From The Shelf- WWE Royal Rumble 2008
Posted by Dylan Diot on 09.16.2013
The surprise entrant no one saw coming...
WWE Royal Rumble 2008
New York City, NY
-Jeff Hardy rides a wave of momentum into the biggest match of his career against Randy Orton.
-Rey Mysterio seeks both revenge and the World Heavyweight Championship against Edge.
-Ric Flair has to put his career on the line in every match he competes in from here on out.
Your hosts are Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler for Raw, Michael Cole and Johnathan Coachman for Smackdown, Tazz and Joey Styles for ECW.
Career Threatening Match- Ric Flair vs. MVP
MVP is the US Champion but this is non-title. Ric Flair talks about his history in MSG before MVP interrupts. Feeling out process to start and MVP slaps Flair. Flair returns with chops and MVP hits a drop toe hold. Big boot by MVP and he hits a swinging neckbreaker for 1. He hammers away on the mat for 2 and he snapmares Flair into a chinlock. MVP charges in the corner but eats elbow and Flair clips him. He goes for the Figure-4 but MVP blocks so Flair chops him. Atomic drop by Flair and he goes for the Figure-4 again but MVP counters into a weak small package for 2. MVP stomps away in the corner and he hits a backdrop on Flair. Ukuza kick by MVP gets 2 as Flair gets his foot on the ropes. MVP complains allowing Flair to roll him up for 2. Clothesline by MVP and he hammers away on the mat for 2. Butterfly suplex by MVP gets 2. MVP puts Flair on top and he follows up. MVP hits a superplex for 2. Slaps by MVP and he goes for a TKO but Flair escapes. Chops by Flair and they collide near the corner, knocking both men down. Small package by Flair gets 2 and he gets a backslide for 2. Flair chops away but MVP comes back with the facebuster. Flair blocks the Playmaker and he grabs the Figure-4. MVP taps. Winner- Ric Flair **1/4 ( Wow, Flair looked really old in this match. He messed up some stuff and kept the pace way too slow for MVP to look effective in any capacity. The crowd was hot for this though which helped things. )
Vince McMahon tells Hornswoggle the McMahon’s history in MSG and tells him he can’t trust anybody in the Royal Rumble, even Finley. He tells Hornswoggle he expects him to win as Finley comes in. Vince warns Finley that Hornswoggle might turn on him. Hornswoggle leaves with Finley.
Mike Adamle makes his debut in the crowd and hypes Chris Jericho and JBL’s upcoming match.
Video package for Jericho/JBL airs.
Chris Jericho vs. JBL
JBL catches Jericho with a cheap shot but Jericho comes back with a leaping forearm. He hammers JBL on the mat but JBL pulls him to the floor to stop him. Back in, Jericho continues to hammer away and Jericho grabs the Walls of Jericho but JBL makes the ropes quickly to break. JBL bails to the floor but Jericho catches him with a baseball slide. Jericho goes for a suplex on the floor but JBL blocks so Jericho sends him into the steps. Back in, JBL hot shots Jericho and connects with a short arm clothesline. A second short arm clothesline by JBL and he chokes Jericho in the ropes. JBL slingshots Jericho in the ropes and he chokes Jericho in the ropes. Sleeper by JBL but Jericho fights out and hits a clothesline. Big boot by JBL and he sends Jericho shoulder first into the ring post which causes him to fall to the floor. Jericho is busted open as JBL follows out and stomps on the bloody head of Jericho. Back in, Jericho hammers away at the cut in the corner but Jericho comes back with a hard forearm. They botch a bulldog spot and Jericho hits a basement dropkick. Elbow drops by Jericho and he hits the Lionsault. He clotheslines JBL to the floor with the momentum driving him out as well. JBL slams Jericho’s face off the announce table but Jericho comes back with a chair shot for the DQ. Winner by DQ- JBL **1/2 ( Hard, stiff match but JBL pretty much bullied Jericho around for most of the match until Jericho finally snap and released his inner- beast. This would have been better with some sort of hardcore type of stipulation added to it. )
After the match, Jericho tosses the chair at the head of JBL and he hammers away. Jericho hangs JBL using the camera cables and it takes two refs to finally pull Jericho off the cables.
Ashley is looking for Maria in her locker room but Santino comes out. Santino tells Ashley that Maria is not interested in the “booby” magazine.
Mr. Kennedy mocks Ric Flair’s win and says that he’ll have a lot of time on his hands in between Wrestlemania and before he finishes, Shawn Michaels appears. Mr. Kennedy leaves and Shawn congratulates Flair. Flair tells Shawn that no one can beat him and now Batista enters. So does Triple H. Shawn says this is awkward. HHH wants Flair to put his pants on and tells the others the best man will win. Shawn uses their stare down as a chance to plug his new T-shirt. HHH and Batista walks off as Shawn hands the shirt to Flair.
