Royal Rumble 2016 – My preview
Today is the day! Apart from my birthday, the day I look forward to the most is the day the Royal Rumble PPV is on. For those who know me, the Royal Rumble is easily my favourite PPV of the year and also has my favourite match of the year, the Royal Rumble match itself. But it’s a bit different this year.
Instead of winning the chance of a lifetime to fight the world champion in the main event of the biggest PPV in WWE, Wrestlemania, this year’s Royal Rumble winner will walk out as the WWE World Heavyweight Champion! For the first time ever, the WWE title match is also the Rumble match and it’s only the second time the Rumble winner will be the WWE champion at the end of the 30-man contest.
Anyone of those 30 guys could end up winning the championship by the end of the match but realistically, it’s more like one of three guys. There’s likely to be 5 previous winners in the match but all 5 of them have only won it once. And about those three guys, it’s likely we’ll end up seeing a two-time winner this year and also a good chance that either entry spot #1 or #30 might have a third Rumble winner. More than half the field has never won a world championship and as many as five guys may make their Royal Rumble debut this year. I won’t talk much about the other matches, just the Royal Rumble match here. So who’s in it this year? Here’s the list of the guys who are confirmed so far:
Roman Reigns (the current WWE World Heavyweight Champion)
The Big Show
Alberto del Rio
So that’s 22 guys confirmed (the last time weren’t actually confirmed but if you saw RAW, it looks as though they’re all in the match) with another 8 spots left to fill in. We already know 2 of them will go to the winner of the kick-off qualifying match which is The Ascension (Konnor & Viktor) vs The Dudley Boyz vs Darren Young & Damien Sandow vs Jack Swagger vs Mark Henry. For these kind of matches, I would usually go with the teams who aren’t really a tag team just so it can easily fill up another two spots so it must be Swagger and Henry going in.
And then there’s still 6 more spots to go. One of them has to be Kane. He’s been a beast in these Royal Rumble matches and he’s been in 18 of them so if he’s fit, he has to be in the match. It just wouldn’t be right if Kane was not in a Royal Rumble match if he’s able to compete.
There’s also two more spots who are supposed to be the “surprise entrants” but I’m pretty sure they’ll show up. One of them being Triple H, he’s been out for a while and I just have this funny feeling he’ll show up and somehow screw Reigns off the title, possibly even win the damn thing himself. Look out for him to likely be the #30 entrant. The other surprise would be the one I’m looking forward to the most, the WWE debut of AJ Styles. He’s easily my favourite wrestler outside of WWE and it would be awesome if it finally happens and at the Rumble match too!
So that means there’s still 3 more spots to figure out. One of them I believe will go to the winner of the Intercontinental Champions Last Man Standing match. The guy who ended up not answering the 10 count will surely not be able to compete for the Rumble match after that. It’s just common sense not to include the loser after that kind of a match.
I’d really like to see one of those spots go to a guy from NXT. After all, the Royal Rumble is held in Orlando, Florida, where NXT is based and with most of their guys likely to be backstage, surely they can get one of them on the show. If not, they could get someone like Heath Slater in (just because he’s over with the internet fans) and Goldust because well, he’s Goldust. Would be cool to see him in his 11th rumble match.
And then there was one. This last spot I believe will be the true surprise entrant. There’s three names I can think of. First is the Undertaker. If he is retiring after Mania, it’s only fair if he showed up at the Rumble. He’s already done so for Summerslam and Survivor Series. He could end up costing either Wyatt or Lesnar the match and get thrown out by the guy he’ll likely face at Wrestlemania, whomever that may be. Another name is Daniel Bryan, that is if he’s fit and the WWE medical team has cleared him or not. If not him….maybe the Rock? He is in Miami so you never know!
So what’s going to happen in the Rumble match? I don’t really know but I just hope it’ll be a good one, the last few ones weren’t that great. How will Kofi save himself this time? I think we’ll see New Day have something to do with his great escape this year. Look out for Axel to be the joke elimination, he’ll go in all cocky and get dumped out right away.
Reigns will start #1 but who will start with him? My gut feeling says it’ll be a big guy just to stick it to him, someone like a Big Show or maybe even a Braun Strowman. But I can see him lasting all the way, maybe even go from #1 to win it all. There’s three guys who are the heavy favourites, Reigns, Triple H and Lesnar. Me personally, I hope it’s neither one of those guys, that itself will make the Rumble match great. There’s just 12 hours left to go, I can’t wait for the 2016 Royal Rumble!