The ring announcer, Howard Finkle, is now coming to the ring for the Royal Rumble.
FINKLE: Ladies and gentlemen, it is now time for The Royal Rumble!!
A roar comes up from the crowd.
FINKLE: Here are the rules. The match starts with numbers 1 and 2. Every two minutes thereafter, another wrestler will enter the fray. The winner will be the one left standing after all 30 numbers had been called. Elimination occurs when a wrestler is thrown over the top rope and to the floor. Also, this match is under "Death Match" rules. This simply means come as you are and use "any means necessary to win." Also, there are no safety mats on the outside of the ring for this bout!! Now, let the Royal Rumble begin by finding out who drew number 1.
With that, the music of Edge starts to play.
FINKLE: From Hamilton, Ontario Canada, Edge!!!
Edge comes through the crowd as usual with no shirt, his long coat and black jeans.
ROSS: What a hell of a situation for this kid. To be in the Royal Rumble takes guts but to draw number one? This kid is going to be in for a long night.
LAWLER: You got that right. He had the misfortune of drawing number one and, to my knowledge, only two men have ever started this match with the numbers 1-5 and won it.
ROSS: You are exactly right "King." "Nature Boy" Ric Flair and Shawn Michaels are the only two men in the history of this event to ever get an early number in the Royal Rumble matchup and still go on to win it.
FINKLE: And now, the man that drew number two!!
The music of The WolfPack starts up.
FINKLE: From Chicago, Ill, "The Total Package" Lex Luger!!
Luger comes down the aisle with black jeans and no shirt as well.
LAWLER: This doesn't look good for Edge. It's bad enough that you got to start this bout but to start it against someone like Lex Luger? Well, you can kiss this kid good-bye in my opinion. Edge is about to be dulled!!
ROSS: Indeed, it looks bad for the youngster but we have seen stranger things happen in the Royal Rumble so I'll wait to see what happens.
Indeed, Luger hits the ring and the Royal Rumble is underway. Edge is battling "The Total Package" despite being outweighed by 50+ pounds. Edge tries to whip Luger into the ropes but Luger reverses things and delivers a hard clothesline. Edge gets up only to receive the same move again. Luger then clotheslines Edge over the top rope but Edge hangs on and doesn't go to the floor. Luger thinks that Edge is gone but he isn't. Edge takes advantage by spinning Luger around and executing his "Downward Spiral" maneuver on Luger. Luger is stunned as he hits the mat head first from the move. Edge takes over on his bigger opponent with kicks and punches. He then tries to leverage the big man out of the ring with some success. Still, Luger uses his bigger mass to punch his way out as he is back into the ring. Edge now kicks him in the left leg, trying to take away the size advantage from Luger. Luger responds with a right hand as the time is ticking down for the next entry into the Royal Rumble.
ROSS: Oh my Lord in heaven!! It's Gangrel!!
LAWLER: Ha, ha!! I stand corrected, Edge will not be dulled. He will be recycled when Gangrel hits the ring.
Indeed, Lawler did have a point as Edge will now have to fight his long-time nemesis as well as "The Total Package." Gangrel hits the ring and is all business. He knees Edge in the back, knocking him face-first into the turnbuckle. Luger goes for a clothesline on Gangrel but the former Vampire Warrior ducks it. When Luger turns around, Gangrel hooks both of Luger's arms in a double-arm bar position and gives him a suplex that drops Luger on his neck and shoulders. Gangrel then goes back to Edge. Edge comes in to attack him but is met by Gangrel spewing a red substance into his face!! Gangrel takes advantage and hooks his "Texas" DDT on Edge. Gangrel then takes Edge and dumps him, eliminating him from the Rumble. Gangrel then goes to work on Luger. Luger is still fighting back but he's also fighting through pain as that suplex did take some steam out of him. These two fight for the remaining minute as the next participant is about to come down.
LAWLER: Oh my God!
ROSS: It is the music called "War Machine"!! That can only mean that the WWF Intercontinental Champion TAZ is the next man coming down to get in on this insanity.
Indeed, TAZ "power-walks" to the ring. He slides underneath the bottom rope and stands ready for anyone. Gangrel tries for a right hand but TAZ ducks it, goes in behind him, and executes a German suplex on the "vampire" man. Luger comes in and gets in about two right hands. He then hits the ropes for another move but TAZ uses a Judo type shoulder throw to take Luger back down. He then nails Luger with a "Yakusa" kick that knocks him back into a corner. TAZ then lines up Luger with his own back against the ropes. He then hooks Luger in a bearhug and suplexes Luger over the top rope and to the concrete floor!!
ROSS: "The Total Package" has just been eliminated from the Rumble and what a hell of a way to be eliminated.
LAWLER: You got that right JR. TAZ just took a 275 pound man like Luger, threw him over his head, over the top rope and Luger went "splat" on the floor. He's still not moving too much now.
