Opinion: Was announcing Alexa Bliss’ return at the Royal Rumble a mistake?

Harry Kettle Harry Kettle

Last night served as the final build towards the Royal Rumble for WWE RAW, and we saw some pretty intriguing developments. One of the most notable was that the in-ring return of Alexa Bliss was confirmed for the 30-woman Rumble match on Sunday, and to be perfectly honest, it left some people feeling a little bit underwhelmed.

For those of you who don’t know, Bliss has been out of action for the better part of three months courtesy to complications from a concussion. With no known return date in sight, some fans were curious as to whether or not she’d even be coming back at all, given how well she was able to transition into her role outside of the ring. Alas, we now know that the former Raw & SmackDown Women’s Champion will indeed be getting another shot at proving just how good she is – and can continue to be – to the WWE Universe.

As you’ll probably know by the title, though, there’s some controversy regarding how WWE went about making the announcement of her return. It comes hot on the heels of the many complaints in reference to WWE announcing some of the names for the women’s Rumble on Twitter, which was a classic example of how many fans don’t tend to read the fine print all too much. If they did, they’d have known that they were never planning on announcing all of the competitors, and that there will indeed be some surprises on Sunday.

The thing is, this isn’t really the same thing at all. Bliss coming back has been a pretty hot topic over the last few months, and the reason is that she’s easily one of the most popular and valuable women on the main roster (and in all of wrestling right now). The argument for making this announcement on RAW was that it’d draw more eyes to the Rumble event, but does anyone really believe that?

The people who are going to watch the Royal Rumble were always going to watch it and while Bliss is indeed incredibly important to the division, it completely contradicts one of the most important aspects of the match stipulation: the surprise. The pool is pretty thin in terms of numbers so we already knew that the Twitter announcements would almost certainly be in the match one way or another, but Bliss’ position was still up for debate.

She probably would’ve received a pretty sizeable pop and while people don’t think that would’ve been a good thing as she’s a heel, that feels like more of an excuse than anything else. It’s impossible to hide the fact that the WWE Universe enjoys the work of a good bad guy or girl from time to time, and to try and do so would be dishonest.

This kind of just feels like a decision that was made on the fly more so than anything else, and while it’s not the end of the world, it certainly feels like a misstep. That’s not a bad thing to admit by any means, but it does leave us wondering who WWE is saving for Sunday when it comes to the surprises in the women’s Rumble.