The 34th annual WWE Royal Rumble took place Sunday night inside the WWE ThunderDome. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this marked the first time the event has taken with no live fans in attendance. But between an intense WWE Championship match between Drew McIntyre and Goldberg, an over the top championship match between Kevin Owens and Roman Reigns and two Rumble matches full of surprise returns, WWE fans got the most bang for their buck when it comes to a Network subscription.
Men's Royal Rumble Live Updates
Edge kicks off the Men's Royal Rumble as the first entrant, and as a way to capitalize on their rivalry thus far, Randy Orton enters second. Edge rushes out to attack Orton before the match even officially begins. The two of them continue to fight on the outside of the ring as Sami Zayn enters at 3. He holds off for a moment before attacking Edge. He starts working with Orton to wear down Edge even further. Mustafa Ali enters at Number 4.
Ali also attacks Edge, and it's three on one thus far. Jeff Hardy enters at 5 and evens the odds as he takes on Orton, Zayn, and Ali. Orton and Edge continue to fight on the outside until Edge manages to land a move on Orton on top of the announce table. Dolph Ziggler enters at 6, but the focus remains on Edge and Orton's fight against one another before the officials separate them. Ziggler eliminates Jeff Hardy.
Shinsuke Nakamura enters at 7. It appears that Orton's knee has been injured after Edge's assault, and the officials are trying to escort Orton through the arena as he hangs onto the barricade for support. Carlito enters at 8, and Orton's is still trying to exit the arena. Xavier Woods enters at 9 and goes right after Ali.
Big E enters at 10, and he and Xavier Woods work together to eliminate Sami Zayn. John Morrison enters at 11. Ali eliminates Xavier Woods while Big E is trying to pull him back from the apron. Big E's so angered by this, he in turn quickly eliminates Mustafa Ali. Ricochet enters at 12, and Elias enters at 13 and eliminates Carlito.
NXT star Damien Priest enters at 14 and eliminates Elias. An update backstage reveals that Orton still has his knee being attended to as he's yet to be officially eliminated from the match. The Miz enters at 15, but before entering the match he wrecks Bad Bunny's DJ equipment. Bad Bunny soon comes out to fight with the Miz and Damien Priest uses this opportunity to eliminate The Mix and Morrison. Bad Bunny then follows this up with a jump off the top turnbuckle. Riddle enters at 16.
Daniel Bryan enters at 17, and Kane enters at 18 and eliminates Dolph Ziggler. Soon after he also eliminates Ricochet. Daniel Bryan is happy to see Kane and tries to reconcile for their Team Hell No days, and the two of them hug before Kane delivers a chokeslam to Daniel Bryan. Damien Priest stands up to Kane directly before the two duke it out. Soon after, Priest eliminates Kane.
King Corbin enters at 19, and eliminates Shinsuke Nakamura. Otis enters at 20, and Corbin eliminates him not long after he makes his entrance and does a caterpillar. Dominik Mysterio enters at 21 and eliminates Corbin.
Bobby Lashley enters at 22 and eliminates Dominik Mysterio and Damien Priest in quick succession. Lashley and Big E then meet in the ring and go on the full offensive. Hurricane Helms enters at 23, and after trying to take out both Big E and Lashley is eliminated himself. Christian enters at 24.
Bobby Lashley is eliminated due to the teamwork of four different competitors and Edge and Christian reunite in the ring with a big hug. Riddle tries to get into the middle of it until Edge and Christian work together to deliver some double team moves. AJ Styles enters at 25, and Rey Mysterio enters at 26. Big E is taken by surprise when Omos reaches over the top rope and drags him over the top rope and eliminates him from the match. Sheamus enters at 27.
Sheamus and AJ Styles are quickly eliminated soon after. This leaves seven competitors overall with Edge, Daniel Bryan, Christian, Seth Rollins, Riddle, Braun Strowman and Randy Orton left in the match. After Daniel Bryan tires himself out against Riddle, Seth Rollins takes advantage and eliminates Daniel Bryan. Riddle and Rollins fight it out on the apron until Riddle is eliminated. It leaves the final four in the ring, Seth Rollins, Braun Strowman, Edge and Christian. Randy Orton is still unaccounted for. Rollins tries to appeal to Strowman, but it doesn't work.
