The 23rd annual WWE Royal Rumble came to you, live on pay-per-view, from the Philips Arena in Atlanta, GA. Thirty men would compete in the traditional Royal Rumble Match with the winner receiving a shot at either the WWE or World Heavyweight Title at WrestleMania. Triple H, Shawn Michaels, John Cena, Batista, Chris Jericho, CM Punk, R-Truth, Cody Rhodes, Ted DiBiase, Big Show, Kane, The Great Khali, The Miz, MVP, Kofi Kingston, Matt Hardy, Carlito, Zack Ryder, Chris Masters, Evan Bourne, Yoshi Tatsu, Mark Henry, Jack Swagger, William Regal, Shelton Benjamin, and some surprise entrants would all vie for the prestigious title opportunity on the grand stage of WrestleMania XXVI. The WWE Championship would be on the line at the Royal Rumble as WWE Champion Sheamus would make his first pay-per-view title defense against a former champion who may be just as ruthless and cunning as the WWE Champion himself in “The Viper” Randy Orton. At the Royal Rumble, The Undertaker would defend the World Heavyweight Championship against a popular Superstar who has shown no fear to the face of “The Deadman”, Rey Mysterio. Christian would face his toughest challenge to date as “Captain Charisma” would defend the ECW Championship against the dominant protégé of William Regal, Ezekiel Jackson. After several weeks of embarrassment and name-calling, Mickie James would get her shot at revenge as she would challenge Michelle McCool for the Women’s Title.
- ECW Championship: Christian (c) def. Ezekiel Jackson by pin following the Killswitch to retain.
Early in the match, William Regal puts his hands on Christian on the outside, but the referee catches Regal and ejects him from ringside.
- United States Championship: The Miz (c) def. MVP by roll-up to retain.
- WWE Championship: Sheamus (c) def. Randy Orton by DQ after Cody Rhodes interferes; Sheamus (c) retains.
After the match, Randy Orton attacks both Cody Rhodes & Ted DiBiase before being laid out via a boot by Sheamus.
- Women’s Championship: Mickie James def. Michelle McCool (c) (with Layla) by pin following the Mickie-T to win the Women’s Title.
After the match, Mickie James and a group of Divas splatter cake all over Team Lay-Cool.
- World Heavyweight Championship: The Undertaker (c) def. Rey Mysterio by pin following the Last Ride to retain.
The Undertaker received a bloody nose during the match.
- 30-Man Royal Rumble Match: Edge elim. John Cena to win the 2010 Royal Rumble Match.
Royal Rumble Match Order of Entry
- Dolph Ziggler
- Evan Bourne
- CM Punk (with Serena)
- The Great Khali (with Ranjin Singh)
- Beth Phoenix
- Zack Ryder
- Triple H
- Drew McIntyre
- Ted DiBiase
- John Morrison
- Cody Rhodes
- The Miz
- Matt Hardy
- Shawn Michaels
- John Cena
- Shelton Benjamin
- Yoshi Tatsu
- Big Show
- Mark Henry
- Chris Masters
- Jack Swagger
- Kofi Kingston
- Chris Jericho
- 30-Man Royal Rumble Match
- World Heavyweight Championship
- WWE Championship
- ECW Championship
- United States Championship
- Women’s Championship
The 23rd annual Royal Rumble kicks off with an ECW Championship match as Christian defends the title against his toughest challenge as champion to date, the protégé of William Regal, Ezekiel Jackson, who brings his mentor with him to ringside. Determined to give the upper hand to his protégé, William Regal puts his hands on the ECW Champion on the outside in the middle of the title match, but unfortunately for Regal & “Big Zeke”, the referee caught Regal red-handed and ejected “The British Brawler” from ringside! Ezekiel Jackson dominated the championship match, but the resilient Christian was able to escape the jaws of defeat and hit the Killswitch, out of nowhere, to retain the ECW Title!
Backstage, SmackDown General Manager Theodore Long informs United States Champion The Miz that there are no Guest Hosts at the Royal Rumble and he is putting The Miz in a match against MVP with the United States Title on the line!
Backstage, Cody Rhodes confronts Randy Orton and informs “The Viper” that he has Orton’s back, but reveals that Ted DiBiase does not feel the same way! Rhodes explains that DiBiase’s goal is to win the Royal Rumble Match and face Orton for the WWE Title at WrestleMania! How will Randy Orton react to this news?
