WWE Royal Rumble 2014 recap: Where do we go from here?
The road to WrestleMania has begun. What twists and turns await us?
Sunday night's Royal Rumble was fantastic at times, but the ending left an extremely sour taste in many fans' mouths. The good news is this is just the first step on the months-long journey to WrestleMania XXX in New Orleans. While there are plenty of questions left to be answered, there are now some things we know for certain (or things we have a pretty good idea about). Let's take a look at where we are following the Rumble.
What We Know
Batista will challenge for the WWE Heavyweight Championship at WrestleMania. The live crowd in Pittsburgh didn't like him winning the Royal Rumble one bit, but this in and of itself isn't necessarily a bad thing. Before he left the company a couple of years ago, Batista finally came into his own as a top-level heel. Him being yet another wedge between Daniel Bryan and the "official" top spot in the company could add just that much more to the story and puts him in a position where he can really shine: as a supreme egotist who believes he deserves all the wonderful things that happen to him (even though the fans know better).
Royal Rumble Review
• Batista wins, no Daniel Bryan• Randy Orton beats John Cena• Roman Reigns sets eliminations record• Bray Wyatt creepy spider-walk
John Cena will feud with the Wyatt Family. The Wyatts cost Cena his chance to claim the unified title at the Royal Rumble, meaning that we're probably full steam ahead for that long-rumored Cena vs. Bray Wyatt match at WrestleMania. Wyatt impressed many with his decisive win over Daniel Bryan in Sunday's PPV opener and is positioned well for a true breakout showing at Mania.
Roman Reigns is a star and The Shield is in trouble. While Roman Reigns put in a supernova showing in the Royal Rumble match, setting a new all-time record with 12 eliminations and coming up just a Batista shy of winning the whole shebang, the seeds were finally -- really, this time -- sown for the breakup of The Shield. (Or at least a shake-up within its ranks.) Dean Ambrose attempted to eliminate Reigns late in the Rumble, going against the threesome's stated plans to be the last three men in the match, at which point it would be every man for himself. True to Ambrose's nature as a snake in the grass, he saw an opportunity and attempted to take it, leading to dissent between himself, Reigns and Seth Rollins, the No. 2 entrant in the Rumble who ended up being in the match for almost 48 minutes. A few moments later, Reigns eliminated both Rollins and Ambrose, meaning there will be a lot for the three to talk about on Monday Night Raw.
CM Punk and the Authority are on a collision course. Corporate Kane (Korporate Kane?) entered himself in the Rumble on Sunday night in order to teach No. 1 entrant Punk a lesson (beyond giving him the No. 1 spot), only to get eliminated by the self-proclaimed "Best in the World." Kane popped back up at the end of the match to pull Punk from the ring once Punk was one of the Final Four. Though Kane did not technically eliminate Punk (or shouldn't have, since it's been established that "eliminations" from eliminated wrestlers don't count), Kane chokeslammed Punk through the Spanish announce table, incapacitating him while the Rumble ran its course. Punk certainly has a bone to pick with the Authority, which means it's likely that Punk vs. Triple H could be a match for WrestleMania
What We Think We Know
Randy Orton will probably be the champ heading into WrestleMania. Which would give us a "main event" of Orton vs. Batista for the title(s). But there is still the matter of February's PPV, Elimination Chamber, where Orton may very well have to defend his title against five challengers, with the winner going on to face Batista in New Orleans. There is no shortage of challengers who could claim a spot in the Chamber match -- Brock Lesnar, Bray Wyatt, Roman Reigns, Daniel Bryan, CM Punk ... even the returning Sheamus. But the WWE (and especially Paul Heyman) is hyping Brock Lesnar as the No. 1 contender. After Sunday night's annihilation of the Big Show, it would be hard to argue with him.
What We're Dying To Find Out
The Undertaker needs an opponent. It could be Undertaker vs. Lesnar in New Orleans in April if Brock comes up short at Elimination Chamber. It could be Undertaker vs. Daniel Bryan, which is the match that Undertaker himself reportedly asked for. But whoever it is, it just wouldn't be WrestleMania without a chance to keep The Streak alive. Will Taker announce this is his last go-round? Or will we just have to wait another year to find out the answer to that one? Don't be surprised if The Dead Man shows up on Raw on Monday night.
What's happening with the Rhodes Brothers? Cody Rhodes and Goldust lost the Tag Team Championship to -- of all people -- the New Age Outlaws on Sunday night's pre-show. Later in the evening, Goldust seemingly accidentally eliminated his brother from the Royal Rumble match. Are the brothers going to finally have their long-anticipated feud, culminating in a match at WrestleMania? Or will they regain the titles?
Is Sting REALLY coming to the WWE? Sunday night, all things considered, probably wouldn't have been the best time for Sting to debut with the WWE. But now that his TNA contract is up, it's likely that it's this year or never for the last WCW star to never wrestle for the company. We'll see what happens in the next couple of months, but don't be surprised either way. (In related news, Hulk Hogan will be coming back to the WWE to build up to WrestleMania. He could make his return on Monday.)
