When Bill Goldberg returned to the WWE last month, it was expected that he would have one final match with Brock Lesnar before being given a grand sendoff. That is no longer the case, so how much longer should fans expect Goldberg to be around? What’s the plan for him going forward?
As has already been announced, Goldberg will appear at Royal Rumble on January 29th, 2017. During his appearance on Monday Night Raw this week, Goldberg said that he would be aiming for one last title run before his retirement and, of course, the winner of the Royal Rumble gets an opportunity at the title. That strongly suggests that Goldberg’s time with the WWE will extend into at least February or March, although he recently said in an interview with PWMania that he’s only focused on Royal Rumble right now.
“I’m only as good as my next appearance and my next match,” Goldberg said. “I’m concentrating on the Royal Rumble and that’s it. I don’t have any plans of doing anything afterwards. My focus is on the 29 other men that I’m going to have to crucify to win that damn match.”
It’s speculated that Goldberg’s storyline will extend into WrestleMania, with the theory being that Brock Lesnar will cost Goldberg the victory at Royal Rumble as revenge, leading into a rematch between the two of them. Lesnar has not yet been officially confirmed for Royal Rumble, but Pro Wrestling Sheet reports that he will be there.
In addition, Dave Meltzer recently said on Wrestling Observer Radio that Goldberg and Lesnar will fight again, and they may have more than one match left together. It’s also rumored that Brock Lesnar will defeat Goldberg at WrestleMania, and this will end up being Goldberg’s grand sendoff, according to Cageside Seats.
In terms of his contract, Meltzer also reports that Bill Goldberg has the same sort of deal Brock Lesnar has, meaning he’ll be considered a part-timer who will be given a large amount of money for each match. For the next few months, then, fans should expect a Goldberg appearance to be relatively rare. According to Cageside Seats, Goldberg is not expected to stay with the WWE much longer than WrestleMania, but then again, a week ago he wasn’t expected to stay with the WWE past Survivor Series.
Goldberg will obviously be a huge draw for Royal Rumble in January, and that’s likely the reason why his participation was announced so early. After all, this year’s Royal Rumble will take place in San Antonio’s massive Alamodome, which holds up to 72,000 people. The WWE wants to make absolutely sure they sell out every seat, as this is a much larger venue than they typically have this yearly pay-per-view in. Last year’s Royal Rumble, for instance, took place in an arena where the capacity was 20,000 people.
The decision to have Goldberg defeat Brock Lesnar in less than two minutes was evidently decided within one week of the match, as it wasn’t until then that Goldberg agreed to stay on past Survivor Series. Before the WWE and Goldberg reached this deal, the plan was reportedly for Brock Lesnar to win.