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Greatest Royal Rumble moments, No. 14: Roman Reigns sets the new elimination record

The build to the current Roman we all know and love started two years ago, with one historic night.

In the lead up to this year's Royal Rumble, we'll be counting down the 20 greatest moments in the history of WWE's most famous match. This list was determined by a panel that included myself, Geno Mrosko and Sean Rueter. We tried to keep it diverse, with a mix of comedy, emotion, story, and wrestling.

The handsome prince enters the history books

In hindsight, WWE sort of got the Roman Reigns push right all along. It all started with how amazing The Shield was, of course, but Roman's rise to the top of the card was ignited at the 2014 Royal Rumble. Reigns eliminated 12 competitors in one Rumble match, establishing a new record.

He didn't win the whole thing and his performance sort of took a back seat to the fan revolt over the lack of Daniel Bryan. But this performance makes our greatest Rumble moments list over Kane's longstanding record for a couple of reasons:

1. It's really cool
2. Kane's record of 11 was never once played up during the 2001 Royal Rumble. It only really became an important record over time. Thus, it really only existed in retrospect, as a record meant to be broken.

It's fun to go back and watch Reigns' performance in the 2014 Rumble. He was in top form and it's pretty cool how the booking took care to make sure he could get sole credit for all of the eliminations he racked up. It's also fun to watch it (knowing that everything worked out just fine) in the context of the fan revolt. The crowd rallying behind him at the end by sheer virtue of him not being Batista is pretty incredible.

A year before he won the Rumble "too soon," he made his mark on one of the most beloved matches of the year. If you haven't seen it in a while, do yourself a favor and check out the match again. It's fascinating for a whole bunch of reasons.

Find previous greatest Royal Rumble moments here.

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