Tampa Bay to host annual event in January to kick off new year

WWE is bringing one of its marquee events to Tampa Bay. The organization announced on Wednesday that the 37th Royal Rumble event will take place at Tropicana Field on Saturday, Jan. 27.

The promotion will spend a few days in the Tampa Bay area, including the Royal Rumble in St. Petersburg and WWE Raw in Tampa on Jan. 29. It marks the first time since 1995 that Tampa Bay will host the annual event. The area also hosted WrestleMania in 2021.

The upcoming event will feature a 30-man and a 30-woman Royal Rumble match, according to a press release from WWE. The winner of each rumble will receive championship matches at WrestleMania 40, currently scheduled for April 6 and April 7 in Philadelphia.

The Royal Rumble is one of WWE’s traditional “big four” events, more recently dubbed the “big five” to incorporate Money in the Bank. The other events in this bubble include SummerSlam, Survivor Series and WrestleMania. The inaugural Royal Rumble was held in 1988 as part of a televised event and subsequently became a standalone event in 1989. The Rumble traditionally serves as “The Road to WrestleMania,” a three-month season where that year’s WrestleMania card begins to take shape.

Last year’s Royal Rumble winners were Cody Rhodes and Rhea Ripley. Rhodes unsuccessfully challenged Reigns in the main event of WrestleMania 39 Night 2. Ripley defeated Charlotte Flair to become SmackDown women’s champion. Ripley was subsequently crowned the inaugural Women’s world champion, a title she actively holds.

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