Rumble Rundown: The Past and Present Royalty of WWE

Paula Ortiz, Design Editor

The Royal Rumble is an annual professional wrestling match where in order to eliminate their opponents, 30 wrestlers target their competitors to toss them over the ring’s ropes. If both feet hit the floor, the wrestler is out of the competition. Two people start off in the ring, and every 90 seconds, a wrestler gets added until there is only one man left standing.

The Rumble is divided among males and females. This year’s male Royal Rumble winner, Cody Rhodes, ended the match with a final duel against Walter Hahn, stage name Gunther, by performing one of his signature moves, “Cross Rhodes,”  eliminating Gunther by clotheslining him out of the ring. The female victory went to Rhea Ripley, who combated against Asuka and Liv Morgan as the last three people standing. Asuka got eliminated after an attempt on Ripley. Morgan got her hits on Ripley, who was inches off the floor, but persevered and successfully eliminated Morgan. 

The World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) is a form of wrestling made for people to enjoy and cheer for, although it differs from freestyle wrestling which is the more common and traditional form. 

“It takes away a little bit because it is entertainment, it is a business competition, those guys are athletes and they punish their bodies on a regular basis, it stays as far as who is going to win, physically they do a lot but it still takes away a little bit from what we do,” Miami Palmetto Senior High wrestling coach Anthony Fadele said.

Pat Patterson initiated the idea of the Royal Rumble. In the first-ever match held in 1988, Bret Hart took the title as the first to ever enter a WrestleMania match, but the ultimate winner was Jim Duggan. Since 1993, the winner of the Royal Rumble match receives a title match for WWE’s most prominent championship: WrestleMania.

“Wrestling is probably the most intense sport across, it was the first sport that was created as far as competition goes so just the workouts and the intensity in general and the things that it does for the kids to compete is beneficial,” Fadele said. “ [WWE] takes a little bit from it because when that guy wins [in WWE], somebody said he should win. When they wrestle one on one here or in college and the Olympics it is because they are better.”

“Stone Cold” Steve Austin holds the highest number of wins at the Royal Rumble, having won three matches in 1997,1998 and 2001. Brock Lesnar is the youngest man to have won the Royal Rumble, earning the title at 25 years old in only eight minutes and 59 seconds. In 1995, Swan Michaels was the first person to enter the ring at number one, and the last man to exit.

WWE wrestling can compare to freestyle wrestling in their competition days and how their matches are set up.

“We do dual meet wrestling, so the team would wrestle let’s say like five different teams at different times throughout the day so there’s never where everybody is all together,” Fadele said.