Cody Rhodes wins the men’s Royal Rumble match

Pat McAfee returned to the commentary booth at WWE Royal Rumble, kicking off the show by joining Michael Cole and Corey Graves at the desk in the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas.

The first match of the night was the men’s Royal Rumble match. 30 superstars battle with the winner earning a world title shot at WrestleMania 39.

The first two entrants were Gunther and Sheamus who immediately started brawling. They were laster joined by Johnny Gargano returned from his shoulder injury as the fifth entrant.

Two-time Rumble winner Brock Lesnar made his entrance at No. 12 and started cleaning house. He exceeded 30 career eliminations by tossing out Santos Escobar, Angelo Dawkins and others until Bobby Lashley entered the match. Lashley floored Lesnar with a spear before laying out McIntyre, Sheamus and company. Lesnar tried to lift Lashley up with an F-5, but Lashley wiggled free and clotheslined Lesnar out of the Rumble.

Brock would go on to take his frustrations out on Baron Corbin, delivering an F-5 to Corbin as he was making his way to the match. Seth Rollins entered the rumble at the halfway mark and immediately eliminated Corbin, who had only just recovered from Lesnar’s rampage. Rollins would then toss Lashley over the top rope and eliminated him.

The evening’s first surprise entrant was revealed at No. 21 when the former world heavyweight and WCW champion Booker T. Booker hit Finn Balor with a Bookend and delighted the crowd with his trademark Spinaroonie. He was then promptly tossed out of the ring by GUNTHER afterwards.

The second big surprise was Edge’s arrival at No. 24. Edge immediately went toe-to-toe with Judgement Day and nailed a spear and tossed both Balor and Priest from the match. Edge briefly faced off with Rollins before attempting to eliminate Dominick Mysterio. Balor and Priest saved their Judgement Day teammate before dragging Edge over the ropes. Edge, Balor and Priest then fought on the rampway, when Edge was blindsided by Rhea Ripley. Beth Phoenix came to Edge’s rescue and speared Ripley.

Logan Paul was another surprise entry and entered the match at No. 29. A replay worthy moment happened when Paul and Ricochet springboard from opposite sides of the ring and hit each other mid-air with clotheslines.

Soon after the long-awaited return of Cody Rhodes came as the son of Dusty Rhodes drew No. 30. This was Rhodes’ first WWE appearance in eight months after tearing a pectoral muscle. Rhodes immediately laid out his fellow superstars and tossed Dominick Mysterio from the ring.

The match came down to Rhodes and Gunther as the last two participants. Gunther set the record for the longest time in a traditional Royal Rumble match. The two fought back and forth for an extended period of time with Rhodes finally hitting a Cross Rhodes and eliminating GUNTHER. Cody Rhodes will now get a world title shot at WrestleMania 39.

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