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5 Best No. 13 Entries in the Royal Rumble

The Royal Rumble has been a staple of the WWE's PPV calendar since 1988
The Royal Rumble has been a staple of the WWE's PPV calendar since 1988

We're almost at the halfway stage of our 30-day countdown towards the 2019 Royal Rumble match. While the number 13 may be considered unlucky in some cultures, that isn't necessarily the case in the Royal Rumble. Entry number 13 in the first Royal Rumble back in 1988, 'Hacksaw' Jim Duggan, would be the first man to win the Royal Rumble, and the Rock would make it to the final 3 in 2002 from the 13th entry.

Interestingly enough, commentary always stresses the difficulty of the numbers one and two when it comes to the Royal Rumble, but as has already been noted in the series, the wrestlers starting in the ring combined have won 4 Royal Rumbles, which is more than most of the entries on the list, despite the two wrestlers being required to outlast every other competitor.

While 13th is considered an unlucky number, and the number 7 is generally considered good luck in many cultures around the world, that hasn't extended to the Royal Rumble. No person coming from the number 7 spot has won, with Triple H coming the closest, finishing 2nd in the 2009 Royal Rumble.

The phrase "good things come in threes" is a cornerstone of why some cultures believe that the number 3 is lucky, but only Ric Flair won from the number 3 back in 1992, but maybe they have something there as Flair would be the first person to win the Royal Rumble with the WWF belt on the line.

China, Japan, and Korea consider 8 to be a lucky number, and perhaps Randy Orton can agree with that as his first Royal Rumble win came from the number 8 spot.

You can see the other entries in this series below:

Part 1 is here; Part 6 is here; Part 11 is here

Part 2 is here; Part 7 is here; Part 12 is here

Part 3 is here; Part 8 is here

Part 4 is here; Part 9 is here

Part 5 is here; Part 10 is here

# 5 Spike Dudley (2004) - Never Made it to the Ring

Spike Dudley fell foul of Kane during his entrance to the 2004 Royal Rumble
Spike Dudley fell foul of Kane during his entrance to the 2004 Royal Rumble

Spike Dudley, the smallest and last member of the Dudley family to join the WWE, was most commonly seen alongside "brothers" D-von and Bubba Ray Dudley in tag team action or in a battle for the Cruiserweight, European or Hardcore title. In 2004, Spike Dudley was the 13th entrant into the Royal Rumble.

Unfortunately for Spike, right before his entry, the lights in the arena went down and a gong sounded, distracting Kane, who believed it to be a sign of the Undertaker, whom he had help Vince McMahon bury at the previous year's Survivor Series.

The distraction allowed Booker T to eliminate the Big Red Machine. After the lights went up, Spike Dudley was the next man to come down to the ring. Angry at being eliminated, Kane then performed a Chokeslam on Spike Dudley onto the entrance ramp.

Spike Dudley was removed from the ramp before the next entrant, Rikishi, came to the ring.

# 4 Luke Harper (2016) - Eliminated 19th - 4 Eliminations

Luke Harper coming into the 2016 Royal Rumble as entrant 13
Luke Harper coming into the 2016 Royal Rumble as entrant 13

During the 2016 Royal Rumble, the four members of the Wyatt Family would create havoc, eliminating several members of the Royal Rumble. Unfortunately, Luke Harper, Erick Rowan, and Braun Strowman were all eliminated by Brock Lesnar.

However, the Wyatt Family would get their revenge, teaming up after getting eliminated to take out Brock Lesnar. Before getting eliminated himself, Luke Harper would take out Stardust and Neville.

This would be Harper's last Royal Rumble as a part of the Wyatt Family because by the time the 2017 Royal Rumble rolled around, Bray Wyatt had kicked Luke Harper out of the family and chose to side with Randy Orton instead. Randy Orton would go on to win the Royal Rumble and would challenge Bray Wyatt for the title at Wrestlemania.

For Harper, he would reform a tag team with Erick Rowan, another former member of the Wyatt Family, called the Bludgeon Brothers, who went on to win the Smackdown Tag Team Championship in 2018.

# 3 Michael McGillicutty (2011) - Eliminated 20th - 4 Eliminations

Michael McGillicutty with the other members of the New Nexus at the 2011 Royal Rumble
Michael McGillicutty with the other members of the New Nexus at the 2011 Royal Rumble

The first half of the 2011 40-man Royal Rumble was dominated by the New Nexus stable, led by their leader CM Punk who came out first. The New Nexus banded together during the Royal Rumble, doing their best to protect CM Punk and at the same time eliminating other entrants from the Rumble.

McGillicutty would come to the ring as the 13th entrant and help out both CM Punk, who was the first entrant, and fellow New Nexus member Husky Harris.

McGillicutty would go on to eliminate JTG, Ted DiBiase, John Morrison and Mark Henry during his 15 minutes in the Royal Rumble before being eliminated by New Nexus' foe John Cena.

McGillicutty would not be seen at the Rumble for another 4 years when he returned under the new gimmick of Curtis Axel and would not participate in a Royal Rumble match for 5 years as he was attacked by Erick Rowan before getting to the ring in 2015.

# 2 The Rock (2002) - Eliminated 28th - 3 Eliminations

The Rock eliminated the Big Show from the 2001 Royal Rumble
The Rock eliminated the Big Show from the 2001 Royal Rumble

After winning the 2000 Royal Rumble, the Rock was aiming to be the 4th superstar to win back to back Royal Rumbles after Hulk Hogan, Shawn Michaels, and Stone Cold Steve Austin.

The Rock entered as the number 13 entrant, and he was able to eliminate 3 other competitors during his 38 minute and 42 second Royal Rumble appearance: The Godfather, The Big Show, and Rikishi.

It would be the last Royal Rumble that the Rock would participate in as a competitor before leaving the WWE to pursue his acting career. The Rock has since participated in the Royal Rumble event, facing Chris Jericho for the WWF title in 2002, CM Punk for the WWE title in 2013 and assisting Roman Reigns to win the Royal Rumble in 2015.

The 2001 Royal Rumble would also mark the third straight Royal Rumble that the Rock had finished in the final three, having come third in the 1998 Royal Rumble and winning the 2000 Royal Rumble, he did not participate in the 1999 Royal Rumble as he was the WWF Champion at the time, but did distract Stone Cold, allowing Vince McMahon to eliminate him.

# 1 'Hacksaw' Jim Duggan (1988) - Winner - 3 Eliminations

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The inaugural Royal Rumble match held in Ontario, Canada in January 1988 was a 20-man Royal Rumble and was won by 'Hacksaw' Jim Duggan. Duggan, the wild man of his era, was usually accompanied to the ring by a 2 by 4 piece of wood, the US flag, and would often chant "Hoooo" during his entrances to the ring. After entering the Royal Rumble as entry number 13, he lasted 14 minutes and 44 seconds on his way to victory.

During his run in the Royal Rumble, he would eliminate Nikolai Volkoff and Danny Davis before making it to the final three. He then found himself in the last three, facing the heel pairing of the One Man Gang and Dino Bravo. The two would gang up on Duggan, but a miscommunication resulted in the One Man Gang accidentally knocking Bravo out of the ring with a clothesline when he was trying to eliminate Duggan.

Still facing uphill odds against the bigger One Man Gang, Duggan was propped against the ropes as One Man Gang charged at him. Duggan low bridged the ropes, sending the One Man Gang crashing over the top and allowing Duggan to pick up the victory.

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Edited by Gabby Duran
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