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Match Times: The 1992 Royal Rumble Match

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Here is a full breakdown of the timing for the 1992 Royal Rumble match.

WWE.com

The 1992 Royal Rumble match lasted for 1 hour 2 minutes and 2 seconds (1h 02m 02s). This particular Rumble match is most well known for Ric Flair's WWF Championship victory. This post includes all of the important numbers you need to know about the timing of the match.

Here is a text graphic that displays much of the information discussed below, including a chronological listing of who the longest lasting men were at any given point in the match. The graphic provides a quick visual way to understand which wrestlers dominated the 1992 Royal Rumble match as time progressed, as well as seeing how crowded the ring was at any given point. And if you really want to dig deeper, the graphic also includes time stamps for when each wrestler stepped foot into the ring as well as time stamps for each wrestler's elimination.

For comparison's sake, here are other versions of this graphic for Royal Rumble matches from 1988, 1999 (version 1, version 2), 2003, 2007, 2011, and 2013.

Survival Times

My definition of the Survival Time for a superstar is the time that lapses between the point when a superstar steps foot into the ring and the time that the superstar's feet hit the floor to signal elimination. This does not include the time it takes for a superstar to make his way from the entrance ramp down to the actual ring.

The average superstar survival time for the 1992 Royal Rumble match was 11m 30s and the median survival time was 8m 15s. If you remove the iron man Ric Flair from consideration, the average survival time for the other 29 superstars decreases to 9m 51s.

Here is the full list of survival times for all 30 superstars.

  • 59m 31s: Ric Flair
  • 34m 08s: Rowdy Roddy Piper
  • 27m 03s: Irwin R. Schyster
  • 23m 37s: The British Bulldog
  • 22m 27s: Macho Man Randy Savage
  • 20m 47s: Hacksaw Jim Duggan
  • 15m 48s: Shawn Michaels
  • 13m 56s: El Matador Tito Santana
  • 13m 52s: The Undertaker
  • 12m 57s: The Barbarian
  • 12m 39s: Rick Martel
  • 11m 30s: Hulk Hogan
  • 10m 56s: Jake The Snake Roberts
  • 9m 21s: The Texas Tornado
  • 9m 00s: The Berzerker
  • 7m 30s: Virgil
  • 6m 26s: Repo Man
  • 5m 56s: Sid Justice
  • 4m 37s: Sgt. Slaughter
  • 4m 14s: Greg The Hammer Valentine
  • 3m 38s: Big Boss Man
  • 2m 36s: Col. Mustafa (The Iron Sheik)
  • 2m 28s: Jimmy Superfly Snuka
  • 2m 13s: Skinner
  • 1m 52s: Haku
  • 1m 43s: The Warlord
  • 1m 19s: The Million Dollar Man Ted DiBiase
  • 1m 05s: Nasty Boy Jerry Sags
  • 1m 04s: Nikolai Volkoff
  • 0m 56s: Hercules Hernandez

Entrance Times

Here are the entrance times for each superstar involved. This is the amount of time that passed between an entrance buzzer going off and when the superstar finally stepped foot into the actual ring. The first two entrants (British Bulldog and Ted DiBiase) are excluded because their entrances took place prior to the start of the match.

There are many short times listed here, so this is more for fun than anything that should be looked at as hard fact. Due to my own timing margin of error and the fact that it can be very tricky to determine entrance boundaries in some cases (for example, the camera completely missed Texas Tornado stepping foot into the ring), the difference between a 0m 10s entrance and a 0m 11s might be completely negligible.

  • 0m 42s: Ric Flair
  • 0m 39s: The Undertaker
  • 0m 32s: The Warlord
  • 0m 25s: Repo Man
  • 0m 23s: Jerry Sags, IRS, Sgt. Slaughter
  • 0m 21s: Col. Mustafa
  • 0m 20s: Jimmy Snuka
  • 0m 19s: Texas Tornado
  • 0m 18s: Hacksaw Jim Duggan
  • 0m 17s: The Berzerker
  • 0m 15s: Shawn Michaels
  • 0m 14s: Nikolai Volkoff
  • 0m 13s: Jake Roberts
  • 0m 12s: The Barbarian
  • 0m 11s: Hercules, Skinner
  • 0m 10s: Haku, Piper, Hogan, Justice
  • 0m 08s: Santana, Valentine
  • 0m 07s: Savage, Virgil, Martel
  • 0m 06s: Big Boss Man

Time Between Buzzers

Gorilla Monsoon stated that there would be two minutes between entrants. How well did WWF stick to that claim? Here are the waiting times between all 28 buzzers, in chronological order:

