and Shawn Michaels. I am reading that a lot of people were upset thinking that Michaels should have won, and therefore gotten the shot at Mania vs Cena. That was not to be, as I predicted about a month ago that Taker would win the Rumble and move to Mania to take on Batista, and that is the plan they went with and will go with for the big show in Detroit.
The match came down to Edge, Orton, and then Taker and Michaels, and they saved Taker and HBK for last, which I thought was a good move on their part. If it would have come down to Taker and Rated RKO, or Michaels and Rated RKO, the outcome would have been sort of lame duck. But, Taker and Shawn did a tremendous job of back and forth for about 6 mintues before Taker finally was able to throw out Shawn for the win. The aftermatch reaction from Michaels was great as well, and all in all it came across as a good job with a good outcome. It also leaves that mystery about what is now going to happen with Cena and who he takes on at Mania. My guess is a triple threat with he, and Rated RKO. They could also do a fatal-four way with Michaels thrown in there as well.
The Cena-Umaga match may have been my favorite match of the last six months. I thought they did it very well, and both men really stepped up to the plate for this one. Forget about Cena for a minute, but how about props to Umaga for what he pulled off? Despite the loss for him, he still I thought was protected well, and I think that he still has a strong match coming for Mania, possibly against Hulk Hogan. I think that the story about how he just kept getting up and fighting back really came across well. Plus Cena did a great job with the match too, and I liked that they didn't stress too much time on the injury angle that was dumb from the word go. Both men deserve major credit for this one, and this match and the Rumble for sure made the card.
The other two title matches were lackluster, as the Batista-Kennedy match was kind of tough to watch. I just can't get over how bad Batista has become since the injury last year. It's tough to watch him anymore, and you can see how Kennedy had to totally carry him again in this match. You can bet that Taker will have to do the same at Mania in Detroit. The ending of the match was good though, as Batista came back and got Kennedy in a bomb to end the match and retain the title. I hope that Taker and Batista do a lot of work on their match for Mania, and that we finally see Batista let go and have a good match for once. It's been too long since that has taken place.
As for the Lashley vs Test nightmare, that is exactly what it was - a nightmare. Please don't ever put these two in a ring together again. It was just awful from the word go, and neither guy really had much to give here. I don't gather what the point was of Test getting counted out after a simple clothesline? Test is supposed to be this big, hulking guy that can beat up anyone, and then he takes a count out in a title match? I have yet to understand the booking of that, as well as why he and Lashely went at it on ECW on Teusday night. I guess for now they will likely put Lashley with Hardcore Holly, who isn't much better but should give a better match to Lashley then Test.
As for the tag match, well done, typical stuff that got the show off to a good start. I really thought they would let MNM go over here to tease a WM showdown with TLC or just ladders. We still may see that, but for that to happen they have to get the belt of Jeff in my opinion so it can be defended at Mania.
It was a good night for WWE, and I thought they got a good start on Mania and the Smackdown PPV - No Way Out, later in Feburary. RAW should be interesting tonight as to what route they take with Mania and the WWE title, as well as what Micahels has to do with it.