Royal Rumble (2020)
|Royal Rumble (2020)|
Promotional poster featuring various WWE wrestlers
|Date||January 26, 2020|
|Venue||Minute Maid Park|
|WWE Network event chronology|
|Royal Rumble chronology|
Royal Rumble (2020) is an upcoming professional wrestling pay-per-view and WWE Network event produced by WWE for their Raw and SmackDown brands. It will take place on January 26, 2020 at the Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas. It will be the thirty-third event under the Royal Rumble chronology.
The Royal Rumble is an annual gimmick pay-per-view, produced every January by WWE since 1988. It is one of the promotion's original four pay-per-views, along with WrestleMania, SummerSlam, and Survivor Series, dubbed the "Big Four". It is named after the Royal Rumble match, a modified battle royal in which the participants enter at timed intervals instead of all beginning in the ring at the same time. Both the men's and women's matches generally feature 30 wrestlers. Traditionally, the winner of the match earns a world championship match at that year's WrestleMania. For 2020, the men and women can choose to challenge for either brand's top championship at WrestleMania 36: the men have their choice between Raw's WWE Championship or SmackDown's Universal Championship, while the women can choose either the Raw Women's Championship or SmackDown Women's Championship. 2020 will be the thirty-third event in the Royal Rumble chronology and feature wrestlers from the Raw and SmackDown brands.
The show will include matches that result from scripted storylines, where wrestlers portray heroes, villains, or less distinguishable characters in scripted events that build tension and culminate in a wrestling match or series of matches. Results are predetermined by WWE's writers on the Raw and SmackDown brands, while storylines are produced on WWE's weekly television shows, Monday Night Raw and Friday Night SmackDown.
While the WWE Championship is generally defended at every year's Royal Rumble pay-per-view, on the January 6 episode of Raw, it was revealed that there would not be a WWE Championship defense at 2020's event. Instead, as he felt that there was no one on any brand who deserved an opportunity, WWE Champion Brock Lesnar decided to enter himself into the Royal Rumble match as entrant number one. There were no changes to the rules of the match, despite Lesnar holding one of the two world championships that the winner can challenge for at WrestleMania 36.
At TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs, The Kabuki Warriors (Asuka and Kairi Sane) defeated the team of Raw Women's Champion Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair in a Tables, Ladders, and Chairs match to retain the WWE Women's Tag Team Championship. In a backstage interview on the following Raw, Lynch stated that she had not been herself the past few months and felt that management had been putting her into tag team matches to protect her from facing Asuka alone and losing. She also stated that she had never defeated Asuka and needed to change that. The following week, Lynch challenged Asuka to a match with her Raw Women's Championship on the line which Asuka accepted. The match was scheduled for the Royal Rumble.
At Survivor Series, "The Fiend" Bray Wyatt defeated Daniel Bryan to retain the Universal Championship. On the following SmackDown, after Bryan accepted another rematch for the title at TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs, The Fiend appeared and attacked Bryan, ripping out his hair. The Miz, who had been intertwined in the feud, appeared the following week and said that Bryan had not been seen since The Fiend's attack and in turn became Wyatt's opponent in a non-title match at TLC, where Wyatt (as his Firefly Fun House character and not The Fiend) defeated Miz. Following the match, a hooded figure attacked Wyatt and then revealed himself as a returning Bryan, now with a buzz cut and shorter beard. On the following SmackDown, both Bryan and Miz stated their desire to take the Universal Championship from Wyatt due to their respective personal issues with him. They were then interrupted by King Corbin, who felt that he deserved an opportunity for the title due to his victory over Roman Reigns at TLC. On the December 27 episode, Bryan defeated Miz and Corbin in a triple threat match to earn another Universal Championship match against The Fiend at the Royal Rumble. On the January 17 episode, after Bryan delivered a running knee to The Fiend, however, The Fiend retreated. Bryan challenged The Fiend to make their title match a strap match and The Fiend accepted.