What happens with Daniel Bryan now? This is probably the biggest question of all. The live crowd on Sunday was dying for Daniel Bryan to make an appearance in the Rumble match. When No. 30 was revealed to be Rey Mysterio, the crowd unloaded with a chorus of boos, then let Batista have it, throwing all their support behind Roman Reigns, in large part because he wasn't Batista. A few tweets from immediately after Sunday's PPV are worth noting:
They try to keep US down and away from the top spots, but they can’t ignore the reactions forever. Keep voicing your opinions. #YESMovement— Daniel Bryan (@WWEDanielBryan) January 27, 2014
Does @WWE actually hate their own audience? I've never been so disgusted with a PPV.— Mick Foley (@realmickfoley) January 27, 2014
Foley's tweet is probably legit, since his current contract is up, but Bryan's tweets are almost certainly furthering the storyline. Bryan isn't the type of person to rock any boats behind the scenes. His underdog story of raging against the machine will continue and will probably make fans just that much more rabid for him.
No matter what happens from here, it's going to be a wild, unpredictable road to WrestleMania. Just the way we like it.
BTW THIS HAPPENED <3
Kevin Love's Taco Bell Super Bowl Commercial
Lebroning Trend Compliation
Inside New York City’s Super Bowl Music Blitz
Your guide to the week in music as New York gears up for this weekend’s Super Bowl, kicking off with six nights of concerts from VH1.
At first, they may have seemed like strange bedfellows, particularly when one recalls that “The Super Bowl Shuffle” is a thing that happened, that exists. But over the years, music and football have become quite the happy couple. Super Bowl Halftime Shows are no longer kitschy theme park spectacles, but bonafide entertainment events. The selection of who will sing “The National Anthem” is one of the most talked about casting decisions in entertainment each year.
As the Super Bowl has transcended, over the years, its status as just the year’s biggest football game to the year’s biggest pop-culture event, the union of music and football has only become stronger. With this year’s championship being held in one of the music industry’s most influential capitals, New York City is doubling as a week-long concert venue. And VH1, especially, is seizing on the Super Bowl’s entertainment-tinged transformation with a blitz of its own. A concert blitz.
“VH1’s Super Bowl Blitz” is six nights of live concerts in the New York/New Jersey area, each of which will be streamed live on VH1, VH1.com, and on the VH1 App. Beginning Monday with rapper J. Cole in Queens, each night leading up to Super Bowl Sunday will feature a concert in each of New York City’s five boroughs, culminating with singer-songwriter Gavin DeGraw in Montclair, New Jersey, near where the big game will actually be played.
“We’ve been doing the concert series with the NFL for close to seven years now,” Tom Calderone, VH1’s president, tells me. But whereas past concerts were one-off events on the Friday or Saturday before the Super Bowl, this is the first year that every day of the week will feature live music.
“People love to give you the comment of ‘it’s strategy’ or that it’s some high-falutin’ plan,” Calderone says about the decision to expand the concert series this year. “But the truth is we were sitting in a meeting with the NFL and they were like, ‘It’d be great if you did a couple of nights.’ So we expanded to Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. And then J. Cole called so we expanded it more. And then all of a sudden it became clear that the demand was there from the talent and the audience for a full week of concerts.”
The Blitz begins Monday at 11 p.m. EST with J. Cole in Queens. Tuesday will be Janelle Monáe in the Bronx, Wednesday is Fall Out Boy in Brooklyn, Thursday will feature TLC (!!!) in Manhattan, Friday stars the Goo Goo Dolls in Staten Island, and the whole thing ends with Gavin DeGraw Saturday night in New Jersey.
Landing the talent wasn’t a hard sell, either. As has become abundantly clear in recent years, whether it’s Beyoncé causing a blackout (OK, maybe she didn’t cause it) with her ferocious halftime performance, Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake galvanizing the television and music industry with their controversial pasty stunt, or Jennifer Hudson moving the nation to tears with her rendition of “The National Anthem,” that music has permanently intertwined itself into the fabric of the Super Bowl.
“It’s such a cliché that rock stars want to be sports stars and sports stars want to be rock stars,” Calderone says. “But it’s true. Now more than ever music is such a big part of the Super Bowl. It’s become a pop culture event.” For the audience, it’s a matter of entertainment—a bonus element tacked on to an event we already look forward to each year. For the artists, it’s a chance to promote themselves, too.
“In this case with the Bowl being in New York, artists are looking at it as a bigger event than ever,” Calderone says. “It’s going to be the first cold-weather Super Bowl. There’s all the handwringing over whether it’s going to snow. There’s so much news around it. Now the artists are even more excited than they were when we booked them.”
Though it’s likely going to be a bitch to pull off—“I bought boxes and boxes of hand warmers and feet warmers for my staff,” Calderone says—it’s all in the name of inclusion. The Super Bowl is an event that everyone in the country looks forward to each year. So why shouldn’t we all—not just the people lucky enough, rich enough, or connected enough to score tickets—be able to partake in all of its surrounding festivities?