Indeed, Luger landed squarely on his back and is having trouble getting up. TAZ, meanwhile, goes back to battling Gangrel. Gangrel racks the eyes of TAZ to get a slight advantage. Gangrel hits the ropes to another move but TAZ catches him and executes his "T-Bone" suplex on Gangrel near the ropes. It sends Gangrel over the top rope and to the floor. TAZ has eliminated two men in just under two minutes!! As the clock winds down, TAZ stands in the corner and awaits his next opponent (or, after what he just did, his next victim). The buzzer rings and it is "Ravishing" Rick Rude!! He comes down with blue jeans, shirtless and cowboy boots. He get to the ringside area and he is up on the ring apron. TAZ comes over to Rude and grabs him. Rude quickly drops down, snapping TAZ across the top rope throat-first. Rude has now entered the ring and he is going to work with forearms smashes to TAZ. He is now putting the boots to TAZ. With "The Human Suplex Machine" down, Rude stands over him and does his "bump and grind" schitck. This turns out to be a mistake as TAZ places an "Iron Claw" hold on Rude's "privates"!! The look on the face of the "Ravishing One" is priceless!! TAZ then gets up (still "holding" Rude) and drags him around the ring. Finally, TAZ lets go and Rude falls to the mat in tremendous pain. TAZ is now putting some good, old fashion boots to Rude as the next man is getting ready to come down.
We now here the theme of "2001: A Space Oddessy."
ROSS: Oh, my. Here we have the man that once won the WWF World Title in this very match, he is "The Nature Boy" Ric Flair!!
LAWLER: Flair is known for being a classic wrestler but this isn't about wrestling, it is about kicking butt here and under these "Death Match" rules, I don't know how Flair will fair here, especially coming in at number 6.
While Rude is recovering from his "problem", TAZ stands ready for Flair as he takes off the robe outside the ring. He slides in and has a stare down with TAZ. TAZ shoves Flair and Flair answers in kind. TAZ throws a right hand and Flair answers with his one of his famous chops. The two trade back and forth around the ring with Flair, surprisingly, gaining the upper hand. Flair lets out a "WHOOO!!" to the crowd and they respond. Flair goes for a whip into the corner but TAZ reverses it. Flair goes into the corner and when he comes out, he is met by a "T-Bone" suplex. Flair quickly scrambles to his feet but is met by a cowboy boot from the top rope by Rick Rude, who climbed up to the top rope while the two were fighting. Rude is quickly met by a clothesline from TAZ. TAZ then goes over to Flair to dish out more punishment but Flair delivers a low blow to TAZ. Rude takes advantage and gives TAZ the "Rude Awakening" neckbreaker!! This is the first true punishment that TAZ has taken in this bout as he lays prone on the mat. Rude doesn't have time to celebrate as Flair gets up up and kicks Rude in the left knee. Flair quickly takes Rude down and locks in the figure four leglock as time runs down and the next man is on his way.
The theme of "Sexy Boy" fires up as it is the WCW World Heavyweight Champion Shawn Michaels!! He comes down in black, knee length shorts, no shirt and in tennis shoes. He quickly leaps on the apron and heads to the top rope with Flair still having Rude in the figure four. Flair hasn't seen HBK yet and that proves to work to Shawn's advantage as Michaels leaps off of the top rope with an elbowsmash on Flair, freeing Rude from the hold. Meanwhile, TAZ has recovered somewhat from the "Rude Awakening" and sees Rude up but hurting. He comes up behind Rude and hooks in the "TAZ-mission" chokehold on Rude. Rude is fighting for his life but TAZ has a good grip on the hold. Michaels has now decked Flair with his "Sweet Chin Music" superkick while Rude frees himself from the "TAZ-mission" by kicking TAZ low. Michaels and Rude quickly double-up on TAZ and throw him out. TAZ is gone from the Royal Rumble. With under a minute left, Michaels and Rude go back to work on Flair. They carry him over to the ropes and attempt to dump him over. Flair is holding on for dear life as it looks bad for "The Nature Boy." Rude is almost out himself as he helps out Shawn. Suddenly, he is brought over the top rope and to the floor. That is because TAZ is still around ringside and has caused the elimination of Rude!! Rude is now pissed as he and TAZ fight up the aisleway. Meanwhile, Flair gets back in with a finger to the eyes of Michaels. Flair slides outside of the ring and gets a steel chair. Flair lays it down flat, hooks up Michaels and delivers a backdrop suplex on the WCW World Champion as the time winds down for another contestant to come down.
It is Greg "The Hammer" Valentine. The former NWA World Tag Team Championship partner of "Nature Boy" Ric Flair is coming down with traditional wrestling attire. In the meantime, Flair is getting set to put the figure four on Shawn. As Flair completes the spinning toehold portion of the hold, Valentine hits the ring and nails Flair with a hard forearm that knocks him down. Valentine quickly drops an elbowsmash onto Michaels. "The Hammer" immediately goes back to Flair with chops similar to Flair in the corner. You can hear the flesh smacking as Valentine is laying them in. Flair quickly reverses the situation and starts to chop Valentine and the two are now trading back and forth with hard chops to the chest. Michaels, meanwhile, is getting a rest while these two fight it out. Valentine manages to get the upper hand as he has Flair trapped in a corner. In the meantime, Michaels has made it up to the top turnbuckle on the other side with the steel chair in hand. Valentine whips Flair into that corner but Flair reverses it. Just as Flair does that, Michaels leaps off of the top rope with a chair shot that hits Valentine flush in the face!! Valentine stands still at first, but then falls face-first to the canvas!! Michaels goes for a chair shot on Flair but Flair counters with a kick to the stomach. Michaels drops the chair. Flair then whips Michaels into the ropes and goes for a back elbow. Michaels ducks it, picks up the chair on the way by, and clobbers Flair in the head with it!! Flair goes down hard. Valentine is just getting up and has a cut on his forehead from the chair shot. Flair is also bleeding as well as the time ends.
