30 Men & 1 Ring: The Best and Worst of the Royal Rumble + '09 Predictions

Alex DavidsonContributor IJanuary 18, 2009

Of all the WWE events, the Royal Rumble is probably my favorite. While Wrestlemania usually has more quality, the Royal Rumble is usually the most fun. Since it's almost that time of year again, I thought I'd do a "Rumble" themed article.

So, I've written a list of what some might call "awards" and chosen the superstar most worthy. As an extra treat, I thought I'd give you my predictions for this year's Rumble.


Best Royal Rumble Match of All Time

No. 3: Royal Rumble 2008

The most recent one combined what makes a rumble match great —it was fun (Piper and Snuka), had WOW moments (Benjamin jumping straight from the ring onto the top turnbuckle), and had a great finish. The only Royal Rumble where I bought the DVD just because of the match itself.

No. 2: Royal Rumble 1993

Occurring a year before I was born, so I've only seen it on videos and YouTube. Back when Flair was “the man,” he managed to last 59 minutes and 26 seconds. The match was star packed and had one of the best finishes to date, with Hogan and Flair teaming up on Sid Vicious.

No. 1: Royal Rumble 2000

BRILLIANT, one of my all-time favorite matches and was one of few Rumbles that backed up by the rest of the card (RR 2000 is my favorite PPV of all time). It contained, in my opinion, the two funniest WWE (or WWF as it was back then) moments.

I can still see the blood stains from Cactus v HHH and I couldn't help but laugh when Too Cool were dancing and Rikishi threw his teammates out of the ring. Then, they started dancing again. When Funaki and Taka, whatever his name is, kept running in to fight until Taka was launched over the ropes and landed on his face. OUCH! All of this plus Chyna, Jericho, the Rock winning, and my favorite Kane Royal Rumble appearance make this the best rumble match of all time.


Greatest Elimination

Paul London by Gene Snitsky

Paul London is thrown over the ropes, but holds onto the apron. You just know Snitsky is going to charge at him and London will duck and throw Snitsky out. Well, Sntisky did charge at him and London did duck, however London ran at Snitsky and was hit by a monster of a clothesline. This caused him to do a shooting star press type thing off the apron and go face first onto the floor.

Check out the Best Royal Rumble Elimination Ever.


Greatest Royal Rumble Appearance

1995 Shawn Michaels

Sorry Benoit (well, not really), but HBK beat you to it. The Rumble lasted 45 minutes.  The fact that he entered as No.1 and managed to win it was just unbelievable. He deserves this award.


Greatest Royal Rumble “Final 2”

No. 3: 1999 Vince McMahon v Stone Cold

How could it happen? WWE's leading face, Stone Cold, entered at No. 1. He dominated the entire Rumble and then Vince McMahon, out of nowhere stole the win, amazing.

No. 2: 2007 HBK v Undertaker

I didn't really like the Rumble in '07, but the ending ranks at No. 2 in my all-time list.  It was probably the best in fighting, but I felt HBK should have won.  HBK was in his hometown and recovering from an injury.  He managed to fight through basicaly a handicap match against RKO with a couple of his trademark out of nowhere eliminations.  He loses to a 300 lbs. Undertaker coming in at No. 30. It was great that finally a No. 30 won but come on, why not have an underdog win? The fact that the favorite came in at No. 30 and won made the Rumble lose a bit of its magic. The battle these two had deserves the runners-up spot.

No.1:  1995 HBK v British Bulldog

HBK, the arrogant tweener comes in at No. 1. He fights his way to the end against arguably the biggest face in the company at the time, British Bulldog. Bulldog tosses Michaels over the ropes and it seemed over. Bulldog's music hit, the crowd went wild, and he started to celebrate. Then, HBK charges in and knocks British Bulldog off the turnbuckle, and over the ropes. Everything goes silent and then, it's announced that only one of HBK’s feet hit the floor.

HBK won and from that we get the famous replay that shows HBK clinging onto the ropes on one foot.


