Five Unforgettable Moments In WWE Royal Rumble History

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The WWE will put on what is widely considered their second-biggest show of the year on Sunday, as the company will showcase their 34th annual “Royal Rumble,” an event that many wrestling fans consider their favorite show of the year.

It’s a show that highlights 30 wrestlers on the men side in a timed battle. The winner gets a shot at a title at WrestleMania.

A few years back, the ladies got in on the action, and now the women get a chance to go at it as well. Thirty women will also battle for a chance at one of the ladies titles at WrestleMania.

This year’s event will take place at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida, but as has been the case since mid-March, no fans will be allowed at the event, making this rumble quite unique.

Even if you’re not a wrestling fan, the rumble is one match worth watching. There’s always a few surprises as well as memorable moments that make it a fun show for everyone.

To get you ready to rumble, we now give you five memorable moments that you may have forgotten but that wrestling fans will likely recall with a smile.

Here we go!

5. Yokozuna wins the 1993 Royal Rumble Match

Rodney “Yokozuna” Anoaʻi was an icon in WWE, a Samoan wrestler who came from the famed Anoaʻi family. However, in WWE, he was billed as a sumo wrestler from Japan, a natural heel who had tremendous athletic ability.

During his WWE run from 1992 to 1997, Yoko would at times weigh in over 600 pounds, but he still had the grace and agility to move around like someone 350 pounds lighter.

In 1993 with his star rising, the rumble came down to Yoko and fellow WWE icon, Randy “Macho Man” Savage.

Yokozuna won the match in a rather inventive way and moved on to the main event, WrestleMania IX, where he topped Bret Hart for the WWE title. He then lost the title five minutes later in a wacky impromptu match to Hulk Hogan, but that’s another story and another rumble memory.

4. Cena Makes a Stirring Return in the 2008 Rumble Match

John Cena is one of those wrestlers who draws a reaction, and while his wrestling days are just about over, he’s still a polarizing figure whom fans love to hate.

During his prime years, you always knew when Cena wasn’t around. In October of 2007, the guy known for “hustle, loyalty and respect” suffered a torn pec muscle that put him on the shelf for a while.

Never one to be on the sidelines very long, Cena worked extra hard to make his return, and he did so as the 30th man in the rumble in 2008.

The crowd at Madison Square Garden popped for Cena’s return, and he went on to eliminate Triple H and take home the win.

3. Santino Makes a Quick Exit from the 2009 Rumble

The Royal Rumble event always has some comedy thrown in, and 2009 was no exception when Santino Marella made his way into the ring late in the match with fire in his eyes.

Marella, real name Anthony Carelli, was involved in numerous comedic segments, and in this rumble, he got into the ring and was immediately dumped right back over the top rope by Kane.

Marella embraced the comedic moment and sat on the floor saying that he wasn’t ready and that he didn’t have time to prepare when he got into the ring.

2. Two Legends Meet At the End of Rumble 2007

When it comes to big names in the world of wrestling, the Undertaker and Shawn Michaels top the list.

The two were on a collision course in 2007. The pair were the final two in the ring in what was an epic rumble.

The best part of this meeting was that the writers allowed Taker and Michaels more than just the standard 2-3 minutes to go back and forth before a winner finally prevailed.

The two went at it for what seemed to be a good 4-6 minutes, and finally in the end, Taker tossed Michaels over the top, winning the right to face Batista at WrestleMania 23 in Detroit.

1. Edge Makes an Emotional Return in 2020

Wrestling fans went into mourning after WrestleMania 27 when the popular Edge announced his retirement due to lingering neck problems.

Though he made occasional appearances, which always got a great pop from wrestling fans, it looked like we would never see Edge in the ring again in a wrestling role.

Then rumors started to circulate in mid-2019 that Edge’s neck had healed and that he had found a doctor that would clear him to return to the ring.

The whispers grew louder until the night of the rumble, and at No. 21, when Edge’s music hit, the crowd at Minute Maid Park in Houston went off the charts.

He lasted 23-plus minutes in the match, and in the end, it’ll go down as one of the greatest returns in rumble history.

Written by Matt Loede

Matt has been a part of the Cleveland Sports landscape working in the media since 1994 when he graduated from broadcasting school. His coverage beats include the Cleveland Indians, Cleveland Browns and Cleveland Cavaliers. He's written three books, and won the "2020 AP Sports Stringer Lifetime Service Award."

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