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Did the waiting intervals actually last 90 seconds in the 2021 women’s Royal Rumble match?

WWE stated that there would be 90-second waiting intervals between each entrant in the 2021 women’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 36s: Buzzer 1 - Bianca Belair
  • 1m 41s: Buzzer 2 - Billie Kay
  • 1m 38s: Buzzer 3 - Shotzi Blackheart
  • 1m 49s: Buzzer 4 - Shayna Baszler
  • 1m 29s: Buzzer 5 - Toni Storm
  • 1m 38s: Buzzer 6 - Jillian Hall
  • 1m 34s: Buzzer 7 - Ruby Riott
  • 1m 31s: Buzzer 8 - Victoria
  • 1m 38s: Buzzer 9 - Peyton Royce
  • 1m 30s: Buzzer 10 - Santana Garrett
  • 1m 31s: Buzzer 11 - Liv Morgan
  • 1m 39s: Buzzer 12 - Rhea Ripley
  • 2m 00s: Buzzer 13 - Charlotte Flair
  • 1m 40s: Buzzer 14 - Dana Brooke
  • 1m 47s: Buzzer 15 - Torrie Wilson
  • 1m 57s: Buzzer 16 - Lacey Evans
  • 2m 36s: Buzzer 17 - Mickie James
  • 1m 57s: Buzzer 18 - Nikki Cross
  • 1m 32s: Buzzer 19 - Alicia Fox
  • 1m 16s: Buzzer 20 - Mandy Rose
  • 1m 42s: Buzzer 21 - Dakota Kai
  • 1m 54s: Buzzer 22 - Carmella
  • 1m 36s: Buzzer 23 - Tamina
  • 2m 19s: Buzzer 24 - Lana
  • 1m 48s: Buzzer 25 - Alexa Bliss
  • 1m 49s: Buzzer 26 - Ember Moon
  • 1m 26s: Buzzer 27 - Nia Jax
  • 3m 27s: Buzzer 28 - Natalya

Seven of the 28 waiting periods fell within 5 seconds of the 90-second goal. 14 of the 28 waiting periods came within 10 seconds of the 90-second goal.

The average waiting period was 1m 47s, and the median time was between 1m 39s and 1m 40s.

Six of the waiting periods lasted at least 1m 55s, so here is some context behind those intervals, in chronological order:

  • The waiting period between Rhea Ripley and Charlotte Flair lasted 2m 00s. Ripley entered the ring and got some time to shine. Three women were eliminated during this interval - Toni Storm, Victoria, and Santana Garrett. As soon as Garrett’s body touched the floor, the countdown clock began ticking down from 10.
  • The waiting period between Torrie Wilson and Lacey Evans lasted 1m 57s. Torrie entered a crowded ring and attacked several different wrestlers one-by-one. This period ended with Ripley’s brutal apron powerbomb elimination of Dana Brooke. The countdown clock began ticking down from 10 right after that happened.
  • The next waiting period lasted 2m 36s. Ric Flair first came out, and then Lacey Evans followed in a slow walk entrance that lasted over a minute. Charlotte proceeded to beat the hell out of Evans and her robe. Peyton Royce and Torrie Wilson were then eliminated as the period came to a close. You could also see Bayley being tossed out of the ring in the distance, but the commentators had yet to bring this to the attention of the viewer. Torrie and Bayley were actually eliminated while the 10 second clock was ticking down.
  • This was followed by a waiting period that lasted 1m 57s, where Mickie James entered the match. A replay of Bayley’s elimination was shown, along with commentators trying to clear up any confusion. Mickie and Charlotte then had an extended one-on-one sequence for the remainder of the period.
  • The waiting period between Tamina and Lana lasted 2m 19s. This included Tamina attacking Reginald during her entrance, leading to Carmella’s elimination. The period then featured the tandem elimination save spot with Naomi and Bianca Belair.
  • The final waiting period of the match lasted a whopping 3m 27s. It began with Nia Jax entering the match, and it included her full 2m 43s survival time. She teamed up with Shayna Baszler to eliminate Lacey Evans, Ember Moon, Naomi, and Tamina. Jax then tossed out Baszler. The period ended with Jax chasing Lana and running herself over the top rope to elimination. It looks like they needed to get Jax out of the ring to set up her and Baszler attacking everyone in the ring after the final entrant (Natalya) emerged. As a result, this waiting period lasted 207 seconds.

None of the first 12 waiting periods of the match appeared on the above list of the longest waiting periods. The ring was consistently filling up with superstars during this early portion of the match, with very few eliminations during this time.

The shortest waiting period (1m 16s) of the match was all about Alicia Fox, R-Truth, and the 24/7 championship. Alicia entered the match, Truth immediately ran out being chased by jobbers, and Fox rolled him up to win the title while the countdown clock was approaching zero.

In a perfectly timed match, the final buzzer (signaling Natalya’s entrance) would have gone off 42m 00s after the start of the match. In reality, this buzzer went off at 50m 00s. That means the match was extended roughly eight minutes due to planned angles, spots, and eliminations.

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