The 2022 Women’s Royal Rumble match will be missing one of the top women’s wrestlers in WWE after the company announced an injury to Smackdown’s Sasha Banks.
Banks have been wrestling Smackdown Women’s Champion Charlotte Flair in recent weeks at WWE live events. They have also main event several of those live events. This past Sunday in Fayetteville, NC, the match between Flair and Banks was stopped due to Banks suffering a leg injury. There was immediate concern that it may be a major injury just like what happened to Bayley last July when she suffered a torn ACL knee injury.
After the match, Banks tweeted the following.
I’m good 👊🏽
Thank you for the love always. 💙
— Mercedes Varnado (@SashaBanksWWE) January 3, 2022
Earlier today, WWE provided an update on Sasha’s injury while offering a timeline for when she might return to action. Here’s what they wrote on WWE.com:
“Sasha Banks suffered a foot injury Sunday evening at a WWE Live! event in Fayetteville, NC. After seeking emergency medical attention, it was determined nothing was broken. Sasha underwent an MRI and it was discovered she has a bruised calcaneus bone. She is at home recovering and undergoing physical therapy. She is expected to be out of action for 6-8 weeks.”
The bad news is that the Royal Rumble pay-per-view (or “Premium Live Event”) is three weeks away, so Banks will still be out of action. The good news is that WrestleMania is about three months away now, so there’s plenty of time for Banks to recover and be featured heavily at WrestleMania.
At WrestleMania 37 last year, Banks main evented night one when she lost the Smackdown Women’s Title to Bianca Belair. There’s no word on if Banks will be featured in title plans at WrestleMania this year, but with Banks locked in as a top face and Smackdown dealing with a thin women’s roster, it’s possible that Banks could be pushed to the top again.
Banks had her last televised match on Smackdown on December 17 when she teamed up with Toni Storm to beat Charlotte Flair and Shotzi. Sasha’s next televised match will likely be in February or possibly March.
As for the Royal Rumble, WWE has already announced 19 of the 30 women in the match: Charlotte Flair, Naomi, Rhea Ripley, Nikki A.S.H., Brie Bella, Nikki Bella, Carmella, Queen Zelina, Lita, Michelle McCool, Kelly Kelly, Dana Brooke, Natalya, Mickie James, Tamina, Shayna Baszler, Summer Rae, Aliyah and Shotzi.
Best wishes to Sasha Banks in her recovery from the foot injury.