Daniel Bryan joining The Wyatt Family is arguably one of the biggest swerves the WWE has pulled off in recent years, one resulting in a fascinating storyline.
The decision for Bryan to align himself with Bray and his family was a huge shock, as it looked like the window of opportunity for that scenario to occur had closed. Despite that, Bryan's debut on Raw last week as a member of the family led many to wonder what the next step will be in the storyline.
Surely Bryan will leave the family at one point, but there are several questions that crop up from that development. When will he leave—is the Royal Rumble too soon, or is it the perfect stage for Bryan and Wyatt to crank up the heat in their storyline?
There is also the question of how Bryan will sever his ties with The Wyatt Family. Let's try to take a look at what the most likely outcome is for this storyline.
The Royal Rumble Is a Perfect Stage for Bryan to Leave
There are suggestions that the Royal Rumble would be perhaps too early for Bryan and Bray to go their separate ways. While there could well be substance with that argument, the Rumble match provides the perfect scenario for their split to occur.
The Rumble match is, by its very nature, chaotic and controversial. It is a pay-per-view where friends become enemies. Splits and swerves are incredibly common. Surely the potential for Bryan to get his revenge on Bray at the Rumble is too much for the WWE's creative team to resist?
There are a number of options the company could take with the storyline if it were to bring it to a head at the Royal Rumble. By far the most likely of those is Bryan eliminating Wyatt to end his allegiance with the twisted, sadistic Bray.
It would be hard to imagine a scenario where Bray and Bryan do not split at the Royal Rumble. With the Elimination Chamber being the next pay-per-view after the Rumble, it makes perfect sense for it to happen in January.
Bray to Sever Bryan, or Bryan to Dispose of Bray?
As well as examining when the split between Bryan and The Wyatt Family will occur, it is also important to look at just how WWE will make the split happen.
There are a number of potential swerves and finishes creative could apply to the rivalry if the split happens at the Rumble. For example, who will it be that causes the split?
There is an assumption that Bryan will eliminate Wyatt at the Rumble to actually win the show. That, however, is very unlikely for several reasons. It would mean a scenario would have to occur where Bryan and Bray are the final two men in the Rumble match, meaning the likes of Batista and CM Punk are eliminated before Bray Wyatt. That seems improbable.
Of course, Bryan could well eliminate Bray, but it would likely happen much, much earlier in the match.
There is also a scenario where Wyatt turns on his newest family member, causing the mother of all shocks by eliminating one of the favorites to win the Royal Rumble.
Why would the WWE do this? Well, it would generate some absolutely huge heat on Wyatt, a guy who the company has big hopes for. It would also free Bryan from Bray's clutches, and enable him to revert back to being a face.
Out of the two options, there is a greater possibility of Bryan eliminating Bray and returning to his "Yes!" gimmick—something the crowd clearly is into. Bryan is so over with the WWE fans that this gimmick with Bray cannot continue for a prolonged period of time, otherwise the momentum Bryan had will be forever lost.