Can we stop calling this a new era in WWE already?
Just because they sell it as one doesn't mean we, the loyal fans of this product, have to gobble it up as such. Is it really a New Era if WWE would rather give the crown of the Royal Rumble to a 36-year-old stuck in a lull?
No, a New Era would be WWE taking a chance in the grandest fashion on someone like Sami Zayn, Samoa Joe, Baron Corbin, Braun Strowman, Bray Wyatt and on and on and on ...
Instead, Randy Orton won the 2017 Royal Rumble which made him the third Evolution member to do so in four years.
Triple H won it last year at 46, Batista two years prior at 45 and Randy Orton this year at 36.
Might as well fucking book Ric Flair coming down to the ring next January, spitting in the crowds face, putting everyone in the Figure-Four, tossing Nakamura over the top rope and winning the 2018 Royal Rumble.
Seriously, hats off to WWE by making the fans feel like they're in a new era. The fantastic NXT shows, Kevin Owens, Dean Ambrose, and AJ Styles getting chances with the belt, but when did this dominant promotion become so timid?
When was the last time this company took a chance on one of its fresh, homegrown talents in a big way at the Rumble? Because just for a little math refresher, HHH, Batista and Randy Orton are a combined 127 years old from their respective recent wins.
Just to be clear, Randy Orton is not the problem here. The problem is that WWE had all the big names in the ring, all the dream match-ups and what did they do?
They gave us more Roman Reigns for some reason, and then Randy Orton won the Rumble.
If you're going to argue the Orton-Bray feud for WrestleMania, then why not give Bray a rub and have someone new, completely unexpected yet fully deserving win the 30-man classic?
Can you imagine all the talk, crowd reaction and sheer excitement? Tell me why Bray couldn't win the Rumble in a move putting his mark on the company forever, and then having Randy win at Elimination Chamber for the belt? Why did it have to be a result that we've all already expereinced.
Instead, WWE once again produced an event that was all talk leading in and nothing but silence in the aftermath. All the talk leading in was Undertaker, Brock and Goldberg. All the excitement led up to their moment. The crowd in San Antonio and the millions watching at home cheered frantically as Roman was last eliminated by Randy Orton, but then fell into silent boredom as they realized that while, yes, Roman lost ... Randy Orton won the Royal Rumble in 2017.
I hope they pay attention, because they had one hell of a Royal Rumble going until they forced more Roman Reigns down our throats at the No. 30 spot. My feelings have nothing to do with Randy Orton, hell, I described the guy as WWE's Pistol Pete Maravich this morning.
My anger deals with more of the same. More missed opportunities. More easy way outs. More cowardly booking.
It had been a great match, some big names were still in the ring, so please explain to me why we needed Roman Reigns at No. 30? And, if it's to set up an Undertaker-Roman Reigns feud and not an Undertaker-John Cena feud, then it is clear that we're just being played.
Not only can we not get a real New Era, but we can't even get the old-timer throwback matches that we so desperately crave. Seriously, WWE fans want to see John Cena in the main event at WrestleMania with Undertaker and they're not going to give it to us. The same company that whiffed on Cena-CM Punk at WrestleMania is going to whiff on a TRUE once-in-a-generation WrestleMania match.
I will talk more Royal Rumble fallout and WrestleMania predictions on this week's angry version of That's So Braven. I just needed to yell a little bit.