The 2000 Royal Rumble match lasted 51 minutes and 51 seconds (51m 51s). This match featured a controversial finish where the Rock was officially determined to be the winner but later replays provided evidence that Big Show was screwed.
This text graphic captures much of the information discussed below. It gives time stamps for each superstar's arrival and exit from the match, as well as showing who the longest lasting superstars were as the match progressed.
For comparison's sake, here are other versions of this graphic for Royal Rumble matches from 1988, 1992, 2003, 2007, 2011, and 2013.
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 2000 Royal Rumble match was 9m 24s and the median survival time was 8m 41s.
Here is the full list of survival times for all 30 superstars:
- 26m 18s: Test
- 23m 20s: Gangrel
- 22m 48s: Big Boss Man
- 19m 04s: Road Dogg
- 17m 18s: Al Snow
- 16m 24s: Rikishi
- 15m 22s: British Bulldog
- 14m 55s: Crash Holly
- 14m 49s: Edge
- 14m 46s: The Rock
- 11m 48s: Val Venis
- 11m 48s: Hardcore Holly
- 11m 23s: Prince Albert
- 11m 06s: Big Show
- 9m 39s: Mr. Ass
- 7m 43s: Grand Master Sexay
- 6m 12s: Kane
- 6m 10s: D-Lo Brown
- 3m 47s: Chris Jericho
- 3m 38s: Mosh
- 3m 32s: X-Pac
- 2m 09s: Christian
- 2m 00s: Bob Backlund
- 1m 33s: The Godfather
- 1m 26s: Viscera
- 1m 02s: Scotty 2 Hotty
- 0m 45s: Steve Blackman
- 0m 38s: Chyna
- 0m 25s: Bradshaw
- 0m 17s: Faarooq
Kaientai and the Mean Street Posse each had multiple run-ins during the course of this match and were tossed out of the ring a few times. They were not official competitors in the match and so I have chosen to ignore them in these results.
The Mean Street Posse’s interference played a significant role in both members of the APA ending up with such short survival times.
Test, Gangrel, and Big Boss Man as the top 3 candidates for Iron Man seems to lack the big upper card name that usually appears in that position.
The Active Iron Man is the wrestler in the ring with the highest current survival time. This title was passed around many times throughout the 2000 Royal Rumble match, and here is a list of how long each man lasted as the Active Iron Man:
- 15m 44s: Big Boss Man
- 13m 46s: Rikishi
- 7m 43s: Grand Master Sexay
- 7m 16s: Road Dogg
- 6m 10s: D-Lo Brown (this time completely coincides with Sexay’s time)
- 3m 43s: The Rock
- 3m 34s: Test
- 0m 05s: Gangrel
Scotty 2 Hotty has certainly had an exciting run of bad fortune during his various Royal Rumble appearances. In 2000, Rikishi turned on him during a friendly dance sequence and this led to his elimination. In 2001, the Undertaker and Kane were tentatively united and had the ring to themselves when Scotty entered the match; Scotty was predictably annihilated by the Brothers of Destruction. In 2002, Scotty was attacked during his entrance by an angry Undertaker who was just eliminated by Maven. And in 2005, Scotty was attacked again during his entrance by the frustrated Muhammad Hassan.
X-Pac was initially eliminated by the Rock, but the referees never saw it because they were distracted outside the ring by a brawl between Kane and the New Age Outlaws. Therefore X-Pac wisely ran back into the ring and continued to fight. If X-Pac’s clock was stopped at the point when he was unofficially eliminated by the Rock, his survival time would have been 1m 47s instead of 3m 32s.
The final bell to signify the end of the match did not ring until about 2 seconds after the Big Show was eliminated, so I added these two seconds onto the survival time for the Rock.
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 (D-Lo, Sexay) are excluded because their entrances took place prior to the start of the match.
- 2m 12s: Big Boss Man
- 1m 10s: The Godfather
- 0m 35s: Test
- 0m 29s: Big Show
- 0m 23s: Kane
- 0m 19s: Gangrel, X-Pac, Backlund
- 0m 18s: Viscera
- 0m 15s: Chyna
- 0m 13s: Chris Jericho
- 0m 12s: Edge, Rock, Faarooq
- 0m 11s: Rikishi, Crash, Hardcore, Bradshaw
- 0m 09s: Christian
- 0m 07s: Mosh
- 0m 06s: Snow, Venis, Mr. Ass, Scotty 2 Hotty
- 0m 05s: Road Dogg, Bulldog, Blackman
- 0m 04s: Prince Albert
Big Boss Man made his entrance at a time when Rikishi dominated the ring and eliminated each new entrant as they entered the ring. Therefore Big Boss Man took the cowardly way out and spent his entire waiting period teasing that he would enter the ring but never actually doing it. The next entrant (Test) had to come out and finally toss Boss Man into the ring, and this happened approximately 2m 12s after Boss Man’s entrance buzzer sounded.
Nothing unusual happened during Godfather’s entrance, he just took his time walking around the ring with his Ho Train before finally entering the ring.
The entrance path to the ring at Madison Square Garden appeared to be physically shorter than in other arenas, and therefore quite a few superstars made it to the ring in under 7 seconds.
These numbers add up to about 8m 20s of total entrance time out of the entire 51m 51s match. That means that for about 16.1% of the match, at least one superstar was in the midst of his entrance. If Boss Man’s entrance is magically reduced to 0m 20s, which is how long it initially took him to tease entering the ring for the first time, then this percentage would drop to 13.5%.
