Bang for Your Buck PPV Review: The 2014 Royal Rumble PPV

 We began the Road to WrestleMania last night, and while some in attendance may have went into business for itself, so did the WWE.

For those who missed the TLC review, the criteria for these reviews is simple: “Did I get my money’s worth?” in terms of the individual matches and the PPV as a whole, using the tried and true “what was this trying to do, and how well did it succeed” test of “quality”.
Each match is rated plus or minus on a sliding scale between 1 and -1, with matches worth multiple rewatches being +1, a just-quite-PPV quality match +/- 0,  and things that make me reevaluate being a fan earning up to a -1 score. The scale is arbitrary, of course, but it’s based around the idea that a match will be fundamentally good, and give me things I wouldn’t see for free: major heel turns, definitive conclusions (which are different from clean finishes) and moves that don’t make their way to Raw.
The more of that in a match/show, the better Bang For Your Buck on the PPV. We’ll (eventually) keep a running tally for each PPV, and a handy list of PPVs we review to give you (and us) a better idea of what we thought was worth the time to check out in terms of matches and PPVs. As for the scale, it’s not particularly complicated but here are the basic levels (on a per-match basis):
Review Guide
As always, we’re going to be using what I said during the What’s the Worst That Could Happen preview to see how close I was to “predicting” what unfolded,  how that stacked up to my beliefs of what they were “trying” to do and whether or not I got what I wanted out of the show. Enjoy!

Kickoff Match for the WWE Tag Team Championship

Middle Age Outlaws

THE BROTHERHOOD vs. THE NEW AGE OUTLAWS

Worst Case Scenario: The New Age Outlaws win this match, through any means other than “impossibly dirty” or the Best Case Scenario.
What Nick Wants to Happen:  Anything that allows Cody or Goldust to work against each other at some point down the road in a way that makes sense.

As always, since this match was part of the free preshow, it doesn’t count in the Bang for Your Buck total, but it definitely seemed to fit the pattern of the night: the WWE choosing to stick to what they think is best for business (with numbers which, while debatable, seem to back them up.)
For instance, it’s easy for fans to say “just don’t have them lose”, but the truth is, Cody and Goldust were going to have to lose sooner rather than later.  Having it happen on the pre-show of the third biggest and second most important show seems like an odd choice and while there  was probably no good way to have the Boys lose, it’s easy to argue that having them lose clean wasn’t the best idea. HAVING SAID THAT, like much of the night, this planted the seeds for a story line that will come to fruition some time in the next two months. It could be tomorrow, it could be next month at the Elimination chamber, but it will happen, and when it does, no matter how they got there, it will be a match worth watching.
Now, if we could just  get the belts off The New Age Outlaws as quick as is humanly possible — preferably to a team like the Real Americans, the Wyatts or, this reviewer’s personal preference, the Usos — that would be wonderful. Though whether or not it happens won’t change how wonderful the run that Cody and Goldust had, how great it is to see guys like Goldust and Billy Gunn still be able to do the work that they were doing 15 years ago, or how much fun the crowd has every time the New Age Outlaws come out and do their little shtick.

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