Updated 2021 WWE Royal Rumble Card and Predictions for Week of Jan. 18

Erik Beaston@@ErikBeastonFeatured ColumnistJanuary 18, 2021

Updated 2021 WWE Royal Rumble Card and Predictions for Week of Jan. 18

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    Credit: WWE.com

    The Royal Rumble is set to take place Jan. 31, and excitement is mounting for the annual spectacular that serves as the kickoff to the Road to WrestleMania.

    Emanating from Tropicana Field in Tampa, Florida, the pay-per-view will feature championship clashes and both the men's and women's namesake matches. 

    Who will emerge from the night's festivities with momentum on their side and a guaranteed title opportunity awaiting them at The Showcase of the Immortals?

    Find out with these early predictions and a preview of one of the night's highest-profile contests.

Match Card and Predictions

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    Already announced for the Royal Rumble pay-per-view:

    • Last Man Standing match for the Universal Championship: Kevin Owens vs. Roman Reigns (Prediction: Reigns)
    • WWE Championship match: Drew McIntyre vs. Goldberg (Prediction: McIntyre)
    • Men's Royal Rumble match (Prediction: Brock Lesnar)
    • Women's Royal Rumble match (Prediction: Bianca Belair)

             

    There is still no indication that Brock Lesnar will reappear in time for the pay-per-view, but this is the time of year when WWE breaks him out to help solidify the WrestleMania card.

    Unlike years past, there are two valid storylines that would warrant his return to television. He could be looking to avenge his WrestleMania 36 loss to McIntyre or, even more interestingly, he could opt to challenge Reigns for the universal title as revenge for being tossed aside by former advocate Paul Heyman.

    It's not every day that there are ready-made storylines waiting for The Beast Incarnate, so it would behoove WWE to throw money at him and get him back in the fold in time for its biggest show of the year—even if we would all rather have someone fresh and more exciting than Lesnar win the men's Royal Rumble match.

Kevin Owens and Roman Reigns Reunite for Rumble Title Match 4 Years Later

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    Four years ago, then-universal champion Kevin Owens and Roman Reigns tore the house down at the 2017 Royal Rumble in a No Disqualification match.

    Fast forward to 2021, and the familiar foes will do battle once more at the event, this time in a Last Man Standing match after Adam Pearce suckered The Tribal Chief into signing a contract that allowed him to replace the WWE official with KO because of "injury."

    Owens has had prior opportunities to dethrone The Head of the Table but failed, primarily because of interference from Jey Uso. While some will point to the Last Man Standing stipulation as a positive for KO because of the lack of disqualifications, it also allows Uso and even Paul Heyman to interject themselves into the match to support Reigns.

    How the storytellers in WWE missed that detail is not surprising given their disregard for the little things, but there is no denying Owens and Reigns will likely deliver another phenomenal match.

    It is highly unlikely KO wins the match, but he should further cement himself as one of the elite Superstars on SmackDown while Reigns continues his critically acclaimed heel run.

New Declarations for Men's, Women's Royal Rumble Matches

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    Jey Uso, Cesaro, Mandy Rose and Dana Brooke have joined the field for the men's and women's Royal Rumble matches.

    They join the following in a quest for a championship opportunity at WrestleMania 37.

           

    Men's Royal Rumble 

    Jey Uso

    Cesaro

    The Miz

    Otis

    United States champion Bobby Lashley

    Randy Orton

    AJ Styles

    Daniel Bryan 

                

    Women's Royal Rumble 

    Mandy Rose 

    Dana Brooke 

    Bianca Belair 

    Bayley 

    Nia Jax 

    Women's tag team champion Charlotte Flair