On this day in Pro Wrestling history on January 24, 1988, the World Wrestling Federation aired the first ever ‘Royal Rumble’ LIVE on the USA Network from the Copps Coliseum in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.
The very first (televised) Royal Rumble event was also the only Rumble that wasn’t a PPV, but aired on free television instead.
The Royal Rumble match itself had only 20 Wrestlers in it, as opposed to 30 Wrestlers like it had from the next year onwards (except in 2011 when it was 40 men).
The event also included Dino Bravo breaking a World Bench Press record (kayfabe wise, as Jesse Venture did help him a bit at the end) and the Hogan/André II contract signing.
This event was held on the same night as NWA Bunkhouse Stampede 1988, which was on PPV though.
Below are the results:
• Ricky Steamboat def. Rick Rude via DQ
• Two-out-of-three falls – WWF Women’s Tag Team Championship
The Jumping Bomb Angels def. The Glamour Girls (c)
• Jim Duggan won the 20-man Royal Rumble match
• Two-out-of-three falls
The Islanders def. The Young Stallions