The 5 coolest moments from the Men’s Royal Rumble Match
The 2018 Royal Rumble event featured not one, but two over-the-top-rope contests. And while the arrival of Ronda Rousey at the end of the Women’s match ended up dominating the headlines, the Men’s contest featured no shortage of astonishing moments that brought the WWE Universe to its feet. Here are the five moments that’ll have you leaning on the rewind button on WWE Network for years to come.
Who wants to rumble with Elias?
Elias was the first Superstar to throw his name into the Men’s Royal Rumble Match, and the wandering balladeer got the spotlight all to himself, making his way to the ring untouched after a fuming Baron Corbin had cleared the field of everyone in sight. With no one to challenge him, Elias treated the WWE Universe to an impromptu performance before he was interrupted by the entry of NXT Champion Andrade “Cien” Almas. Elias was ultimately sent packing by John Cena after an impressive stint in the match, but for one shining moment, everyone finally walked with Elias.
A balanced breakfast
Kofi Kingston once again escaped defeat by the narrowest of margins, and this time he has Xavier Woods’ torso and a nutritious breakfast to thank for it. After Woods and Big E were eliminated by Jinder Mahal, Kingston was sent airborne by The Modern-Day Maharaja, only for Woods to dive under Kingston’s shoe to keep both feet from touching the floor. Big E spotted his partner with a plate of pancakes to save The Dreadlocked Dynamo, and the 10-year veteran returned to the ring in short order to eliminate Mahal. Adding insult to injury, Big then pelted Mahal with pancakes.
He’s just one man
Heath Slater faced a harder path to the Royal Rumble Match than anybody — literally. The One-Man Band was obliterated by Corbin and embarked on a Herculean crawl to the ring, only to be waylaid with the entry of each new Superstar into the match. Sheamus finally tossed Slater into the ring to tee him up for an elimination, but it was the former SmackDown Tag Team Champion who ended up with the last word, eliminating The Alabaster Gladiator in a matter of seconds to earn some hard-won vindication and a story for his kids. (We hear he’s got kids.)
The Ultimate Underdog returns
Of all the surprise entrants in the match (Adam Cole, Almas, The Hurricane) It was the arrival of Rey Mysterio at No. 27 that brought the house down. The Ultimate Underdog’s impressive physique showed the WWE Universe this wasn’t just a nostalgia quickie. But it was seeing the former World Heavyweight Champion zoom around the ring like it was 2006 that truly proved that Mysterio has a lot left in the tank. If he can make 205, we have one idea in particular for him …
King of the Rumble
This is the biggie. Shinsuke Nakamura made his Royal Rumble Match debut and won the whole thing thanks to a canny, stick-and-move performance that took him from No. 14 all the way to the end, when he last eliminated Roman Reigns to punch his ticket to WrestleMania. The King of Strong Style even called his shot for WrestleMania, challenging WWE Champion AJ Styles for The Show of Shows just seconds after notching his victory. So yeah. This was the coolest moment of the night, not in the least because it promised something even cooler in just a couple months’ time.