World Wrestling Entertainment sent shockwaves through the industry on Friday Night SmackDown when they announced several Royal Rumble surprise entrants’ weeks ahead of time.
According to Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful.com, WWE let it be known they were bringing back several “Divas” from past eras for the 30 Woman’s Royal Rumble match that would include the likes of Lita, Michelle McCool, the Bella Twins, Summer Rae, Kelly Kelly, and the reigning IMPACT Wrestling Knockouts Champion Mickie James.
Over the past number of years, WWE would reach out to talent about the Royal Rumble as little over a week, week and half from the day of the event. This year, however, they began reaching out far earlier than usual to talent. Fightful would continue to report that most talent was under the impression their participation in one of WWE’s “Big Four” events would NOT be made public ahead of time.
The reasoning behind WWE making the announcements early was to drive up ticket sales and WWE was quoted as saying: “Plenty of room for more surprises and likely will be.” It’s been reported that WWE does have some backup names in mind as well since not every talent they have reached out to has been sold on the idea.
On Friday sources that Fightful spoke to from WWE said they were not made aware the announcements would become publicly known but the later scripts before the show went on the air included them. A funny note though is that when Mickie James name was mentioned it was stylized with a “(?) IMPACT WRESTLING KNOCKOUTS CHAMPION (?)” type of deal. The rumors backstage at IMPACT’s “Hard to Kill” PPV from Saturday night was that the mentioning of the Knockouts Championship title was part of the agreement for the Royal Rumble event, however WWE or Mickie James herself have not confirmed that with Fightful.
It has been noted that IMPACT was VERY pleased with the interest this created for Mickie James and IMPACT wrestling. Even more so pleasing when you consider they already have a Women’s Main Event Championship match planned for their PPV.
WWE has said no more about any more entrants to the Royal Rumble for the men’s or women’s match. We have heard some “big” names be tossed around, interesting pitches but nothing has been confirmed nor does anyone who they may be or if they even happen.
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