10 Best WWE Royal Rumble Performers (Who Never Won The Rumble)

Winning is overrated - these guys stole the show.

Daniel Bryan Greatest Royal Rumble

The end of the holidays is always bittersweet. On the one hand, it’s back to work for most of us, with a gruelling midwinter to wade through. On the other: Royal Rumble season is officially upon us!

The Rumble is the calendar highlight for many wrestling fans, and if done right it can be huge news for the lucky winner. In recent years, Drew McIntyre’s main eventer ticket has been punched by a well booked win, and Becky Lynch, Seth Rollins, and many more have done similarly well after the event.

But what about those whose hands aren’t raised at the end of the Rumble? WWE’s past and present roster is full of stars who never won the Rumble (though some may yet), but have nonetheless made names for themselves through the top rope showdown.

While these wrestlers may not have gotten the nod from management for the year’s first (and best) pay per view, they saw an opportunity to break off a little piece of the spotlight for themselves, be it in one particular Rumble or over the course of their careers, and they grabbed it with both hands (before both feet ultimately touched the ground, thereby eliminating them).

10. Mick Foley

Daniel Bryan Greatest Royal Rumble

As is his wont, Mick Foley approached the Royal Rumble with the same verve and inventiveness he did the rest of his wrestling career. While Foley floated around the top of the card during some great years for the Rumble, he was never given the nod to win the whole thing, but nonetheless lifted some flat events with his inimitable schtick.

Perhaps his finest year was 1998, a disappointing Rumble that amounted mostly to waiting for Stone Cold to finally make his entrance at 24 and win the thing. It was bolstered immensely by Foley, who entered in all three of his gimmicks, firstly opening the show as Cactus Jack, then appearing again as Mankind and Dude Love. Few wrestlers would be welcome to take up 10% of a Rumble - Foley is one of them.

His 2004 performance was also great, stealing Test’s spot so as to eliminate Randy Orton, as well as himself, thereby pushing forward their excellent feud. Whether as a novelty act or part of something more serious, Foley is, as ever, one of the best.


Yorkshire-based writer of screenplays, essays, and fiction. Big fan of having a laugh. Read more of my stuff @ www.twotownsover.com (if you want!)