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.
The survival time for a superstar is the time that lapses between the point when he steps foot into the ring and the time that his 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 2020 men’s Royal Rumble match was 6m 27s and the median survival time was 3m 21s.
Here is the full list of survival times for all 30 superstars:
- 34m 11s: Drew McIntyre
- 26m 23s: Brock Lesnar
- 23m 43s: Edge
- 16m 01s: Roman Reigns
- 14m 37s: Randy Orton
- 12m 19s: Dolph Ziggler
- 9m 45s: Karl Anderson
- 7m 49s: AJ Styles
- 6m 59s: Kevin Owens
- 5m 07s: Kofi Kingston
- 5m 06s: Aleister Black
- 4m 25s: Samoa Joe
- 4m 06s: King Corbin
- 4m 00s: Seth Rollins
- 3m 32s: Keith Lee
- 3m 09s: Ricochet
- 2m 54s: Rey Mysterio
- 2m 00s: Luke Gallows
- 1m 49s: Braun Strowman
- 1m 00s: Elias
- 0m 53s: Big E
- 0m 41s: Robert Roode
- 0m 41s: Matt Riddle
- 0m 36s: Shelton Benjamin
- 0m 30s: The Miz
- 0m 23s: MVP
- 0m 20s: Shinsuke Nakamura
- 0m 18s: Cesaro
- 0m 08s: John Morrison
- 0m 08s: Erick Rowan
Every listed time above should be viewed with a margin of error of about two seconds or so.
11 superstars failed to survive for more than one minute, mostly thanks to Brock Lesnar.
Cesaro and Shinsuke Nakamura combined to survive for 0m 38s.
Karl Anderson finished with the 7th highest survival time.
Only four superstars survived for at least 15 minutes. The last time that happened was in 2015.
You have to go back to the 2010 Royal Rumble to find a recent one with shorter average and median survival times than this one.
You can find information on the elimination order here.
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 (Lesnar, Elias) are excluded because their entrances took place prior to the start of the match.
- 1m 21s: Seth Rollins
- 1m 09s: MVP
- 1m 01s: Edge
- 0m 50s: Keith Lee
- 0m 48s: AJ Styles
- 0m 47s: Shelton Benjamin
- 0m 45s: Robert Roode
- 0m 41s: Matt Riddle
- 0m 39s: John Morrison
- 0m 38s: Shinsuke Nakamura
- 0m 37s: Drew McIntyre
- 0m 33s: Roman Reigns
- 0m 32s: Rowan, Big E
- 0m 30s: Mysterio, Miz
- 0m 26s: Kingston, Orton
- 0m 25s: Braun Strowman
- 0m 24s: Dolph Ziggler
- 0m 23s: Luke Gallows
- 0m 20s: King Corbin
- 0m 18s: Ricochet
- 0m 17s: Owens, Black, Joe
- 0m 15s: Cesaro
- 0m 12s: Karl Anderson
The way I record this data is that the entrance time ends when the survival time begins. WWE sometimes makes things complicated by having an angle take place during a superstar’s entrance that prevents them from entering the ring for a while (like Lana or Billie Kay from 2019), which can result in entrance times that seep into the next waiting period. Nothing of the sort happened in this Royal Rumble match.
Seth Rollins did spend some time giving out orders to his troops, and being attacked by the babyfaces before he ever entered the ring. That all counted as part of Rollins’ entrance time, which helps to explain why it lasted 1m 21s.
It’s pretty clear why Edge’s entrance was among the longest of the match, considering this was his first match in almost nine years.
MVP decided to chase Paul Heyman around the ring for a little bit before Lesnar pulled him into the ring, so that counted as part of his entrance time.
It’s interesting that the three babyfaces (Owens, Joe, Black) who entered towards the very end of the match, and were all involved in the Rollins angle, each had identical entrance times of just 0m 17s.
The median entrance time was 0m 31s. I haven’t done any kind of analysis on this, but my best guess is that these stadium shows have longer entrances because there is more physical distance for superstars to traverse on their way to the ring, compared to a regular arena.
These entrance times add up to 15m 53s, which means that a superstar was in the midst of his entrance for approximately 26.4% of the match.
