One of the biggest events of the pro wrestling year is set to go down when the WWE Royal Rumble lands in St. Louis, Missouri, on Jan. 29. The event is the start to what WWE has dubbed “WrestleMania season” as the promotion ramps up toward the biggest wrestling event of them all.
The Royal Rumble card is still coming together, but we do know that, in addition to the men’s and women’s Rumble matches, Brock Lesnar will defend the WWE championship against Bobby Lashley.
Many more matches will be confirmed in the coming weeks and WWE is expected to blow out the event with plenty of huge showdowns as WrestleMania creeps closer.
As with all major WWE events, Royal Rumble will stream live on Peacock. The main card will begin at 8 p.m. ET following a kickoff show one hour prior.
Let’s take a look at what we know — and what we expect — at WWE Royal Rumble.
WWE Royal Rumble matches
WWE Championship — Brock Lesnar (c) vs. Bobby Lashley: Lesnar captured the WWE championship at Day 1, winning a fatal five-way match against Lashley, Big E, Seth Rollins and Kevin Owens. Lesnar only ended up in the match because Roman Reigns tested positive for COVID-19. The following Raw, Lashley won a shot against Lesnar in a four-way match. This sets up a long-awaited first-time meeting between Lesnar and Lashley, two of the premier powerhouse wrestlers of their generation.
Miz & Maryse vs. Edge & Beth Phoenix: Since Edge and Miz began mixing things up, it seemed the obvious endpoint was a mixed tag match involving their wives. Both Maryse and Phoenix are former champions who no longer compete in the ring but will get to work in a marquee match at the Rumble. Maryse tried to help Miz steal a win at Day 1 but was chased off by Phoenix, setting up the match.
Men’s Royal Rumble match: Interestingly, “Jackass” star Johnny Knoxville was the first man to announce that he would participate in the Royal Rumble, making the announcement via a video that aired during Day 1. A handful of participants are now known, but there are plenty more to come as well as surprises once the actual match begins. Participants: Johnny Knoxville, Montez Ford, Angelo Dawkins, Rey Mysterio, Dominik Mysterio.
Women’s Royal Rumble match: No participants have been announced for the match as of yet. However, we can expect to find out plenty in the coming weeks, and as with the men’s side, there are almost certain to be plenty of surprise entrants.
WWE Royal Rumble predictions
Raw Women’s Championship — Becky Lynch (c) vs. Bianca Belair vs. Doudrop vs. Liv Morgan: Belair, Doudrop and Morgan are all set for a triple threat match with the winner getting a shot at Lynch at Royal Rumble. It feels possible that we get no clear winner and that all three women end up in the championship match. Doudrop would be the freshest challenger, but a heel vs. heel match at a major event doesn’t make a ton of sense. Morgan has lost a pair of shots at the title already and Belair already went through a feud with Lynch. It seems reasonable to just throw everyone at the wall for some additional chaos.
Raw Tag Team Championship — RK-Bro (c) vs. Alpha Academy: Chad Gable and Otis have been giving Randy Orton and Riddle plenty of trouble as of late. The duo have also vowed to end RK-Bro’s reign as champions. WWE is going to want RK-Bro — a very over act with the fans — on the pay-per-view and there’s no clearer team to challenge for the belts than Alpha Academy.
SmackDown Women’s Championship — Charlotte Flair (c) vs. Sasha Banks: Flair is in need of a challenger, especially with Toni Storm quitting WWE in the midst of a feud with a champion. Banks had teamed with Storm against Flair on SmackDown before Storm left and Banks and Flair have also been working together at live events recently. That seems to hint that Banks vs. Flair will be the direction WWE chooses to go at one of their biggest shows of the year. Banks suffered an injury at one of the live events but has since tweeted that she is fine, so plans can move ahead.