The next competitor is six-time former NWA World Champion Lou Thez. He is greeted by applause from, for the most part, respectful fans that admire what this man has done in the past. He gets into the ring and, as he does, Michaels goes for another chair shot but Thez ducks it, hooks Michaels waist, and delivers a "Saito" suplex on Michaels. Michaels gets up and charges in on Thez, only to be met by a Judo style shoulder throw!! Thez moves in with a bodyslam on Michaels. Lou follows that up with a "Rito Ramierez" special on Michaels. Michaels is being stretched. Seeing an opportunity, Valentine and Flair move in on Michaels. Valentine goes to work with elbows to the head of Michaels while Flair drops right hands into the exposed mid-section of Michaels while Thez still has the hold on him. Flair follows that up with an elbowsmash to the groin (nuts) of Michaels while he is still trapped in that hold. Thez finally lets go of him and Michaels rolls down in pain. Valentine seizes the opportunity and drops a kneesmash into Thez while Flair stalks Michaels. Michaels is in no condition to fight back after being stretched by Thez, elbowed several times in the head by Valentine and having Flair perform an elbowdrop to his balls!! Flair loves this as he picks up the helpless Michaels and chops him at will in the corner. Meanwhile, Valentine is trying to get Thez out with no avail as Lou has a death-grip on the top and middle ropes. This is the way it goes on as the period ends for another competitor to come in.
It is "Hacksaw" Jim Duggan!! He comes down in a white tank top, blue jeans, tennis shoes and his 2 X 4 plank. He gets into the ring and surveys the situation. He sees Valentine trying to get Lou Thez out of the ring. Duggan responds to that by clobbering Valentine between the shoulderblades with his trusty board!! Valentine falls backwards to the canvas. Duggan lets out a "HOOOOOO!" to the Texas crowd as they respond in kind. Flair comes in from behind with a knee to the back that only gets Duggan's attention. Flair chops at the "Hacksaw" to no avail. Duggan then jabs Flair in the gut with the board and hits him in the back with it! Flair falls to his knees after that hit. Duggan goes to work with right hands to the face of Flair, re-opening that cut which had stopped bleeding slightly. Meanwhile, Michaels and Thez are going at it with Thez hooking him in a "Tiger" suplex!! Thez feels that he has Michaels ready so he goes to lift him up to get him over the top rope. As he picks him up, Michaels delivers a low blow and dumps the legend over the top himself. So Thez is gone from The Royal Rumble. Remaining in the ring are Flair, Duggan, Valentine and Michaels. Flair, Valentine and Michaels decide it would be best to get rid of "Hacksaw" then worry about each other. The three heels move in on Duggan, who manages to fight them off at first. Still, the numbers catch up with him as Flair and Co. have him now. They are attempting to get him over as the period ends.
Up next to join this mayhem is former two time WWF World Champion Bruno Sammartino. He is wearing traditional ring wear. He races to the ring and sees that Flair, Valentine and Michaels have their backs to him (they are trying to get rid of Duggan). Bruno takes advantage and dumps Valentine over the top rope!! Valentine is gone from the Rumble and he is hot!! Duggan has now regained his balance and is slugging away at Michaels while legends Flair and Sammartino hook it up. Sammartino has a distinct advantage right now over Flair due to the punishment that Flair received earlier in the bout. Bruno is peppering Flair with right hands and kicks that has Flair reeling along the ropes. Meanwhile, Duggan has taken over on Shawn Michaels. He throws Michaels over the top rope but Michaels hangs on and swings back inside to prevent elimination. Michaels is near the steel chair that's still in the ring. Michaels throws it at Duggan but Duggan catches it. It turns out, however, that it was a set up as Michaels goes for his "Sweet Chin Music" superkick. Duggan, showing surprising savvy, ducks with the chair in hand. Michaels turns around to see Duggan throw the chair at him. Michaels catches the chair but he was being set up as Duggan throws a hard right hand to the chair, thus clocking Michaels in the head. Michaels goes down. In the meantime, Bruno has Flair in a bearhug and in a corner, trying to lift him out of the ring. Flair is holding on for dear life as the clock runs down for our next competitor.
It is WCW Cruiserweight Champion Dean "The Ice Man" Malenko. He comes to the ring in traditional ring attire. Malenko comes in and goes for "Hacksaw." Michaels is just getting up to his feet from the "chair-punch" he took earlier on. Duggan takes over on a slugfest and has Malenko against the ropes early. Malenko gets underneath Duggan and tries to lift the 280 pound man up and over. He does get him up but not over. Michaels, seeing opportunity, runs from across the ring and dropkicks Duggan in the back of the head. This, along with Malenko's lifting, was enough to get Duggan out of there!!! Duggan is gone. Michaels, showing tremendous heart, is now battling the "Ice Man" tooth and nail. Meanwhile, Flair has just nailed Sammartino with a vertical suplex. Flair, bloody and all, gets up and delivers his patented knee to the head of Bruno. Michaels, believe it or not, actually has Malenko down and is putting the boots to him. He picks up Malenko and executes a bodyslam on him. Michaels then goes to the top rope, with difficulty I might add, and gets in his elbowsmash on "The Man Of A 1,000 Holds." That move, however, seems to have taken as much out of Michaels as it did Malenko.
