Photo Credit: WWE
In a recent interview with the Public Enemies Podcast, former WWE writer Chris Dunn revealed that Bianca Belair’s win came as the result of a last-minute pitch from Ryan Ward to then WWE CEO, Vince McMahon. The original finish penciled in a back-to-back Royal Rumble victory for “The Queen” Charlotte Flair, but a compelling case from Ward saw McMahon change directions.
“I was in a Tampa Hotel room and we were watching some sort of football game. An assistant had just left the Royal Rumble night-before meeting and they changed the finish and Charlotte [Flair] was going to go over. They rehearsed Charlotte going over and Bianca [Belair] was going to get eliminated like midway through the match. It got changed to Bianca going over. I think a lot of people voiced it but this guy, Ryan Ward, he’s been there for like 14 years. He was [John] Cena’s writer. Probably, for my money, I think he has had the biggest hand in the women’s revolution. He was lead writer in the golden days of NXT with Kevin [Owens] and Sami [Zayn] and The Four Horsewomen, all that stuff.”
“From my understanding, from what I heard, he kind of said something to Vince [McMahon], something to the effect of, ‘Vince, if you look at the Royal Rumble tomorrow, we have Edge winning and Charlotte winning. We’re not making any new stars’. I think that really resonated [with Vince] and Bianca was on such a roll where it kind of made sense. She also had to, again, right after that match, really nail that post-match promo. She did it and she was just awesome and great.”
Though she didn’t win, Charlotte Flair did make it to the final three competitors, seeing elimination from Bianca Belair and Rhea Ripley. Belair, of course, would go on to outlast Ripley. Through that, she officially won the 30-woman Royal Rumble match from the early #3 spot.
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