The WWE Royal Rumble is the second biggest WWE event of the year. It marks the beginning of the road to Wrestlemania 30, and determines one half of the main event of Wrestlemania. This year's Wrestlemania is expected to be huge considering in marks the 30th anniversary of the biggest event in sports entertainment.
The Royal Rumble match itself has always been a unique undertaking. For those who are not aware, it is battle royal that features thirty WWE Superstars. Two men start off, and a new Superstar comes in ever two minutes thereafter until all competitors have entered. Over the last five or so years, the WWE has taken the Rumble to another level.
The reason for that has been the excitement of the surprise entrants into the Rumble match. It brings an element of unpredictability that makes the match fresh. As a fan you may feel that you have a strong grasp on who will win, but when it comes to who you will see in the match, it is a toss up.
There have been some big surprises over the last couple of years, so what should we expect for this years Royal Rumble? Who do we want to see, and who could we do without?
The number one guy in my mind that I would love to see in the Rumble match as a surprise entrant is Sting. The one thing missing in the career of Sting is a WWE run. Rumors are running around that this could be the year that Sting finally makes the jump. While I am not certain that Sting debuting in the Royal Rumble would be the best way to bring him in, it would still be cool.
The second that would bring the fans to their feet at home and in the arena would be Goldberg. Bill Goldberg had a one year run in the WWE back in 2003-2004 that was uneventful to say the least. Even if it was a one-off, it would be fun to hear Goldberg's music hit following the sound of the buzzer at some point during the Rumble match.
Third on my list of surprise entrants is Jake Roberts. Obviously a run as a performer in the WWE for Roberts is likely not going to happen, but a return for Roberts at the Rumble would be a great capstone for the life come-back that he has made. All indications are that Roberts has completely turned his life around and it would be great to see him walk the isle one more time as a competitor in the Rumble match. (Note: Roberts was a surprise entrant in the 1996 Royal Rumble)
Three letters: R-V-D. Rob Van Dam made his return to the WWE last year and had a short run. The Rumble would be a great way to bring him back once again and put him in a program with a young guy leading into Wrestlemania 30. (Note: Van Dam was a surprise entrant in the 2009 Royal Rumble)
For my fifth and final pick for who I would like to see return at this years Royal Rumble I am going to give a short list of names that would be good for one night only appearances: Sid, Diamond Dallas Page, Chyna, Vader, Shane Douglas and The Ultimate Warrior.
One name that I would like to see in the Rumble but is a long shot, is A.J. Styles. Styles is on the market but the 'insiders' say the WWE is not interested. It would be interesting to see what type of reaction Styles would get from the fans. Hardcore wrestling fans are familiar with Styles but are the casual WWE fans?
Now, let's move to a couple of names that may return as surprise entrants but they are names we could do without.
Sheamus. Sheamus is a star that has been out for a while with an injury. Not that I do not like Sheamus, but as a Rumble return entrant I think he would be a let down.
The Undertaker. Wait, what? Tell me I didn't just say that! Yes, The Undertaker. Using The Undertaker as a Royal Rumble entrant would be a waste unless he is going to win. If he won the match it would be interesting because then you would set up a WWE title versus 'the streak' match which would be interesting.
The world of professional wrestling has become very predictable and the Royal Rumble match does bring back a certain level of unpredictability that make it a great event. This year's Rumble takes place this Sunday at 7:00 p.m. and air live on pay per view from the Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Who would you like to see return at this year's WWE Royal Rumble?