While the 2022 Royal Rumble has been and gone, the aftermath of the event is still being felt, with one source within WWE describing the experience as complete chaos.
On the latest episode of Monday Night Raw, WWE turned their attention to the upcoming Elimination Chamber event on February 19th. However, the fall-out from the company’s recent Premium Live Event is still rumbling on.
A new report has now offered an update on the events leading up to the show, late changes during the show and the controversy surrounding Shane McMahon and WWE’s other producers.
The report from Fightful Select notes that there were “tons of extras and backups” who were in town for the show. These included, Apollo Crews, Shelton Benjamin, Aksana, and Jillian Hall. In addition, some NXT talent were tipped off up to three weeks in advance that they would not be used. It was said that the company wanted to “lean away” from using NXT 2.0 talent, although no reason was given as to why.
Following the show, there has also been a great deal of conjecture over who was in charge of producing the matches on the night. In particular Shane McMahon reportedly has a “lot of heat” after producing and appearing in the men’s Royal Rumble match.
Fightful have now confirmed that McMahon was “heavily involved” in the match, particularly with many of the late changes. Even without Shane O’Mac’s involvement, one source described the scene as “the most frustrating and stressful experience of their WWE careers.” Meanwhile, the report suggests that Vince McMahon changed the order of the men’s Rumble match, and on more than one occasion, stars went out to the ring, not knowing who they were meant to be eliminating.
The report states that there were also issues with the women’s Rumble match. Fightful claim that Fit Finlay was brought in as a replacement for Tyson Kidd, who hasn’t produced any matches for a number of weeks. “Several stars” said that this was tied to the Royal Rumble. Kidd “technically” remains a producer with the company, although his presence was missed at the event.
Participants in the match later described it as a “mess,” while one particular talent called it “complete chaos.” Not only that, one female talent turned down the chance to be in the match as TJ Wilson (Tyson Kidd) wasn’t involved.
Meanwhile, Asuka was said to be “not physically ready to return” and it was felt there were easier options than including Kairi Sane.
Finally, Drew McIntyre’s surprise appearance was kept “very quiet,” with many within the company in the dark until he arrived at the Gorilla position. His neck issue still requires rehab and goes all of the way back to an injury suffered in 2016.
It has since been announced that men’s Royal Rumble winner Brock Lesnar will challenge Universal Champion Roman Reigns at WrestleMania 38, while women’s winner Ronda Rousey will make her decision on the upcoming episode of SmackDown.