You cannot talk about the history of the Royal Rumble without mentioning The Big Red Machine, Kane. Ever since his debut in the 1999 Royal Rumble, Kane has dominated in the match, appeared in consecutive years, and has eliminated dozens of opponents. On a large scale, it’s easy to see how much Kane has dominated, but by taking a closer look, you can see the specific moments that led to his reputation in the match. Giants naturally have an advantage in a match where you must be tossed over the top rope, but Kane really knew how to perfect his performances in the prestigious match.
Learn about some of his shocking eliminations, allies in the match, and the legends that he has gone up against in an attempt to win. This includes Royal Rumble matches from the Attitude Era, with the original brand split, and even some during his time with Team Hell No. Even though Kane has been extremely dominant, there were some years where he was just terrible and did not have an impact at all. Whether you love him or hate him, you cannot deny his skills in this match.
17. 2014 Royal Rumble
2014 was the year of Corporate Kane, but his new professional attitude was a huge disappointment in the Rumble match. He competed in suit pants and did not have his dominant presence that fans were used to. Kane entered the match at number five and was eliminated in about a minute by CM Punk. Kane didn’t do much to extend his Rumble record other than adding another appearance.
This would not be the last of Kane in the match however. About an hour into the match, Kane made his way back out to the ring and pulled CM Punk over the top rope. This moment was made even more significant as it was CM Punk’s last appearance in the WWE, ending his time there on a bitter note, as you’re probably already aware of.
16. 2002 Royal Rumble
Kane had a great spot in the 2002 Royal Rumble, but he could not take advantage of it. Entering at number 28, Kane immediately came in the ring and took out Big Show. Less than a minute later, he would be double-teamed and eliminated by both Kurt Angle and Stone Cold Steve Austin. Even though he was one of the last entrants, Kane couldn’t last long enough to make it to the Final Four.
His elimination of the Big Show was impressive, but being in the ring for around a minute really made this appearance forgettable. It also began a lackluster road to WrestleMania for Kane as he was put into a throwaway feud with Kurt Angle heading into WrestleMania X8, in a bout that was largely overshadowed by the other memorable encounters from the show which included Jericho and Hunter and the prestigious Rock versus Hogan encounter.
15. 2005 Royal Rumble
The 2005 Royal Rumble put all its focus on the future stars of the company – Batista and John Cena. Kane was a part of the match, but mostly played fodder to the new heroics of Cena. Entering at number 27, Kane eliminated Mark Jindrak but then lingered around for a few minutes.
He was then tossed out by John Cena. It was nice for him to add an extra elimination to his tally, but this was mostly forgettable for The Big Red Machine. Kane would go on from there to compete in the Money in the Bank Ladder Match at WrestleMania 21. He also fell short in that match, but it was a better performance than his short-lived Rumble cameo a couple of months prior. In terms of his historical Rumble appearances, this is one of the least memorable performances by the monster.
14. 2011 Royal Rumble
The largest Rumble match of all-time featured 40 total Superstars and Kane had the honor of being the last entrant. By the time he entered the ring, the fans had already experienced a lot of great rumble moments including the return of Diesel. Even with his prime position, Kane was not able to take advantage of the situation.
He was able to toss out Ezekiel Jackson, but the wrestling world was shocked when Rey Mysterio preyed upon The Big Red Machine and eliminated him from the match providing the 40 man Royal Rumble with yet another OMG moment. Kane could not take advantage of this great position and had one of his more disappointing Rumble matches because of it. His cameo was ultimately memorable, but not in a good way on that January 2011 night.
13. 2000 Royal Rumble
Entering as number 28 in the 2000 Royal Rumble match, Kane had a prime position to win it all. He was instantly confronted by The New Age Outlaws, who attacked him. Kane thwarted the attack and added to his elimination tally by tossing out Val Venis, Prince Albert, and Billy Gunn. His quick eliminations were impressive and helped lead him to his first Final Four appearance ever.
With Kane so dominant in these matches, it was surprising to see that his former partner X-Pac would be the one to eliminate him in a shocking twist. X-Pac delivered a spinning heel kick that sent Kane over the top rope. He wasn’t in the ring very long and his surprising elimination really knocked his Rumble performances down a few pegs.
