Predictions for Final 11 Spots in 30-Woman WWE Royal Rumble 2022


Last night on SmackDown, I’m sure I’m not the only person who was stunned to see WWE announce 19 of the participants in the 30-Woman 2022 Royal Rumble in rapid fire succession. Not only were some of the names themselves surprising to hear (Impact Knockouts Champion Mickie James???) but the act of announcing them in that fashion was outside the norm.

WWE tends to drag things out more often than not. Sometimes, to excruciating levels. But Royal Rumble entrants have always been part of the hush hush in an acceptable way. You don’t want to know all the participants because you want to be surprised when someone shocking enters the match.

Very rarely has WWE announced the vast majority ahead of time. It’s happened, sure, and in the first years, you pretty much knew all the people who would be involved because of the smaller roster, but over the past few years, WWE’s played more loose with the announcements.

In comparison, the 30-Man match only has 7 participants announced. Over the coming weeks, more people will declare themselves and we’ll probably end up with around 20 names like this. But with so few options left on the women’s division side, we now know more of what we’re working with after WWE spoiled so many outsider returns.

As it stands, here are the 19 women currently announced:

  1. Aliyah
  2. Brie Bella
  3. Carmella
  4. Charlotte Flair
  5. Dana Brooke
  6. Kelly Kelly
  7. Lita
  8. Michelle McCool
  9. Mickie James
  10. Naomi
  11. Natalya
  12. Nikki A.S.H.
  13. Nikki Bella
  14. Queen Zelina Vega
  15. Rhea Ripley
  16. Shayna Baszler
  17. Shotzi
  18. Summer Rae
  19. Tamina

Provided COVID doesn’t pull people off this list, that leaves 11 spots to fill and more than 11 women on the roster.

So while we still have time, let’s try to predict which Superstars will be those final 11 entrants!

Tier 1 – The Obvious Guarantees

#20. Alexa Bliss = WWE advertised her return on Raw. She’ll be back in time and there’s no reason to assume she wouldn’t be in this match.

#21 and #22. The two losers of Bianca Belair vs. Doudrop vs. Liv Morgan = One of these three women will win the right to challenge Becky Lynch. The other two will obviously fail and fall back to being in the Royal Rumble instead. It makes sense not to reveal those names and spoil the outcome of the Raw No. 1 contender’s match. My guess is Morgan wins again, but we can be fairly certain Doudrop won’t fight Lynch, at least.

#23. Sasha Banks = I’m surprised WWE didn’t announce her, but maybe they’re iffy about her potential injury. Then again, maybe she’s too big of a star in their eyes to just waste like that and they want to have her show up on SmackDown to say she’s declaring herself for that pop on that episode.

Tier 2 – Less Obvious, But Likely Givens

#24. Xia Li = There’s no reason why she shouldn’t be in this match, but they didn’t announce her. I’m unaware of any injuries. So what gives? Are they keeping her out because they’re rebooting her character again? Did they already lose faith in her and that’s why we haven’t seen her recently? Do they want to protect her and not have her lose? What’s up? She should have been announced, so it’s very curious why that wasn’t the case.

#25. Sonya Deville = Maybe she doesn’t officially enter the match, but she’ll screw Naomi somehow. We might as well count her as a competitor. Worst case scenario, she appears wearing a suit, gets Naomi out by interfering, but one other random woman is in the Royal Rumble instead of Deville.

#26. Raquel Gonzalez = I’ll believe she’s not in the Royal Rumble when I see it. Not only do I think she’s a damn near certainty to participate, I think she’s got one of the best chances to win. All I’m saying is look out for her potentially tossing out Flair to set up a feud between those two. It’s one of the top scenarios I could imagine going down.

Tier 3 – The Questionables

#27. Bayley = We don’t know what the timetable for Bayley’s return is, but if they can have her come back here, they’ll pull that trigger. In fact, she might be one of the favorites to win. I could imagine a babyface refreshed Bayley against Becky Lynch or Charlotte Flair at WrestleMania, can’t you?

#28. Asuka = Likewise, Asuka is injured, but she might be ready to go by the end of the month. I don’t think she stands a chance at winning, but her entrance would be a pop.

#29. Lacey Evans = It will be nearly a full year since Evans left for maternity leave. Her most recent posts on Instagram show that she’s been getting back in shape and training. I’m betting she’s ready to go.

#30. Jinny = Maybe I’m wrong, but I’m banking on this idea that WALTER and Jinny are a couple, WALTER is going to NXT or the main roster, I think he’ll be in the men’s Royal Rumble and Jinny will be in the women’s. It’s something different. She’s an NXT UK star and they can bring a little attention to that brand even if she leaves it. This could even be what makes her jump to Raw or SmackDown.

Tier 4 – Anyone’s Guess

Let’s talk about some other potential alternates who may show up.

Becky Lynch and/or her opponent = You heard me. Flair is in there. They could want to put Becky in there, too. In previous years, they’ve also had the person who challenged for the title and lost pop up in the Royal Rumble match, so all 3 of the Belair/Doudrop/Morgan match might be in there, too.

Trish Stratus = They announced Lita, but no Trish. Technically, Trish had a retirement match against Charlotte Flair, but she’s talked about wanting to wrestle Sasha Banks and others. She had a retirement match before that and came back already, so who’s to say she doesn’t go back on retirement #2?

Io Shirai = She should’ve made the jump to the main roster a long time ago. Maybe it doesn’t happen and she ends up staying in NXT a while longer or gets cut entirely, but if you’re looking for talent to fill the remaining spots and you want someone who’s a name and reliable, you can’t be looking beyond her.

Cora Jade = They seem to like Cora Jade a lot. Putting this much stock in her means she’s caught someone’s attention. That same person could pitch her name to appear here to show off the youth movement of NXT 2.0 and try to tie into promoting that brand.

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