Jay’s Ways – Top 5 WrestleMania Sign Points
Ladies and gentlemen, it is now time for the ROYAL RUMBLE! Music to any wrestling fan’s ears. The road to WrestleMania is kicking off in a big way this Saturday. With that comes more rumors, more drama, more intensity, more entertainment (hopefully), and a whole lot more sign pointing! Yes, the big WrestleMania sign should start popping up in arenas all over the world until April.
All sarcasm aside, I love it. Great stuff from the stars inside the ring and the executives who decided to hang that bad boy above the rafters many years ago. Since then, we have seen many cool moments involving the infamous “sign point.” Sting pointing his bat, Drew McIntyre celebrating his Rumble victory, Nakamura with his cool pose, etc. Portions of this list were written about four years ago in a different column, but it still stands here in late January 2022. Let’s do this…
5. Sheamus at Royal Rumble 2012 – Sheamus was the odds-on favorite to win the 2012 Royal Rumble from the Smackdown side. That is something I wrote about in late 2011. On the RAW side, it was a returning Chris Jericho. He was the man penciled in for a WWE Championship bout at WrestleMania 28 against CM Punk. That was already well known. The Celtic Warrior? Eh, maybe he would be in the World Title scene…but maybe he wouldn’t. Still undecided for many fans. It only seemed logical to predict a Y2J victory come Rumble time and keep his ‘end of the world’ momentum going strong. Well, in true Jericho fashion, he didn’t come back to win. He came back to put over others. As fitting as it was to have them as the final two, it was Sheamus who prevailed. In victory, he was back in the main event picture and his post-match point at the sunny, shiny WM sign was quite the sight. A new star over an established star was just what we needed at the time. A mere 18 seconds was all it took for Sheamus to claim the World Title at WM28, a fact I wrote about two weeks before the event…
4. Randy Orton at Royal Rumble 2009 – This is more because of Randy Orton yelling at a referee and missing his cue. My sister and I still laugh at this moment. As most know by now, Mr. RKO won the 2009 Royal Rumble. A rare case where WWE didn’t have a whole heck of a lot of legitimate choices. Big Show wasn’t winning. The Undertaker wasn’t winning. Chris Jericho wasn’t winning. Randy Orton WAS Royal Rumble that year, and he (rightfully) won. Another example where predictability is not a bad thing. Anyways, after the bout he went for the traditional sign point standing in the middle of the ring…except the planned fireworks didn’t go off. Either he was not in position, or the crew was not ready in the back. Regardless, there was an awkward pause and then a hilariously obvious “Huh? What?” followed by Orton going to the top rope this time and then pointing. Cue the fireworks.
3. The Undertaker/Triple H on 2-21-11 – Ah, the memories. Remember when people said they saw Sting in the classic 2-21-11 vignettes? That he was FOR SURE coming to WWE then? I’ve told this story before, but I was at Raw two weeks prior. When the newest promo aired with that creepy cabin, everybody in the building started chanting for The Undertaker. Or Taker. Or Deadman. Whatever, nothing for The Stinger. It was obviously marking the return of The Undertaker. Saying otherwise was just another lovely ‘internet only’ thing to do. When the big night arrived, sure enough, it was The Undertaker…and Triple H. Quite the curve ball and a good surprise to jump start the build that year which had lacked. While everybody remembers their silent ten-minute segment, what most don’t remember is that the two men never actually pointed at the WM27 sign. They did with their heads and eyes but not with their hands. Still, I am including this on the countdown because of its historic significance and technically, the sign was pointed at in some form.
2. John Cena at Royal Rumble 2008 – Besides The Streak ending in 2014, this is likely the most shocking moment in professional wrestling history. I know there are tons of other examples, and my age will be called into question here, but I don’t care. If you followed WWE in late 2007 and early 2008, you know I speak the truth. This was beyond words. If you don’t want to believe me, re-watch the 2008 Rumble. It is my favorite, for the record. Listen to the Madison Square Garden ‘smart fans’ react to the final ten minutes of the pay-per-view. Watch it all unfold. Even if you knew absolutely nothing about the product, you could tell how huge this was. When John Cena came out as #30 and faced off with Triple H, he quickly reminded him of WrestleMania 22 and their previous encounter. With a sarcastic tap out hand gesture and a few punches, it was ON! Epic, epic stuff I implore all of you to seek out on the WWE Network. This may not have been the first ever WM Sign Point, but this was the beginning in my mind.
1. Ronda Rousey at Royal Rumble 2018 – I went back and forth over the top two spots but ultimately went with Ronda Rousey. No, not due to her THREE separate sign points within a ten minute span. No, not because she just may win the 2022 Womens Royal Rumble match. I am placing it at #1 for the simple fact that she main evented and made history as the first ever female competing in the final match at WM. None of that happens without her, let’s be real. We all know that. Same with the Evolution event in Fall 2018. As we have seen, it happened when Rousey was there…and didn’t again. You can mention Sasha Banks and Bianca Belair getting a WM ‘main event’ in 2021, but the extravaganza is two nights now. Much different than getting THE top spot. Ronda showing up at the Royal Rumble 2018 event changed the entire industry in an instant, and her overtly excited and awkward sign pointing was a shocking sight to see. Will we see a similar scene unfold this Saturday night in St. Louis?
Time will tell. Anything can happen on the road to WrestleMania…