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Csonka’s WWE Royal Rumble 2020 Preview

January 26, 2020 | Posted by Larry Csonka
WWE Royal Rumble Bray Wyatt Daniel Bryan

WELCOME back to column time with Larry! Today, I am going to discuss and preview the WWE Royal Rumble 2020 event, which airs tonight on the award winning WWE Network. The show will feature Becky Lynch vs. Asuka, two Royal Rumble matches, Universal Champion The Fiend vs. Daniel Bryan, and much more. So today I will breakdown and preview the event. Feel free to make your picks in the comment section. Thanks for reading! It’s wrestling, we love it and will disagree. The only rules are “have a take, be respectful, and don’t be a dick.”

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US Champion Andrade vs. Humberto Carrillo: Back at TLC 2019, Humberto Carrillo defeated Andrade @ 12:30 via pin in a very good pre-show match. Later, Andrade, frustrated with losses to Carrillo would take him out of action during the infamous 50-MINUTE GAUNTLET MATCH WITH NO FINISH! Since Andrade took him out of action for a while, the feud continuing makes sense, but I wish they would have waited. A confrontation in the Rumble where Carrillo tosses Andrade, a brawl on Raw, and then build up to the match at the Saudi show or another PPV after. It feels rushed, and it doesn’t feel like the time for Carrillo to win the title it just feels too soon for him to win and for Andrade to lose. It very well could be a non-finish or DQ, but I think that Andrade retains. WINNER: Andrade

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Sheamus vs. Chad Gable: Sheamus last wrestled in April of 2019, an then took a long hiatus reportedly due to issues with his neck. During that time off the fella got into great shape and finally got the ok to return and did so on Smackdown attacking Chad Gable. There isn’t much to the feud, Sheamus attacked, bullied Gable and made fun of his size, and Gable wants revenge. I like Sheamus, he’s had a lot of really good to great matches, and we’ll see what’s left in the tank at age 41 (the age isn’t the issue, it’s the neck injury for me). The good news is that he’s working Chad Gable, and Chad Gable is great. This should be the basic big bully vs. smaller, talented, resilient babyface. Sheamus looks great, I am sure he’ll be out to prove he can still go, and Gable always busts his ass when given an opportunity. This one should be good, and I see Sheamus winning in his returns. If not, it’s a shameful thing… I think it ends up on the pre-show. WINNER: Sheamus

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Smackdown Women’s Champion Bayley vs. Lacey Evans: Following the babyface turn of Lacey Evans, they have been building to this match for weeks. Bayley & Sasha have been harassing Lacey, targeting her daughter, which infuriated Lacey and led to several brawls and Lacey eventually pinning Bayley on Smackdown to earn this match. Lacey has been much better as a babyface, and as most suspected has gotten over due to her background in the military, and through the angle with her daughter. She’s also been better in the ring, but has yet to deliver on PPV. Granted, she was a heel and the dynamic was different then, but she really needs to have a good showing here. I’m not feeling a Lacey win here, although it wouldn’t surprise me if they put the title on her. I see Bayley winning here, but I really hope that Lacey has a strong showing here. WINNER: Bayley

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FALLS COUNT ANYWHERE MATCH: Roman Reigns vs. King Corbin: Between Raw & Smackdown, it feels as if Reigns & Corbin have been feuding for eons with no end in sight, and it’s never been good, it’s simply existed. I have been critical of WWE’s lack of ability or desire to evolve the Roman Reigns character since his return, but I am even more critical of the poor booking of him overall since coming back. On one hand, it’s been a smart play not to rush him back into a top spot, one because he likely needed time to get fully back into the swing of things and two, so that they didn’t run right back into backlash issues. But he’s just felt like such “a guy,” in terms of not really looking like a star, and that’s not on him, it’s on the booking. It almost feels like they are just booking him with the dirt worst guys available as of late to ensure no backlash, but while doing that, it also feels like they have taken anything that makes him special. And then there’s Corbin, who some bought into as some “great worker that was always great” following some good matches with Chad Gable. And he did have some good outings, but lets keep perspective, he’s fine, but not a top heel and this King run just shows how cliché a heel he really is and on top of that, he’s constantly been exposed as a limited worker. In theory, the stipulation should help the match, but if they aren’t careful they could lose the crowd brawling in such a big venue as they rely on the big screen for live fans to watch it’s a catch 22 with the stipulation. The thing is that I don’t think this feud ends here, and that King Corbin wins to continue to be a thorn in Reign’ side for a bit longer. WINNER: King Corbin

