At a mammoth 72 minutes long, the women’s Royal Rumble match was the longest 30-man or woman Rumble match in history. It was even longer than the 40-man Rumble in 2011, which was 69:49. The longest Rumble match in WWE history is the Greatest Royal Rumble last year, which had 50 entrants and went 77:20.
Natalya broke Sasha Banks’ female longevity record lasting 56:01, slightly longer than Sasha’s 54:46 set last year. That puts Natalya 10th on the all-time list.
The iron man in the men’s match was winner Seth Rollins, who managed 43:00.
Candice LaRae made her main roster debut in the women’s Royal Rumble match and paid tribute to her injured friend Tegan Nox by wearing some of her gear from the MYC as part of her attire. Nox commented on Twitter about the tribute, describing herself as “floored” by the gesture.
According to PWInsider, the pop that Nikki Cross received in the women’s Rumble “pleasantly surprised” people backstage. The main roster newcomer entered the match at #8 and lasted for nine minutes before getting chucked out by The IIconics.
Jeff Jarrett’s appearing in the Royal Rumble was his first WWE match of the Millennium. He last appeared in the ring for the promotion in an infamous Good Housekeeping Match at No Mercy ’99, almost 20 years ago. Prior to the match Jarrett held up the promotion for a six figure sum before he would agree to lose the Intercontinental Title to Chyna. He left for WCW immediately afterwards.
Maria Kanellis wrestled only her match for WWE since her return to the promotion over a year and a half ago. Other than a brief appearance in the Evolution battle royal, her previous match for the company was in February 2010 where she teamed with Matt Hardy and The Great Khali in a defeat to David Hart Smith, Natalya and Tyson Kidd on Superstars.
Hornswoggle’s appearance at the Royal Rumble was a one-off cameo spot. He has not signed with the promotion.
Bray Wyatt responded to a fan expecting to see him return in the Rumble match with the words “near time” then went on to further hint at his impending return. He is expected back on television any day now.
Seth Rollins became the first person to ever win the Royal Rumble having entered in the #10 spot. Becky Lynch became the second person to win from #28 but it was the third time it has happened, as Batista previously achieved the feat in 2005 and 2014.
NXT UK talent was in the building watching the show as the talent was flown in to be part of the Worlds Collide tournament and to tape several episodes of the NXT UK TV show. Not everyone from the roster was flown in. Those who were included: Pete Dunne, Tyler Bate, Trent Seven, Joe Coffey, Mark Coffey, Wolfgang, Dave Mastiff, Ligero, Travis Banks, Mark Andrews, Jordan Devlin, Zack Gibson, James Drake, Toni Storm, and Jinny.
Aleister Black is not going to be at Raw tonight as he is going to the Sundance Festival for the premiere of the Paige family movie Fighting With My Family alongside his wife Zelina Vega, who stars in the film. Most of the NXT and NXT UK roster were flown home after the Rumble.
Several members of the WWE roster made their in-ring main roster television debuts last night, including Lacey Evans, Xia Li, Candice LeRae, Kacy Catanzaro and Rhea Ripley in the women’s Royal Rumble match. Johnny Gargano and Aleister Black made their main roster debuts in the men’s match. The other surprise entrant, Pete Dunne, had previously made an appearance on Raw in a win over Enzo Amore.
None of the new NXT call-ups from the men’s roster (EC3, Heavy Machinery, Lars Sullivan) appeared on the show but both Lacey Evans and Nikki Cross were in the women’s bout.
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