12. 2006 Royal Rumble
For the 2006 Royal Rumble, Kane had the advantage of teaming up with his tag team partner, Big Show, when he entered ninth. The two used their skills in the ring to dominate opponents. Their first victim in this match was Bobby Lashley. After tossing him out of the ring, both Big Show and Kane briefly turned on each other. As they fought against the ropes, Triple H snuck up from behind and tossed them both over for the elimination.
Kane and Big Show played it up as a typical tag team in the Rumble by turning on each other and then losing out because of it. Fortunately for them, they would learn their lesson and embark on the same plan years later.
11. 2004 Royal Rumble
Kane’s first Rumble match without his mask was a fairly quick one. After helping Vince McMahon bury The Undertaker months earlier, Kane felt like his brother was haunting him. This would come into play in a major way for this Rumble match. Entering at number 12, Kane made quick work of his opponents, knocking down many Superstars, but failing to score any eliminations.
That’s when the Gong hit. The arena went completely black, Kane got spooked, and Booker T took advantage of this by tossing him out of the ring. Kane was in the match for just over a minute. It was an exciting moment to hear the Gong, but Kane’s quick departure was a fairly disappointing effort. After getting eliminated, he had one saving grace — Kane attacked the incoming Spike Dudley and delivered a chokeslam that made him unable to compete in the match.
10. 2007 Royal Rumble
The Undertaker may have won the 2007 Royal Rumble, but it was Kane who had one of the biggest impacts. For this Rumble match, many ECW Superstars were allowed to use weapons. As Kane entered at number ten, he took full advantage of this for himself. He chokeslammed Sabu over the top rope and through a table. He also easily disposed of Tommy Dreamer.
Several minutes later, Kane got his third elimination by tossing King Booker over the top rope. Once Booker was eliminated, he became furious, attacked Kane, and threw him out of the ring. It was a cheap move to get Kane eliminated, but it still didn’t take away from this impressive Rumble performance that featured a lot of great spots and hardcore action.
9. 2008 Royal Rumble
The 2008 Royal Rumble was filled with many surprising moments and it was also one of Kane’s lengthier Rumble appearances. Entering at number 20, Kane spent nearly 20 minutes in the ring before getting eliminated.
His start in the match was great as he disposed of both Roddy Piper and Jimmy Snuka at the same time. The two legends made their return at Madison Square Garden and Kane helped show them the door. Kane also eliminated John Morrison, who spent nearly 30 minutes in the ring before getting tossed out by Kane. Once again making the final four, Kane was double-teamed by Batista and Triple H. They both threw him out of the ring and another Rumble match ended in disappointment for The Big Red Machine.
8. 2009 Royal Rumble
During his Royal Rumble career, Kane has constantly been breaking records and the 2009 Royal Rumble helped add to that. Kane was pretty dominant in the match as he entered at number 23. He had to fight off Legacy members Randy Orton, Cody Rhodes, and Ted DiBiase throughout, as they controlled the match. Once Kane broke away from the group, he had a few impactful eliminations of his own.
Dolph Ziggler entered the match at number 27 and was eliminated in around 20 seconds. Santino Marella entered next and was eliminated in less than a second. This quick elimination beat Hulk Hogan’s record for eliminating The Warlord in the fastest amount of time. The highlight of this elimination is now played almost every year at the Rumble.
7. 2010 Royal Rumble
The 2010 Royal Rumble featured several great moments like CM Punk’s involvement, the return of Edge, and an awesome Shawn Michaels performance, but Kane didn’t really stand out in any way. Entering at number 12, Kane had a quick elimination on Matt Hardy, but was mostly in the background until Triple H eliminated him after just ten minutes of being in the ring.
Kane would go onto WrestleMania with no significant storylines as he was once again plopped into the Money in the Bank Ladder Match. As a new crop of WWE stars started rising through the ranks, Kane lost some of his main event luster and it was evident with this Rumble match. He was no longer nearing the end of the match and his large size was barley a factor during the elimination.