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STRAP MATCH: Champion The Fiend vs. Daniel Bryan: This is a rematch from Survivor Series. In my opinion, Bryan is not just a great performer, but he’s a guy that understands his role and plays to the strengths of all of his opponents extremely well. He did so at the Survivor Series in a good match and now that they had the first match, I think that this one will be better, especially when you consider Bryan is the only man to have a great singles match with Wyatt during his WWE run. The key again will be creating the drama, because I feel that the likelihood of the Fiend losing the title seems to be absolutely zero, so they will have to create that great drama, and I feel Bryan can do that. I think that they really have to evolve the Fiend past “guy that no sells 18 finishers and wins” into something else, and I also feel that they need to keep it short again, because that’s where the Fiend thrives. This is now a strap match, which isn’t the easiest stipulation to pull off. I have a lot of faith in Bryan here, but I am far from convinced that the stipulation will actually help this match. I’d LOVE for Bryan to win here, but I see the Fiend winning and retaining to defend at Mania. And I again beg of you WWE, get rid of the stupid fucking red lighting. WINNER: The Fiend

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Champion Becky Lynch vs. Asuka: I really love the idea of this match, Becky and Asuka are great and WWE has actually played the story extremely well going all the way back to last year’s Rumble PPV where Asuka beat Becky. This has led to Becky feeling she has to prove herself, having a crisis of confidence knowing that Asuka beat her clean last year. She wants to avenge that loss and more importantly feels she needs to in order to prove herself as the champion going forward. It’s a good story that they have executed well and that should also add to the match. I think that they can have a great match and will deliver here, and expect them to deliver. I love Asuka, but see Becky retaining here as she’ll move onto a big Mania match. WINNER: Becky Lynch

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The Women’s Royal Rumble: I’m actually very excited for the Women’s Royal Rumble. The women always work hard, they’ve had good rumbles in the past and the WWE women’s roster has never been deeper in terms of overall talent. It will be really interesting to se who from NXT/NXT UK gets a spot and the possible surprises we’ll see. I think Mickie returning is possible as is a Beth Phoenix cameo. While highly unlikely, I’d LOVE to see appearances by Sarah Stock and Sarah Amato. When it comes down to it, and I may be very wrong, I see one of three winners here. 1) Charlotte to give her another accomplishment. 2) Shayna Baszler to play off of the feud they started running into Survivor Series (as they could stand to move someone from NXT to make more room for others to move up). 3) Ronda Rousey makes her return at #30 to win and give us the one on one match we really should have had last year and to pay off Becky pinning her. I think that is highly possible, and it’s WrestleMania season, which means all hands on deck. WINNER: If this match main events, it’s Ronda Rousey. If not, it’s Shayna Baszler

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The Men’s Royal Rumble: The 2020 Men’s Royal Rumble has more to consider than just a winner this year, we also have the added factor of WWE champion Brock Lesnar being in the match. The title isn’t on the line because Brock hasn’t deemed anyone worthy, and is basically looking for someone to step up in this one. The feeling I get is that someone eliminates Brock to be his Mania challenger, while someone from Smackdown wins the Rumble to challenge the Fiend. So the first thing to discuss is the Brock deal. I don’t see him winning as I feel that would be a bad call, but I can see him running wild and dispatching of bunch of undercard geeks early on until the man that eliminates him appears. I am really hoping it’s someone like Drew McIntyre or Matt Riddle, but think it will end up being Cain Velasquez returning to get revenge and setting up a rematch. From there, who will the possible surprises be? I could see Booker T, to set up the rumored Revival match, there have been heavy rumors of Edge, and will all hands on deck I could see a Goldberg & Taker appearance as well. It will be interesting to see who they choose to use. But at the end of the day, I think we’re getting a big dog win, and if Corbin beats him as I expect, that sets up a rematch with Reigns title shot on the line where Reigns beats him ahead of Mania. WINNER: Roman Reigns


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The 411 on Wrestling Podcast returns to the 411 Podcasting Network for episode 84. On the show, 411’s Larry Csonka & Steve Cook review the latest between AEW & NXT, and then preview NWA Hard Times, WWE World’s Collide, & The WWE Royal Rumble. The show is approximately 144–minutes long.

* Intro
* AEW Dynamite (1.22.20) Review: 7:45
* NXT TV (1.22.20) Review: 39:05
* The Head to Head Comparison: 53:30
* NWA Hard Times Preview: 57:55
* WWE World’s Collide Preview: 1:19:35
* WWE Royal Rumble Preview: 1:45:56

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– Thanks for reading.