Follow the Buzzers
WWE stated that there would be 90-second waiting intervals between each entrant in the 2020 men’s Royal Rumble match. How well did WWE stick to that claim? Here are the waiting times between all 28 buzzers, in chronological order:
- 1m 33s: Buzzer 1 - Rowan
- 1m 29s: Buzzer 2 - Robert Roode
- 1m 51s: Buzzer 3 - John Morrison
- 1m 49s: Buzzer 4 - Kofi Kingston
- 1m 32s: Buzzer 5 - Rey Mysterio
- 2m 08s: Buzzer 6 - Big E
- 2m 09s: Buzzer 7 - Cesaro
- 1m 25s: Buzzer 8 - Shelton Benjamin
- 1m 52s: Buzzer 9 - Shinsuke Nakamura
- 1m 45s: Buzzer 10 - MVP
- 1m 50s: Buzzer 11 - Keith Lee
- 2m 08s: Buzzer 12 - Braun Strowman
- 2m 30s: Buzzer 13 - Ricochet
- 1m 18s: Buzzer 14 - Drew McIntyre
- 2m 40s: Buzzer 15 - The Miz
- 1m 57s: Buzzer 16 - AJ Styles
- 1m 44s: Buzzer 17 - Dolph Ziggler
- 1m 28s: Buzzer 18 - Karl Anderson
- 1m 38s: Buzzer 19 - Edge
- 2m 23s: Buzzer 20 - King Corbin
- 1m 46s: Buzzer 21 - Matt Riddle
- 1m 46s: Buzzer 22 - Luke Gallows
- 1m 35s: Buzzer 23 - Randy Orton
- 1m 17s: Buzzer 24 - Roman Reigns
- 1m 26s: Buzzer 25 - Kevin Owens
- 1m 24s: Buzzer 26 - Aleister Black
- 1m 31s: Buzzer 27 - Samoa Joe
- 1m 30s: Buzzer 28 - Seth Rollins
Only nine of the 28 waiting periods fell within 5 seconds of the 90-second goal. 11 of the 28 waiting periods came within 10 seconds of the 90-second goal.
The average waiting period was 1m 46s, and the median time was between 1m 44s and 1m 45s.
Six of the waiting periods lasted longer than two full minutes, so here is some context behind those intervals.
The first two such waiting periods occurred consecutively, during the periods when Rey Mysterio and Big E joined the match. Kofi Kingston was already in the ring when Mysterio entered the match in the first of these periods, and the time was extended until both Rey and Kofi were beaten up and rolling out of the ring to regroup. The latter period then saw Big E make his entrance, and the three babyfaces teamed up to try taking Brock out. The waiting period was extended until Lesnar tossed out all three superstars and cleared the ring once again. That’s when the countdown clock to Cesaro’s entrance began ticking down from 10.
The next two waiting periods of greater than two minutes in length also occurred consecutively. This included the entrances of Keith Lee and Braun Strowman into the match. The first of these periods included a 50 second entrance from Lee, and was extended to culminate with a double clothesline spot. The latter period was extended to allow Lesnar time to once again clear the ring of Lee and Strowman.
Those two periods were followed by one of the shortest intervals (1m 18s) of the match, which saw Ricochet enter the match and get dropped with a backbreaker and german suplex. Ricochet needed to lay there in the corner for the eventual nut shot that he would deliver to Brock in the following waiting period, so I guess they jumped the clock a bit to get McIntyre out there for that spot.
McIntyre’s waiting period then clocked in at 2m 40s, which was the longest of the match. This was the turning point of the match and was used for Lesnar’s elimination, Ricochet’s elimination, and an extended staredown between McIntyre and Lesnar.
The final waiting period that went longer than two minutes was the one that saw Edge return to active competition in WWE. This included his dramatic entrance and a barrage of spears.
The final five waiting periods of the match stayed very close to or under the 90 second mark. Perhaps they were just loading the ring up for the chaos that would ensue once Rollins and his gang joined the match.
The shortest interval of the match lasted 1m 17s, and this is when Randy Orton entered the match. It seemed strange that Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson were still in the ring, and this is when they were disposed of by Edge and Orton. Orton’s entrance (26 seconds) was faster than I expected, in fact he even ran or jogged for the last few seconds. Then he nailed a few RKOs, the Good Brothers were eliminated, and Randy exchanged a few words with Edge.
The median entrance time in this match was 31 seconds, which makes up a substantial part of the 90 second waiting interval. This might help explain why there weren’t far shorter intervals during Lesnar’s time in the ring, because lengthy slow entrances could have delayed the inevitable for a wrestler walking to certain doom. For example, MVP’s waiting period included his 69 second entrance. Bobby Roode’s entrance was 45 seconds, Shelton Benjamin’s was 47 seconds, Morrison’s was 39 seconds, and Nakamura’s was 38 seconds.
Lesnar and Heyman did pad some time by occasionally parading around the WWE championship when the ring was empty.
In a perfectly timed match, the final buzzer (signaling Rollins’ entrance) would have gone off 42m 00s after the start of the match. In reality, this buzzer went off at 49m 24s. That means the match was extended roughly seven or eight minutes due to inaccurately timed waiting periods.
Overall, WWE’s claim that the buzzer would ring every 90 seconds was mostly inaccurate.
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 %|
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.
End of the Match
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.
That’s all you need to know about the timing of the 2020 men’s Royal Rumble match. Which numbers do you find to be the most interesting?
Previous Royal Rumble analyses: