On the January 7 edition of WWE SmackDown, WWE announced 19 stars from the women’s Royal Rumble. Among the names were numerous former WWE names, including The Bella Twins, Lita, and IMPACT Women’s Champion Mickie James.
As per Fightful Select (subscription required), WWE reached out to talent about appearances much earlier than usual for this year’s event. It was noted that on previous occasions, WWE has called legends with as little as nine days notice about Royal Rumble spots.
most former WWE stars contacted for the Rumble were under the impression that their appearances would be kept a surprise. WWE reportedly announced the names to boost ticket sales, and increase the buzz surrounding the show.
It was noted that there still is “plenty of room for more surprises, and likely will be.” The report noted that WWE does have back-up names in mind, as not everybody who was contacted for a potential appearance committed.
The report also noted that it is believed backstage at IMPACT that mentioning the Knockouts Title was part of the agreement for the match. This hasn’t been confirmed with WWE or Mickie James.
An earlier report has revealed that WWE might be planning an ‘unexpected’ forbidden door entrant for the men’s Royal Rumble match.
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