Top 5 Surprise Royal Rumble Entrants

The Royal Rumble is one of the most exciting matches of the year, and WWE love to throw in the occasional surprise entrant, here's some of the best.

Top 5 Surprise Royal Rumble Entrants

Whether it's a superstar returning from injury, making their debut or simply providing a one off appearance, the Royal Rumble match has become known for it's surprise entrants, and whilst the match itself as high stakes, these surprises are what makes the rumble such a fun match. 

So let's look back at five of the greatest surprise entrants, in the history of the event, and there have been some good ones:


Diesel returned to a thunderous reception. Photo:Youtube
Diesel returned to a thunderous reception. Photo:Youtube

The 2011 Royal Rumble was a stacked show, due to it being the first ever 40 man Rumble, the WWE brought in a host of former superstars to fill up the numbers, and provide fans with some nostalgic feelings. 

None was more shocking than the return of Big Daddy Cool, Diesel, who entered at number 32 to a fantastic ovation from the crowd before heading to the ring and proving that he certainly did still have the ability to get the job done. 

Eventually being thrown out by Wade Barrett, Diesel's return was so popular, that the WWE decided to bring him back later in the year to be involved in an angle with CM Punk, and Kevin Nash surprised fans again in the Rumble at 2014, but it was his first return, as Diesel that fans will remember. 

4.Chris Jericho-2013

One of the best kept secrets in Rumble history. Photo:
One of the best kept secrets in Rumble history. Photo:

Arguably the best kept secret in Royal Rumble history, in terms of surprise entrants, no one expected Jericho to return to the WWE, after posting via social media, that he was finished with the company for good in the weeks prior, Jericho fooled everyone. 

Unlike most surprise appearances, Jericho didn't come in halfway through the match, but instead would be the number 2 entrant, much to the shock and horror of rival Dolph Ziggler (who was number 1). 

It was one of the loudest reactions in Rumble history, as it caught the fans off guard, there had been no internet rumors of any kind, and Jericho would go on to last 47 minutes, proving his career was far from over. 

3.Mick Foley-2004

Foley went straight for Orton in the Rumble. Photo:
Foley went straight for Orton in the Rumble. Photo:

Bang Bang! The hardcore legend himself has been a surprise entrant on more than one occasion, but it was the 2004 Royal Rumble where Foley made his biggest impact, returning to action to get revenge on Randy Orton who had punted him down the stairs during the previous summer. 

Foley wasn't even originally in the match, and as the number 21 came up, nobody came down the ramp, leaving fans and commentators shocked, until a camera backstage saw that Test (who was supposed to be entrant 21) had been taken out. 

Stone Cold Steve Austin, who was the RAW general manager at the time then told someone to head to the ring, but the camera didn't show who that was, until the car crash sounds of Foley's theme song rang round the arena, and fans leapt to their feet. 

Foley wasted no time in going for Orton, and his determination to get revenge on the young upcoming star ended up with him taking out himself and Orton from the Rumble, before the pair would go on to have a fantastic rivalry, which helped create Orton to be the star he is today. 

2. Edge-2010

After suffering a torn Achilles tendon, the Rated R superstar had been out of action since the summer of 2009, and given the reaction he received, it's clear the WWE Universe had missed him, as made a shock return at the 2010 Royal Rumble. 

Edge immediately made his first target, his former tag-team partner, Y2J, hitting a huge Spear to the man who had been running his mouth about him in the weeks leading up to the event. 

The hall of fame superstar would go on to win the entire Rumble, as he continued to cement his legacy as one of the all time greats, before going on to Wrestlemania to face, none other than Jericho himself for the World Heavyweight Championship. 

Due to the surprise of his return, which was quicker than expected from injury, and the fact that he would manage to win the entire match, Edge's surprise entrance in the Rumble has gone down as one of the best of all time. 

Honorable Mentions

Goldust-2013: One of the loudest ovations for a surprise entrant at a Rumble is Goldust's 2013 return, and unlike most one off returns, he had a natural rivarly waiting for him in the ring, as he locked up with half-brother Cody Rhodes for the first time, who eventually eliminated him. 

Michael Cole-2012: Ok, this one's a joke, but there must be at least one Cole Miner out there, right? 

Kharma-2012: This was a great surprise, having been gone from the WWE since her pregnancy, Kharma made her return in a huge way, becoming only the third ever women to compete inside the Rumble, in what would be her final appearance for the company. 

Even though she was eventually taken out by Dolph Ziggler, Kharma did manage to deal with the Michael Cole problem,as he jumped over the ropes himself through fear of this dominant female.

Rob Van Dam-2009: RVD's return in the Rumble was fantastic, from JR's brilliant commentary to the shocked faces in the ring, of course the former ECW original got a huge pop from the crowd, who were all surprised to see him appear.

He quickly made his way to the ring, bringing his quick paced style as he unloaded on the superstars, hitting all his signature moves, before ultimately being eliminated by Chris Jericho. 

1. John Cena -2008

Cena would go on to win the rumble
Cena would go on to win the rumble

Undoubtedly the greatest surprise entrant in the history of the Royal Rumble is that of John Cena, in 2008. Whilst some fans may not like the superstar, there can be no denying that his incredible recovery time from injuries is a testament to his hard work and love for the company and the fans. 

His ability to recover faster than normal has never been more clear, than on his return in 2008, where he entered as the number 30 entrant, returning from his pectoral injury four to five months ahead of schedule, and shocking the WWE Universe, as well as the superstars (who can forget Triple H's face). 

The reaction was thunderous inside Madison Square Gardens, and Cena would go on to win the match, earning him the opportunity to headline Wrestlemania, after creating one of the biggest shocks, not just in Royal Rumble history, but in WWE history.