The latest WWE rumors give fans insight into what happened after Daniel Bryan broke free from The Wyatt Family and why Ryback recently spat out a series of strange tweets.
The suddenness of Bryan's defection, the injury he suffered that same night and what the company's Royal Rumble plans are for him dominated the week's WWE-related buzz. The rest of the biggest rumors surround a potential championship match at the Royal Rumble pay-per-view and word on the 2014 Hall of Fame class.
What in the blue hell Ryback has been doing on Twitter lately has also been a trending topic.
Ryback Rules Twitter
It appears that WWE asked Ryback to go on his recent Twitter frenzy.
"The Big Guy" garnered a lot of attention in the last few weeks for insulting Jerry Lawler, mocking the Internet Wrestling Community and teasing that he'd been released.
F4WOnline(h/t WrestlingInc.com) writes that this was all by design. Reportedly, "The idea is that talents will be pushed to do different things on social media during slow times on the weekend to get fans talking when there is nothing going on."
If that is the case, consider Ryback's work a major success.
His aggressive Twitter rants may not have been exactly what WWE had in mind, but Ryback certainly made news outside of the ring. Those messages were constantly the source of reports, comments and speculation.
As of now, Ryback's Twitter account is empty. Either the company believed he'd gone too far or he's simply gearing up for another crazy tweet-fest when the news cycle slows again.
Divas Match at Royal Rumble?
Backstage reports have AJ Lee in line to defend the WWE Divas Championship at the Royal Rumble.
F4WOnline (h/t WrestlingInc.com) reports that "Naomi vs. AJ Lee for the WWE Divas Title may be added to the Royal Rumble card." According to PWInsider (h/t WrestlingInc.com), though, the matchup isn't a lock.
The report says that officials plan to wait until the day of the show to decide and that "the idea on Monday was that if they don't have enough time for it on the pay-per-view, the match will take place on RAW the next night."
AJ and Naomi have been colliding frequently as of late in tag team action, so this is certainly a plausible bout.
Unfortunately for those two wrestlers, this certainly doesn't sound like the match will be a priority—something that is par for the course when it comes to the Divas division. This is how we end up with hurried, awkward Divas matches shoved into shows.
Hall of Fame Updates
The Ultimate Warrior is the only confirmed member of the 2014 Hall of Fame. Who will join him? Who will induct him on the eve of WrestleMania XXX?
According to PWInsider(h/t WrestlingInc.com), "it looks like Paul Bearer will be inducted" this year. Bearer (Bill Moody) passed away in 2013. He is among the most recognizable managers in WWE history, having stood in Undertaker, Kane and Mankind's corner.
For WWE to honor his life and legacy would be no surprise.
The only question about his Hall of Fame entry is whether Undertaker will break character to induct him. Those two men will forever be linked in fans' minds just as Warrior and the man reportedly in line to induct him are.
Wrestling Observer (h/t WrestleZone.com) reports that "there's a feeling within WWE that Hulk Hogan will induct Warrior into the WWE Hall of Fame."
Not yet back with the company, Hogan has been the center of a storm of WrestleMania rumors. For those wondering if "The Hulkster" still harbors animosity toward Warrior, he recently told TMZ that Warrior was a good choice for the Hall of Fame.
As much as Warrior and Hogan have shared as foes and allies in both WCW and WWE, it's hard to imagine anyone else being a better fit.
Word on Daniel Bryan
Bryan was the star of the Jan. 13 edition of Raw and eventually the star of the WWE rumor mill.
Questions about his storyline with The Wyatt Family, his concussion and what was next for him in the Royal Rumble floated around the Internet. It appears that there are now a number of answers to satisfy the curious fan.
The original plan reportedly didn't have Bryan turning on Bray Wyatt so soon. A rousing "Yes!" chant at a Michigan State game apparently got Vince McMahon to speed up the narrative.
According to F4WOnline (h/t WrestlingInc.com), "The idea was that Bryan would either turn back at Elimination Chamber, setting up Bryan vs. Bray at WrestleMania XXX, or he would turn at WrestleMania after coming out for a tag match with Wyatt."
The report says that the Michigan State chant made officials feel that they needed to hurry things along. The result was a stirring image of Bryan celebrating atop a steel cage.
"The whole backstage was in awe. Vince McMahon loves Bryan," a source told F4WOnline (h/t PWMania.com) about that moment.
Then came word that Bryan was concussed during that match. The celebration halted prematurely. Would Bryan be like Dolph Ziggler and suffer weeks and weeks of concussion symptoms?
Even though WWE is being careful with him momentarily, his injury reportedly isn't going to keep him out for long.
Mike Johnson of PWInsider.com wrote the following:
WWE sources are confirming that Daniel Bryan has been cleared to return to the ring following the concussion he suffered during the steel cage match last week on Raw.
We've heard that he may be kept out of the ring until the Royal Rumble PPV as an extra precautionary move but that is not 100 percent.
Wyatt vs. Bryan was booked on Monday's Raw for the pay-per-view, so the company must be quite confident that Bryan will be ready come Jan. 26. Will he be in the Rumble as well as this battle with the clan leader?
Bryan fanatics aren't going to like the answer.
PWInsider (h/t WrestlingInc.com) writes, "As of Monday afternoon, Bryan was not going to be in the match. His only appearance at the Rumble is scheduled to be the match against Wyatt." Plans could shift course in the meantime, but Bryan doing double duty so soon after a concussion is unlikely.
His journey has him tangling with a monster instead—a confrontation that came earlier than planned.