With the announcement on WWE Monday Night Raw that Brock Lesnar would be returning to WWE programming next week, one thought immediately comes to mind: Brock Lesnar in the Royal Rumble Match. Now that Vince McMahon has announced that Roman Reigns must defend the WWE World Heavyweight Championship in the 30-man battle royal, all bets are off. The Beast Incarnate returns to Raw in less than a week, and Lesnar has never lost at the Royal Rumble.
Sure, Lesnar has only been at four Royal Rumble events — but Joe Montana only went to the SuperBowl four times. When you never lose at a huge event, it's significant. While we still have at least a week for an official announcement, we can definitely start speculating about the infamous streak-ender right away. Brock Lesnar will be the next subject in a series of "Royal Rumble Résumé" articles (including John Cena, The Rock, The Undertaker, Randy Orton, Triple H and The Big Show) in which we take a look at some of the biggest names in WWE, how they have fared at the Rumble in the past, and make predictions for how they will do this year.
For each WWE Superstar, we will take a look at both their experience in the Rumble Match and in other matches at the Rumble PPV.
Brock Lesnar's singles matches at Royal Rumble
Every year that the former UFC and NCAA champion competed at WWE's annual January PPV, he had a singles match that he won. That 4-0 record includes two victories over The Big Show (one of which earned him his spot in the only Rumble Match he's ever entered), an "I Quit" Match win over Hardcore Holly, and successfully defending the WWE World Heavyweight Championship in a Triple Threat Match against John Cena and Seth Rollins in 2015.
Lesnar still hasn't exacted revenge for losing the WWE Championship at WrestleMania 31, but entering and winning the Royal Rumble Match could change all of that. Despite his perfect record, it doesn't make sense to use Brock at the Rumble unless it's in the match the event was named after.
Royal Rumble Match entry number
Some of these other sections of Lesnar's "résumé" will be shorter than usual for one specific reason: Brock Lesnar has only entered the Rumble Match one time. Of course, the one time he entered, he won the match and went on to WrestleMania 19 where he won the WWE Championship for the first time in a match against Olympic gold medalist Kurt Angle.
That year, Lesnar defeated The Big Show in the first match of the night to earn the right to enter the Rumble. Brock would end up entering at #29 and would take very little time to win the battle royal.
Length of stay and elimination order
At the time of his victory, the 8 minutes and 59 seconds that he was in there set the record for the shortest amount of time a winner has been in the Rumble Match. He is also the youngest person to win the Royal Rumble, having accomplished the feat at the age of 25.
He has no input for elimination order, unless you consider the winner the 30th elimination. Lesnar is just one of three guys to win the Rumble Match the only time he entered it.
Eliminator / eliminated
During his only Rumble Match entry, Brock Lesnar managed to toss four opponents over the top rope and to the floor. That list includes The Undertaker (over a decade before their huge feud truly began), both members of the World's Greatest Tag Team (Shelton Benjamin and Charlie Haas) and Matt Hardy. He also played a big part in Bill Goldberg being eliminated in 2004.
Of course, we don't know exactly what it takes to eliminate Lesnar from the Rumble, since it's never happened. Vince McMahon (1999) and Big John Studd (1989) are the only two other guys to win the only time they tried.
Based on his history, if Lesnar returns this year, it would make complete sense for him to have results very similar to those of 2003: entering late, eliminating a handful of the remaining guys, and winning the match in quick fashion.
Royal Rumble 2016 will air live on the WWE Network on January 17.