The Undertaker vs. AJ Styles Rumored For WWE Royal Rumble 2017
On Monday Night Raw, Bill Goldberg announced he would be the first entrant in the WWE Royal Rumble 2017, kicking off the build to one of the biggest WWE events of the calendar year. However, Goldberg entering the Rumble might not be the biggest story surrounding the annual pay-per-view (if we can even still call it that).
Dave Meltzer reports that WWE officials are considering having AJ Styles defend the WWE Championship against The Undertaker at the Royal Rumble. Part of what makes this plausible is WWE’s need to sell a larger-than-average amount of tickets, since they’re running the show at the massive Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas, on the twentieth anniversary of the 1997 Royal Rumble, which also emanated from the Alamodome. The other big boon in plausibility is The Undertaker’s recent appearance on the 900th episode of Smackdown, where he explained that he was “back”, and he would no longer be defined solely by Wrestlemania. This would seem to indicate that he would be back to wrestle again before Wrestlemania.
Of course, the decision to have the match at the Rumble might not even be up to The Undertaker, or even WWE.
In the latest issue of the Wrestling Observer, Meltzer explains that the only thing preventing the match from moving forward right now is timing, since The Undertaker is still going through rehab after his recent hip surgery.
As a potential main event caliber match, it makes sense to pit Styles against Taker. Not only would Styles refuse to let the match be anything less than a four-star minimum, it’s one of the rare fresh match-ups that WWE has right now, since Styles and Taker have never faced one another before. Granted, some fans argue that Styles has taken a bit of a hit in the credibility department due to having lost so many matches to James Ellsworth, but I think WWE has done a good job protecting Styles, even in defeat. There’s no reason that Styles vs. Taker shouldn’t still be a credible match capable of stealing the show. The big question is whether or not they put The Undertaker over to give him one last run, perhaps culminating in a final match at Wrestlemania. Either way, the match would have clear intrigue, and that could be reason enough to do it. Hell, save it for Wrestlemania, if you have to. The Phenomenal One vs. The Phenom should sell itself.
But what do you think? Is AJ Styles vs. The Undertaker a match you’d want to see? If not, what would you put in its place? Sound off in the comments!
And for more WWE news, read the latest on the possible negotiations between WWE and UFC star Conor McGregor!