The Golden Ticket
(Yes, I did watch Willy Wonka today...)
But who will it be?
Well, for the first time since the first Royal Rumble, the odds are great for rookies-- 15 will be in the match, and there are more rookies in wings (Usos, Michael Tarver, Skip Sheffield, to name a few) waiting to be called up as one of the final five.
Most come from The Nexus, both the former and new members: Daniel Bryan, Darren Young, David Otunga, Husky Harris, Mason Ryan, Michael McGillicutty, Ezekiel Jackson, Heath Slater, Justin Gabriel and Wade Barrett. Unfortunately, I don't see any of these guys winning. I'm sure many of them-- like Gabriel, Otunga, Jackson and Ryan-- will give us a good show.
Out of the remaining rookies-- DH Smith, Primo, Sheamus, Tyson Kidd and Alberto Del Rio-- Del Rio is a real possibility to win. He has the total package, and, actually, feels more like a veteran than a rookie when I see him perform. I also like that whether the champion is Edge or someone else, he will be a great match-up to them.
So, if a rookie can win, what about the complete opposite-- a past winner?
Only two are in the match: John Cena and Rey Mysterio. Only Hulk Hogan, Shawn Michaels and Stone Cold Steve Austin have won the Royal Rumble more than once (more than twice, for Stone Cold). Cena is definitely in the same category as these men. He is the face of the company. Shouldn't the face of the company be in the main event at WrestleMania? So, that makes Cena a real possibility to win the Royal Rumble.
However, that is also too expected. So, let's look at another option.
Out of the remaining entrants, who would be great to see in the main event at WrestleMania? John Morrison.
Morrison is definitely main event ready and has certainly filled Shawn Michaels' shoes in my eyes. He is someone the fans will pay money to see because you know you will see an amazing show if he is there.
There's another plus-- Tough Enough, of which Morrison is only remaining winner, returns the night after WrestleMania. That would be great marketing for the new show-- see future WWE Champions. (I, of course, am assuming Morrison will be among the 70% who win at WrestleMania...)
As I said earlier, five spots remain (of course, there's always the chance someone will get knocked out backstage and sixth person will have to replace them...). Who should fill those spots?
Wade Barrett tweeted earlier in the week that Papa Shango was one of the mystery entrants to the Royal Rumble. My question is, once he's eliminated, will he re-enter as the Godfather?
Fans (okay, I'll admit it, I, too) have been drooling over when Triple H will finally make his return. This, especially with his new movie, The Chaperone, being released, could be it.
Another return could also come in the form of The Undertaker. I really can't wait to the faces on the Superstars in the ring when the first "BONG" rings.
I could also see anyone who loses in any of the title matches that night making an appearance in the Royal Rumble match. I'm pretty sure it has happened before, and with the match extended this year, it makes it more possible since there will be more of a rest period. If Natalya loses, I would love to see her enter (making her the third woman ever) and somehow toss Tyson Kidd or DH Smith over the top rope. She trained with them in the Dungeon, she can probably do it.
We also cannot rule out the past performers working backstage, like IRS and Sgt. Slaughter. Oh, and if Jerry Lawler is not doing color commentary for the match for some reason, that reason may be because he is entering the match.
For the list of confirmed 2011 Royal Rumble entrants, click here.
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