Lex Luger has shared how Bret Hart played a big role in coming up with the finish to the 1994 Royal Rumble match.
In January 1994, the sixth Royal Rumble pay-per-view took place. It also happened in 1988 as a TV special before becoming a PPV in 1989.
By this point, WWE had established the rule that the winner of the Royal Rumble match gets to face the WWE Champion at WrestleMania. It started one year earlier at Royal Rumble 1993 when a “rookie” Yokozuna won the Rumble in dominant fashion.
The final four men in the 1994 Royal Rumble were Lex Luger, Bret Hart, Shawn Michaels and Fatu (aka Rikishi). It eventually came down to Luger and Hart as the final two men in the match. Both of them were popular babyfaces at the time with Hart as a former WWE Champion while Luger had never won that title before.
Luger and Hart had a brief exchange of punches. They made their way toward the ropes with Lex’s back against the ropes. Hart charged toward him and they went tumbling over the top to the floor. They hit the floor at around the same time, so it was declared a tie finish.
Lex Luger rehearsed the 1994 Royal Rumble finish with Bret Hart
On the debut episode of Luger’s “Lex Expressed” podcast on Adfree Shows, Luger was asked if he practiced the finish with Bret Hart.
“We did. Vince McMahon, Bret, and I all got in the ring; we talked a few things over. We worked it out — we wanted to keep it quick and simple. We didn’t want to do a long wrestle-off to get to the end of the match. We just decided to go at it. We ended with Bret cross-bodying me and they wanted me to go backwards over the top rope.”
The finish was Bret tackling Luger over the top rope rather than a running cross body block, but it’s essentially the same kind of bump with Luger going backward over the top rope while Bret went over the top with him.
As he continued, Luger spoke about not being sure if he could go backwards over the top like that, but the “Excellence of Execution” Bret Hart reassured him it would be fine.
“I’m thinking, ‘How do I protect myself because I’m holding him?’ Bret, of course, took care of everything. [He’s] the master tactician and technician.”
It’s the only official tie in a Royal Rumble match in WWE history. In the 2005 Royal Rumble, Batista and John Cena tied accidentally. However, WWE put them back in the ring for an overtime period with Batista eliminating Cena to get the win.