Monday, February 8, 2010

Royal Rumble 2010

Royal Rumble featured professional wrestling matches involving different wrestlers from pre-existing scripted feuds, plots, and storylines that were played out on Raw, SmackDown, ECW and WWE Superstars—World Wrestling Entertainment's (WWE) television programs. Wrestlers portrayed a villain or a hero as they followed a series of events that built tension,and culminated into a wrestling match or series of matches. All wrestlers were from WWE's Raw, SmackDown and ECW brands—a storyline division in which WWE employees are assigned to a television program of the same name.

The pay-per-view featured the annual Royal Rumble match, which has been featured at every Royal Rumble event since its inception. It features 30 wrestlers, and the match ends when one wrestler remains in the ring, after all 29 other wrestlers have been eliminated via being tossed over the top ring rope and having both feet touch the floor. The winner would earn a worldchampionship match of their choosing at WrestleMania XXVI.

On the December 15, 2009 episode of ECW, general manager Tiffany made an announcement that the ECW brand would host a competition called the "ECW Homecoming", in which the winner will face Christian for the ECW Championship at Royal Rumble. Featuring current and former superstars from the ECW brand, the first round of the competition consisted of eight singles matches. The winners of the matches would then qualify to the "Homecoming Finale" on the January 12, 2010 edition of ECW, where they would fight in an eight-man battle royal that will determine the competition winner. The first two qualifying matches were featured later that night with Ezekiel Jackson defeating Vladimir Kozlov and Kane defeating Zack Ryder.
On the December 22, 2009 episode of ECW, Jack Swagger returned in a losing effort to Yoshi Tatsu, while Vance Archer advanced with a victory over Goldust. On the December 29, 2009 episode of ECW, Matt Hardy and Evan Bourne defeated Finlay and Mike Knox respectively to qualify. The two remaining qualifying matches were held on the January 5, 2010 episode of ECW and saw Shelton Benjamin defeating Chavo Guerrero and CM Punk defeating Mark Henry to qualify. Ezekiel Jackson won the "Homecoming Finale", last eliminating Kane, to earn the right to face Christian at Royal Rumble.Shawn Michaels after being eliminated at Royal Rumble.

It was announced on December 31, 2009 on the company's official website that The Undertaker would be defending the World Heavyweight Championship at Royal Rumble; the means of determining the challenger was stated to be via the "Beat the Clock Sprint", a series of matches that sees who ever wins their match in the fastest time would be declared number-one contender. The sprint, held on the January 1, 2010 edition of SmackDown, consisted of four matches, in which CM Punk, Kane, Chris Jericho, Rey Mysterio, Dolph Ziggler, R-Truth, Matt Hardy and Batista could qualify for if they won their matches in the quickest amount
of time. CM Punk defeated Matt Hardy in his match, setting the time at 7:20. The next match featured Kane and Ziggler; both failed to beat the time limit, thus ruling both men out of winning the match and advancing to the match against for the World Heavyweight championship. Chris Jericho later lost to Rey Mysterio with one second to spare. Mysterio defeated Jericho in 7:19, setting the new time to beat. The final match was Batista versus R-Truth, where the match Align Leftresulted in another time-limit draw, due in part to interference from Mysterio. Despite Mysterio being ruled number-one contender, onscreen consultant Vickie Guerrero overruled the standing, announcing another contenders match the following week between Mysterio and Batista, who had disputably won his match. The rematch between the two on the January 7, 2010 episode of SmackDown was declared a no contest following both men being incapacitated. Another rematch between the two was held on the following week, this time inside a steel cage. Mysterio won the match, earning him the right to face The Undertaker at Royal Rumble.

The main event for Raw was determined on the January 11, 2010 edition with guest host Mike Tyson announcing the winner of a Triple Threat match later that night between John Cena, Kofi Kingston, and Randy Orton would advance to face Sheamus at Royal Rumble for the WWE Championship. Orton ultimately won with the help of Legacy, who took out Cena and Kingston for him.Since November of the previous year, WWE Women's Champion Michelle McCool had been relentlessly insulting Mickie James over a perceived weight issue. The two had a match at TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs, which saw McCool win, continuing the torment. James confronted McCool on the January 15 edition of SmackDown during a mocking monologue about James, leading to the champion assaulting her. It was also confirmed that day that McCool would defend her title again at Royal Rumble against James.

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