It’s Royal Rumble season and you know what that means: predicting winners and pulling for your favorites. The more I think about who I want to win the men’s Royal Rumble, the more I come to one conclusion:
I want Kofi Kingston to win.
Not only do I want him to win, but I don’t think it’s outside the realm of possibility. It’s not like saying I want Curt Hawkins or Bo Dallas to win the Rumble. While not an odds on favorite, Kofi could have a legitimate chance.
The nice thing about the brand split era is the Rumble winner doesn’t have to be the main event of WrestleMania. There are two major titles and the other championship can take that spot. This gives WWE more flexibility and allows someone to win who may not have that chance with just one major championship.
If someone from Raw is winning the match, my guess would be Roman Reigns. (That’s probably the guess of 90% of people.) It’s looked like Brock Lesnar vs. Roman has been in the cards for awhile. Reigns just dropped the Intercontinental title back to the Miz, freeing him up for a big Universal title program.
However, much like my main Cain A Knight in his post about why he thinks Dolph Ziggler has a decent chance to win, I don’t think they’re going to run with Roman winning in Philadelphia yet again. That happened in 2015 and did not go well. They booed the Rock for goodness sake!
That’s not to say that things haven’t changed since then. Roman has continued to improve and Roman winning in 2018 makes way more sense than when he did in 2015. The crowd may be hostile, but likely not as bad as last time. And WWE will have planned for it to book according. All that being said, it still feels very “been there done that.” With the brand split, they have a chance to make a fresh, feel good moment while still not abandoning their plan for Roman/Brock. To use a cliche, they can have their cake and eat it too.
So why Kofi?
Simple. He’s a man who’s put in plenty of work in the company and is currently part of one of the most popular acts in the business. It’s time to see him reach the pinnacle he deserves.
Kofi Kingston has been in the WWE for a decade. And outside a halted push against Randy Orton back in 2009, he’s never been in the main event. He’s held countless midcard titles and tag team championships, but hasn’t been in a serious title feud.
He found new life as part of the New Day, who are consistently one of the hottest and entertaining acts in WWE. With Xavier Woods and Big E, he’s always featured on television and often in a high profile spot. However, he hasn’t worked as a singles competitor in awhile, which means he’s avoided taking a bunch of single’s losses prior to the battle royal.
Compare that to one of the Rumble favorites, Shinsuke Nakamura, who has worked singles and who hasn’t had a big single’s win on PPV since joining SmackDown earlier this year. He’s had big wins on SmackDown against Randy Orton and John Cena, but outside those matches, his general booking paints him as an upper midcarder right now. While I certainly wouldn’t complain about a Nakamura win, he doesn’t feel set up for it. Kofi was able to avoid that by avoiding the single’s scene entirely.
Kofi has been putting his time in the WWE for 10 years. Whether it be working in the midcard or in a tag team, he’s been doing everything asked of him. Nakamura vs. Styles would be great, but Nakamura has been in WWE main roster for 9 months so his victory would lack the feeling that he’s worked his ass off to earn it.
Given the history of Kofi in the company and the great work he’s done as part of the New Day, a Kingston win would be extremely satisfying. My favorite stories in wrestling are when someone who’s been putting in their dues for years finally climbs that mountain. It’s the most satisfying, rewarding moments for fans. Watching him notch a big win at the Rumble and go on to try and win a major title for the first time on the biggest stage would be an emotional ride, one fans could latch onto.
That’s not to mention that the match would be awesome. Kofi has always been a talented ring worker and no doubt he and AJ could make magic in New Orleans.
Kofi has had some exhilarating spots in Royal Rumble matches, a variety of amazing saves such using a chair as a Pogo stick to stave off elimination. But there’s one Rumble moment he’s been missing and that’s a win. I hope to see that this Sunday.
Who will you be pulling for?