By the order of SmackDown General Manger Theodore Long, The Miz would make a surprise defense of the United States Title against MVP! Miz was able to catch MVP out of nowhere with a roll-up to retain the United States Title! After the match, The Miz got into the face of MVP and flaunted his title retention, but MVP responded by laying Miz out with the Playmaker! How will The Miz respond to this post-match attack by MVP? How will there two fair in the Royal Rumble Match?
Backstage, Ted DiBiase confronts Randy Orton and states that Cody Rhodes is acting “weird” and plans on winning the Royal Rumble Match and challenging for the WWE Title at WrestleMania, but tells Orton that he has got the back of “The Viper”! A frustrated Orton tells DiBiase that he is going to beat Sheamus for the WWE Title and he does not want or need the help of either of them!
Then it was time for the WWE Championship to be defended as “The Celtic Warrior” Sheamus would defend the title against “The Viper” Randy Orton. During the match, with Sheamus on the outside, Cody Rhodes blind-sides the WWE Champion in front of the referee! While the referee’s attention is with Cody Rhodes, Orton hits the RKO on Sheamus, but the referee rings the bell for the disqualification! After the match, Rhodes tried to explain himself to Orton, but Orton pops Rhodes with a right hand and bounces his protégé’s skull off of the mat! Ted DiBiase comes in and pulls Orton off of Rhodes, but as DiBiase checks on Rhodes, Orton pops DiBiase with a right hand! Screaming at Legacy, Orton pummels Rhodes & DiBiase, but when Orton turns around, he is caught with a boot by Sheamus! What is the status of Orton & Legacy following this sequence of events?
After weeks and weeks of embarrassment at the hands of Women’s Champion Michelle McCool & Layla, Mickie James would get her shot at McCool and her Women’s Title. Before her title defense, Women’s Champion Michelle McCool proclaims that she is there to give them “what they paid to see” and states that Mickie James is not there! The Women’s Champion continues her relentless taunting of Mickie James and deems the match a “forfeit” before bringing out her best friend, Layla, dressed as “Piggy James” once again. Having seen and heard enough of Team Lay-Cool, Mickie comes out and takes Layla out! Layla climbs on the apron and is the victim of an errant kick by McCool! Mere moments later, Mickie James hits the Mickie-T on McCool to soundly defeat Michelle McCool and win her fifth Women’s Title! After her title win, a host of WWE Divas come to the ring with a cake and the new Women’s Champion Mickie James, along with the Divas, splatter the cake all over Team Lay-Cool! Mickie James has taken McCool’s title and embarrassed Team Lay-Cool, where does the now former Women’s Champion go from here?
Then it was time for the World Heavyweight Championship to be decided as The Undertaker would defend the gold against “The Ultimate Underdog” Rey Mysterio. The Undertaker was able to endure a bloody, possibly broken, nose en route to hitting the Last Ride and retaining the World Heavyweight Title!
Backstage, Shawn Michaels tells partner Triple H that his rematch with The Undertaker is “meant to be” and Triple H responds by telling Michaels that he will have to find “another way” to The Undertaker!
Then it was time for the epic 30-Man Royal Rumble Match to determine who will be guaranteed a WWE or World Heavyweight Title opportunity at WrestleMania XXVI. All thirty Superstars draw random numbers and the two Superstars who draw #1 & #2 will start the match with a new competitor entering the match every ninety seconds until all thirty men have entered. The one man left standing will challenger for either the WWE or World Heavyweight Title at WrestleMania XXVI.
