Sunday, January 31, 2010, the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) will hold it's first pay-per-view of the new year, the Royal Rumble. The Rumble, coming from Atlanta, Georgia, is seen as the official beginning to the Road to Wrestlemania. Four championship matches will be held (previewed in a separate article) prior to the Rumble 30-man battle royal main event. The winner of the main event receives a world title shot of his choosing at Wrestlemania 26.
The following, based on their spots on the roster, have absolutely no chance of winning this year's Rumble:
-Raw Roster: Chris Masters, Santino Marella, Carlito, Evan Bourne, Jack Swagger, Mark Henry, Kofi Kingston, The Miz, MVP.
-ECW Roster: Hurricane Helms, who may not even be on the WWE roster after Sunday given his recent arrest in Kentucky.
-Smackdown Roster: Great Khali, Kane, Matt Hardy, R-Truth.
-Raw Roster: Big Show, who could prove to make a novel match with Sheamus at Wrestlemania if Sheamus holds the title. Cody Rhodes or Ted DiBiase, as the long rumored face turn for one of these would be a natural Wrestlemania event if Orton wins the title. Shawn Michaels. While I realize Michaels would normally be favored to win the Rumble to face Undertaker at Wrestlemania, I think that's all a swerve. That will be examined in a follow-up article.
-ECW Roster: Shelton Benjamin, Yoshi Tatsu, William Regal or Zack Ryder. While I don't see any of these actually beating the top stars in the Rumble, it would be convenient to give one of these guys the win to blow off the title stipulation against Christian at Wrestlemania.
-Smackdown Roster: C.M. Punk. Punk is no stranger to the title picture, although it's been a while since he's visited that area. My money goes to Punk not getting the Wrestlemania title match, but getting put in yet another Money in the Bank match in Arizona.
-Raw Roster: John Cena and Triple H.
-Smackdown Roster: Batista.
-Swerve: Keep in mind that as of this writing, three spots still remain for the Rumble's 30-man field. There are three men's championship matches preceeding the Rumble. I forsee the losers of those matches making their way in as late entrants to the Rumble, setting up a field comprised of the losers of Undertaker/Mysterio, Sheamus/Orton and Christian/Ezekiel Jackson. One of these could also be a darkhorse contender to win the Rumble and set up a future rematch at Wrestlemania.