As much as I love WrestleMania, a spectacle unlike any other, the Royal Rumble has a special place in my heart. The name “Rumble Ramble” was actually inspired by the Royal Rumble event, and with this year’s stacked lineup, I could not be more excited. Here are my match-by-match predictions for what I think (and hope) is going to go down in the Alamodome tonight.
Rich Swann (c) vs. Neville
Cruiserweight Championship Match
It’s safe to say that Neville is one of the best heels in the WWE. In fact, you could go as far as to say he is the best. As much as I love Rich Swann, Neville is most likely going to defeat him and capture his first title since winning the NXT Championship in 2014. Hopefully, Neville carries the title for a while, because he’s without a doubt one of the hottest things in the WWE right now.
Charlotte (c) vs. Bayley
Raw Women’s Championship Match
Like it or not, I don’t think anyone is going to pin or submit Charlotte on a pay-per-view until WrestleMania 33, at the earliest, so I have Charlotte defeating Bayley for the WWE Raw Women’s Championship. Personally, I would like to see Bayley defeat Charlotte, leading to Bayley vs. Sasha Banks at WrestleMania 33 with the title on the line.
Photo Credit: WWE.com
Kevin Owens (c) vs. Roman Reigns
Universal Championship Match
The Kevin Owens Show, with the help of Chris Jericho, has been one of my favorite things going in the WWE for the last few months. However, I expect Roman Reigns to interrupt our regularly scheduled programming and capture the WWE Universal Championship for the first time. Love him or hate him, Roman Reigns is one of the WWE’s biggest stars, and I expect to see him in a marquee matchup at WrestleMania 33. Capturing the WWE Universal Championship is the first step in Roman Reigns’ road to WrestleMania 33.
AJ Styles (c) vs. John Cena
WWE Championship Match
This match is tricky. My heart says that The Phenomenal One will walk out of the Alamodome with the WWE Championship on his shoulder, but I don’t think that is the route the WWE is going to take. I think the story is going to unfold something like this: John Cena is going to win his sixteenth World Championship at the Royal Rumble pay-per-view from AJ Styles. The Undertaker is then going to capture the WWE Championship in the Elimination Chamber match at the February 12th pay-per-view. That sets up John Cena vs. The Undertaker for the WWE Championship at WrestleMania 33. If Cena wins, he breaks Ric Flair’s record by becoming a seventeen-time World Champion. More importantly, if The Undertaker loses, he has taken his last ride in the WWE.
2017 Royal Rumble Match
I can’t recall a more unpredictable Royal Rumble match in the last 15 years. There are two World Championships again, as well as a wealth of talent to choose from, so the WWE has multiple options. I’ve had The Undertaker in mind as the winner ever since he was initially announced as a participant in the Royal Rumble match, but I think there may be something else planned this year. We’ve already laid out the blueprint for a WWE Championship match featuring John Cena and The Undertaker, so the winner of the Royal Rumble match needs to be from the Raw brand. Goldberg has been an unofficial member of Team Raw since he returned, so I think it’s safe to say that Goldberg will more than likely face whoever is carrying the WWE Universal Championship at WrestleMania 33. In the course of events laid out thus far, that man would be Roman Reigns, a competitor who is quite similar to Goldberg in many ways. This is one of the more exciting matchups for Goldberg in 2017, and I believe he and Roman Reigns could have a hard-hitting and exciting bout at WrestleMania 33.
Heading into WrestleMania 33, I have The Undertaker defending his WWE Championship against John Cena in a match too momentous for anything but WrestleMania. Goldberg and Brock Lesnar will finish up their feud at a later date, with Goldberg taking on the WWE Universal Champion, Roman Reigns, in Orlando on April 2nd.
Two huge championship matches that place larger than life Superstars from different generations against each other, on the grandest stage of them all? Realistically, I can’t think of much the WWE could do that would be bigger.