Edge and Christian both take on Strowman, and the two of them struggle to land any kind of decisive move. Edge nearly pulls Strowman over the side and Christian then comes from behind to grab Strowman's legs. Using this, Seth Rollins then eliminates both Strowman and Christian. Edge eliminates Rollins, and Orton comes from behind with a surprise RKO. But Edge manages to counter this and eliminate Randy Orton instead. Meaning, Edge has won the 2021 Men's Royal Rumble match with over 58 minutes and becomes the third superstar in history to win from entering in the top spot.
WWE Universal Championship Last Man Standing Match Results - Roman Reigns Retains Title vs. Kevin Owens
With Reigns and Owens' history, it was clear the both of them were going to lay it all on the line with this one. As expected, the fight makes its way to the outside of the Thunderdome set up before too long. With an onslaught of chairs and the steel steps, Reigns began to dominate as he continued to throw Owens beyond the screens of the Thunderdome. Making their way to a precarious edge, Reigns tries to throw Owens over the side of the Thunderdome set up. The two of them continue to fight one another until Reigns throws Owens over the side. Owens manages to get himself up by 9 counts. Owens then crawls his way into the backstage arena at Tropicana Field, and Roman Reigns hits Owens with a golf cart.
Owens manages to get himself back up and begins a furious counterattack. He then slams Reigns onto a table, and follows it up with a splash to break the table. Reigns does get himself up before the ten count, however. Owens then slams Reigns onto another table before setting up a forklift to give him a platform high enough to jump back down onto Reigns. With a Senton Bomb, Owens comes crashing down on Reigns (captured by overhead drones). The both of them are able to get back up, but Reigns soon falls back to the ground.
Fighting their way back through the Gorilla Position and back into the Thunderdome proper, and Reigns begins to stumble getting back up before the ten count. Soon enough, Reigns hits Owens with a spear through the entrance screens. Owens manages to use some leverage to keep himself on his feet, however. After fighting some more and landing a stunner, Owens then handcuffs Reigns to a nearby stanchion, and it's so low that Reigns can't get himself back to his feet. Before the count was finished, Reigns pulls the referee to the ground and hits Owens with a low blow.
Paul Heyman soon arrive with something to pick the lock, and a new referee begins a new count. Owens is also rousing himself back up. Heyman does manage to unlock Reigns' cuffs, and Reigns locks Owens with a guillotine hold until he passes out. Both are on the ground, and Owens remains on the ground until ten counts pass. Roman Reigns wins and retains the WWE Universal Championship.
New 24/7 Champion - Peter Rosenberg
During a special recap of the events of the Women's Rumble and the night overall thus far, the pre-show panel made a return. R Truth soon made his way to the panel to interrupt like he usually is known to do, but soon he's taken by surprise as Peter Rosenberg hits Truth with a low blow and then pins Truth to win the 24/7 Championship. That makes three different champions in the night so far following the Women's Rumble.
Royal Rumble Women's Match Results
Bayley is the first entrant, and she's soon joined by Naomi, who is the first big surprise return of the night. Bianca Belair comes in at 3, and Billie Kay comes in at 4. Rather than head to the ring immediately, however, she instead takes a seat at the announce table. NXT star Shotzi Blackheart enters at 5 and drives her tank up the ramp. Soon she hits Billie Kay with a missile, and enters the ring. Kay has yet to enter the ring and thus not officially entered into the rumble just yet. Shayna Baszler enters at 6.
Baszler attacks Billie Kay as Kay tries to give her one of her portfolio pictures, and then makes her way to the ring. Toni Storm enters at 7. Shayna Baszler eliminates Shotzi Blackheart, seven remain as Jillian Hall makes her return as the 8th entrant. Billie then tries to team up with Jillian as "Billie and Jillie" and the two of them officially enter the ring. Ruby Riott enters at 9.
Victoria is another surprise return as she enters at 10. She's nearly eliminated by Naomi, but slips through the bottom rope instead. Peyton Royce enters at 11, and makes it ten competitors overall with only one elimination on the board so far. Peyton and Billie try to recreate their Iconic teamwork with Victoria, but Billie is soon interrupted when Rubi sees her. Entering at 12 is NXT star Santana Garrett. Liv Morgan enters at 13.
Jillian Hall is eliminated by Billie Kay and Kay is eliminated by Ruby Riott and Liv Morgan. Rhea Ripley enters at 14. Victoria is eliminated by Shayna Baszler, and Rhea Ripley eliminates Satana Garrett. Charlotte Flair enters at 15. Bayley eliminates Ruby Riott, and Dana Brooke enters at 16. Liv Morgan is eliminated by Peyton Royce and Torrie Wilson enters at 17.