Greatest Royal Rumble Superstar

[Note: this is different from a Royal Rumble appearance.  Rumble appearance was for one single appearance this award is for all of their appearances]

Shawn Michaels/ Stone Cold

You choose, I couldn't. Hogan could have been included in this, but I think his three wins were because everyone else left in the match was lackluster and it helped keep Hulkamania going. Austin may have won three, as compared to HBK’s two, but I think performance-wise, they equal each other. HBK is the ultimate underdog, while Steve Austin is the ultimate destroyer.


Worst Royal Rumble Match

No. 3: 2002 Royal Rumble

Lasted 4 days, and had the predictable HHH win, plus a disappointing finish.

No. 2: 1994 Royal Rumble

The year I was born was also the year Yokozuna somehow won the Rumble. The finish was laughable with Savage jumping on Yokozuna and trying to pin him. Yokozuna tossed him off the top of him, over the ropes, and onto the mat.

No. 1:2006 Royal Rumble

The Rumble seemed to last for a week, it wasn't even last on the card, and it only included five stellar superstars.  The rest of the competitors were made of rubbish (i.e. Simon Dean).

This example joins the long list of things the WWE has done to exploit the death of Eddie Guerrero. As soon as Eddie died, a three-year-old could have told you that Rey would win.


Greatest WWE Superstar to Not Win a Rumble

Eddie Guerrero

I would have liked him to win it in ’05, but once he lost the title to JBL—the year earlier, he drifted back into mid-card status. For the short time Eddie was with the WWE, he was poorly used. It's only apparent how brilliantly talented he was now that he's gone. If Eddie was still alive, he surely would be headlining PPVs instead of Batista etc.

I just wish there would have been an Eddie Guerrero v HBK match. That would have been a classic.



Ross wrote an article recently on his predictions for the Rumble and they are almost spot on with what I think will happen.

ECW Title - Jack Swagger (c) v Matt Hardy

I would have liked Hardy to have held on to the title for a little bit longer. However, the current rule is that within a few months of entering the WWE, you have to have a title, or at least be challenging for it (ask Koslov). I've lost all interest with ECW.




Women’s Title - Melina v Beth Phoenix (c)

I've liked Phoenix this year; she has managed to hold up the crumbling women's division. However, since Melina has been on a roll, I can't see her losing this match.

WHAT SHOULD HAPPEN—Phoenix wins   



WHC Title - JBL w/ HBK v Cena

I can't see JBL being given the title. HBK will be definitely involved in the outcome. However, I can see JBL ordering HBK to get a chair, but HBK will refuse and JBL will shout at him. Cena will then F-Us the distracted JBL.

WHAT SHOULD HAPPEN—JBL wins By DQ after HBK kicks his face off.

WHAT WILL HAPPEN—Cena wins after F-U (or throwback) on JBL, after JBL is arguing with HBK.


Royal Rumble Match

So far there seems no obvious choice to win. I'd love a heel to win, but I can't see WWE risking upsetting the three-year-olds. HHH is the most likely to win as he's gone a week without a title. HBK has also been tossed around as a possible winner. Yet, WWE seems determined for JBL to be in a high profile match at Mania. I think WWE has realized HBK is the only one talented enough to carry him to a good match. Therefore, I think JBL will probably screw HBK out of the victory as revenge for costing him the Cena match.

WHAT SHOULD HAPPEN—Orton wins     



WWE Title - Jeff Hardy (c) v Edge

I'm not sure what will happen because so many stories have been thrown around about when Christian will return. I have a gut feeling that it will happen at the Rumble. In fact, I'm pretty sure that it will happen now as it seems definite that Christian attacked Hardy at Survivor Series. This caused Hardy and his girlfriend to crash, later causing the Pyro to screw up on Smackdown. If this is the last match on the card, Christian will return.

WHAT SHOULD HAPPEN—Jeff Hardy wins, but get's attacked by Christian after the match.

WHAT WILL HAPPEN—Edge wins, after Christian interferes.






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