LAWLER: How can Michaels still be in this thing after the punishment that he has taken? It is unbelievable!!
ROSS: I have to agree with you there. Flair's taken a pretty good beating as well. These two were numbers 6 and 7 respectively and they are still in this matchup. Flair is a bloody mess but Michaels has been beat almost to death and they are still fighting in that ring!!
As Ross and Lawler commentate, Michaels is on his feet again but is met by a right hand from Bruno. Michaels fires back with a right of his own as Flair goes to work on Malenko. He picks up Malenko's legs and drops a knee into his "privates." This occurs when the period ends.
Coming down at break neck speed is WCW United States Champion Chris Benoit!! He comes down in black jeans, black cowboy boots and no shirt. He hits the ring and confronts Flair. Flair stares "The Crippler" down and gives him a shove. Benoit responds with a slap to the face and the two men begin to battle. Flair goes to his chops but Benoit answers with hard chops of his own that stagger the former champion. He chops Flair back into a corner. Meanwhile, Bruno goes for his backbreaker on Michaels but Shawn saves himself by poking Bruno in the eyes. As Michaels backs up to the center of the ring, his back bumps into the back of Benoit. The two turn around and face each other!!
ROSS: Oh, my god!! Folks, we may be getting a preview of WCW SuperBrawl next month as these two men, regardless whether or not either one wins a shot at the WWF Title, will face each other for the WCW Title.
LAWLER: We may have SuperBrawl right here and now in Houston!!
Indeed, Michaels and Benoit are exchanging punches on each other. The other wrestlers (Flair, Sammartino and Malenko) have stopped to view this match up. Benoit gets the better of the exchange but Michaels stops it with a poke to the eye. Michaels now whips Benoit into the ropes but Benoit reverses it. He catches Michaels, throws him up into the air, and catches him in a "Gut-Buster"!! Michaels quickly heads to a corner on his knees with Benoit in hot pursuit. Benoit follows him in with kicks to the back and kidney area of Michaels. Michaels is in more pain now than ever. "Get up!!" yells Benoit at a struggling Shawn. Shawn fights back with a right hand that only brushed against Benoit. Michaels gets some momentum and the second one had more effect. Shawn then grabs Benoit by the hair, goes up to the top rope from the inside, puts on leg on Benoit's head and neck, jumps off, and drives his head into mat with his leg!! Michaels slowly makes his way up to his feet as he has Benoit hurt with the time running down for another competitor to come in.
It is Bret "The HitMan" Hart!! Michaels looks up the aisle to see the sight of Bret coming down in black jeans, a "Calgary HitMen" hockey jersey, tennis shoes and a hockey stick and has a priceless look on his face as if to say "Why him?! Why now?!" While Michaels is distracted, Benoit spins Michaels around and plants a kick into Michaels gut. He hits him with another chop to the chest. Michaels is staggered but he is fighting back as "The HitMan" enters the ring. Michaels turns around to take a jab to the gut again from the blunt end of Bret's hockey stick (the other wrestlers, by the way, have gone back fighting each other). Benoit moves in and hooks in his "snap suplex" on Michaels. Bret comes to Michaels' head, turns the stick to the outer curved end, winds up, and plants a hard groin shot with it on Michaels!! If Michaels wasn't in tremendous pain before, he is now!! Michaels jumps to his feet holding himself. Even the other wrestlers (except Bret, of course) felt a little sorry for Michaels for the blow that he took. Bret now has his belt off and is whipping the sh*t out of Michaels!! Meanwhile, Benoit has joined up with his former tag partner in ECW (Malenko) to fight Flair and Sammartino. Malenko is battling Bruno while Benoit is tangling with Flair. Bruno whips Malenko into the ropes for a clothesline but Malenko ducks it, rebounds off of the opposite ropes and comes with a leg lariat that knocks Bruno down. On the other side of the ring, Benoit has Flair down and in the "Lion Tamer" boston crab!! Flair is screaming to the heavens right now. In the center of the ring, Bret Hart is choking down Shawn with the belt. He is now pounding the head of Michaels with "fists of fury" (apologize to Bruce Lee) that opens up a cut on Michaels' face. Bret now takes the belt, wraps it around the head, and rakes it across Michaels' forehead!! The cut is really gushing blood now as the period ends.
