Shinsuke Nakamura Wins the 2018 Royal Rumble

The men's Royal Rumble began just past 8:00 p.m. Eastern, surprising everyone as the second hour of the four hour Royal Rumble PPV event began. This seemingly guaranteed the women's Rumble would main event the show (which it did).

The first two entrants for the match were Rusev (#1) and Finn Balor (#2). The complete order of entrance, as well as who each performer eliminated, was as follows.

Order of Entrance

  1. Rusev
  2. Finn Balor (eliminated Corbin, English, Ziggler, Mysterio)
  3. Rhyno
  4. Baron Corbin (eliminated Rhyno)
  5. Heath Slater (eliminated Sheamus)
  6. Elias
  7. Andrade 'Cien' Almas (eliminated Kingston)
  8. Bray Wyatt (eliminated Rusev, Hardy, Slater)
  9. Big E
  10. Tye Dillinger (who was shown being attacked by Owens and Zayn backstage before he could enter the ring). So Sami Zayn came out and replaced him.
  11. Sheamus
  12. Xavier Woods
  13. Apollo Crews
  14. Shinsuke Nakamura (eliminated Zayn, Cena, Reigns)
  15. Cesaro (eliminated Crews)
  16. Kofi Kingston (eliminated Mahal)
  17. Jinder Mahal (eliminated Woods, Big E)
  18. Seth Rollins (eliminated Cesaro, Miz)
  19. Matt Hardy (eliminated Rusev, Wyatt)
  20. John Cena (eliminated Elias, Hurricane Helms, Balor)
  21. Hurricane Helms
  22. Aiden English
  23. Adam Cole
  24. Randy Orton (eliminated Almas)
  25. Titus O'Neil
  26. The Miz
  27. Rey Mysterio (eliminated Cole)
  28. Roman Reigns (eliminated Miz, Rollins, Orton)
  29. Goldust
  30. Dolph Ziggler (eliminated Goldust)

Order of Elimination

  1. Rhyno (by Corbin)
  2. Corbin (by Balor)
  3. Sheamus (by Slater)
  4. Slater (by Wyatt)
  5. Zayn (by Nakamura)
  6. Crews (by Cesaro)
  7. Woods (by Mahal)
  8. Big E (by Mahal)
  9. Cesaro (by Rollins)
  10. Mahal (by Kingston)
  11. Kingston (by Almas)
  12. Rusev (by Wyatt and Hardy)
  13. Wyatt (by Hardy)
  14. Hardy (by Wyatt)
  15. Elias (by Cena)
  16. Hurricane Helms (by Cena)
  17. English (by Balor)
  18. Almas (by Orton)
  19. Cole (by Mysterio)
  20. O'Neil (by Reigns)
  21. Miz (by Rollins, Reigns)
  22. Rollins (by Reigns)
  23. Goldust (by Ziggler)
  24. Ziggler (by Balor)
  25. Orton (by Reigns)
  26. Mysterio (by Balor)
  27. Balor (by Cena)
  28. Cena (by Nakamura)
  29. Reigns (by Nakamura)

Things started to heat up at the beginning as Corbin eliminated Rhyno almost immediately upon entering the match, but he turned around and was then eliminated by Balor himself. Following that, he dragged Balor to the outside (underneath the top rope) and left him laying as he exited the ringside area. Corbin also attacked Slater as he was entering the match.

The first surprise came as NXT Champion Andrade 'Cien' Almas entered at number seven. He and Elias went at it one on one as Balor, Rusev, and Slater were laid out on the outside.

The second surprise was Sheamus throwing Slater into the ring as he came down to the ring, and then Slater turned around and immediately eliminated Sheamus (on his birthday).

Upon Xavier Woods' entrance into the match, we got some of our first teamwork as he and Big E worked together.

Throughout the early portion of the match, Rusev was getting the biggest reactions from the crowd, with loud "Rusev Day" chants. That changed when Nakamura entered at 14, with the crowd going nuts for him.

When Kingston entered, all three members of New Day were in the match simultaneously. That didn't last long, as Jinder Mahal eliminated Big E and Woods pretty quickly. He then almost eliminated Kingston, but he landed on top of Woods, saving him from having both feet touch the ground. He then hobbled around with one foot on top of a pancake. He was then launched back into the ring, from the floor and over the top rope, on a pogo stick.

The first double elimination was Matt Hardy and Bray Wyatt eliminated each other at the same time shortly after they teamed up to eliminate Rusev.

When John Cena entered the match at 20, virtually everyone in the ring immediately ganged up on him. Cena was quickly able to eliminate Elias, getting his mojo back from his loss to Elias on RAW not too long ago.

The next big surprise was Hurricane Helms at 21. That was followed up shortly by NXT's Adam Cole at 23. Rey Mysterio got the biggest pop of the night so far when he entered at 27 as a huge surprise.

Following Reigns' entrance (to a chorus of boos), he and Rollins teamed up to eliminate Miz. Reigns then immediately turned on Rollins and threw him out directly after.

Ziggler made his return at 30 and promptly botched an AA reversal from Cena. The crowd didn't like that, a they wanted Bryan at 30. It was smart to put a heel in that position.

Mysterio hit a double 619 on Reigns and Cena, but he was promptly eliminated by Balor following that. Nakamura, Reigns, Cena, and Balor were then left as the final four. After taking out the other two for a moment, Cena and Reigns went face to face as the crowd chants "you both suck."

Balor was the first eliminated of the final four (by Cena). Nakamura then eliminated Cena, setting up a back and forth with Reigns for several minutes until Nakamura eventually eliminated Reigns for the victory.