The first entrant in the 2010 Royal Rumble Match would be “The Platinum Superstar” Dolph Ziggler! Ziggler would start the match with the #2 entrant, Evan Bourne! Ninety seconds later, “The Straightedge Superstar” CM Punk joins the fray as the #3 entrant! Punk quickly eliminates Evan Bourne, followed by Dolph Ziggler! Serena fetches Punk a microphone and Punk states that Bourne & Ziggler are just the first two to be eliminated! JTG then enters the match at #4. After eliminating JTG, CM Punk continues his speech as he awaits the #5 entrant, who turns out to be The Great Khali! CM Punk quickly tries to defuse a confrontation with Khali by offering to “save” Khali! “The Punjabi Playboy” refuses and locks Punk in the Khali Vise Grip! The #6 entrant is a shocking one as Beth Phoenix enters the Rumble! Khali sets Phoenix on the apron, but Phoenix locks lips with Khali and the shocked Khali is eliminated by “The Glamazon”! CM Punk hits the GTS on Phoenix before being joined by #7, Zack Ryder! As Ryder enters, Punk eliminated Phoenix and Punk pops Ryder with his microphone! After eliminating Ryder, Punk proclaims he is better than the #8 entrant, who is revealed as “The Game” Triple H! CM Punk & Triple H goes face-to-face and the two battle as the Intercontinental Champion Drew McIntyre enters at #9! CM Punk goes for the GTS on Triple H, but “The Game” counters and eliminates CM Punk! Legacy member Ted DiBiase then comes in at #10. Former Intercontinental Champion John Morrison then enters at #11 and it does not take long for Morrison to find his way to rival Drew McIntyre! At #12, in his twelfth Rumble appearance, Kane enters the Royal Rumble Match and wastes no time in dominating the Rumble Match! The #13 entrant joins the match as Cody Rhodes enters the match and immediately assists his Legacy cohort, Ted DiBiase! After failing to win the United States Title, MVP joins the Rumble Match at #14, but MVP is quickly taken out during his entrance by The Miz!
At the halfway point, Carlito enters at #15 as the ring continues to fill with Superstars. Following his attack on MVP, United States Champion The Miz enters at #16! However, MVP enters the ring for revenge and eliminates The Miz, as well as himself! Entrant #17 then joins the fray as Matt Hardy enters the Royal Rumble Match. Kane is quick to eliminate to Matt Hardy and Triple H is even quicker in eliminating Kane! Things get interesting with the #18 entrant, Shawn Michaels, who quickly eliminates Carlito and follows it up by eliminating both members of Legacy, followed by John Morrison! Drew McIntyre then finds himself all alone with both members of DX and is eliminated by the duo before being joined by #19, John Cena! Cena has HBK hoisted up for the Attitude Adjustment, but Triple H makes the save and hits the Pedigree on Cena! Michaels then hits Sweet Chin Music en route to eliminating his partner, Triple H! Following this surprise elimination, Shelton Benjamin enters at #20, but is eliminated by John Cena! Yoshi Tatsu then makes his Rumble Match debut as entrant #21, but Cena makes quick work of Tatsu by eliminating the Rumble first-timer! John Cena & Shawn Michaels are then joined by entrant #22, Big Show! After Big Show takes control of the ring, “The World’s Largest Athlete” comes face-to-face with the #23 entrant, “The World’s Strongest Man” Mark Henry! The #24 entrant then comes in as Chris Masters joins the fray, but Big Show is able to eliminate “The Masterpiece” with ease! The #25 entrant, R-Truth, then enters the match and manages to eliminate both Mark Henry & Big Show! Entrant #26 then joins in as Jack Swagger enters the Royal Rumble Match. The #27 entrant then makes his way to the ring as Kofi Kingston enters the Rumble Match and eliminates Jack Swagger! Kofi eliminates R-Truth just before Truth’s recent rival, Chris Jericho, enters the match at #28! Kofi is able to hit Trouble in Paradise on Shawn Michaels before Kofi is eliminated by John Cena! #29 then makes his entrance into the Royal Rumble as “The Rated R Superstar” himself, Edge makes his shocking return to the WWE! Edge immediately sets his sights on Chris Jericho as he spears everyone in sight and eliminates his former tag partner! The final Superstar then enters the Royal Rumble Match and the #30 entrant is revealed as “The Animal” Batista! With all thirty entrants having been revealed, it comes down to four men- Batista, John Cena, Shawn Michaels, & Edge with a title opportunity at WrestleMania XXVI on the line! Both Edge & Shawn Michaels find themselves on the ring apron and, after Shawn Michaels hits Sweet Chin Music on Edge, knocking him back into the ring, Batista eliminates Shawn Michaels to crush the dream of a WrestleMania Rematch for HBK! An emotional Shawn Michaels then attacks the referee on the outside before entering the ring and delivering Sweet Chin Music to another official! With his dreams shattered, Shawn Michaels makes his exit as the Royal Rumble Match comes down to Batista, John Cena, & Edge. John Cena is able to use the velocity of Batista to his advantage to eliminate “The Animal”! Cena then tries to eliminate Edge, but “The Ultimate Opportunist” counters John Cena and tosses Cena over the top rope to win the 2010 Royal Rumble Match and earn a title opportunity at WrestleMania XXVI!