6. 2013 Royal Rumble
Kane and Daniel Bryan took the 2013 Royal Rumble by storm as the duo of Team Hell No entered the match shortly after one another. They worked together well to start off, first by double-teaming The Great Khali and knocking him out of the ring. That’s when Daniel Bryan turned on Kane and tossed him over the top.
The shocking move upset Kane as his partner and fellow Tag Team Champion gloated in the ring. Cesaro then picked up Bryan and threw him into Kane’s arms. Feeling betrayed, Kane dropped Bryan down and eliminated him. Kane did not last long in the match, but it was very entertaining to see the duo compete together. It was one of the funniest moments in the match and really helped showcase the chemistry between Kane and Bryan.
5. 1999 Royal Rumble
Kane’s first Royal Rumble appearance was an odd one. The Big Red Machine entered the Rumble and started off by showcasing his dominance. He quickly cleared the ring by eliminating four Superstars – Road Dogg, Kurrgan, Goldust, and The Godfather. This was an impressive feat and would showcase what was to come in the years that followed.
As Kane stood alone in the squared circle, a group of asylum workers rushed down to the ring and tried to have Kane committed. This led to Kane eliminating himself from the match and running to the backstage area. In what would turn out to be a very chaotic Rumble match, Kane’s debut was just a part of the norm. If he had a little more time in the ring, he would likely have earned more eliminations.
4. 2003 Royal Rumble
In the first Royal Rumble to feature a SmackDown versus Raw theme, Kane represented the Raw brand well. He entered number 22 and lasted for nearly twenty minutes in a long in-ring battle. During this time, he wouldn’t get the chance to team up with The Undertaker, but rather go up against him. Kane earned three eliminations in this match, tossing out A-Train, Rosey, and RVD.
Making it to the final four, he teamed with fellow Raw star Batista to take on Brock Lesnar and The Undertaker. The Undertaker eliminated both Kane and Batista. Kane’s performance was great and some fans actually thought he had a chance of winning. It was also a nice way to extend his feud with The Undertaker and add some drama to the end of the Rumble match.
3. 2016 Royal Rumble
Once again the master of quick eliminations, Kane made R-Truth one of his victims for the 2016 Royal Rumble main event. In this match, the WWE Championship was on the line, giving Kane a chance to win the title. Kane entered early at number seven and competed for nearly twenty minutes.
R-Truth was his only elimination, but he still had some great moments in the ring and went face to face with Braun Strowman. Kane was unable to prove his Rumble dominance over Strowman as the former Wyatt Family member eliminated The Big Red Machine in a crowded ring full of Superstars. This moment looked like a nice passing of the torch as new monsters are beginning to enter the Rumble match. It would be nice to see Kane get a chance at winning, but other entrants like Brock Lesnar and Triple H took away from that spotlight.
2. 2015 Royal Rumble
This performance, like the previous one on the list, was especially surprising considering it went down during the later part of his career.
Monsters like Kane typically have a great advantage in the Royal Rumble, but that advantage is made even greater when they pair up with another monster. That’s exactly what happened when The Authority used Big Show and Kane to create some Royal Rumble havoc. The duo spent multiple minutes in the ring dismantling the competition as they double-teamed wrestlers and caused some shocking eliminations.
The duo worked together to eliminate Bray Wyatt, Dean Ambrose, Dolph Ziggler, and Ryback among others. Eliminations were added to Kane’s tally, but in the end he could not overcome Roman Reign’s huge comeback. Reigns eliminated Kane and ended a close chance at a first ever Rumble victory.
1. 2001 Royal Rumble
Regarded as one of the greatest Royal Rumble performances ever, Kane’s third Royal Rumble appearance was by far his best performance out of all the matches he appeared in. He notched up eliminations, had a lot of great moments, and lasted longer than previous Rumbles. His entrance started with only one other man in the ring – Drew Carey. After Drew Carey eliminated himself to avoid the wrath of Kane, The Big Red Machine took his aggression out on other Superstars.
In total, Kane eliminated eleven Superstars. During a large portion of the match, he teamed up with The Undertaker and the two brothers worked together to get eliminations. As Kane battled through opponents, he ended up being a part of the final two against Stone Cold Steve Austin. After a Stunner and three chair shots, Kane was eliminated as Austin would go on to win his third and final Royal Rumble match.
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