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guide to the royal rumble

When and where

Date: Saturday, January 20, 2022

Venue: St. Louis, MO, The Dome at America’s Center

Main card start time: 7 pm Eastern.

Kickoff show start time: 6 pm Eastern.

Card

Men’s Royal Rumble Match

Women’s Royal Rumble Match

WWE Title Match: Brock Lesnar (c) vs. Bobby Lashley

Universal Title Match: Roman Reigns (c) vs. Seth Rollins

RAW Women’s Title Match: Becky Lynch (c) vs. Doudrop

Edge and Beth Phoenix vs. Miz and Maryse

Supplemental content

I put a piece together on the possibilities regarding the Rumble matches:

Who Goes Home with Titles After This Weekend?

The reports stating Ronda Rousey could be back threw a wrench into the gears of my piece last week regarding possible Women’s Rumble winners. But if WWE and Rousey aren’t able to hammer out an agreement…

Who wins the 2022 Women’s Royal Rumble?

Full Royal Rumble Live Play By Play

Podcasts


The WRAP – January 24, 2022

Twitter Spaces Royal Rumble Preview

How we got here

Brock Lesnar v. Bobby Lashley: This came about when Roman Reigns had to pull out of his Universal title match with Lesnar at the Day 1 event the day of the show. WWE tore up its plans and put Lesnar in a five-way for the WWE title to headline that show. The replacement main event led to a new WWE champion.

The Lashley match was a natural fit because they needed something big for the Rumble and the two had never faced one another. They had Lashley get the best of Lesnar in the Day 1 match to establish him as a threat. Then on the Jan. 3 edition of RAW, Lashley won a four-way over Seth Rollins, Kevin Owens and Big E to earn this shot at Lesnar.

Roman Reigns v. Seth Rollins: It’s very possible Rollins was going to win the original four-way match at Day 1 and become the WWE Champion. It would have set up a chase for Lashley or Big E leading to the run-up to WrestleMania. Whatever the plan was, it was scrapped on Jan. 1.

On the Jan. 7 episode of SmackDown, General Manager Adam Pearce said he was tasked with finding a new opponent for Reigns at the Rumble (isn’t that his job anyway?). He seemed like he didn’t know what he’d do, but he managed to magically teleport Rollins to SmackDown in time to appear in the last segment. On the Jan. 21st episode of SmackDown, Rollins and Owens beat the Usos in a tag team match, with the stipulation the Usos will be barred from ringside for the Rumble match.

Becky Lynch v. Doudrop: Lynch defeated Liv Morgan at Day 1. With no clear top contender, Bianca Belair, Doudrop and Morgan all vied to get a shot at the champion. A triple-threat match was held on Jan. 10’s edition of Smackdown to determine a new number one contender. Lynch came to ringside to sit in on commentary. That always leads to some kind of involvement on WWE TV. Sure enough, Lynch attacked Belair, indicating who Lynch did not want to face at the Rumble. In the meantime, Doudrop got the pin on Morgan and earned the shot.

Edge and Beth Phoenix v Miz and Maryse: Edge and Miz had a confrontation on the Miz TV segment back on Dec. 13. Miz ended up laying out Edge. They teased dissention between Miz and his wife with her expressing frustration with her husband’s tendency to shoot his mouth off at the wrong people. Still, Edge has been booked smart enough to be skeptical. More confrontations on RAW followed, including Miz and Maryse getting a “Brood Bath” (black sludge was dropped on them instead of red since the old bloodbath gimmick is too gory for today’s allegedly tamer product), leading to an Edge-Miz match at Day 1. Edge won a bad match, with Beth Phoenix coming out to help counter Maryse’s interference. After that, Edge and Phoenix issued a challenge for a mixed tag team match and Miz accepted.

Never one to avoid beating a dead horse, WWE teased more dissension between Miz and Maryse. That was also a red herring as Maryse laid out Phoenix with a brick on the Jan. 17 RAW.

Current Rumble Lineups

Currently, there are 25 announced entrants in the men’s Royal Rumble. NXT 2.0 stars are expected to take some of these spots.

Johnny Knoxville announced he’d be in the Rumble on social media as part of a deal to promote the new movie, “Jackass Forever.”

The other 14 were announced on RAW and SmackDown:

Angelo Dawkins

Montez Ford

Rey Mysterio

Dominik Mysterio

Austin Theory

Sheamus

Damian Priest

AJ Styles

Big E

Happy Corbin

Madcap Moss

Sami Zayn

Kofi Kingston

Kevin Owens

Omos

Randy Orton

Riddle

Chad Gable

Otis

Dolph Ziggler

Robert Roode

Ricochet

Rick Boogs

Shinsuke Nakamura

23 entrants have been announced for the Women’s Rumble. It’s a mix of current wrestlers from RAW and SmackDown, with names from the past brought in to fill spots since they’ve cut so many workers over the past year.

Sasha Banks returned from her injury on the Jan. 28 episode of SmackDown and announced she would participate. Sonya Deville also put herself in the match that night.

Reports have come out three women that have not been officially announced will be in the match. Asuka, Melina and Cameron are the three mentioned. Asuka has been out with an injury. The other two are names from the past coming in as surprises.

NXT 2.0 talent are likely to be brought in to fill out remaining spots. There could still be surprises as well. Reports began to swirl Rousey would be added in. If she is, she becomes the favorite to win pretty much immediately.

Here’s the current list:

Rhea Ripley

Nikki A.S.H.

Dana Brooke

Carmella

Queen Zelina

Tamina

Shotzi

Natalya

Aliyah

Naomi

Shayna Baszler

Charlotte Flair

Nikke Bella

Brie Bella

Lita

Michelle McCool

Kelly Kelly

Summer Rae

Mickie James

Bianca Belair

Liv Morgan

Sasha Banks

Sonya Deville

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