Brooke nearly eliminates Rhea Ripley, but Ripley is able to counter and eliminate Dana Brooke instead. Ric Flair starts walking out at Number 18, but it's soon revealed that Lacy Evans is actually the one entering. She's wearing the exact same coat that Charlotte just entered into the Rumble with a few numbers prior. Evans refuses to take off the robe in the ring, and Charlotte attacks her until the two of them slide under the ropes and begin fighting outside of the ring.
Baszler eliminates Torrie Wilson and Mickie James enters at 19. Belair and Naomi have both been in this match for nearly a half hour, and Nikki Cross enters at 20. Alicia Fox enters at 21, and R Truth surprisingly makes his way to the ring right after followed by all those chasing after the 24/7 title. Fox and Truth work together until she pins Truth to get the 24/7 title. Mandy Rose enters at 22.
Mandy Rose eliminates Alicia Fox. Using that momentum, Fox is pinned by R Truth and he regains his 24/7 title. Dakota Kai enters at 23. Fox's reign was confirmed to last for two minutes and five seconds in total. Mickie James is eliminated by Rhea Ripley as Carmella enters at 24. Ripley also eliminates Dakota Kai. Mandy Rose is eliminated. Carmella eliminates Nikki Cross after she failed to eliminate Carmella. Tamina enters at 25 and she takes out Reginald — eliminating Carmella in the process (as he was carrying her).
Naomi goes over the top rope but stays in as her feet never touch the ground. Grabbing onto Belair's hair, Naomi pulls her way back into the ring. Helping one another, the two of them swing back into the ring. Lana returns following her injury at 26 with a new attitude. Alexa Bliss enters at 27, and everyone in the match begins to gang up on her. This soon triggers her transformation and she becomes her twisted self. But she's taken by surprise and Ripley eliminates her before her transformation is complete. Ember Moon enters at 28.
Nia Jax enters at 29, and eliminates Ember Moon. Baszler and Jax work together to eliminate Naomi. Jax and Tamina end up having to work with one another, much to the chagrin of Baszler, before Jax backstabs her and works together with Baszler to eliminate Tamina. Jax then eliminates Baszler. Jax charges at Lana, but Lana dodges at the last moment to have Jax eliminate herself instead. Natalya enters at 30, but does not make it to the ring as Jax and Baszler attack her.
Baszler and Jax head back into the ring and attack Lana, but soon they're told to exit the ring. They force Natalya into the ring, and she reunites with Lana briefly before eliminating Lana. This leaves a final four of Rhea Ripley, Bianca Belair, Natalya and Charlotte Flair.
Belair eliminates Natalya, leaving Belair, Ripley and Charlotte Flair as the top 3. Belair and Ripley decide to team up with one another to take down Charlotte. Rhea and Charlotte then focus on one another as a runback to their match at Wrestlemania 36, and with Charlotte on the apron Rhea and Belair manage to eliminate her. Belair starts to celebrate too much and Rhea tries to eliminate here until the both of them end up hanging off the apron. Easing back into the ring, the two fight once more as it's anyone's game.
The two of them begin trying to land their respective signature moves, but soon Bianca Belair is able to eliminate Rhea Ripley. She has won the Women's Royal Rumble Match after entering at Number 3. It's 56 minutes and 49 seconds, a record for the women overall.
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SmackDown Women's Championship Results - Sasha Banks vs. Carmella
Carmella and her sommelier Reginald have been biting at Sasha Banks' heels for the last few weeks, and it all came to a head with this title match. Banks tried to win it early and fast with a Banks statement, but Carmella quickly wormed her way out of it and bought herself some time with trash talk. Reginald continued to interfere just as he has over the last few weeks, and Carmella used that to her advantage during his distractions. Carmella used as many rule encroaching moves as she could to wear down Banks over the course of the match as well. Being sure to keep her from getting any real breathing time, Carmella continued with a sneaky offense that included moves like tangling Banks' hair in the ropes.
