The WWE will be holding its annual Royal Rumble event this Saturday live from St Petersburg Florida. it is one of the big four the company holds each year and the actual start on the road to WrestleMania. The event is one of my favorites each year as it is usually the weekend before my birthday, so for me, the Royal Rumble will always have a special feel to me. Here are my four favorite events of the past 30-plus years of the event.

Honorable mentions 2005 Royal Rumble, 2010 Royal Rumble and 2016 Royal Rumble.

1992 Royal Rumble won by Ric Flair

Ric Flair entering the 92 Royal Rumble.

This was the first time the Royal Rumble would crown the new WWE Champion. It led to a star-studded list of entrants as the 30 men who entered all knew they had a chance at being champion, which many at the time would think could be their only chance at the title. What happened on this night was the man who made himself outside of the company and was the greatest wrestler who had yet to win gold in WWE. Ric Flair, in this era, was among the best wrestlers in the world, and this was before he became a major player in WWE.

For a lot of people, not many thought he was winning since he was the outsider who made a name for himself without the help or push from WWE. When Flair did win, he did it with this aura around him and proved in this rumble why he was among the best at the time for his longevity, capturing the WWE championship and cutting one of the more memorable promos in Royal Rumble, possibly WWE history.

2001 Royal Rumble won by Stone Cold Steve Austin

The final from the 2001 Royal Rumble.

The 2001 Royal Rumble was held in New Orleans, and it was one of the best Rumbles in history for some of the record-breaking performances at the time and the one with the most weapons. This was the year, the Big Red Machine Kane just mauled superstar after superstar. He would enter as entrant 6 and was the finalist while also setting the record for most eliminations with over a third of the competition at 11 eliminations, which was a record until the mid-2010s.

Some of the stars from this Rumble included The Rock, Rikishi, Undertaker, and Stone-Cold Steve Austin, along with surprise entrants Drew Carey and Honky Tonk Man. With the final two being Kane vs Austin, the night would end with another record being broken. After some brutal chair shots and a bloody Austin, he was able to eliminate the Big Red Machine and become the sole three-time event winner a record that still holds today.

2007 Royal Rumble won by The Undertaker

The Undertaker who entered last celebrating his 2007 Royal Rumble win.

For how historic the 2001 event was, the 2007 iteration of the event will possibly go down in history as the event with the best finish with the two most historic names in company history. It was the first Rumble to have entrants from RAW, Smackdown, and ECW, whose stars had some of the loudest pops from the San Antonio crowd. It would feature the return of Rob Van Dam. While the match was dominated by the team of Rated RKO consisting of Edge and Randy Orton, the team would stack up a total of 7 eliminations. The arena would erupt when the hometown kid, HBK Shawn Michaels, entered the match and eliminated 4 on his own.

The last entrant of the match this year was The Undertaker, and to this day, no one has won the match from the number 30 spot. The final four would end up being Edge, Randy Orton, Shawn Michaels, and The Undertaker. The final two would be the two halls of Famers, as this was the beginning of what would turn into their legendary rivalry for the next few years. These two would put on the best final two entrants closing moments in the match’s history. Back and forth with loud cheers for Michaels as he was raring up for Sweet Chin Music. But a bloody and battered Taker was able to recover, maneuver around the superkick, and flip Michaels over the top rope for the win. This would be the first time the 30th entrant would win the match in the event’s history.

2008 Royal Rumble won by John Cena

The final three from the 2008 Royal Rumble.

Having back-to-back events on my favorite list? Well, for me, this is probably my favorite. The setting was Madison Square Garden, the most famous arena; the crowd was loud, and the match had the legendary Michael Buffer announce the first two entrants. The match kicked off with the last two superstars remaining from the year prior, Undertaker at number one and Shawn Michaels at number two. In what was one of the best starts to a match in Rumble history, it was neither man’s night. The two lasted about halfway through when HBK found an opportunity to eliminate Undertaker to continue the tease of their legendary rivalry in the years to come.

Going into the match, some favorites were HBK, Batista, Umaga, and the favorite heading in Triple H, who came out at entrant 29. No one had any idea who entrant 30 was going to be. The crowd went through the MSG roof as they couldn’t believe their eyes as John Cena made his return just five months after tearing his pectoral muscle completely off the bone. And you all know how it ends.

After a back-and-forth of five or so minutes between Cena and Triple H, Cena overpowered Triple H and hit him with the Attitude Adjustment onto the floor, winning the Royal Rumble match. The iconic shot of Cena on the top turnbuckle pointing at his scar on the muscle he had surgery on and the Pyro going off all around is one of the shots they still use in the intro to today’s shows! It is probably one of, if not the best, endings to a Royal Rumble match in the history of this event.

So, what is your favorite Royal Rumble event?

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