Up next we have "The Russian Nightmare" Nikita Koloff!! He comes down with red warm up pants, his usual boots, no shirt and is armed with a steel chain. Meanwhile, Malenko (just out of the sight of the camera view) and Sammartino both went over the top rope and to the floor. Both of them are now gone from the match!! This leaves, at this point, Flair, Hart, Benoit, a battered Michaels and Koloff in the ring. Nikita goes after both Flair and Benoit, leaving Hart to punish Michaels. Michaels now has Bret's hockey stick. He takes it and "groins" him with it and pulls it out!! Michaels, with whatever strength he has left, pulls "The HitMan's" jersey over his head and is wearing out Bret with his own stick!! Meanwhile, Nikita has bashed both Flair (who is bloody anyway) and Benoit in the face with his steel chain. Nikita goes to work on "The Nature Boy" by putting his foot on the throat of Flair, choking him down. While this was going on, Michaels has gone to the outside (his face a bloody mess) and has the steel ladder that was used earlier in the ECW Title Match between Magnum TA and The Rock. He brings it into the ring and lays it flat on the canvas. He then goes and gets Bret, picks him up and bodyslams him on the ladder. Michaels then goes to the second rope, measures up the "HitMan" and flies at him with the elbowsmash.....and misses!! Michaels' right elbow drives into the ladder as Bret moves out of the way. Bret has now taken off his jersey and has thrown it to the outside. With Michaels prone, Bret picks up the ladder straight but still folded, climbs up to the second rope, lets the ladder fall forward with him ridding it down, and squashes Michaels underneath it!!
LAWLER: Oh my God!! Bret is trying to kill Shawn Michaels!!
ROSS: I'll tell you "King", the refs might ought to consider getting Michaels out of there. I know no one wants to lose this thing but Shawn may be in danger of losing his WCW Title, not to mention his career right now.
Indeed, Michaels looked dead as Bret had a big smile on his face. Michaels, amazingly, was still moving!! Bret quickly drug Michaels to a ringpost and hooked the "HartBreaker" on him (ringpost figure four). Benoit has now made it over to them and has a "Dragon Sleeper" on Michaels with Koloff and Flair battling in the background as the period ends.
The music of Kilgore's "Walk" blares out as "Mr. Monday Night" Rob Van Damn is making his way out to the ring. He comes out in his usual ring attire. He gets to ringside and finds another steel chair. He makes his way over to where Bret, Shawn and Benoit are. Hart releases the "HartBreaker" and gets up to confront RVD. RVD throws the chair at Hart but Hart catches it. It is, however, a set up as Van Damn executes the "VanDamanator" spin kick on Bret. The blow knocks the chair into Hart's face and the force of it knocks the back of Bret's head into the ringpost!! Meanwhile, Michaels is knocked out from all of the punishment that he has taken and the ref's finally decide to use discretion and get him the hell out of there. Several officials come down to pull Michaels out of the ring. They help him from the ringside area but Michaels is able to walk out on his own somewhat. The fans, out of respect for hanging in there, give Michaels a hand for his efforts. He just took too much punishment. Meanwhile, RVD is punishing the "HitMan" on the outside of the ring with a mixture of karate kicks and punches. He throws Bret back into the ring (he is now busted open as well). RVD, seeing that Bret was still on his back, jumps to the top rope and executes his version of the "Frog Splash" on Bret Hart!! Meanwhile, Benoit, Flair, and Koloff are having a mini "triple-threat" bout in the corner. Koloff knocks Benoit against the ropes and has Flair in the center of the ring. He backs up and runs at Flair with the "Russian Sickle" clothesline!! Flair ducks the blow but Benoit gets it flush in the neck and goes over the top rope and to the floor. Benoit is now gone. Koloff is now off balance as well. Flair takes advantage and dumps Koloff out as well. Koloff is gone. Remaining in the ring right now are Flair, Hart and RVD as the period ends.
It is "The American Dream" Dusty Rhodes!! He comes down with his famous pokadot tights!! He hits the ring and is met by RVD. RVD tries the chair toss trick again but Rhodes quickly tosses it back!! RVD catches it but is set up by his own trap as Rhodes executes his "bionic elbow" on RVD, driving the chair hard into RVD's head!! Meanwhile, Bret Hart has recovered somewhat from the "Frog Splash" and is moving in on RVD. He takes the chair and places it on Van Damn's face. He then mounts the second rope and drives his elbow into the chair, thus nailing the face of RVD!! Meanwhile, two old rivals in Rhodes and Flair hook it up. Rhodes goes to work with the famous left jabs and rapid fire elbows that has a bloody Flair reeling. Flair, showing that he still has his head in the game, pokes Rhodes in the eyes. With Rhodes' momentum stopped for a moment, Flair kicks the bad left knee of Rhodes. Rhodes is now limping. On the other side, RVD and "The HitMan" are really having a fight. Bret does a smart move and takes Van Damn down. He straddles the agile competitor and is hammering him with right hands to the head. RVD reverses field and does the same to Bret. As they get to their feet, Bret goes for a single-leg takedown again on RVD but he counters with an "insiguri" kick that Bret ducks. RVD catches himself on his missed foot and comes back with a leaping side kick that knocks the "HitMan" down!! With Hart prone, RVD sees that Flair has the figure-four leglock on Rhodes. RVD gets the chair, hits the ropes, uses his incredible leaping ability and (with the chair on his chest) executes a splash on Rhodes. This goes on as the period ends.
