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Analysis of how crowded the ring was during the 2020 men’s Royal Rumble match

The 2020 men’s Royal Rumble match lasted 60 minutes and 7 seconds (60m 07s).

This text graphic provides 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.

If you add up each wrestler’s survival time, it results in a total survival time of 3h 13m 33s. Given that the match lasted a total of 60m 07s, that comes out to an average of 3.2 competitors in the ring at any given second. That would make this the 36th most crowded Royal Rumble match ever out of all 37 matches. The only match with an emptier ring on average was the 2002 edition.

These numbers have not been adjusted to account for ring absences of active superstars, like when Braun Strowman briefly left the ring to run over Keith Lee. Therefore when I talk about how many superstars were “in the ring” I’m counting all active superstars, whether they are literally inside the ring or not. It does not, however, count a superstar’s time outside the ring prior to initially stepping foot into the ring, like when MVP was chasing Paul Heyman.

Here is a more accurate way to understand how many men were active at any given time. This chart shows the total time that the ring was filled with an exact number of discrete superstars at once.

2020 Men’s Royal Rumble Ring Crowdedness

Active Wrestlers Total Time % of Match Time Cumulative %
Active Wrestlers Total Time % of Match Time Cumulative %
1 14m 52s 24.7 24.7
2 12m 30s 20.8 45.5
3 8m 02s 13.4 58.9
4 7m 39s 12.7 71.6
5 8m 30s 14.1 85.7
6 4m 30s 7.5 93.2
7 3m 03s 5.1 98.3
8 1m 01s 1.7 100.0

The chart above shows that there were 2 or fewer superstars in the ring for a total time of 27m 22s, which is 45.5% of the match. There were 5 or fewer superstars in the ring for 51m 33s, which is 85.7% of the match.

There were more than 6 superstars in the ring for a total time of 4m 04s, which is 6.8% of the match.

Brock Lesnar’s presence dominated the first 26m 23s of the match, and there was an average of 1.8 active competitors at any given second during this time. Lesnar was the only superstar in the ring for 12m 06s of that time, and this includes the time when he was alone while the next superstar was making his entrance. The ring only reached a total of 4 superstars once in that time, and it lasted for 44 seconds when Big E entered the ring to join Kingston and Mysterio.

10 of the 15 men who shared the ring with Lesnar did not last long enough to see the next buzzer. The only five stars who were not eliminated by Lesnar within one waiting interval were Kingston, Mysterio, Lee, Ricochet, and McIntyre.

Once Lesnar was gone at the timestamp 26m 23s, McIntyre kept the ring to a maximum of two superstars until the timestamp 32m 04s. He did this by tossing out Ricochet, quickly eliminating Miz, and then battling it out with AJ Styles until Dolph Ziggler finally became the third active competitor.

The longest time span without eliminations was 9m 34s, between the time stamps of 28m 59s and 38m 33s, bounded by the eliminations of Miz and AJ Styles. The superstars who entered the match during this time were AJ Styles, Dolph Ziggler, Karl Anderson, Edge, and King Corbin.

Karl Anderson joined the match at the timestamp 33m 20s, and the ring held between 4 and 6 superstars from that point until 48m 11s, right before Samoa Joe entered the match. There was an average of 5.0 active competitors at any given second between these two timestamps.

Joe’s entry into the match kicked off that aforementioned period of 4m 04s where the ring had more than 6 superstars. This was the only time the ring had more than 6 superstars. The ring reached its maximum depth of 8 superstars when Seth Rollins joined the battle. That makes the 2020 men’s Royal Rumble only the fourth out of 37 total Royal Rumble matches to never reach a maximum depth of 9 or more superstars. The other Royal Rumbles on that list are 1989, 1990, and 2002.

Backing up to the timestamps between 44m 23s and 45m 16s, there were only four active superstars in the ring, and this included the eventual final four of McIntyre, Edge, Orton, and Reigns. This was right before Owens, Black, Joe, and Rollins entered the match to boost the superstar count up to eight. Those latter four superstars were then all eliminated by the timestamp 54m 45s, which essentially reset the match back to the final four of McIntyre, Edge, Orton, and Reigns. This part of the match existed solely to insert all the players in the Rollins/Owens story, tell the next chapter in their rivalry, and then clear them all from the ring.

When Seth Rollins entered the ring, the match essentially turned into an 8-person Battle Royal to the finish between McIntyre, Edge, Orton, Reigns, Owens, Black, Joe, and Rollins.

This final segment of the 2020 men’s Royal Rumble match lasted 9m 22s, and at that point Drew McIntyre emerged as the winner.

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