The 2005 Royal Rumble in Fresno was a firm launch of the Ruthless Aggression era. Hailing from Fresno, the match was won by Raw’s Batista who was riding a wave of popularity going into the event, who last eliminated Smackdown’s John Cena. Batista – who was a part of Evolution – went onto Wrestlemania to beat his mentor, Triple H. Cena also had a successful Wrestlemania, winning WWE Smackdown’s top title by ending JBL’s long reign.

Sadly another rumble rarely talked about due to the Benoit tragedy, this match does feature two famous moments that are widely shared. The first was Paul London’s elimination by Gene Snitsky. The second is the ending which was farcical.

Like 1994, both Batista and John Cena eliminated each other at the same time. However, unlike 1994, the match was supposed to end with Batista winning. Irate, Vince McMahon marched to the ring to restart the match. However he managed to tear both his quads getting into the ring, leaving him announce the match restarting from the floor.

Promotional poster for Royal Rumble 2005

30th January, 2005

Fresno, California

Save Mart Center at Fresno State


  • All the rumbling, minus the dancing and singing


Notable Records

Record Individual
Winner Batista
Iron Men Chris Benoit (47:32)
Least time in Match Scotty 2 Hotty (00:00)
Most Eliminations Batista (6)
Potential Winners (wrestlers in the ring after last entrant) 8 (Batista, John Cena, Edge, Rey Mysterio, Ric Flair, Chris Benoit, Christian, Jonathan Coachman)
Number of debutants 10 (Daniel Puder, Kenzo Suzuki, Luther Reigns, Muhammad Hassan, Orlando Jordan, Simon Dean, Jonathan Coachman, Mark Jindrak, Paul London, Gene Snitsky)
Last Rumble Appearances 10 (Eddie Guerrero, Daniel Puder, Kenzo Suzuki, Luther Reigns, Muhammad Hassan, Scotty 2 Hotty, Charlie Haas, René Duprée, Mark Jindrak, Paul London)
Average Time in match10:42
Number of individuals with at least one elimination53.33%

Did You Know?

  • The famous ending of the match, which featured Vince McMahon blowing out his quads, was repeated 18 years later where his son Shane McMahon had a similar injury at Wrestlemania 39. Both incidents took place in California.
  • This match was the last appearance on the main roster of the Tough Enough winner – Daniel Puder. The runner up however was Mike Mizanin, who has had a long & successful career as The Miz.
  • This is the first year that uses the army-style logo. It was used for 10 years.
  • This was the second Royal Rumble to take place in Fresno, with the 1996 Royal Rumble taking place there.


Number of Entrant Wrestler Name Brand Time in Match Finishing Position Eliminations Eliminated By Other Facts
1 Eddie Guerrero Smackdown! 28:16 20 3 Edge
2 Chris Benoit Raw 47:32 6 2 Batista, Ric Flair
3 Daniel Puder Smackdown! 04:08 30 0 Hardcore Holly
4 Hardcore Holly Smackdown! 01:59 29 1 Chris Benoit, Eddie Guerrero
5 The Hurricane Raw 01:04 28 0 Eddie Guerrero
6 Kenzo Suzuki Smackdown! 03:32 27 0 Rey Mysterio
7 Edge Raw 40:23 3 5 Batista, John Cena
8 Rey Mysterio Smackdown! 38:28 4 2 Edge
9 Shelton Benjamin Raw 14:37 21 1 Edge
10 Booker T Smackdown! 10:45 22 3 Eddie Guerrero, Rey Mysterio
11 Chris Jericho Raw 28:26 10 2 Batista
12 Luther Reigns Smackdown! 07:13 24 1 Booker T
13 Muhammad Hassan Raw 00:53 26 0 Booker T, Chris Benoit, Chris Jericho, Edge, Luther Reigns, Shelton Benjamin
14 Orlando Jordan Smackdown! 03:36 23 0 Booker T
15 Scotty 2 Hotty Smackdown! 00:00 25 0 Unable to Compete

Scotty 2 Hotty was attacked by Muhammad Hassan before entering the ring, and was unable to compete in the match.

16 Charlie Haas Smackdown! 06:21 18 0 Shawn Michaels
17 René Duprée Smackdown! 11:33 15 0 Chris Jericho
18 Simon Dean Raw 00:21 19 0 Shawn Michaels

Simon Dean “warmed up” before entering the match, so time was taken from when he first entered the ring.

19 Shawn Michaels Raw 04:56 16 3 Kurt Angle

Kurt Angle never left the ringside area after elimination and returned to the match to attack and eliminate Michaels.

20 Kurt Angle Smackdown! 00:37 17 1 Shawn Michaels
21 Jonathan Coachman Raw 13:51 8 0 Ric Flair
22 Mark Jindrak Smackdown! 08:15 12 0 Kane
23 Viscera Raw 03:00 14 0 John Cena
24 Paul London Smackdown! 03:15 13 0 Gene Snitsky
25 John Cena Smackdown! 15:28 2 3 Batista

Both Batista and John Cena eliminated each other at the same time. Mr McMahon then entered the ringside area for the match to be restarted. Cena then was eliminated by Batista pretty quickly.

26 Gene Snitsky Raw 03:38 11 1 Batista
27 Kane Raw 03:54 9 1 John Cena
28 Batista Raw 10:55 1 6 Winner

Both Batista and John Cena eliminated each other at the same time. Mr McMahon then entered the ringside area for the match to be restarted. Batista then eliminated Cena.

29 Christian Raw 02:10 7 0 Batista
30 Ric Flair Raw 02:00 5 2 Edge


Entrant Waterfall
Elimination Pie Chart
Time by Number
Eliminations by Number

Entrant Waterfall

Elimination Pie Chart

Time by Number

Eliminations by Number

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