Maria comes out to host the Kiss Cam but right after Ashley comes out. Ashley tells her Hugh Hefner wanted Maria to be on the cover of Playboy and before Maria could give her answer, Santino comes out with someone under a sheet. Santino tells Ashley the answer is No as no one wants to see Maria with her clothes off. Santino makes fun of New York sports team and gets an awesome line in about the only thing they have to look forwards to is a team from New Jersey!!! Ashley says that it’s Maria’s choice to make and she asks the crowd if they want it to happen. Santino says the crowd would cheer if they were asked if they wanted hepatitis. He says since the fans like the boobies, he has a gift for them. He pulls the sheet off and reveals Big Dick Johnson in Patriots gear!!! Ashley beats him down with some rubber chickens and Johnson bails. Santino made this segment awesome.
Mike Adamle infamously refers to Jeff Hardy as Jeff Harvey.
Michael Buffer does the ring announcement for the Royal Rumble Match!!!!
Royal Rumble Match
Undertaker is #1 and Shawn Michaels is #2 in an awesome callback to last year’s match. Chops by Michaels to start but Taker tosses him to the corner. Taker works him over in the corner and kicks Shawn which causes him to get crotched on the top rope. Taker goes for the high knee in the corner but Shawn moves and Taker falls to the apron. Shawn charges but Taker grabs him and looks for the Chokeslam but Shawn breaks. Big boot by Taker as Santino Marella is #3. Sweet Chin Music by Shawn and Taker dumps Santino. Shawn goes to dump Taker but he blocks and knocks Shawn down. Taker looks to go Old School but Shawn tosses him off the top to block. Reverse atomic drop by Shawn and he chops away. Another reverse atomic drop by Shawn and he hits a flying forearm. Great Khali is #4 as Taker hits the Chokeslam on Michaels. Taker throws some jabs at Khali but Khali knocks him down with a chop to the head. Khali stomps away in the corner and he chokes away on Taker. Khali misses another chop attempt and Taker dumps Khali!!! Taker goes for the Last Ride but Shawn blocks and tries to hurricanrana Taker to the floor but he hangs on to the apron. Hardcore Holly is #5 and Taker hits a corner clothesline to him. Big boot by Taker and he goes to dump Shawn but he holds on. Hardcore and Shawn trade chops as #6 John Morrison comes out. Shawn tries to dump Morrison but he hangs on. Slam by Shawn and he goes up for the flying elbow drop. Sweet Chin Music is blocked and Morrison hits the enzuigiri. Tommy Dreamer is #7 and he hammers away on Taker. Clothesline to Morrison and he charges at Taker in the corner but eats boot. Shawn tries to suplex Morrison to the floor but he holds on and snaps the neck of Michaels. Batista is #8 and he hits a spinebuster to Dreamer. He cleans house and before he could go after Taker, Dreamer attacks. Batista dumps Dreamer to eliminate him and he spears Morrison. Hornswoggle is #9 and he hides under the ring. Batista spears Taker as Hardcore suplexes Morrison. Hardcore tries to clothesline Shawn to the floor but he holds on. Chuck Pulumbo is #10 and he works over Shawn in the corner. Jamie Noble is #11 and he goes right after Chuck Pulumbo who injured his ribs. Noble hammers away on Pulumbo in the corner but Pulumbo dumps him to the apron and hits a knee lift to knock Noble to the floor. CM Punk is #12 and he hits corner knee strikes to Taker, Michaels, and Morrison. He goes for a bulldog on Michaels but he eats a clothesline from Taker. Pulumbo goes to dump Punk but he escapes and dumps Pulumbo to the apron. Knee strike by Punk knocks Pulumbo to the floor. Cody Rhodes is #13 and he hits an atomic drop to Punk. Cody blocks a Chokeslam attempt and he hits a dropkick to Taker. Umaga is #14 and he cleans house. Samoan Spike knocks Hardcore to the floor to eliminate him. Umaga hammers away on Batista in the corner and he hits the hip check into the corner. Snitsky is #15 and he stomps away on Morrison in the corner. Cody hops on Snitsky’s back to try and eliminate him but Snitsky holds on. The Miz is #16 and he and Morrison double team Punk in the corner. Taker tries to dump Umaga but he holds on. Shelton Benjamin is #17 and he springboards to the top rope and snap both Miz and Morrison’s necks off the ropes!!! Gold Rush to Punk but he eats a Sweet Chin Music from Michaels to eliminate him!!! #18 is JIMMY SNUKA!!!! Taker goes for a head butt but