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The Royal Rumble is officially in the bag and the "Road to WrestleMania" now begins. Am I the only one that hates Raw is in Vegas tonight and Raw Roulette has to return? These gimmicks always seem to get in the way of serious creative development and outside of the inevitable Rock/Cena/Punk follow-up, I expect very little progress to be made tonight. Maybe they'll surprise me though, but I doubt it.
Don't forget to tune into the Voice of Wrestling tonight at 6:30/e. Nick Paglino returns this week and we'll break down the Rumble even more in the "Nick's Pay-Per-Review" segment.
What Did NOT Bother Me: Del Rio vs Big Show
I thought this was a solid opener. The "Last Man Standing" stipulation was clearly made again for Del Rio's benefit and it makes sense. Big Show had a nice run with the title, but it was fairly forgettable. Del Rio has a bigger upside carrying the gold, especially now that he's a babyface.
The spot off the scaffolding and through the table was well done. It happened a little early though, so even after it took place, you never really thought Big Show had a chance to win the match.
I loved the finish - creative and fun. The great thing about Del Rio's face turn is the fact that he'll be able to continue cheating when necessary and it will still get over. I give a lot of that credit to Ricardo as well. He is committed to his role and at this point, it's hard to even imagine Del Rio without him.
Speaking of Ricardo, isn't it interesting to see the use of managers again in WWE? It's like we went to sleep one night with zero and woke up with several. Ricardo, AJ/Langston, Heyman - it's nice to see that part of pro wrestling being brought back to life. I think managers can play a significant part in certain stars, at certain times, finding success.