There was no doubt what the direction was going to be. When The Rock was set to wrestle CM Punk for the WWE Championship, and John Cena was entered into the Royal Rumble match, Sandra Bullock could’ve connected the dots behind her Bird Box blindfold. “Once in a Lifetime” was a cute marketing slogan for Rock and Cena’s generational dream match, but was as sacred as a discarded Slim Jim wrapper. “Twice in a Lifetime” was going to happen, because it was going to make what Lone Starr from Spaceballs would call, “A s**tload of money.”
While the inevitability of the rematch didn’t sit well with many vocal fans (particularly the “Why can’t CM Punk hold the belt for three more years?” crowd), I have to say that the 2013 Royal Rumble was a rather fun show. A star-heavy Rumble match with just the right amount of surprises, plus two very enjoyable World title matches (Alberto Del Rio vs. Big Show is a bit of a lost gem), made for a show low on shocking developments, but big on well-executed goodness.
Many didn’t see it that way, and saw the 2013 Royal Rumble as the starting point for a WrestleMania they weren’t asking for. Naturally, those fans don’t complain about WWE any more, since they all stopped watching back then.
10. Divas Denied
A couple weeks before the Rumble, Kaitlyn would defeat outgoing WWE Divas Champion Eve Torres for the belt on Raw in what was actually one helluva match (the final couple minutes had the crowd losing their minds, and really has to be seen to be appreciated). Kaitlyn’s title reign would never equal the greatness of her win, sadly, and she missed out on a Rumble match, to boot.
The original plans were for Kaitlyn to defend the belt against Tamina Snuka on the card, a match that would be pulled due to time constraints. The two would face off three weeks later at the Elimination Chamber pay-per-view, with Kaitlyn retaining the belt in a relatively short match, just a three-minute bit of filler before the Rock/Punk rematch.