As many of you heard on NAIpod this week (and if you didn’t, what’s the matter with you? Go listen!), one of the topics of discussion was the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal. Specifically, the talk revolved around who was going to be in it, since so many of the obvious choices for winners are otherwise booked at Wrestlemania this year.
Well, as Chief of Staff of the New Age Insiders, amateur and unofficial Statistician of the same organization, and just basically a guy who enjoys making lists, I decided to do some quick figuring, and I have some startling results.
I can easily see 30 superstars in this years Battle Royal. Yes, that’s right. Thirty.
All that would be required is literally using everyone on the WWE roster. . . Well, not everyone, I didn’t count David Otunga. . . Plus a couple of additional entrants from NXT (though not necessarily developmental talents), and it was easy. I didn’t even consider those traditional “Surprise Royal Rumble” guys - RVD and Jericho to name a pair of them. If I did that, I bet I could manage to squeeze 40 in.
While I doubt we’ll see 40 (or even 30, really) in the ATGMBR (now that’s a mouthful) this year, looking at the list I compiled did bring to mind some interesting ideas. So, my friends, allow me to present to you 10 guys whom, in my opinion, could be potential winners. In no particular order, let’s start with . . .
Well, OK, I guess I’m going in SOME sort of order. Who better to win this than the guy whom, at one dark point in wrestling history, was billed as the progeny of the late Monsieur Roussimoff?
I know, I know. . . Basically ANYBODY ELSE would be better.
Still, it would make sense that a giant win a battle royal one of these days, doesn’t it? And if the winner isn’t going to get a push of note (and let’s face it, have we seen any signs that they will?), why not let Big Show have a day in the sun.
. . . I hear your “eclipse” jokes, people. . . I hear them. . .
I honestly don’t think we’ll even see Sheamus in this match - He seems much more likely to show up in the next few weeks as part of the eleventeen man IC ladder match - but if Sheamus were to enter the Battle Royal, he’d immediately become a favorite to win. Having a dominant performance here would remind fans that when he wants to be, Sheamus can be a brute, and it could (if he did it as a heel and with maximum violence) propel him into a potential contender for our new World Heavyweight Champion, Roman Reigns.
Note: I don’t particularly like the sound of that phrase, but I’m going to keep using it in the hopes that it grows on me in the next 3 weeks.
Here’s a return that I think we can all but carve out in stone for the Battle Royal. As much as I would like to see Bo Dallas immediately insert himself into the IC title picture, I just don’t think its feasible. Truthfully, we’re far more likely to see Dallas eliminated within 15 seconds of the bell ringing than to last to the end.
I just . . .Won’t Stop . . . Bo-Lieving. . . Hold onto that feeeeelllliinnnggg. . .
Yes, kids, DC Matthews just broke out a Journey reference. Google them - they were good.
I’ll give full credit for this idea to (Originally I believed this to be Brandon McIntire, but open review it was @PJCooler) as I heard it on NAIpod and immediately knew it was super-plausible. Henry is reportedly in as good a physical shape as he’s been in years, so if WWE wanted to use the Battle Royal as a launching point, having the Hall of Pain resume at Wrestlemania is a really good way to do it.
This is THE guy, in my mind, for this Battle Royal. I know this, because I heard myself say it on NAIpod. I truly believe that the Sandow / Miz storyline comes to a head at Wrestlemania. There’s no point in having Sandow “snap” on a RAW (or God forbid, a Smackdown), especially when they’re both in this match.
The booking is easy as pie - Miz and Sandow wind up being the last two men in the ring. Miz orders Sandow to eliminate himself, and when Damien hesitates, Miz slaps him yet again. This sends Sandow over the edge, who sends his former boss over the ropes, winning the Battle Royal for himself and basking in the adoration of tens of thousands screaming fans.
How is that not the perfect way to book this match?
Alright, just for fun, let’s get to the more “out there” picks.
I assume that at least 2 members of New Day will be in this Battle Royal, if not the whole trio. We’ve never really seen a team absolutely run amok through a match like this, but if they used teamwork and did a lot less crowd-playing, there is a possibility that these guys could do well. Big E makes the most sense as a potential winner, since he really is a monster in waiting.
I know they seem to be as low down the WWE totem pole as you can get without being a Matador right now, but Wrestlemania would be a good time to re-introduce fans to Konnor and Viktor. Why not have them, as I mentioned with New Day, run roughshod over the other combatants, working as a cohesive unit the entire time? Then, at the end, rather than turn on each other, they lift the trophy together and declare their dominance over the entire roster. Wouldn’t that be better than seeing them wrestle yet another tag team from wrestling’s past?
I really think we’re going to see either Rhyno or Kendrick (possibly both) as the “surprise” entrants in the Battle Royal. It will garner much of the same reaction for the casual WWE fans tuning into Wrestlemania after who-knows-how-many months away and also provide an opportunity for the announcers to plug NXT without using an actual NXT guy.
(If the newest member of the NAI team Bill Neville was producing this blog, he’d cue the Tony Atlas laugh right here - Imagine, WWE announcers promoting NXT!!!)
While I don’t really see Rhyno winning this thing, it is possible that some of these veterans are going to get a second shot at WWE, so who knows? It could happen!
If there’s going to be an NXT talent appearing in the Andre Battle Royal, it’s going to be Neville. It won’t be Breeze (he’s more of a “RAW after Mania” debut, I think), and I’m sorry friends, but it’s certainly not going to be Finn Balor.
Note: In my head during the last 5 seconds, I just created a conspiracy theory that says the next NXT “special event” is specifically taking place before Mania so that when Finn loses to Owens, he can advance to WWE right away. I don’t believe it for a second, but I’m sure somebody will latch onto it.
Neville makes a lot of sense in this match, and if WWE is going to go with some sort of “diminutive underdog” gimmick, winning a Battle Royal in his first match is a good way to start.
Look, at no point in the last few weeks has Daniel Bryan announced he’s going to be in the IC ladder match. To be honest, he hasn’t said much of anything about Wrestlemania, from what I’ve seen. I made a prediction a while ago that there’s a very good chance Daniel Bryan goes from Mania main event to the Battle Royal, and I still think that’s a viable possibility.
Ladies and gentlemen, your 2015 Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal winner just might be Daniel Frickin Bryan. Stick that on your Twitter feed and rant about it.
What do YOU think? Who do you think are the favorites to win the Battle Royal? Who do you want to see win? Be Heard.