The WWE Royal Rumble kicks off the road to Wrestlemania and this year’s is a little more significant compared to years prior. Up for grabs this year for the person to outlast 29 other men is a title shot at, not only Wrestlemania, but the landmark 30th Wrestlemania. The winner will more than likely challenge for the WWE title at Wrestlemania, which takes place at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. A lot more emphasis for this one, so let’s check out who will most likely come out of the 27th Royal Rumble as the victor.
Dolph started 2013 very well with a strong Rumble appearance and a world title win after cashing in the Money in the Bank briefcase against Del Rio. However, it seems to be a trend with WWE in the past few years to have first time world champs flat line immediately after their big win; it also happened to Edge, Punk and Jack Swagger. Despite being pushed down on the card and not getting many wins, Ziggler has remained consistent and has been putting on great matches. WWE has probably taken notice of this too and just like the other former world champs, with the exception of Jack Swagger, he is due to rubber-band back to the top and what better way to do this than have Ziggler win the Rumble.
CM Punk has been deliberately kept away from the title picture for the better part of 2013, so his return to the top is imminent. A Rumble win would catapult him back to that top spot and out of all the wrestlers named on this list, Punk is your best bet to win the match. It would be hard to have Punk lose and kept away from the Wrestlemania main event after holding the WWE Championship for 434 consecutive days just a year ago. Punk’s time is due and it’s should come in the form of a Rumble win.
Sheamus will more than likely be the biggest name to return at the Rumble since his estimated return from injury lands around that time. Usually names as big as Sheamus come back really strong, so expect him to either win the whole thing or be at least among the final four. The only thing going against Sheamus if he does make his comeback this night is the fact that he has already won the Rumble in 2012 and only the top, top stars of the WWE have repeat wins in the Rumble. Sheamus is good, but he isn’t Stone Cold, Shawn Michaels or Cena good.
The least likely of the bunch, but there’s still time to salvage what’s left of the Ryback character and a Rumble win would do the trick. Based on wrestling psychology and the nature of the Rumble match, Ryback should be a favorite to win it all — he’s strong, heavy and was the runner-up of the 2013 match. The biggest issue here is the fact that Ryback wouldn’t belong in a main event match at the 30th Wrestlemania. Wrestlemania 30 should feature the biggest matches possible and Ryback, even with perfect build-up until Wrestlemania time, he just wouldn’t be big enough in 5 or so months.
Bryan is a two-time WWE champion and arguably the hottest star in the company at this very moment. Conversely, his combined reigns with WWE’s top belt doesn’t even total more than 24 hours. It’s unclear what upper management is thinking smothering the fire Bryan created over the summer, but the hope is they’re doing this to make it an extra special moment when Bryan finally wins the title again. So what better way to accomplish this than to have Bryan win the Rumble and go after the title once and for all. It’d be silly for WWE not to have Bryan in one of the top storylines come Wrestlemania season. Consider Bryan and Punk the top two candidates to win the match.