During the triple threat match to determine the number one contender for the Universal Championship, Roman Reigns attacked King Corbin, costing him the title opportunity. The following week, Reigns announced his participation in the Royal Rumble match. Later that night, Reigns teamed with Daniel Bryan to face Corbin and Dolph Ziggler which ended in a no-contest. Following the match, Corbin and Ziggler attacked Reigns only for The Usos (Jey Uso and Jimmy Uso) to return and aid Reigns by attacking both Corbin and Ziggler. On the January 10 episode, Corbin announced his participation in the Royal Rumble match and stated that Reigns was scared to face him again, hence why Reigns was also competing in the match. In response, Reigns challenged Corbin to a rematch at the event which Corbin accepted. On the January 17 episode, a tables match between Reigns and the returning Robert Roode was contested with the winner deciding the stipulation for their match at the event. Reigns won and chose a Falls Count Anywhere match.
On the SmackDown following Survivor Series, SmackDown Women's Champion Bayley and Team SmackDown women's captain Sasha Banks criticized their brand's women's division for letting them down at the event as both Bayley and Team SmackDown lost their respective matches. Team member Lacey Evans interrupted and performed a Women's Right on Banks, with Evans turning face. The following week, Evans questioned Bayley's leadership as champion. Later, Banks confronted Evans after the latter's match, after which, Bayley ambushed Evans. On the December 13 episode, Bayley dismissed Evans' comments and was then defeated by Dana Brooke in a non-title match. She defeated Brooke in a rematch the following week. After the match, Bayley and Banks taunted Brooke until Evans came out and challenged Banks to a match that ended in a double countout. On the December 27 episode, Bayley and Banks defeated Evans and Brooke in a tag team match. Evans and Brooke then won a triple threat tag team match the following week also involving Alexa Bliss and Nikki Cross with Brooke pinning Banks. Evans was then scheduled to have a match with Banks on the January 10 episode, but Banks no-showed. Bayley appeared on the TitanTron and Evans went backstage to confront her where the two brawled. The following week, Evans defeated Bayley in a non-title match, earning herself a title match at the Royal Rumble.
After a seven-month hiatus, Sheamus appeared in a vignette on the November 29 episode of SmackDown, announcing that he would be returning to in-ring action. Over the next several weeks, more vignettes aired, with Sheamus claiming that SmackDown had become soft in his absence. On the January 3 episode, as Shorty G was being attacked by The Revival (Scott Dawson and Dash Wilder), Sheamus returned, seemingly to help Shorty G. However, after The Revival cleared the ring, Sheamus delivered a Brogue Kick to Shorty G. Sheamus claimed that Shorty G embodied everything wrong with SmackDown and continued to target him over the next few weeks, and a match between the two was scheduled for the Royal Rumble.
|1||Men's Royal Rumble match||30-man Royal Rumble match for a world championship match at WrestleMania 36|
|2||Women’s Royal Rumble match||30-woman Royal Rumble match for a women's championship match at WrestleMania 36|
|3||"The Fiend" Bray Wyatt (c) vs. Daniel Bryan||Strap match for the WWE Universal Championship|
|4||Becky Lynch (c) vs. Asuka||Singles match for the WWE Raw Women's Championship|
|5||Roman Reigns vs. King Corbin||Falls Count Anywhere match|
|6||Shorty G vs. Sheamus||Singles match|
|7||Bayley (c) vs. Lacey Evans||Singles match for the WWE SmackDown Women's Championship|
Announced competitors in the Men's Royal Rumble match
19 of the 30 entrants have been announced as of January 19, 2020.
|Roman Reigns||January 3, 2020||Announced on SmackDown|
|Brock Lesnar1||January 6, 2020||Announced on Raw|
|Elias||January 10, 2020||Announced on SmackDown|
|Rusev||January 13, 2020||Announced on Raw|
|Braun Strowman||January 17, 2020||Announced on SmackDown|
- 1 – Lesnar will enter the match at #1.
Announced competitors in the Women's Royal Rumble match
4 of the 30 entrants have been announced as of January 19, 2020.
|Charlotte Flair||December 30, 2019||Announced on Raw|
|Alexa Bliss||January 10, 2020||Announced on SmackDown|
|Sarah Logan||January 13, 2020||Announced on her Twitter|
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