Follow The Buzzers
Jim Ross stated that there would be 90-second waiting intervals between each entrant. How well did WWE stick to that claim? Here are the waiting times between all 28 buzzers, in chronological order:
- 1m 34s: Buzzer 1 - Mosh
- 1m 41s: Buzzer 2 - Christian
- 1m 39s: Buzzer 3 - Rikishi
- 1m 41s: Buzzer 4 - Scotty 2 Hotty
- 2m 03s: Buzzer 5 - Steve Blackman
- 1m 36s: Buzzer 6 - Viscera
- 1m 59s: Buzzer 7 - Big Boss Man
- 1m 41s: Buzzer 8 - Test
- 1m 32s: Buzzer 9 - British Bulldog
- 1m 47s: Buzzer 10 - Gangrel
- 1m 43s: Buzzer 11 - Edge
- 1m 50s: Buzzer 12 - Bob Backlund
- 1m 52s: Buzzer 13 - Chris Jericho
- 1m 40s: Buzzer 14 - Crash Holly
- 1m 31s: Buzzer 15 - Chyna
- 1m 37s: Buzzer 16 - Faarooq
- 1m 33s: Buzzer 17 - Road Dogg
- 1m 32s: Buzzer 18 - Al Snow
- 1m 38s: Buzzer 19 - Val Venis
- 1m 39s: Buzzer 20 - Prince Albert
- 1m 32s: Buzzer 21 - Hardcore Holly
- 1m 33s: Buzzer 22 - The Rock
- 1m 42s: Buzzer 23 - Mr. Ass
- 1m 39s: Buzzer 24 - Big Show
- 1m 30s: Buzzer 25 - Bradshaw
- 1m 45s: Buzzer 26 - Kane
- 1m 32s: Buzzer 27 - The Godfather
- 1m 35s: Buzzer 28 - X-Pac
10 of the 28 waiting periods fell within 5 seconds of the 90-second goal.
The average waiting period was 1m 40s and the median time was 1m 39s.
In a perfectly timed match, the final buzzer (signaling X-Pac's entrance) would have gone off 42m 00s after the start of the match. In reality, this buzzer went off at 46m 36s.
Howard Finkel actually said that there would be “regularly scheduled intervals of 2 minutes or less,” but then on commentary Jim Ross stated that there would be 90-seconds between entrants. Finkel’s claim is somewhat ambiguous when trying to pinpoint an exact waiting time between each buzzer, and the data above generally reflects that Jim Ross’s claim of 90 seconds could be accurate. However, Finkel’s claim introduces the possibility that WWE was planning on variable length waiting periods rather than a fixed waiting interval between buzzers.
Four different waiting periods lasted 1m 50s or longer:
The longest waiting period lasted 2m 03s and this was when Scotty 2 Hotty joined his buddies Rikishi and Grand Master Sexay to dance together, before Rikishi eliminated both of them.
The next longest waiting period lasted 1m 59s and featured a one-on-one battle between Rikishi and Viscera, which ended with Viscera’s elimination. WWE’s official clock began to count down from 10 once Viscera was eliminated.
The 1m 52s waiting period between Buzzers 12 and 13 included a surprise entrance from Bob Backlund as well as everyone in the ring teaming up to eliminate Rikishi from the match.
The waiting period between Buzzers 11 and 12 lasted 1m 50s and included Edge’s entrance into the match. Nothing really stands out about this waiting period to explain its length.
11 waiting periods lasted between 1m 39s and 1m 47s. This could perhaps give credence to Finkel’s implication that waiting periods might have variable lengths. But differences like this have been observed in many Royal Rumble matches so it’s difficult to know if this was intentional from the start or if WWE was having issues sticking to a 90-second clock.
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 4h 42m 04s. Given that the match lasted a total of 51m 51s, that comes out to an average of 5.4 competitors in the ring at any given second.
Here is a more accurate way to understand how many men were in the ring at any given time. This chart shows the total time that the ring was filled with an exact number of discrete superstars at once.
2000 Royal Rumble Ring Crowdedness
|Active Wrestlers||Total Time||% of Match Time||Cumulative %|
|Active Wrestlers||Total Time||% of Match Time||Cumulative %|
This match essentially had two different periods of ring crowdedness. The early portion of the match was dominated by Rikishi owning the ring. From the beginning of the match until the time stamp 21m 29s (Rikishi’s elimination), the ring averaged 3.1 competitors at any given second.
A period of 9m 31s with no eliminations occurred right before Rikishi’s departure, and this was the longest stretch of time in the match without an elimination. The following superstars all joined the match during this time: Boss Man, Test, Bulldog, Gangrel, Edge, and Backlund.
Once Rikishi was eliminated at 21m 29s, the ring never had fewer than 6 superstars until 48m 08s, during the final portion of the match when all entrants were revealed.
From 21m 29s through the end of the match, the ring averaged 7.1 superstars at any given second.
The ring reached peak crowdedness between 35m 31s and 40m 52s; there were always 9 or 10 superstars in the ring during this time. The Rock and Big Show were among the superstars who joined the fray during this time.
Bradshaw entered the ring at 41m 55s and was the 9th man in the ring at that time. However all three members of the Mean Street Posse immediately followed him into the ring, so it could be argued that there were 12 men in the ring and that this point represented peak crowdedness. I am ignoring the Mean Street Posse in the numerical results because I only want to deal with official participants. Bradshaw went on to unofficially eliminate all three of them before being tossed out by the New Age Outlaws.
End of the Match
Once X-Pac entered the ring, the match essentially turned into a 9-man Battle Royal to the finish between Road Dogg, Al Snow, Hardcore Holly, Rock, Mr. Ass, Big Show, Kane, Godfather, and X-Pac.
This final segment of the 2000 Royal Rumble match lasted 4m 56s, and at that point the Rock emerged as the winner of the match.
That's all you need to know about the timing of the 2000 Royal Rumble match. Which numbers do you find to be the most interesting?
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