  • 1m 49s: Buzzer 1 - Ric Flair
  • 2m 08s: Buzzer 2 - Jerry Sags
  • 2m 01s: Buzzer 3 - Haku
  • 2m 06s: Buzzer 4 - Shawn Michaels
  • 1m 59s: Buzzer 5 - Tito Santana
  • 2m 02s: Buzzer 6 - The Barbarian
  • 2m 02s: Buzzer 7 - Texas Tornado
  • 2m 00s: Buzzer 8 - The Repo Man
  • 2m 01s: Buzzer 9 - Greg Valentine
  • 2m 01s: Buzzer 10 - Nikolai Volkoff
  • 2m 00s: Buzzer 11 - Big Boss Man
  • 2m 01s: Buzzer 12 - Hercules
  • 2m 11s: Buzzer 13 - Roddy Piper
  • 2m 00s: Buzzer 14 - Jake Roberts
  • 2m 02s: Buzzer 15 - Jim Duggan
  • 2m 01s: Buzzer 16 - IRS
  • 2m 01s: Buzzer 17 - Jimmy Snuka
  • 2m 02s: Buzzer 18 - The Undertaker
  • 2m 01s: Buzzer 19 - Randy Savage
  • 3m 21s: Buzzer 20 - The Berzerker
  • 2m 02s: Buzzer 21 - Virgil
  • 2m 00s: Buzzer 22 - Col. Mustafa
  • 2m 01s: Buzzer 23 - Rick Martel
  • 2m 00s: Buzzer 24 - Hulk Hogan
  • 2m 01s: Buzzer 25 - Skinner
  • 2m 03s: Buzzer 26 - Sgt. Slaughter
  • 2m 00s: Buzzer 27 - Sid Justice
  • 2m 03s: Buzzer 28 - The Warlord

WWF did a really excellent job of sticking to the promise of two-minute intervals.

There was one extreme outlier though, as it took 3m 21s for buzzers between Savage and Berzerker. There was a major ongoing story between Savage and Jake Roberts, as Savage immediately darted to the ring to gain revenge on Jake, who slapped Elizabeth in the face on a previous show. During this 3m 21s interval, Savage eliminated Roberts from the ring and then continued to beat on him even after the elimination occurred.

My best guess is that WWF wanted this entire story to play out uninterrupted, and so the interval was extended.

Ring Crowdedness

I also wanted to take a look at how the ring filled up with superstars as the match progressed. If you add up each wrestler's survival time, it results in a total survival time of 5h 45m 09s. Given that the match lasted a total of 1h 02m 02s, that comes out to an average of 5.6 competitors in the ring at any given second.

Here is a better way to understand how many men were in the ring at any given time. This table shows the total time that the ring was filled with an exact number of discrete superstars at once:

Active Wrestlers Total Time Percentage of Match Time Cumulative Percentage
1 1m 50s 3.0 3.0
2 7m 19s 11.8 14.8
3 7m 43s 12.4 27.2
4 5m 28s 8.8 36.0
5 4m 28s 7.2 43.2
6 9m 37s 15.5 58.7
7 9m 41s 15.6 74.3
8 9m 18s 15.0 89.3
9 4m 53s 7.9 97.2
10 1m 45s 2.8 100.0

The longest time clusters occur around 6 to 8 superstars, and then between 2 to 3 superstars.

This Rumble also featured two separate moments where only one man was legal in the match. British Bulldog eliminated Ted DiBiase at the 1m 19s mark and was by himself in the ring until the third entrant (Flair) entered the ring at 2m 31s.

Later on at the 25m 53s point of the match, Ric Flair was the lone man in the ring after Big Boss Man's elimination. Flair had the ring to himself until 26m 31s, when the 15th entrant (Piper) stepped foot into the ring.

It seems that this Rumble may have been booked with two separate parts in mind, with Piper's entrance into the match signifying the start of the second part of the match.

Miscellaneous Notes

There was a unique moment in the match near 47m 10s when Randy Savage eliminated his nemesis Jake Roberts from the match but then continued to pursue Roberts outside of the ring. However, Randy Savage intentionally jumped over the top rope and both of his feet hit the floor at 47m 12s while he was engaging in this enraged pursuit of Roberts.

By recent Royal Rumble standards this would be a clear elimination. Gorilla Monsoon and Bobby Heenan were also initially stating that Savage made a huge mistake by eliminating himself. Savage briefly engaged in a scuffle with The Undertaker on the outside of the ring before finally rolling back into the ring and continuing his Rumble time. Gorilla explained that an opponent must propel a superstar over the top rope to be eliminated (implying that a superstar cannot simply eliminate himself without being touched by another superstar)

However, Gorilla and Heenan didn't say a word earlier at the 33m 33s mark of the match when Big Boss Man lunged in mid air at Ric Flair and missed, essentially eliminating himself. Flair ducked and Boss Man ended up going over the top rope, untouched by Flair or anybody else. This would seem to indicate that Randy Savage was probably not supposed to jump over the top rope later on in the match, and the announcers were covering for his blunder.

One other noteworthy feature in this match was the prevalence of simultaneous eliminations. Michaels and Santana threw each other out of the ring at the 31m 47s mark, Duggan and Virgil threw each other out of the ring at the 59m 08s mark, and Sid tossed out both Piper and Martel at the same time, though I have Martel's feet hitting the floor at 1h 08m 18s and Piper's feet hitting the floor at 1h 08m 19s. It was a really close call though and was essentially my best guess.

That's all you need to know about the timing of the 1992 Royal Rumble match. Which numbers do you find to be the most interesting?