Favourite Royal Rumble Moments - Triple Threat POV | Smark Out Moment

Favourite Royal Rumble Moments - Triple Threat POV

Posted by Dallas Allsopp Thursday, January 16, 2020
Welcome to another edition of Triple Threat from Smark Out Moment, where three of us get together to discuss three questions based on one big topic going down in the week of professional wrestling.

This week, Dallas Allsopp, Ethan Neufeld and Ben Williams will be discussing their favourite Royal Rumble moments of all time.

Royal Rumble events have provided wrestling fans with many memorable moments over the past 4 decades, with incredible Royal Rumble matches and unbelievable surprise entrants. These events usually have a standout non battle royal match, with some of these contests living long in the memory. But which matches and moments do we think are the best?

Question 1: Which Royal Rumble match is your favourite? What made it so memorable?

ALLSOPP: My favourite Royal Rumble match is the 2001 offering, purely because it was the best booked Royal Rumble match since 1992, but with a higher level of entertainment. The final 2 of Stone Cold and Kane led to an intriguing finishing sequence, with Stone Cold finally claiming the victory despite the best efforts of The Big Red Machine. Drew Carey made a cameo which was genuinely hilarious, whilst the use of weapons during the match was apt considering this was the final Royal Rumble of the attitude era. This Royal Rumble match had it all, and was surprisingly star studded.

NEUFELD: The 2001 Royal Rumble match is amazing, and arguably how every Royal Rumble match should be run. It had multiple storyline threads, multiple different parts such as a hardcore segment in the middle, and a career defining performance from Kane. But I would also like to give attention to the 2018 Rumble. The modern era of WWE doesn’t get much praise, but they really nailed it here with a fantastic Royal Rumble that had a lot of fun moments, with the right guy going over in the end. The final 6 guys faced off as the old guard against the new guys, which was a great moment. This was followed up shortly after, with Finn Balor and Shinsuke Nakamura as the indie darlings, and John Cena and Roman Reigns acting as the wrestlers fans don't want to win. WWE made the right call in the end, even though Nakamura’s run since has been like watching your firstborn fail high school.

WILLIAMS: My favourite Royal Rumble match would probably be the 2009 match. With major stars like The Undertaker, Rey Mysterio and Triple H in addition to rising stars like John Morrison and The Miz, this match had a really good balance of talent which meant the match never felt dull or stagnant. The use of Evolution at the end of the match was genius, and made Randy Orton a truly detestable heel winner, although we won’t talk about the WrestleMania card that followed.

Question 2: Excluding the battle royal matches themselves, which match do you think is the best to have happened at a Royal Rumble pay-per-view?

NEUFELD: This is a tie for me. Chris Benoit versus Kurt Angle at the 2003 Rumble is an almost perfect match in my opinion, and could have easily been the main event of WrestleMania. It is just 2 master technicians going at it in a showstopping performance, but Seth Rollins vs John Cena vs Brock Lesnar at the 2015 Royal Rumble is right there with it. This was an awesome triple threat match that had amazing storytelling. I will never forget the moment in the match where Cena and Rollins look at each other and realize they have to work together. They then proceed to beat down Lesnar, with Rollins nailing an amazing elbow drop through the table. It was a star making performance for Rollins, and a breath of fresh air during a bad period for WWE, especially when considering this was an event that is sadly remembered for its horrendous ending.

WILLIAMS: My favourite non Royal Rumble match would have to be the 2019 showcase between Sasha Banks and Ronda Rousey. This match was my favourite match of 2019, and is probably in my top 5 favourite Banks matches. The dynamics were perfect, with Banks channelling the heel aspects of her character that fans go nuts for, whilst Rousey was a surprisingly good underdog babyface. This match stole the show in my opinion, and did wonders for both women’s careers going forward.

ALLSOPP: In terms of wrestling classics, Kurt Angle vs Chris Benoit from 2003 is up there at the top, however I have a soft spot for the last man standing match between Triple H and Shawn Michaels from 2004. This was a brutal affair which impressed me more than I thought it would, with both Triple H and Michaels hitting each other with so much power and venom that I thought they genuinely wanted to kill each other. The finish of a Sweet Chin Music into a double 10 count was an amazing visual, whilst neither wrestler deserved to lose. The reason why I didn't choose The Rock vs Mankind from 1999 is simply due to the fact those unprotected chair shots are difficult to watch in 2020.

Question 3: Which surprise Royal Rumble entrant did you most enjoy?

WILLIAMS: My favourite surprise entrant would definitely be Edge in the 2010 Royal Rumble. The pop was huge, the moment was special, the story was there and the result was perfect. Edge went from spending many years as WWE’s main heel character to winning over the entire WWE universe in one match, so much so that he ended his career as one of WWE's top babyfaces. The Rated R superstar eliminating the likes of Chris Jericho and John Cena made this moment even sweeter.

ALLSOPP: My most enjoyable surprise entrant is John Cena in 2008, simply due to the fact it was assumed he would be out with a torn pectoral muscle for much longer than he was. However, Cena is a medical marvel and returned at the 2008 Royal Rumble completely under the radar. The reception for his return was off the charts, with even the most die hard Cena detractor taken aback by sheer amazement and joy. It may not have been the most comedic entry, but it was the most memorable.

NEUFELD: While it wasn’t a total surprise, my choice is AJ Styles from the 2016 Royal Rumble. People knew that Styles was WWE bound at the time, so fans thought he might show up in the Royal Rumble match, however it wasn’t certain. There was a lot of drama to his entry as Roman Reigns had dumped Rusev and was waiting to see who his next opponent would be. Out comes Styles, with the announcers singing his praises as the crowd went nuts. The timing of it was excellent, and Styles’ debut was, to me at least, the perfect way to debut someone who is a big deal. The Royal Rumble is the best event for so many reasons, but one of them is that it’s an ideal tool to debut new wrestlers. I can’t think of a better debut that was done at the Royal Rumble than Styles, with his subsequent WWE career speaking for itself.

Those are our thoughts on the issue, but where do you stand?
Let us know your answers to these questions in the comments below!

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AUTHOR OF THIS POST: DALLAS ALLSOPP

Dallas Allsopp is a writer with two main interests, Pokemon and wrestling. He has been writing for a few years for his own personal blogs and is now taking his passion for wrestling and putting it into his writing. You can follow him on Facebook.

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