Banks hurts her leg during a Meteora, and this continues to wear her down as Carmella and Reginald continue to throw all sorts of tricks at her. Reginald interferes so much in fact that he's soon sent back to the locker room. Following a dive to the outside that wears her out (as she seemingly landed on her face), Sasha finally got a chance for payback with a number of pin attempts. After a number of back and forths, Banks finally did manage to get a successful Banks Statement hold on Carmella. Carmella taps out, and Sasha retains.
WWE Championship Match Results - Drew McIntyre vs. Goldberg
Following his return to the WWE during Monday Night Raw's Legends Night, Goldberg has been squarely focused on taking the WWE Championship away from Drew McIntyre. There were concerns among fans about Goldberg's potential going in, but he seemed to take this on in stride with a new look paralleling Brock Lesnar's black trunks. McIntyre was not one to back down either, and he took the first move by hitting Goldberg with a headbutt and spear before the bell even rang. Taking the fight outside of the ring, Goldberg speared McIntyre through the barricade. With the bell officially ringing, McIntyre hit Goldberg with a Claymore but it did not take. Goldberg then continued his early assault by hitting McIntyre with a series of spears to McIntyre's ribs, which took a major hit when Goldberg speared him through the barricade earlier.
Goldberg then set up for a Jackhammer, but McIntyre kicked out of it. After some more struggle, McIntyre was able to land a successful and clean Claymore. This ended up doing the job as Goldberg was taken out completely and McIntyre was able to get the pin. McIntyre retains the WWE Championship.
Women's Tag Team Championship Match Results
Kicking off the Royal Rumble 2021 pay-per-view in full was the Women's Tag Team Championship match between current champs Asuka and Charlotte Flair against challengers Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler. There was concern on Charlotte Flair's end considering how much Lacey Evans had been getting under her skin lately, but with the Women's Rumble coming up it seems this was going to be a "clean" match for the pre-show at first. But that wasn't for long as when Charlotte had the advantage, her father Ric Flair suddenly appeared alongside Evans and interfered with the match. Charlotte managed to fight her off, but Flair soon used a distraction to pass along some kind of item to Evans and Evans then used it for a strong Women's Right — knocking Charlotte out. Using this chance, Jax finally got the pin on Charlotte and won the Women's Tag Team Championships for her and Baszler once more.
Men's Royal Rumble Lineup Gets Big Pre-Show Update
There were 21 confirmed competitors for the Men's Royal Rumble heading into the night of the pay-per-view as announced on Raw, SmackDown, and Twitter, but the pre-show for the event provided yet another update of new competitors with Xavier Woods, Ricochet (despite seemingly losing a qualifying match to AJ Styles on Monday Night Raw), Riddle, Elias, and Braun Strowman all officially entered into the match. Curiously, Jey Uso was not included in the graphic for the match despite being announced during the January 15th airing of Friday Night SmackDown. This means the current lineup includes Daniel Bryan, Bobby Lashley, AJ Styles, Randy Orton, Otis, The Mix, Ricochet, Cesaro, Jeff Hardy, Sami Zayn, Dolph Ziggler, Shinsuke Nakamura, Big E, Sheamus, John Morrison, Mustafa Ali, Edge, Rey Mysterio, King Corbin, Xavier Woods, Riddle, Braun Strowman, Elias, and potentially Jey.
Becky Lynch's Royal Rumble Status
Last seen on WWE television following Money in the Bank in May 2020, Becky Lynch has been in the midst of a maternity leave for the last few months. Following the announcement that she and Seth Rollins welcomed their daughter Roux in December, fans had begun speculating over whether or not Lynch would be making her return to the WWE during the Women's Royal Rumble match this year. With 13 competitors confirmed as of this writing, Wrestling Observer's Dave Meltzer commented on Lynch's possible return during Wrestling Observer Radio with, "She's on her way back," Meltzer began, "But I was told not on [Sunday at the Royal Rumble]. But who knows?" Lynch has been open about her desire to return to wrestling following her pregnancy, and betting odds for the Rumble even place her among the ranks, so it remains to be seen whether or not she makes her return.
How to Watch Royal Rumble 2021
The event will begin at 7 p.m. ET on the WWE Network, with a one-hour kickoff show beginning an hour earlier on all of WWE's social media platforms. Based on the number of announced matches and the length of pay-per-views during the pandemic era, the show will likely last less than four hours.
This will mark one of the last shows to take place on the WWE Network in the United States, as all of the Network's content will be moved over to NBCUniversal's Peacock streaming service in March. WWE confirmed to ComicBook earlier this week that the WWE app will no longer be functional once the switch is made.
