When the Royal Rumble rolls around every year, viewers are always guaranteed a few things.
One of those things is a few surprise entrants. It could be a blast from the past—as The Godfather justified last year—or it could be a Superstar who is returning to really kick off the road to WrestleMania with a serious bang.
Who could draw big reactions from the crowd at the 2014 edition?
Let's take a look at some of the potential surprise entrants for the 27th annual Royal Rumble.
He was on Raw a couple of weeks ago to present a Slammy Award with former tag team partner Road Dogg, and recently Billy Gunn has even returned to the ring.
Gunn took on Bo Dallas at the final NXT show at the NXT/FCW Arena in Tampa on Thursday, losing in a no disqualification match.
He's still in excellent shape—as his sporadic appearances with Road Dogg in the ring on Raw have proven—and would be a great entrant in the Rumble; however, whether he emerges as a surprise entrant would depend on who the WWE is luring back to kick off WrestleMania season.
He was most recently on WWE TV last year when he took on Heath Slater in the buildup to the 1,000th edition of Raw, and Diamond Dallas Page could certainly still cut it if he returned.
Fans immediately get on his side, and it would make for a brilliant moment should Page return to the Royal Rumble.
Nowadays, he is immersed with his latest venture—DDP Yoga; however, the lure of appearing at the Rumble one more time would no doubt be too much to turn down, should the WWE approach him.
There has been buzz of a Batista return to the WWE since he was spotted at an NXT taping at Full Sail University, according to WrestlingInc.com.
He has been away from WWE TV since 2010, and a return to the company would certainly make for interesting TV given the current situation with a Roman Reigns babyface turn.
WWE's interest in recruiting top names will be intensified given that the 30th edition of WrestleMania promises to be a blockbuster. With plenty of top names and stars hopefully on the roster, Batista may well be brought back to the Royal Rumble to start the ball rolling.
Don't bank on it, but Batista would be a wow of a surprise entrant.
Could he really make a comeback to the WWE at the age of 46? Wrestling fans constantly discuss that Goldberg may well be on the way back to the company, and he certainly didn't rule it out earlier this year, per ProWrestling.net.
Perhaps he is only interested in returning for WrestleMania 30, or perhaps he could return to the Royal Rumble. It would draw huge props from the crowd if Goldberg's music kicked in and he strutted out to the ring.
It seems unlikely, but it certainly isn't impossible.
With the schedule he currently has with the WWE, Brock Lesnar's return to TV may well be imminent.
Lesnar has been off WWE TV for a good few months now, and the Royal Rumble may well be an ideal starting point for the monster to return and kick off a rivalry on the road to WrestleMania.
As well as Lesnar returning, you would more than likely get Paul Heyman back on TV too, which would only be a good thing.
With Lesnar likely to be at WrestleMania, the Royal Rumble—an event he won in 2003—would be a good place for Lesnar to find a foe and set up a huge feud before the showpiece event.
This one is a Superstar who really would be a surprise entrant. He is also one man who would send the crowd crazy should he emerge to compete in the Rumble in 2014.
The thing is, the chances of Jake "The Snake" Roberts competing in the Royal Rumble are not all that far-fetched.
Per the WGD Weekly on YouTube, Roberts claimed he is in training with the hope of appearing at the event for one last time.
For those who loved him in the past, Roberts' return to the Rumble would be a superb moment in wrestling folklore. You never tire of watching him, and if he does return, many fans would hope he goes far and actually puts on a show.
It would arguably be one of the high points of the year—just weeks into 2014.
Chris Jericho is used to returning and then disappearing for months; he has certainly earned the right to do so after a stellar career.
If he chooses to return for WrestleMania 30—which he really should—then he is in good enough condition to have a prolonged run with the company. That run should start at the Royal Rumble.
Although not exactly a huge surprise entrant, Y2J emerging to compete in the Royal Rumble would draw plenty of attention.
His previous return to the company was in January just in time for WrestleMania season, so why not again?
His return from injury is imminent, and you would highly anticipate that Sheamus will make his return to action as a surprise entrant in the Royal Rumble in January.
Sheamus has been on the injury bench since August.
He is a former winner of the event, becoming the last man standing in 2012. Although it is highly unlikely that he will win another Rumble in 2014—purely due to the other guys on the roster who need it more—you can wager a fair amount of money that the Irishman will make his comeback to action at the 27th annual Royal Rumble.