10 Strangest WWE Royal Rumble Entrants Ever

Check out these strange entrants ahead of the 2023 Royal Rumble

Typically a night of shocks, surprises and once-in-a-lifetime moments, the Royal Rumble has managed to retain its place as one of WWE’s premier pay-per-views and match types over the past thirty-plus years by keeping fans guessing right up until the buzzer hits.

With thirty warm bodies required and a portion of the roster either being unavailable or required elsewhere on the card, WWE have in the past turned to unexpected and often unadvertised names to bolster the ranks. 

These usually take the form of a beloved legend from a prior era or a returning hero and the keyword here is ‘usually’ because, sometimes, WWE enlist the services of performers nobody remembers, people that the audience have never seen before and, sometimes, people who aren’t actually wrestlers in the first place. 

There have been hundreds of Rumble participants all told, but the following have lingered on in the memory because of how incredibly out of place they were.  

10. Doug Gilbert

Doug gilbert

The 1996 Royal Rumble match showed that WWE’s roster not only lacked depth but was populated with some truly rotten gimmicks. 

When the field of entrants includes Isaac Yankem D.D.S, Duke ‘The Dumpster’ Droese, ‘Make a Difference’ Fatu, Sparky Plugg, Kama and Portuguese Man O’ War Aldo Montoya, you know you’re in trouble. 

The pickings were slim and, outside of Shawn Michaels, Vader and the British Bulldog, there weren’t any viable winners. 

WWE’s roster was so threadbare at this point that they had to look further afield in order to pad out the 30. 

This included a random cameo from Doug Gilbert, brother of the late, great ‘Hot Stuff’ Eddie Gilbert, who won a battle royal in WWE feeder league, Memphis’s USWA territory, to gain entry.

It’s fair to say that nobody knew who the bloke entering at number 19 was. 

He came out to some generic bluegrass music and looked completely ordinary for the time he was in the match, which was just shy of three minutes (before he was eliminated by Vader).

A completely pointless and rather bizarre entrant, this was Doug Gilbert’s sole televised WWE appearance. 

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Lewis Howse

Written by Lewis Howse

Features journalist for Cultaholic.com and script writer for the Cultaholic YouTube Channel.