WWE NXT's Bo Dallas earned a spot in the Royal Rumble Match

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January 26, 2013

PHOENIX — Early Saturday morning, Bo Dallas was just another hardworking WWE NXT competitor, fighting for a spot on WWE’s main roster. By late afternoon, he was preparing himself for the 2013 Royal Rumble Match, where he would be tangling with 29 WWE Superstars for an opportunity to challenge for a World Title on The Grandest Stage of Them All at WrestleMania 29.

How did Dallas’ fortunes change so dramatically in just a few short hours? Give credit to perseverance and good fortune. The resilient kid from Brooksville, Fla., won an eight-man tournament held during the Royal Rumble Fan Fest to earn a coveted spot in WWE’s classic over-the-top-rope melee. (PHOTOS)

This doesn’t even feel like real life,” Dallas told WWE.com only moments after his victory. “I’m hovering above myself and watching this happen. An unreal experience, man.”

Starting out on an unseasonably rainy day in Phoenix, Dallas tested his resolve in three grueling matches over the course of four hours. In the gifted competitor's way stood big Luke Harper, the unpredictable Conor O’Brian and the devious Leo Kruger — three of WWE NXT’s most highly touted prospects. (MORE ON NXT’S TOP TALENT) By the time he scored the final pinfall on Kruger, it was clear that the battered Dallas had given everything he had in him to become the first WWE NXT Superstar to qualify for the Royal Rumble Match.

“To be in the history books for anything is amazing,” the dynamo admitted. “But being the first NXT Superstar to be in the Royal Rumble Match? I don’t know if I’m allowed to say this, but that’s badass!”

Now headed into one of the most pivotal bouts of the year, Dallas no doubt realizes that this rare opportunity could turn him into a sports-entertainment phenomenon overnight. While the Royal Rumble Match has traditionally been won by established Superstars like “Stone Cold” Steve Austin, John Cena and Shawn Michaels, the chaotic, fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants atmosphere of the brawl presents the perfect opportunity for a competitor like the 225-pound youngster to shock the world.

“I’m always the underdog,” he said. “I never let that get me down. I take the punches, but if there’s one thing I believe, it’s always get up.’ And that’s how I live life.”

Dallas has already made history by becoming the first WWE NXT Superstar to grab a spot in the Royal Rumble Match, but can he do it again by becoming the first WWE NXT Superstar to headline WrestleMania? The WWE Universe will find out Sunday night when 30 Superstars battle for an opportunity at sports-entertainment's richest prize at Royal Rumble.

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