The 2013 Royal Rumble is about five-and-a-half weeks away and it’s time to take a look back at previous years.
The rumble match has seen its fair share of weak participants like Gillberg and Razor Ramon, which just seven minutes and 17 seconds.
However, there have been many dominant participants over the years.
The criteria I used to determine what “dominant” is: time spent in the ring and number of eliminations based on when they entered the match. For example, Mr. McMahon lasted over 56 minutes in the 1999 Royal Rumble, but he spent most of the time out of the ring.
Before I get to my top 10, here are some Superstars who just missed the cut:
He was the first entrant in the first ever Royal Rumble. He lasted over 25 minutes, but only had one elimination. It wasn’t until 1994 when Hart had his most impressive performance. He eliminated five Superstars on his way to becoming a co-winner with Lex Luger.
Jericho had a dominant year in 2003 when he entered at No. 2. He eliminated six men and lasted almost 40 minutes. However, in his next four rumbles, he only had a combined four eliminations and one final-four appearance.
Punk got off to a rough start in his first three appearances. He had one elimination in each match. He made an improvement in 2010 with five eliminations, but was sent packing early. Last year, Punk entered at No. 1 and eliminated seven Superstars with the help of the New Nexus. He was in the match for over 35 minutes before Cena tossed him out of the ring.
Big Show made his first Royal Rumble appearance in 2000 and it didn’t go unnoticed.
He came out at No. 26 and eliminated four Superstars. He almost won it, but The Rock held onto the top rope and sent Show flying to the mat. It was a couple of years until Show’s rumble dominance returned. In 2004, Show lasted over 22 minutes and tossed out four men. He made it to the final two, before Chris Benoit eliminated him.
In 2009, Show spent only 9:32 in the match, but he made sure six other Superstars didn’t win, including The Undertaker.
The Rabid Wolverine made his first Royal Rumble appearance in 2004 and won. He is one of nine Superstars who won the match their first time.
Benoit’s run in the 2004 rumble was very impressive. He entered in at No. 1, tossed out six men and spent over 61 minutes in the squared circle. He tried to duplicate his success as he entered the 2005 Royal Rumble at No. 2. He spent almost 48 minutes in the ring before being eliminated at No. 25 by Ric Flair.
Benoit was unlucky starting two rumbles in a row as one of the first two, but he held his own and put up a big fight.
Randy Orton started the 2004 Royal Rumble at No. 2. He eliminated five Superstars and spent 33 minutes in the ring.
Orton was the runner-up in 2006 and made it to the final four in 2007.
In 2009, Orton entered the match at No. 8 and spent over 48 minutes in the ring. He last eliminated Triple H to win his first rumble match.
Orton hasn’t been seen much since Survivor Series. The Viper could be back and dominate the 2013 Royal Rumble.
John Cena failed to record an elimination in his first two appearances.
The third year, in 2005, he spent over 15 minutes and almost won after Mr. McMahon announced the match be restarted with Cena and Batista.
John Cena suffered a torn pectoral muscle in October 2007. Many thought he would be out for months. However, Cena had other plans. He made a surprise return as the No. 30 entrant in the 2008 Royal Rumble.
After eliminating three other stars, Cena eliminated Triple H and won the 2008 Royal Rumble.
In 2011, John Cena eliminated CM Punk and four other members of the New Nexus and spent over 33 minutes in the match.
The 2013 Royal Rumble could see John Cena dominate on his way to his second victory if he wants to get to The Rock or CM Punk.
Edge had some mild success during his first few appearances.
It wasn’t until he became the Rated-R Superstar when the WWE Universe saw Edge dominate in the Royal Rumble.
Edge entered the rumble at No. 5 in 2005 and 2007. He eliminated five Superstars and made it to the final three in both matches.
Edge returned from injury at the 2010 Royal Rumble at No. 29. He eliminated John Cena and Chris Jericho and won his first rumble match.
Hulk Hogan was the first back to back Royal Rumble winner.
The immortal Hulk Hogan was the first back-to-back winner in 1990 and 1991.
Although he only has four appearances, he dominated in three of them.
In the second annual Royal Rumble, Hogan entered at No. 18 and eliminated nine Superstars in only 11-plus minutes.
In the two years he won, he eliminated five and seven men.
Hogan’s final appearance came in 1992. He made it to the final three, but his chances at a third consecutive win were cut short by Sid Justice.
Stone Cold holds the record for most wins with three. That is dominance right there, but there is more to it.
In 1997, Stone Cold eliminated 10 Superstars in over 45 minutes on his way to his first victory.
After entering at No. 24 in 1998, Austin took out seven men to secure his second victory.
1999 was a rough year for Austin. He was the No. 1 entrant, but was taken out by the members of the Corporation. He returned later, only to be distracted by The Rock.
Austin’s third victory came in 2001 after three eliminations.
Stone Cold made it to the final four in 2002 while tallying seven eliminations.
The Heartbreak Kid’s first few appearances were rocky. He lasted only 12 seconds in the 1990 Royal Rumble.
Things picked up in 1994 when he made it to the final four. He then won the rumble back to back in 1995 and 1996. Michaels eliminated eight Superstars in each of those matches.
Michaels and the British Bulldog began the 1995 rumble. They lasted the whole match and were the final two. Bulldog thought he eliminated Michaels, but only one foot touched and he then pushed Bulldog over the ropes to win.
Michaels had another dominant appearance in his final rumble in 2010. He tossed out six men and made it to the final four.
Michaels is known as Mr. WrestleMania, but he also shined at the Royal Rumble.
Kane has appeared in 15 Royal Rumbles—13 in a row—and it’s a shame he didn’t win at least one.
His most dominant match was the 2001 Royal Rumble. He took out 11 Superstars in 53 minutes and was in the final two with Stone Cold. Many believe he should have won that match, and I am one of them.
From 2007 to 2009, he had three eliminations and lasted at least 13 minutes.
Kane is tied for the most final four appearances with five. Whenever Kane enters the rumble, all eyes are on him. His presence alone is dominant and he’s a force to be reckoned with.
Triple H entered No. 1 in 1996, his first appearance. Although he didn’t eliminate anyone, he lasted over 48 minutes.
The ball didn’t get rolling until 2002, the year he returned from his first quadriceps injury. The Game entered at No. 22 and eliminated four Superstars on his way to his first rumble victory.
His next appearance was in 2006 as the No. 1 entrant again. Triple H lasted over an hour before being eliminated by the eventual winner, Rey Mysterio.
In 2008 and 2009, Triple H made it down to the final two before being eliminated by the respective winners, John Cena and Randy Orton. However, in those two matches, he had six eliminations each.