BS Meter on the Biggest WWE Rumors of 2020 So Far

Chris Roling@@Chris_RolingFeatured ColumnistMay 13, 2020

BS Meter on the Biggest WWE Rumors of 2020 So Far

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    WWE is unlike any other sport when it comes to rumors. 

    The rumor mill spins so fast it's a blur, especially in the early goings of a calendar year that happens to feature massive events such as the Royal Rumble and WrestleMania itself. 

    Speculation comes from all over the place. Given the nature of the events, rumblings of big returns, expected winners, involvement of legends and more take center stage as the best of 2020 so far—and don't forget whispers of how the company will try to innovate while counteracting ratings issues. 

    Let's look at the biggest rumors of this year to date on the BS Meter (1 is a rumor that is almost certainly true and 10 is one that is largely nonsense).

Shayna Baszler, Royal Rumble Winner

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    It sure seemed like Shayna Baszler was on the fast track to being one of WWE's biggest names on the main roster. 

    So much so that in January, Dave Meltzer of Wrestling Observer Radio reported she was the favorite to win the women's Royal Rumble. 

    But WWE ended up doing WWE things and instead gave the big moment to Charlotte Flair, who didn't exactly need it. Things were still interesting as The Queen messed around in NXT, but it cut some momentum out from under Baszler. 

    And since? The Queen of Spades had a fun little moment at Elimination Chamber but has otherwise eaten some losses without notable wins, including coming up short in the Money in the Bank ladder match. 

    BS Meter: 8

Ronda Rousey's Return

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    Everybody knew this rumor was coming. 

    On March 31, Tom Colohue of Sportskeeda reported Ronda Rousey was nearing a deal with WWE to make her hotly expected return, seemingly setting up some unfinished business with Becky Lynch. 

    So much for that. 

    Rousey hasn't shown up and even worse, she went public with some odd anti-WWE comments, which the company doesn't need right now

    There is always a chance this one comes to fruition at a later date. WrestleMania season would have made plenty of sense given the scale of Rousey's star power but only in a year when WWE wasn't making talent cuts amid the coronavirus pandemic. 

    But with Lynch now stepping away after handing the Raw women's title off to Asuka, maybe there is an opening for something to still happen. WWE could use the star power at the top of cards now that arguably its biggest name just went on hiatus. 

    BS Meter: 5

Undertaker's American Badass Persona to Stick

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    Undertaker seemingly revived his career with a character shift during WrestleMania season in response to the coronavirus pandemic and how it impacted the biggest show of the year. 

    Instead of getting into the ring with AJ Styles as The Deadman, he reverted to his American Badass persona in a Boneyard match. Not long after, WrestleVotes reported this would be the usual from now on for the WWE legend. 

    And it's hard to argue. 

    Undertaker's match with Styles—after arriving at the cemetery, burying The Phenomenal One alive and riding off again into the night—set a new standard for cinematic pre-taped matches in WWE. It was blatantly unforgettable if not the outright highlight most viewers will remember from the show for a decade or more. 

    And the American Badass persona just fits better in modern times. Undertaker is all over social media now and giving out-of-character interviews. That's totally fine, provided he's this elite-striking motorcycle rider and not the undead guy who rolls eyes into the back of his head constantly. 

    BS Meter: 1

Brand-to-Brand Invitation Rule Is Here to Stay

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    WWE is starting to break some of its own rules seemingly for the sake of ratings compensation. 

    According to Wrestling Observer (h/t Randall Ortman of Cageside Seats), the new "brand-to-brand invitation" rule is sticking around and a direct response to the well-documented ratings issues. 

    The first salvo in this breaking of brand-split rules is apparently Drew McIntyre taking on Baron Corbin. Not only is that not a terribly interesting matchup, it seems weird it would be the first one for WWE to trot out there if it's really going to break these rules and feature crossover matches. 

    But this does seem like a very WWE thing to do at this point. Fans probably knew it was only a matter of time before the strict brand split got broken up for one reason or another despite the company's best efforts to make the draft for that split feel realistic just like the NFL draft. 

    If one had to guess, all of this is not only true, but it's also here to stay for the long run. 

    BS Meter: 1