With 2017 in the books (from a pay-per-view perspective) and WWE setting a course for the Road to WrestleMania 34, the 2018 Royal Rumble is of grand importance for the company as it hopes to rebound from some slow and repetitive booking over the last few months.
The Royal Rumble will go down live from Philadelphia on Sunday, Jan. 28. It will likely be a four-hour show beginning at 7 p.m. ET with a kickoff going down two hours earlier at 5 p.m. ET. CBS Sports will be offering full coverage leading up to and during the Royal Rumble, so be sure to check back for more in the lead up to the big show.
2018 WWE Royal Rumble matches
Men’s Royal Rumble: The 30-man, over-the-top-rope affair for a No. 1 contendership to a world title will go down as usual. It will likely serve as the main event of the show. Entrants (11/30): John Cena, Finn Balor, Randy Orton, Shinsuke Nakamura, Elias, Baron Corbin, Matt Hardy, Samoa Joe, Bray Wyatt, Aiden English, Rusev
Women’s Royal Rumble: For the first time, WWE will hold a women’s rumble. It was announced Monday night that the event will include 30 participants just like the men’s match. Entrants (18/30): Asuka, Ruby Riott, Liv Morgan, Sarah Logan, Sasha Banks, Nia Jax, Bayley, Naomi, Natalya, Paige, Sonya Deville, Mandy Rose, Mickie James, Tamina Snuka, Lana, Carmella, Becky Lynch, Dana Brooke
Universal Championship — Brock Lesnar (c) vs. Braun Strowman vs. Kane: This match was formally made on Raw, and though it appears to be a mess of a booking, getting Lesnar and Strowman together in the ring is not normally a bad thing.
WWE Championship — AJ Styles (c) vs. Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn (Handicap Match): Styles will defend against the team of Owens and Zayn in a match made by general manager Daniel Bryan, who took Styles’ sarcastic suggestion that he fight the best friends seriously. Once again, this match will likely wind up being background fodder for the continued rivalry between the partial Bryan and hothead commissioner Shane McMahon.
United States Championship — Tournament Finals: Participants TBD.
Raw Tag Team Championship — Seth Rollins & Jason Jordan (c) vs. The Bar: Sheamus & Cesaro finally get their title rematch at the Royal Rumble, though the Rollins/Jordan team looks to be together for a while and likely needs the championship in order for their program to make sense.
SmackDown Tag Team Championship — The Usos (c) vs. Chad Gable & Shelton Benjamin (2-of-3 Falls Match): The rematch to the rematch, this one should be the end of the feud (if The Usos retain) or just the start should we get new champions at the show.
Cruiserweight Championship — Enzo Amore (c) vs. Cedric Alexander: It was Alexander who won the No. 1 contendership on Raw a couple weeks back, and he just beat Amore via countout.
2018 Royal Rumble predictions
The following matches are projections and have not been announced (yet).
Intercontinental Championship — Roman Reigns (c) vs. The Miz: The current plan is for Reigns and Miz to fight at the Raw 25 show, which also serves as the go-home program before the Royal Rumble. Neither has officially entered himself into the Royal Rumble itself, which lends one to believe they will fight again at the PPV.
United States Championship — Dolph Ziggler (c) vs. Jinder Mahal: Fresh off losing his WWE title rematch to Styles, Mahal needs a feud of some importance. It would make sense for him to go after the U.S. strap, though by the time the event transpires a month from now, he may be fighting a more traditional babyface than the current title holder. Ziggler may (or may not) have relinquished the title, and Mahal is in the U.S. title tournament. I would not be surprised to see Ziggler demand a match on the show after a new champion is crowned.
Women’s Championships: I would expect Charlotte Flair and Alexa Bliss to be watching the rumble from ringside and not competing in singles matches on the show. Then again, you never know.
Source : CBSsports