- What: WWE Royal Rumble 2021
- Date: Sunday, January 31, 2021
- Time: 7 p.m. ET
- Location: Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg, FL
- Live stream: WWE Network App
Royal Rumble 2021: Full Card
Here's the complete lineup for the show, as of now:
- WWE Championship: Drew McIntyre vs. Goldberg
- WWE Universal Championship: Roman Reigns vs. Kevin Owens (Last Man Standing)
- WWE Women's Tag Team Championships: Charlotte Flair & Asuka vs. Nia Jax & Shayna Baszler
- Men's Royal Rumble: Daniel Bryan, Bobby Lashley, AJ Styles, Randy Orton, Otis, The Miz, Jey Uso, Cesaro, Jeff Hardy, Sami Zayn, Dolph Ziggler, Shisuke Nakamura, Big E, John Morrison, Sheamus, Mustafa Ali, Edge, more TBA
- Women's Royal Rumble: Nia Jax, Charlotte Flair, Bianca Beliar, Bayley, Mandy Rose, Dana Brooke, Peyton Royce, Alexa Bliss, Shayna Baszler, Liv Morgan, Ruby Riott, Tamina, more TBA
Ronda Rousey's Royal Rumble Status
Though she hasn't appeared on WWE programming since WrestleMania 35 in April 2019, but clips of her training inside of wrestling rings have been popping up for months. She poked fun at the idea of returning during the Women's Rumble on Twitter earlier this week.
Possible Spoiler on Surprise Return
Wrestling Observer's Dave Meltzer reported this week that NXT's Rhea Ripley has been bumped up to the main roster internally. She hasn't appeared on NXT since losing the Last Woman Standing Match to Raquel Gonzalez at NXT's New Year's Evil, and a Rumble win could quickly set up a rematch between her and Charlotte Flair from WrestleMania 36.
"Rhea Ripley is on the main roster," Meltzer said on Wrestling Observer Radio. "She was gonna debut a couple of weeks ago and they put it off for a couple of weeks. A couple of weeks is now. Debuting her as a surprise in the Rumble and winning the Rumble, that just makes sense."
Latest Royal Rumble Winner Betting Odds
Sportsbook Bovada has updated its betting odds for the two Rumble matches multiple times over the past month. Here's are the latest odds for who will win both matches:
Men's Royal Rumble
Daniel Bryan +125
Keith Lee +400
Big E +750
Brock Lesnar +650
Bray Wyatt +1500
Seth Rollins +1600
Kevin Owens +2500
Drew McIntyre +1400
Roman Reigns +2500
AJ Styles +2000
The Rock +3300
CM Punk +5000
Braun Strowman +2500
John Cena +3300
Randy Orton +3500
Adam Cole +3300
Aleister Black +5000
Karrion Kross +5000
Matt Riddle +5000
Finn Balor +6600
Samoa Joe +6600
King Corbin +6600
Lars Sullivan +6600
Johnny Gargano +8000
Bobby Lashley +5000
Tommasso Ciampa +6600
Kofi Kingston +8000
Buddy Murphy +8000
Rey Mysterio +8000
Mustafa Ali +8000
Velveteen Dream +10000
Tyson Fury +10000
Pete Dunne +10000
Angel Garza +10000
Xavier Woods +15000
John Morrison +50000
Shinsuke Nakamura +1200
Erick Rowan +15000
The Miz +10000
Conor McGregor +20000
Dean Ambrose +15000
Robert Roode +50000
Dolph Ziggler +50000
Humberto Carrillo +50000
Shane McMahon +250000
Vince McMahon +250000
Women's Royal Rumble Odds
Bianca Belair +180
Alexa Bliss +265
Rhea Ripley +350
Ronda Rousey +1600
Charlotte Flair +1400
Shayna Baszler +1600
Sasha Banks +2000
Nia Jax +2000
Sonya Deville +1400
Io Shirai +2500
Liv Morgan +3300
Ruby Riot +6600
Kairi Sane +5000
Nikki Cross +5000
Mandy Rose +4000
Ember Moon +6600
Dana Brooke +4000
Lacey Evans +4000
Toni Storm +6600
Peyton Royce +5000
Tegan Nox +66001comments
Candice LeRae +6600
Dakota Kai +6600
Kay Lee Ray +8000
Mercedes Martinez +8000