it has no effect on Snuka. Snuka cleans house with chops and he works over Miz. #19 is RODDY PIPER!!!!! Piper attacks Snuka but it has no effect. Piper pokes the eye of Snuka as the other wrestlers watch!!! #20 is Kane and he dumps both Snuka and Piper. Kane cleans house and he chokeslams Miz. Taker fakes going after Kane and he goes to chokeslam Shawn but Umaga saves. Carlito is #21 and he spits an apple at Cody as he enters the ring. He goes for a double springboard back elbow but Punk and Morrison catch him. Carlito escapes them and connects with a Backstabber to Punk. Bulldog by Rhodes to Carlito as MICK FOLEY IS #22!!!!! Foley cleans house as Taker hits the Last Ride to Batista. Double Arm DDT to Kane by Foley and Umaga hits the Samoan Drop to Undertaker. Flash Kick by Morrison to Foley as Mr. Kennedy is #23. Mic Check to Miz and Punk and he goes after Taker. Taker catches him with a Chokeslam and he stacks up a couple of guys in the corner for an Avalance. Bid Daddy V is #24 as Taker shoves Snitsky to the floor. Sweet Chin Music by Shawn eliminates Taker!!! Mr. Kennedy dumps Shawn!!!! Taker put Snitsky through the announce table off camera, a rare screw up by WWE’s production team. Kennedy tries to dump Cody but he holds on and tries to headscissors Kennedy to the floor. He holds on as Mark Henry is #25. Kennedy tries to dump Miz but Horswoggle appears and pulls Miz to the floor himself!!! Hornswoggle hides under the ring immediately after. Chavo Guerrero is #26 and he slugs it out with Punk. Kane backdrops Morrison to the apron and Kane hits a big boot to knock him off. Hornswoggle appears and goes after Cody but Henry lifts him into the ring. Finley charges out and he attacks Henry and Daddy V with the shillelagh. He brings Hornswoggle to the back, so I guess Hornswoggle is out. Finley was #27 but he’s not going to be allowed to return. #28 is Elijah Burke and he goes after Foley. Punk backdrops Chavo to the apron but Chavo pulls Punk out to the floor to eliminate him. #29 is Triple H and he cleans house. He dumps Cody to the floor and hits the facebuster to Daddy V. He dumps Daddy V to the floor!!! Facebuster to Umaga and he slugs it out with Foley!!! HHH sends Foley into Burke, eliminating both!!! Umaga charges in the corner but misses and HHH hits the Pedigree. #30 is JOHN CENA RETURNING FROM INJURY. THE ARENA GOES CRAZY!!!! HHH can’t believe it as Cena enters the ring and goes after Henry. Leaping shoulderblock to Henry and Cena cleans house. He dumps Carlito, Chavo, and Henry!!!! He and HHH slug it out and HHH hits the spienbuster. He walks into an uppercut from Umaga and he goes for the Samoan Spike but Batista spears him. Batista clotheslines Kennedy and Umaga to the floor to eliminate them. Kane goes for a double chokeslam to HHH and Batista but they block and dump Kane!!! Final three are HHH, Batista, and Cena and the crowd is red hot for this. They brawl and Batista hits a back elbow to Cena. Corner clothesline to HHH and he knocks him down. Double clothesline by Batista and he charges in the corner but eats boot. Spinebuster by Batista to Cena and he counters a Pedigree attempt into a spinebuster. He goes for the Batista Bomb but Cena backdrops out. HHH clotheslines Batista to the floor!!! They slug it out and Cena hits the Protobomb to HHH. Five Knuckle Shuffle by Cena and he goes for the F-U but HHH escapes. Cena counters the Pedigree and they clothesline each other. HHH charges at Cena but eats boot and Cena goes to F-U HHH to the floor but he blocks. DDT by HHH and he goes to dump Cena but Cena blocks. They trade counters and Cena F-U’S HHH TO THE FLOOR TO ELIMINATE HIM!!!! Winner of the 2008 Royal Rumble- John Cena **** ( I loved this Rumble match. The opening segment with Taker and Michaels was an awesome call back to last year’s finale, the legends’ coming in was fun, there wasn’t too much overcrowding, and John Cena’s return got one of the biggest pops in MSG history. The final segement with Cena/Batista, and Triple H was terrific. This is in the upper-tier of Rumble matches. )
The 411: This was a really fun show. The two title matches were very good, I thought the Santino segment was actually entertaining, and I loved the Rumble match. At the time, no one saw Cena's return coming, so it blew the roof of MSG and made it one of the most memorable moments in Rumble history. This is an easy show to sit through and it's well worth your time.