And it’s not just VH1…the entire city is in blitz mode, turning New York into a week-long concert. John Legend will perform at the McKittrick Hotel on Wednesday. Kings of Leon will headline a concert at Time Warner Cable Studios Thursday. And Friday and Saturday night? A breakdown of the big events happening those nights is below:
-VH1 Super Bowl Blitz: Goo Goo Dolls
-Shape and Men’s Fitness: John Legend, Mary J. Blige and Marc Anthony
-ESPN 10th Annual Super Bowl Party: Kendrick Lamar & Robin Thicke
-JBL Party: Maroon 5
-Citi and Live Nation’s Evenings With Legends: Black Keys
-Pandora Presents Party: Imagine Dragons
-VH1 Super Bowl Blitz: Gavin Degraw
-Eighth Annual DirecTV Celebrity Beach Bowl: Paramore
-Bud Light Main Event Concert: Foo Fighters and Zac Brown Band
-REVOLT Concert: Drake Featuring Special Guest Diddy
-WFAN's Big Hello To Brooklyn:Red Hot Chilli Peppers feat. New Politics, MS MR, J. Roddy Walston & The Business
-Maxim Party: Kendrick Lamar
-DirecTV Super Saturday Night: Jay Z
Oh yeah, then there’s the actual Super Bowl itself, which will feature performances by Queen Latifah, opera singer Renee Fleming, Bruno Mars, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers. And, maybe if we’re lucky, a Seahawks or Broncos cover of “The Super Bowl Shuffle.”
USA Basketball selects 28 for national team pool
Colorado Springs, CO (SportsNetwork.com) - Former Olympic gold medal winners LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony are among the 28 players USA Basketball has selected for its men's national team pool for 2014-16.
The team will compete in the 2014 World Cup of Basketball this summer and will end with the 2016 Rio Olympics.
James and Anthony will be joined by nine other members of the 2012 London Olympic gold medal winners: Chris Paul, Deron Williams, Tyson Chandler, Anthony Davis, Kevin Durant, James Harden, Andre Iguodala, Kevin Love and Russell Westbrook.
Also on the initial roster are Dwight Howard, Blake Griffin, Stephen Curry, Derrick Rose, LaMarcus Aldridge, Bradley Beal, DeMarcus Cousins, Andre Drummond, Kenneth Faried, Paul George, Gordon Hayward, Kyrie Irving, Kyle Korver, David Lee, Kawhi Leonard, Damian Lillard and Klay Thompson.
"This is the first step of building the USA Basketball National Team pool of players for 2014-16. This roster is extremely talented, deep and versatile," said managing director Jerry Colangelo. "We are very fortunate to have 11 of the 12 members who won gold at the London Olympics wanting to be part of the national team program again. To receive that kind of commitment is remarkable and it demonstrates how much it means to our players to represent USA Basketball and their country."
Players can be added to the pool.
Mike Krzyzewski will once again serve as the head coach and he will be joined by assistants Jim Boeheim, Tom Thibodeau and Monty Williams.
Shaun White '110 percent' for Sochi despite crash, coach says
Shaun White headed home from a week of training Sunday, with his coach declaring him "110 percent" healthy for the Olympics despite that nasty-looking shiner under the snowboarder's right eye.
Bud Keene said White benefited greatly from the four-day session on the private halfpipe and slopestyle course in Copper Mountain, where he landed hard and face-first into an air bag while practicing Saturday.
White posted a picture of the damage on his Instagram account Sunday.
He also has been nursing his left ankle, which he sprained in December during the season's first Olympic qualifier. He opted against competing in the Winter X Games so he could focus on the tricks he'll need in Sochi, starting Feb. 6 with slopestyle qualifying.
Keene said White saw one of the world's top slopestyle riders, Mark McMorris, go down hard and break his rib in X Games finals Saturday. McMorris said he still plans to compete in the Olympics.
"That was certainly unfortunate and we were sad to see that happen to Mark," Keene told The Associated Press. "Obviously, it's not the end of the world for him. That highlighted our decision in a good way."
But, he said, the risk of injury wasn't the main reason White skipped the X Games.
It was simply the need for more training after a hectic qualifying schedule that included the ankle injury and a nasty fall in a slopestyle qualifier in Mammoth Lakes, Calif.
Despite all that, White qualified for both events and will have a chance to win a third gold medal in halfpipe and take the first ever awarded in slopestyle.
White will spend a few days at home before heading to Germany, where the U.S. Olympic Committee will give athletes final paperwork and instructions before sending them on charter flights to Sochi.
Slopestyle training starts Feb. 3, with the competition beginning three days later.
The halfpipe contest is Feb. 11.
Asked about White's overall health, Keene didn't hesitate: "He's 110 percent."
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I CANNOT -__-
but tyfyt ONTD ! Super Bowl is coming up as are the Sochi games :D