This Sunday (January 24) is the twenty-ninth annual Royal Rumble pay-per-view event. It will be taking place at the Amway Center in Orlando, Florida, home of the NBA’s Orlando Magic. It will be the first WWE pay-per-view event at the Amway Center since it opened in 2010. This will also be the second time the Royal Rumble’s been in Orlando, the first being in 1990.
WWE has recently added three new matches to this Sunday’s card; two being announced on this week’s edition of Raw and the other being announced just prior. So without further ado, the following is your current 2016 Royal Rumble lineup.
Please note that (c) refers to the champion/s heading into the match.
30-Man Royal Rumble Match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship: Roman Reigns (c), Brock Lesnar, Sheamus, Chris Jericho, Stardust, Bray Wyatt, Eric Rowan, Luke Harper, Braun Strowman, Dolph Ziggler, Ryback, Big Show, Curtis Axel and others.
Last Man Standing Match for the WWE Intercontinental Championship: Dean Ambrose (c) vs. Kevin Owens
WWE United States Championship Match: Alberto Del Rio (c) vs. Kalisto
WWE Divas Championship Match: Charlotte (c) vs. Becky Lynch
WWE Tag Team Championship Match: The New Day (c) vs. The Usos
This will be the second Royal Rumble match in WWE history where the WWE Championship is on the line. It is also the first time in WWE history where the reigning WWE Champion will be defending his title in the Royal Rumble match. It was announced on this week’s Raw that Roman Reigns will be the number one entrant in this Sunday’s Royal Rumble match.
The 13 names listed for the match above all come from WWE.com. That leaves 17 unannounced entrees. The Social Outcasts (Slater, Dallas, Rose, Axel) all keep talking as if they’re in the Royal Rumble match. Only Axel has been officially listed, so maybe they just forgot to list the others; or maybe they’re just not in the match yet.
Expect a couple of surprises as is usually the case in every Royal Rumble match. If any of the recent “New Japan Four” acquisitions are going to show up, I think AJ Styles is the most likely. He recently teased showing up in the Royal Rumble match after one of his latest matches. You can click here to watch that video. He could just be having fun with the crowd, but you never know. Stephanie McMahon even teased during this week’s Raw that “someone the WWE Universe has never seen before” may win the Royal Rumble match and subsequently the WWE Championship. If Styles enters, I don’t think he’ll win, but I sure am hoping that the Phenomenal One will make an appearance.
Mark’s reaction: Having five matches is just about right for the Royal Rumble PPV. The actual Royal Rumble match itself always takes up at least an hour, so it’s natural that there are fewer matches on the card and I don’t expect anymore to be added.
This is going to be an interesting Rumble (I’m just going to call it Rumble from here on) for Roman Reigns’ sake. The Rumble is being billed as a “One Versus All” match and now we know that Roman will be entering in the number one slot. I feel like Roman’s kind of in a lose-lose situation here. If he outlasts all 29 wrestler’s and retains his WWE Championship, that’s asking a lot from your fans. Winning the Rumble match is hard enough as it is, but entering number one and winning it all is even tougher. People may revolt on the decision, I’m not even too sure how I’m going to feel if that happens. I like Reigns and they did a good job this past year of slowly having him earn his way to the WWE Title picture. However, having him win on Sunday could potentially undo all the good work of the past year that got more of the fans to accept him as the top babyface of the company.
If the rumors are true and Triple H wins the Rumble, that just means we’re going to see Reigns vs. Triple H as the main event at WrestleMania 32 where it’s almost a known fact that Reigns will defeat Hunter and win back the title. This would make Reigns a three-time WWE Champion in just two months. Again, I think it’s asking a little too much from the fans.
I’d like to see WWE shock us all by having Reigns get eliminated by the time #10 enters the Rumble, so we know early on that a new WWE Champion will be crowned. I’d also like to see Triple H not win the Rumble either, maybe he gets close but Reigns interferes and screws him out of the win. Reigns gets his rematch at Fastlane which Triple H screws Reigns out of winning and then they have they’re big match at WrestleMania. Even though this is most likely a pipe dream, I still have my fingers crossed that this will happen. I think it would make fans more accepting of the Reigns/Triple H match at ‘Mania.
Are you looking forward to this year’s Royal Rumble? Who’s your bet to win the 30-Man Royal Rumble match? Any ideas as to who you’d like to see be a surprise entrant? Keep the conversation going by leaving your thoughts in the comment section below.
Picture used above is courtesy of WWE.com.