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Royal Rumble 2017 Predictions

The Royal Rumble is, without question, my favorite WWE pay-per-view event of the year. I am not the biggest fan of battle royals, but there is something special about this particular event. Not only do we usually get some of the best championship matches of the year, but the main event, the Rumble match itself, just brings a level of uncertainty that is rare when it comes to World Wrestling Entertainment programming.  Here at The Scrum Sports, we decided to make some choices on who we want to win the Royal Rumble and who we think will likely win the match due to the writing this past year and the habits of the powers that be.

Who I want to win
Finn Balor. Hands down. A “surprise” return to the Royal Rumble would get one of the biggest pops of the year. I have been a huge fan of his all the way back to Prince Devitt in NJPW. The injury during his Summer Slam match with Seth Rollins was so disappointing, especially because he had just moved to the main card and was crowned the first ever Universal Champion. Finn would also be an easy pick for writers, as he can easily main event Wrestlemania with almost anybody on the main card. If I had my choice I would love to see a rematch versus Rollins. Easy story to write and it would easily be an amazing match. Oh, and one more thing. A Wrestlemania Demon King entrance with that size of a crowd chanting OHHHHHHHHH! when he raised his arms……amazing.

Who I think will win
Undertaker. I’m guessing that this will be Undertaker’s final Wrestlemania. Him winning and then having him challenge Brock (or vice versa) to regain his honor would make sense to me if I were thinking like the WWE writing team. Very easy to put together promos. There’s a great backstory with Brock and Heyman being able to taunt The Undertaker with the broken streak. If this is Taker’s swan song, he absolutely deserves to go out in the main event of a PPV that he dominated for two decades. I think that many in the WWE offices would agree with that statement, which has me believing he is a lock to win the Royal Rumble.

Who I want to win
Sami Zayn
I am a big proponent of surprising the fans in a positive way. The Triple H victory last year was really cool, but who wouldn’t have marked out bigtime for Dean Ambrose or AJ Styles pulling it off in the “one vs. all” match? Roman Reigns was so poorly received in this match, the fans were cheering the thought of anyone dumping him over the top and onto the floor. Zayn has really picked up his character work and focused his in-ring acumen, carrying matches with Braun Strowman as he develops as a big man ala early Kane. We’ll see what happens, but I’m hoping to be surprised by this victory or perhaps a true wild card in the sure-to-be debuting Samoa Joe.

Who Will Win
Braun Strowman
The Undertaker is a very close second for me and to be frank, I’d actually be excited for a title vs. career match between Cena and Taker at ‘Mania, but rumors are running rampant that they have “other” plans. Vince is going to “Jerry Jones” one of the big ‘Mania matches and it’s more than likely going to be the Universal Title match which will feature Roman Reigns and the winner of the rumble, which looks to be Strowman. We’ll see what happens, but I’m sticking to my guns on this one. Barring a miracle where Sami Zayn dumps him, I’m willing to give the big man the benefit of the doubt as to me he’s been one of the surprising “rising stars” of a very lackluster Raw program as of late. Owens and Jericho are literally carrying the show on their back, but who knows, maybe Strowman can do some things right in the title picture?

Who I want to win
My heart has said a few things, actually. One says let Goldberg win it considering the WWE shot themselves in the foot having him say Stephanie McMahon asked him about one more title run. How are they gonna pay that one off? The other part of me says, and hear me out, a returning and newly minted Hall of Famer, Kurt Angle. Imagine an Angle v Cena Wrestlemania title match. Cena’s first in the business was against Angle. How epic would it be if Angle’s last match was against Cena? Think about it.

Who I think will win
There is plenty of nostalgia entrants in this year’s Rumble and there still could very well be some surprise nostalgia entrants as the Rumble goes on. However, I have this gut feeling Undertaker wins this year’s match, 10 years after winning his first by eliminating HBK in a fantastic finish in 2007. If WWE creative really wants Cena v Taker at ‘Mania – this makes the most sense. If they decide to trash that angle (shame on them, btw) then I could see Taker winning the Rumble go by the wayside, as well. Personally, I think he still has one last hurrah in him that could culminate in Orlando v Cena in a fantastic main event.

Who I want to win
Sami Zayn
I’d love to see Sami Zayn win it all and headline WrestleMania against Kevin Owen’s. Let’s be honest this was an amazing feud early-mid 2016, but I know there’s no way Vince allows Zayn to win the Rumble.

Who I think will win
I’m honestly torn as to who will win the Royal Rumble, and I’m torn between three guys. Undertaker, Brock Lesnar or Goldberg. Those to me are the odds on favorites. Reigns won’t be anywhere near the main event of the granddaddy of em all.

Who I want to win?
Sami Zayn.
This is going to be a bit tricky. He has been booked pretty poorly since the blow off match with Owens at Battleground (which Zayn won). Zayn has also been written like a dork by the Raw writers. It would take a hard reboot (similar to what was done recently with The Club) for the “casual” fans to take him seriously. There is another caveat…Owens would need to retain the Universal Championship in his match at the Royal Rumble. Given that his match is against the handpicked top guy, Roman Reigns, I worry that Owens may not leave San Antonio with the championship. But if he does, I can see Zayn winning. The road to Wrestlemania would see the Zayn/Owens feud reach fever pitch and culminate at the grandest stage of them all.

Who I think will win:
I originally felt that Braun Strowman was a shoe in. With Reigns winning the championship at the Rumble, Vince McMahon and Kevin Dunn could “coronate” their golden boy, Reigns, three years in a row at Mania, all while using the worn out formula of “get him over by putting him against a giant”, a formula that has been dead for at least 20 years. However, it seems that we may be seeing Strowman vs. Taker. In some ways, I felt Jericho winning the Rumble and having to fight his best friend Kevin Owens for the championship at Wrestlemania would be something WWE would likely do to blow off this storyline. There’s the potential dark horse pick, Samoa Joe. He could win and challenge Cena or Styles for the World Championship at Mania (or both in a Triple Threat Match). There’s also the likely original plan…Cena winning and facing a Champion Taker at Mania, or vice versa.

Our loyal readers, we ask you. Who do you want to win the 2017 Royal Rumble? And who do you think will likely win?

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