Ah WWE circa 2022, a company without highs or lows, where every PPV (ahem, premium live event, a phrase no real human being will ever use in actual conversation) is steeped in mediocrity and there's no reason to get invested in anything because the company will just screw it up anyway.
The 2022 Royal Rumble fits the above description to a tee. A bunch of just-okay matches, in one ear, out the other, the details of which will all be forgotten by WrestleMania. No one gets over except the one or two established stars the company wants to push, thus both Rumbles felt like everyone involved was just killing time. Was it a reasonably entertaining way to spend four hours? Sure. Was anything here even close to being a great match or having any historical significance? Nope. Even the first-time WWE Title match with a big-fight feel was more of the same ol' shit with repetitious action and a bad finish. WWE could fuck up a can of Pringles.
Speaking of bad finishes, the show started with Roman Reigns vs. Seth Rollins, in a very well-worked Universal Title bout where Seth, dressed in his old Shield gear and entering through the crowd to the group's classic theme, resided fully in Roman's head. No matter how badly Roman beat him down, Seth kept smiling and asking for a fist bump. Roman couldn't stay on his game and Seth dominated much of the bout. They did the old spot from 2016 where Roman went for a spear and Seth countered into a Pedigree for a near fall. This was a very good match. And then the finish happened. Roman locked in a guillotine choke, Seth struggled to get to the ropes but fell short and went limp. The referee lifted Seth's arm for one, two, and on the third drop, Seth's hand fell on the bottom rope. Yes, the referee inadvertently put Seth's hand on the rope, and then demanded Roman break the hold. Ummm, what? How can that be a rope break if the referee is the one who put his hand there? Roman, the heel, rightly refused to break the choke and was disqualified. Oh super. So Seth got legimitately beaten and Roman did something stupid to cost himself a sure victory. Who wass this designed to get over? This was yet another very good WWE match ruined by stupid WWE booking. And sadly it was the best thing on the show. ***1/2