Coming to the ring now is Steve "Dr. Death" Williams!! He comes down with his old "Oklahoma Sooners" jersey and wrestling tights. He is also bringing a table to the ring!! He hits the ring and confronts Bret Hart, who has made it back up to his feet. Williams puts the table down in the corner and goes to a staredown with "The HitMan." After about 10 seconds, they look over and see Rhodes being double-teamed by RVD and Flair. They decide to get RVD and Flair and worry about each other later. Bret goes for Van Damn while Williams goes for Flair, freeing Rhodes from the figure four. Bret hits RVD with a hard clothesline to knock him down. Hart then takes the table that Williams brought out, drags it to the outside, and sets it up between the ring apron and and the ringside safety rail. As Bret tries to come back into the ring, RVD nails him with a straight kick that knocks Bret onto the table. Seeing opportunity, RVD goes to the second rope on the outside but Bret gets up before RVD can set up. RVD then climbs backwards to the top rope with Bret following him up. They trade blows back and forth with both men teetering towards falling. Bret then throws in a knee to RVD's guts that doubles him over. Bret then hooks in a "superplex" from the very top rope!! They go flying off of the ropes, through the table and to the concrete floor!! The fans are cheering this move that was just done. Many of them are chanting "ECW, ECW!!" with both men laid out on the floor.
ROSS: To quote ECW commentator Joey Styles, I have to say "oh my god!!"
LAWLER: Amen to that JR!!! There is no way these two can continue!! Bret just superplexed Rob Van Damn off of the top rope, through a table and to the concrete floor!! I don't care who you are, you aren't going to continue after that!!
Meanwhile, as that was going on, Williams and Rhodes were struggling along the ropes when the move occurred. Flair, seeing opportunity, reached underneath them and dumped both men over the top rope for a double-elimination. Both Williams and Rhodes are gone!! Right now, however, all of the attention is focused on RVD and Bret Hart. Unbelievably, the two are getting up and back into the ring. They are hurting to be sure, but they are moving!! Even Flair can't believe what he is seeing as the period ends.
We hear "death music" and a shot of fire!! This is signaling the arrival of Kane. Meanwhile, Flair has (mercifully) eliminated RVD and Bret as they do need some medical attention. Flair now looks up the aisleway to see this big giant coming towards the ring. Kane steps over the top rope and stands in the center of the ring with Flair. He then does his usual "fire blasting" effect that brings the lights back on. Kane then goes for a right hand on Flair but Flair gets out of the way and into a corner. Kane then charges in on the "Nature Boy" but Flair moves out of the way again, trying to stay away from the big man. He chops Kane in his chest in the corner about three times but the masked man just looks at him and shoves him back. Flair rushes forward but Kane stops him with a big foot to the face. With Flair down, Kane leaps up to the top rope and waits for Flair to get back to his feet. When Ric gets up, Kane flies off of the top rope with a clothesline on the exhausted Flair (who has been in the ring for about 28 minutes). As the time winds down, Kane awaits for Flair to get up again. He gets Flair by the throat with his massive hand and delivers his chokeslam on Flair just as time ends for another man to come to the ring.
It is former UFC Superfight Champion Ken Shamrock!! He comes down in faded blue jeans, cowboy boots, and no shirt. Kane is about to give Flair the "Tombstone" when Shamrock arrives and gives Kane a chop-block to the left knee. This doesn't take the big man down but it does make him let go of Flair. Kane turns around to confront Shamrock. Shamrock throws some right hands into the face of Kane with some effect but the big man still stands. Kane throws a right hand of his own but Shamrock ducks it. Meanwhile, Flair performs the same move that Shamrock did on Kane's leg. This time, Kane goes down to one knee. The two men are now pounding Kane into the canvas. This strategy works for about 10 seconds until two massive hands reach up and grab the two men by the throat!! Shamrock and Flair respond by kicking Kane low at the same time. This loosens the grip momentarily but Kane stands up again with them in his grasps and delivers a double-chokeslam to Shamrock and Flair. This goes on as the period ends.
Shattered glass and driving guitars mean the arrival of NWA World Champion "Stone Cold" Steve Austin!! He comes down wearing black jean shorts, black tennis shoes, and an "Austin 3:16 Blood Stone" t-shirt driving a Ford pickup truck!! He gets out of the truck and hits the ring. Kane goes for Austin with a clothesline but Austin ducks it and gets in about three right hands. He whips Kane into the ropes but Kane reverses the whip. Austin rebounds off of the ropes with his "Lou Thez" press that takes Kane down and he his peppering him with fists. Austin then gets to his feet and waits for Kane to get up. When Kane does, Austin does his boot to the gut and goes for his "Stone Cold Stunner." Kane shrugs him off and throws him into the ropes. Kane goes for a big foot but Austin ducks it. Kane turns around and gets "stunned" by Austin!! Kane is still up but he is staggared. Austin then goes to eliminate him. Flair and Shamrock get up to help him. The three eliminate Kane from the Rumble!! He is gone!! Now, we have another "triple-threat" match going on as Shamrock, Flair and Austin are going after each other. Both Flair and Shamrock have scores to settle with the texas "rattlesnake" but neither want to share in the glory of kicking Austin's butt. Shamrock throws a right hand to Austin and one to Flair that knocks him down. Shamrock then goes back to Austin and gives him a thunderous belly to belly suplex!! Shamrock then turns Austin over for the anklelock hold. He wouldn't get a submission as submissions don't count here but Shamrock is looking punishment here. Flair takes advantage and kicks Shamrock in the back. He then takes the stunned man and executes a backdrop suplex on him. Ric then backs up on Shamrock and drops the patented knee to the head on him. Flair now sees Austin just coming up to his feet. Flair charges him but Austin dips his shoulder and executes his "Stun Gun" move on Flair, dropping him throat first on the top rope. Flair falls back in on the canvas as the next man is ready to come down.
