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Best WWE Royal Rumble Matches in History: Our Top 5 Picks

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The WWE Royal Rumble, a cornerstone event in the wrestling calendar, has given fans unforgettable moments since its inception in 1988.

As we look back at the history of this over-the-top-rope extravaganza, certain editions stand out for their drama, star power, and the legends they’ve created.

Here’s a look at the top five Royal Rumble matches that have left an indelible mark on WWE history.

5. 2007 Royal Rumble

While not as star-studded as other editions, the 2007 Rumble is memorable for its climactic ending.

The final showdown between The Undertaker and Shawn Michaels was a spectacle of athleticism and drama, with ‘The Deadman’ emerging victorious as the first to win from the 30th entry spot.

4. 1998 Royal Rumble

Signifying the rise of the Attitude Era, the 1998 Royal Rumble was a pivotal moment in WWE’s battle for viewership supremacy against WCW.

The event featured a dominant performance by The Rock and the unique participation of Mick Foley in all three of his personas.

The highlight was Steve Austin’s victory, setting up a legendary confrontation with Shawn Michaels at Wrestlemania XIV.

3. 2002 Royal Rumble

Post the ‘death’ of WCW, this Rumble was significant for being the last under the ‘WWF’ banner before the transition to ‘WWE’.

The event saw the return of Triple H from injury, who emerged victorious. The match was also notable for being Stone Cold Steve Austin’s final Rumble appearance before his retirement.

2. 1992 Royal Rumble

This Rumble is notable for its star-studded lineup and the unique stake of the WWE Championship for the winner. With icons like Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair, Shawn Michaels, and The Undertaker, the match was a showcase of the Golden Generation of WWE.

Ric Flair’s victory after a gruelling 59 minutes is a testament to his endurance and skill, marking one of the most memorable moments in his career.

1. 2001 Royal Rumble

This edition is often hailed as the greatest in WWE history. A star-studded lineup, including some of the biggest names in the business, set the stage for an epic showdown.

The narrative focused on Stone Cold Steve Austin’s return from a year-long hiatus due to neck surgery, aiming for a record-breaking third Rumble win.

Kane’s dominant performance, marked by a record 11 eliminations (later surpassed by Roman Reigns), and his humorous encounter with actor Drew Carey were highlights.

The finale saw a bloodied Austin triumph, overcoming Kane with three chair shots, sending the New Orleans Arena into a frenzy.

These matches not only define the legacy of the Royal Rumble but also highlight the evolution of WWE as a global entertainment powerhouse.

Each Rumble brought its unique blend of storytelling, athleticism, and spectacle, contributing to the rich tapestry of professional wrestling history.

FAQ

  • What makes the Royal Rumble unique in WWE? The Royal Rumble is unique due to its over-the-top-rope battle royal format, where the last person standing after all competitors have entered is declared the winner.
  • How is the winner of the Royal Rumble determined? The winner is the last wrestler remaining in the ring after all others have been eliminated by being thrown over the top rope with both feet touching the floor.
  • Has anyone won the Royal Rumble from the number 1 entry? Yes, notable wrestlers like Shawn Michaels and Chris Benoit have achieved this feat.
  • What does the Royal Rumble winner receive? The winner typically earns a championship match at WrestleMania, WWE’s flagship event.
  • How has the Royal Rumble evolved over the years? The Royal Rumble has evolved in terms of scale, production, and global reach, becoming one of the most anticipated events in the WWE calendar.
Jake Skudder
Written by
Jake Skudder
Jake is an SEO-minded Combat Sports, Gaming and Pro Wrestling writer and successful Editor in Chief. He has more than ten years of experience covering mixed martial arts, pro wrestling and gaming across a number of publications, starting at SEScoops in 2012 under the name Jake Jeremy.