As part of “The Big Four” PPV’s of the year The Royal Rumble was one of my favorite events growing up. It has gone through some changes some good some not so good. In 1988 the first Rumble (called Rumble Royal) was won by Jim Duggan and was a special on the USA network. The second Royal Rumble was the first to go PPV and was won by Big John Studd. After 1993 the tradition started to grant the winner a WWE title match if he (or in some cases she) won the match. As much as this concept sounded like a good idea at the time this made the Rumble seem less special somehow at least in my view.
Don’t get me wrong at the time I loved the idea, however it started getting old after the first couple of years. Once they added the prize of a Wrestlemania title match you kind of lose the concept of “anyone can win the Rumble”. Before 1993 you could sell the concept that any wrestler could win and maybe use it as a stepping stone for bigger things. However once you throw in main event atWrestlemania it kind of limits the pool of talent. The WWE is not going to give there headliner PPV to some unproven wrestler so this eliminates the fun out of the rumble. Taking the current product as an example your likely winners are going to involve Orton, Cena, maybe HHH if he is around, Punk. It is very limited, I highly doubt Tyson Kidd, Santino, or Goldust have a shot unless something gets botched.
The Rumble is no longer that much fun because it is not as unpredictable as in the past. If not for the prize at the end, how many times would Cena have won, or Austin, or even HBK? Guys like that don’t need to win the Rumble; guys like Cody Rhodes or Kofi should be on the short list to win they need it more. The Elimination Chamber concept they use in February would be a better venue to determine a main event for Wrestlemaina.
As for the Royal Rumble 2011 my pick is either John Cena or CM Punk. If the WWE is serious about this “youth movement” concept than I give Alberto Del Rio an outside shot of winning. Personally however I would love to see Kane win it all, he has always done well at the Rumble and certainly deserves it. As always thank you and let’ s watch