It is former NWA World Tag Team and United States Champion Wahoo McDaniel. He comes down in his traditional wrestling tights. He hits the ring with both Austin and Shamrock waiting for him. He immediately goes into his wardance and uses his legendary hard chops on both Austin and Shamrock, fighting off both men. Wahoo then takes and rams both Austin's and Shamrock's heads together. Flair now comes in and joins in the fight. He and Wahoo have a virtual "chop-fest" as they trade back and forth on each other. Wahoo gets the upper hand only because he is the fresher of the two (Flair has now been in the ring for about 34 minutes). Wahoo gets Flair down but is caught with a clothesline from Austin. The two texas natives are now into it (Wahoo is originally from Midland, TX). Meanwhile, Shamrock is coming for Flair, trying to eliminate him. The two are now trading punches with each other. Flair, surprisingly, is holding his own against the fresher Shamrock. Shamrock goes for another right hand when Flair ducks and gets in a "nut" kick on him!! Flair quickly gets "The World's Most Dangerous Man" out of there and Shamrock is history!! Flair now sits in the corner and gets his breath as another competitor is coming down.
It is former seven time NWA World Champion Harley Race. He comes down dressed in traditional wrestling gear. He gets to the ring and immediately goes for Flair (who is a battered warrior). He comes in with left hands to the side of the neck of Flair. He then takes Flair down with a snap mare and measures him with his own patented kneedrop to Flair's head. The bleeding that had stopped was now restarting again as Flair began to bleed. Meanwhile, McDaniel went for another chop on Austin but Austin ducked and backdropped him over the top rope and to the floor. McDaniel is history. Race, while that was going on, was trying to get rid of Flair but Austin snuck up behind him and eliminated Race!! Race, barely a minute into this event, is now gone as well. Austin has his arch-rival in a helpless state as he is now kicking the daylights out of Flair. Austin backs up and gives the fans the "Stone Cold Salute." Flair, seeing that it is just himself and Austin in the ring, is energized suddenly and charges at him, taking him down by the legs. Flair quickly straddles Austin and is pounding the head of "Stone Cold." He then gets up to his feet and does his strut yelling "WHOOO" to the Houston, TX crowd!! Austin is dazed but gets up and goes fist for fist with Flair. The two trade punches and chops all over the ring as the next man is getting ready to come down.
The nWo music plays for "Hollywood" Hulk Hogan!! He comes down in his black and white gear. He still bears some of the scars from the "woodshed" whipping that he received at Starrcade: Deadly Unions on his back. He runs to the ring and slides underneath the bottom rope. Meanwhile, Austin had regained the advantage over Flair. Hogan sneaks up behind Austin, takes off his "weightlifting" belt, and lashes Austin with it. He beats Austin down to the canvas with the belt.
LAWLER: You know Hogan has revenge on his mind. Remember, it was Austin that cost Hogan the match at Starrcade in St. Louis, forcing Hogan to kiss the rear end of Shawn Michaels.
ROSS: It was also Austin, along with twenty-seven other superstars, that then proceeded to whip the living daylights out of Hogan as he was handcuffed like an animal to the "Hell In A Cell" cage.
As Ross continues the history lesson, Flair has snuck up behind Hogan and delivers a low-blow to Hogan. Flair the chops at "Hollywood", knocking him back a few steps. Austin now joins in and the two enemies join forces against a man that they hate even more than each other. Austin holds Hogan from behind and Flair gets in some rights and lefts on Hogan with some chops mixed in. Flair returns the favor by holding Hogan as Austin throws in some right hands to the face of "Hollywood." Flair then spins Hogan around and gives him a reverse atomic drop. It is followed by the "Stunner" from Austin!! Austin goes down into his push-up position, shaking his head and talking trash to Hogan. The camera picked up the words:
AUSTIN: Hell yeah you stupid piece of trash!! Your ass is going to wish you were back in Hollywood!!
Austin then gets up and picks up Hogan's legs. He then drops a quick knee into Hogan's nuts!! Austin then goes to the ground and grabs a headlock on Hogan and is peppering him with fists. Meanwhile, Flair has hooked in the figure four on Hogan as Austin gets to his feet and is stomping the crap out of him!! Austin is also yelling to Hogan as he stomps on him:
AUSTIN: Hell yeah you son of a bitch!! How does that figure four feel you bastard!!
Hogan is in too much pain to answer as he is being double-attacked from the two unlikely allies. This continues until the period ends.
We now have former WWF World Champion "Superstar" Billy Graham coming to the ring. He is coming in his traditional attire of tie-dye tights and to the music of "Bad To The Bone." He enters the ring with Austin all over him. Meanwhile, Hogan has freed himself from the figure four leglock by raking the eyes of Flair. He gets up limping but has Flair at a disadvantage. He bodyslams the "Nature Boy" and does his traditional legdrop on him. He goes to the ropes again and does it for a second time. While this is going on, Graham has taken over on the "Rattlesnake" with right hands and a pair of brass knuckles which has busted open Austin. By this time, Hogan has done the legdrop five times on Flair!! He struts around like a peacock that won the lotto or something. Seeing that Austin was down, Graham goes over and attacks Hogan!! "Superstar" uses the brass knucks and is wearing Hogan out with them. He then picks up Hogan and puts him in an over the shoulder backbreaker, trying to squeeze the life out of him as the period ends.
