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USA Insider WWE Monday Night Raw

What Are the Rules For The Pitch Black Match At Royal Rumble? LA Knight & Bray Wyatt Square Off

We try to gather as much information as we can about this never-before-seen match ahead of Saturday’s historic event.

By Chris Phelan
Split image of Bray Wyatt and LA Knight

We’re almost 24 hours away from the 2023 Royal Rumble, and the WWE Universe still has so many questions about the Mountain Dew Pitch Black match between Bray Wyatt and LA Knight!

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Bray Wyatt has made a career out of participating in some of the most innovative matches the wrestling industry has ever seen — who can forget the Firefly Inferno Match or the Firefly Fun House Match at WrestleMania 36 between Wyatt and John Cena? The rules of the Fun House Match weren’t clear ahead of the event, and Cena famously took to SmackDown days before WrestleMania to announce that he had no idea what to expect, proclaiming “I myself have been challenged to a Firefly Fun House Match, and I cannot get a single human being to tell me anything that a Firefly Fun House Match is!”

RELATED: Here Are The Wildest, Most Shocking Eliminations In Royal Rumble History

While the official rules of the Pitch Black Match haven’t been explained yet, here’s everything USA Insider knows about the match so far!

What Are The Rules?

During an early January episode of SmackDown, WWE lead announcer Michael Cole gave a few tidbits of information concerning the rules of the match:

“It’s unique — it’s never been seen before,” Cole said. “We don’t know quite what to expect. All we know is there are no rules — anything goes, pinfall or submission.”

According to Michael Cole, a win can only be secured via pinfall or submission, as this is essentially a no-disqualification match. Also, judging by the name of the match itself, the WWE Universe can rightfully assume the entire match — or at least some portions — will take place entirely in darkness, which will make for a unique and memorable viewing experience. 

With the match itself only one day away, one would think that the two Superstars competing in the match would know the exact rules — but that isn’t the case. Wyatt himself has revealed that although most of his innovative matches have come from his own mind, that isn’t the case with this matchup, as he has had no hand in actually coming up with it!

“I genuinely don’t know what the Pitch Black Match is going to be like,” Bray Wyatt admitted during an interview with Ryan Satin on Friday morning. “I’ve been assured that it’s unlike anything that’s been seen before. I have no idea and that’s exciting for me. It’s cooler that way — I’d rather just walk into the unknown. It’s what I’m best at, I think.”

LA Knight, on the other hand, has gone on the record by showing some high levels of confidence ahead of the match, despite also not knowing the exact rules:

“If there’s one thing that doesn’t bother me, it’s the dark,” Knight said during an interview with Chris Van Vliet. “I don’t think anybody really knows entirely what’s in store for this. I’m going in with the mindset it’s gonna be a kick-ass fight. And whether that means the lights are completely out, whether it’s broad daylight, whatever it is… at the end of the day, if you ask me, just because I’m not a creature of circumstance, I’m more of a creator of circumstance. So in my mind, I’m thinking okay, lights are out, pitch black, what do I have to do to adapt to that situation? What that means is advantage LA Knight.” 

What Can Fans Expect From The Match?

Here’s the best-possible one-word answer for this question: mayhem.

With so many unknowns heading into the match and with both competitors literally and figuratively in the dark about the match’s format, it’s safe to say that fans of jaw-dropping action, Bray Wyatt’s bizarre and trademark mysticism, and a few genuinely extreme moments will be glued to this match on Saturday.

Who Will Win The Pitch Black Match?

We’ll be honest, we were ready to predict a huge victory for Bray Wyatt, but upon hearing that even Wyatt has no idea what to expect, we’re going to err on the side of caution and call it a total tossup! Is there a WWE Superstar currently competing that is more hungry for a win than LA Knight? He seemingly has all the tools necessary for a lengthy and successful career, and a loss to Bray Wyatt at the Royal Rumble would throw him off track entirely — and possibly derail his entire upward trajectory.

So we stand with the rest of the WWE Universe by saying we genuinely don’t know who will walk out of the Alamodome with their arm raised in victory — but that’s exactly what will make the match so compelling.

The 2023 Royal Rumble is finally here, and it’s shaping up to be one of the best iterations of the event in WWE history — we can’t wait to see what happens!

Watch Royal Rumble on Peacock this Saturday, Jan. 28.

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