WWE presents the 30th annual Royal Rumble live from The Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas tomorrow night and it could well be one of the most unpredictable Rumble matches of all time.
It will certainly be the biggest match in the history of The Rumble, with Brock Lesnar, Goldberg and Undertaker all part of the same match for the first time, but it’s not just the Rumble that the WWE Universe have to look forward to this year as John Cena could make history in his match against AJ Styles for the WWE Championship.
Kevin Owens defends against Roman Reigns with Chris Jericho hanging above the ring in a steel cage, Bayley battles Charlotte for the Raw Women’s Championship whilst Sheamus and Cesaro defend their tag team Championships against Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson in a match that will include two referees and Rich Swann defends his Cruiserweight Championship against the self-proclaimed king of The Cruiserweights Neville.
This year’s card is stacked, it seems that WWE are wanting to celebrate the 30th anniversary in style and as ever The Brass Ring’s team will be offering all of their predictions and previews ahead of the event. This week’s panel includes Daniel Standring, Andrew Parker, Jake Waring, Andy Arthurs, Chris Rossington, Phillipa Hopwood, Zach Brassington and Steven Dimelow.
Kick off Matches
Phillipa, Zach, Andy, Andrew, Steven – Nia Jax
Jake, Chris, Dan – Sasha Banks
Thoughts by Steven – This is a feud that has interested me for a while and it started after Sasha lost her Women’s Championship match to Charlotte back at Roadblock in December. Nia then stepped in to allow the feud between Charlotte and Sasha to end and attacked The Boss. Sasha was injured the night after her Last Woman Standing match and Nia managed to get the better of her. Nia has gone on to attack Sasha before shows and put the Boss in her place many times before Sasha came out and cost Nia her match against Bayley and then attacked her after her match against Ray Lyn last week. Sasha needed to use her crutches to get the upper hand, though, and right now it isn’t clear if she will be one hundred percent on Sunday. I think Nia is set for a huge push in the Women;s Division and could even be the fourth woman to compete in the Rumble match. Nia needs to win this match, at less than 100 percent, Sasha won’t be hurt much by the loss.
Phillipa, Chris – Gallows and Anderson
Dan, Andy, Jake, Andrew, Zach, Steven – Sheamus and Cesaro
Thoughts by Andrew – It’s refreshing to see a new gimmick match which makes as much sense as it does here. It makes you wonder why it hasn’t been done before when refereeing mishaps or misunderstandings have happened. Kayfabe wise, whoever came up with assigning two referees to this match must be feeling like a genius. I can’t wait to see how they’re used in the story of the match. I’m predicting there will be a disagreement between the two referees in the lead up to the finish of the match – perhaps a double-pin from a small package or similar? In terms of who walks out as champions, I don’t think it’s time for Sheamus and Cesaro to drop their titles yet. They’re over, and they’re very talented and could easily have a few more months in them. However, this gimmick match will mean that Anderson and Gallows can look incredibly strong even without walking out as champions, because of the stories they can tell with the two referees.
Phillipa, Dan, Chris, Zach, Andy, Jake, Steven – Team Mickie
Andrew – Team Becky
Thoughts by Jake – There are 10 women in this PPV, six have been clumsily thrown into this rather pointless match at the last minute. The story with Mickie James being La Luchadora and teaming with Alexa Bliss was great, but for some reason, they have thrown Naomi, Nikki Bella and Nattie into the mix as well, just, because. Don’t get me wrong, I like all these wrestlers and would have been looking forward to this match had there been a little more build up and reasoning. Team Bliss will win I guess. I just don’t see why there can’t be some kind of women’s Rumble now. Still, great to see a load of women wrestlers on a PPV, and this could be a fun start to the kickoff show.
Phillipa, Jake, Dan, Andrew, Zach, Steven – Neville
Andy, Chris – Rich Swann
Thoughts by Zach – Ever since Neville returned to WWE as the self-proclaimed “King of the Cruiserweights,” he has literally kicked and flipped his way into the cruiserweight title picture and deservedly so. The man has injected some star power into the division that was so desperately needed ever since The Cruiserweights debuted on RAW. Rich Swann is a good wrestler and his matches in the CWC show he can be exciting to watch but he’s just not on the same level as Neville to carry the division up to the standard it has the potential to be. At the Royal Rumble, King Neville will show everyone why he deserves his seat on the purple throne and why he should remain there until a worthy challenger is able to slay him.
Phillipa, Zach, Jake, Andy, Steven – Charlotte
Chris, Andrew, Dan – Bayley
Thoughts by Andy – ‘Roses are red. A punch makes a bruise, this rivalry sucks, Bayley will lose’
Phillipa, Chris, Zach. Andrew – AJ Styles
Andy, Dan, Jake,Steven – John Cena
Thoughts by Phillipa – John Cena has been back in WWE for weeks and already he’s been given a Championship match at the biggest Rumble in years. You could say it’s undeserved, but he’s John Cena, let’s be honest, he does what he wants and he wants that title. Now, I have a feeling that WWE have given him the match, but they won’t give him the title, I think that if they allow Cena to create history minutes before The Royal Rumble match then all of the news coming out of The Rumble will be about Cena and all of their work to make us ‘Remember The Rumble’ will be undone. I think Cena will be inside The Elimination Chamber and he will win his title there. The Rumble is about AJ proving how much better he is than Cena and considering the fact that AJ has carried SmackDown since July, WWE owes him that much.
Phillipa, Zach, Chris, Steven – Roman Reigns
Dan, Andrew, Andy, Jake – Kevin Owens
Thoughts by Dan – Once again Roman Reigns is getting a shot at Kevin Owens. but this time Chris Jericho is in a shark cage above the ring. This must mean that the sales of this new toy are just not where they want it to be, so one again they have added it to a pay-per-view match. The match itself will be a good back and forth match with Roman getting the upper hand but with some kind of interference from Jericho. Kevin will win and the fans might just get the Kevin vs Jericho match we have been waiting for and that WWE has been teasing for months. This match could also end up being for the title, and I have a feeling Braun Strowman could well involve himself as well.
30 – Man Over the top rope Royal Rumble Match
Andrew – Sami Zayn
Andy, Jake – Chris Jericho
Dan, Zach, Steven – Undertaker
Chris – Randy Orton
Thoughts by Chris – With the Royal Rumble just around the corner, this year’s 30-man match is literally a who’s who of who has entered. From Goldberg and Undertaker to John Cena and Brock Lesnar. This year is the most unpredictable rumble in years, we’ve heard news on the grapevine that Ryback will be in the rumble at number 26 and most recently NJPW’s Kenny Omega has been signing autographs with #30! Does this mean we will finally see Omega in WWE? What about the returning gold medalist and Olympic hero Kurt Angle? The great thing is, that any of these superstars could win it and fans would be happy. Noticeable absentees are Seth Rollins, Gallows & Anderson And Sheamus and Cesaro to name a few, but the possibilities are endless and this is shaping up to be the best Royal Rumble in WWE history.