Out comes the nWo's Raven. He comes out to the music that he uses in real life. He makes his way in and sees Hogan in trouble. Raven waits for Graham to turn around in the back breaker, kicks him in the gut (this causes Graham to drop Hogan), and gives him his Evenflow version of the DDT!! He spikes Graham's head into the canvas with it. Hogan and Raven quickly pick up Graham and eliminates him from the Rumble. They now go to work on Austin and Flair. Hogan is on Flair while Raven takes over on a battered Austin. The two nWo members hold the advantage for the rest of the period.
In comes Scott Hall from DX!! He rushes the ring and attacks everybody. He decks Hogan, Flair, Raven and Austin in succession!! He then goes into his famous "Razor Ramon" pose for the fans. Hall then points to Austin's Ford truck that is still at ringside. He then points to Hogan and does his "That's It" sign to a huge roar from the crowd!! He goes and gets Hogan but Raven comes in for the save before Hall even has him in position. Raven then whips Hall into the ropes and goes for a backdrop. Hall stops and hooks his head between his legs! He lifts Raven up for the "Razor's Edge", runs a few steps forward and throws him over the top rope and through Austin's windshield!! This got a huge pop from the crowd!!
ROSS: My lord in heaven, Raven is dead!! He got to be finished after that!!
Indeed it was. Amazingly, Raven was actually moving. Officials came down to get Raven to the back for some medical treatment. The ref's ruled that Raven is officially gone from the Rumble even though he never actually touched the floor. Hall stands over the ropes and laughs sadistically. This gives Austin the opportunity to get him out of the ring as well. Hall is now gone from the contest!!
AUSTIN: That's for f*cking up my truck you asshole!!
Austin yelled this but one could sense he actually enjoyed seeing that, so he probably wasn't as ticked as he wanted people to think. Meanwhile, Flair and Hogan are at it again as the period ends.
Coming to music of "Perfect Strangers" is Shane "The Franchise" Douglas. He comes to the ring and, like Hall, attacks everyone. He especially goes after Flair. Shane whips Flair into the ropes but Flair reverses it and goes for a chop but misses. Shane turns around and gets in a clothesline that sends Flair over the top rope but not out to the floor. Douglas, however, thinks that Flair is gone and turns his back on him. Flair sneaks back in and throws Douglas over the top rope for an elimination!! Douglas is gone!! This trick, though, has Flair exhausted as he slumps in a corner. Douglas, meanwhile, is pissed as he tries to get back in but the refs are making sure that he goes back to the dressing room. Meanwhile, Hogan and Austin have hooked it back up again (the truck, by the way, has been moved from ringside by officials). They are exchanging blows with Hogan getting the better of it. Austin responds by kicking Hogan low!! Hogan falls to a crumpled heap. In the meantime, Flair is getting some rest as the period ends for another contestant to come down.
It is The Junkyard Dog!! He comes down ready for battle but before he gets there, here comes The Rock!! He clotheslines JYD from behind, knocking him down. He then takes JYD's famous chain and is pounding him in the head with it. He then picks up JYD and executes the "Rock Bottom" on the concrete floor on JYD!! Officials are now coming down to get Rocky Maivia out of there but the damage has been done. JYD is out on his back!! Meanwhile, Austin almost has Hogan out of the ring. He makes on last effort and gets him out!! Hogan is gone...or is he? Officals and referees were attending to the JYD so they didn't see the elimination of Hogan!! Austin thinks that Hogan is gone so he goes for Flair. Before he could get a blow in on Flair (who is still down in the corner), Hogan comes in, scoops up Austin and eliminates him. One of the refs does see this and declares Austin gone!! The other refs join him to try to get Austin to leave as the last competitor comes down.
It is The Ultimate Warrior from the nWo!! He comes down in his traditional attire with the nWo colors. He runs to the ring and stands beside Hogan. Flair is now on his feet and looks at what he is facing now!! As the two nWo powers move in, Flair is fighting for his life!! He manages to hold them off for a few seconds but the numbers plus the fatigue is too much!! Warrior executes his gorilla press on Flair. He then turns Flair over on his back and signals to Hogan. Hogan and Warrior hits the ropes and hit their big moves simultaniously (the legdrop from Hogan/the splash from Warrior) on a prone Flair. They then decide it is time to get rid of Flair. What they don't realize is that Austin is still at ringside. They throw Flair into the ropes for a double-clothesline attempt but Flair ducks it. Hogan and Warrior's momentum is great enough to send them into the ropes when they missed this move. Austin, seeing opportunity, pulls down the top rope and both Warrior and Hogan go over it!! The match is over!! "Nature Boy" Ric Flair will go on to WrestleMania to face the WWF World Champion!! Hogan and Warrior are both ticked off at Austin, who has a big smile on his face now as he flips off both of them!! Meanwhile, Flair celebrates in the ring as he survived just over 50+ minutes to win this Royal Rumble event. He leaves to cheers from the Houston crowd as Jim Ross wishes everyone a good night.
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