Undertaker, embarrassed by his defeat at the hands (and feet) of a rookie, came back into the ring to take his frustrations out on Maven. In the ensuing beatdown, Maven was certainly eliminated from contention due to injury, but he was never officially eliminated from the Rumble. The Undertaker had thrown him through the ropes, not over the top rope! See for yourself in this classic clip uploaded by WWE:
This oversight inspired Ric Flair, then co-owner of the WWF, to place Maven into a match with Undisputed Champion Chris Jericho. Maven was never officially eliminated, so he deserved a title shot. Chris Jericho was livid, but what could he do? Flair was not only the boss, but he had a point. The only way to be eliminated from the Royal Rumble is to be thrown over the top rope, so Maven never was eliminated.
Except that he was. For whatever reason, WWE likes to replay these moments:
Judging by that sequence, you would think that Maven dropkicked Taker over the ropes, Taker threw Maven through the ropes, then beat him all the way from the ring to the concession area. I don't know what WWE has to gain by perpetuating this myth of Maven never being eliminated, but they have certainly been effective. Wikipedia tows the WWE line:
|"Undertaker attacked Maven after his elimination, beating him to the point where he could no longer continue the match."|
Here, watch it again:
So there you have it. Maven was officially eliminated. Also, Sheamus's 18-second victory over Daniel Bryan didn't set any kind of record. But you already knew that.