“Wow” was the only non expletive word that came to mind after watching this years Survivor Series. Sunday night’s epic featured three Raw vs. SmackDown traditional Survivor Series elimination matches, as well as the frequently mentioned “fantasy warfare” between Ryback impersonator, Goldberg, and Paul Heyman’s puppet, Brock Lesnar.
In the pre show, former Cruiserweight Champion, TJ Perkins teamed up with Rich Swann and Noam Dar as they beat Daivari no.2, Drew Gulak and Tony Nese. Rich Swann once again picked up the win after a standing 450 splash. Also on the pre show Kane defeated Luke Harper after countering a discus lariat into a chokeslam. It’s never too late for a Kane push!
The first elimination match of the night was the Women’s and Team Raw (Bayley, Alicia Fox, Nia Jax, Sasha Banks and Charlotte) defeated Team SmackDown (Becky Lynch, Naomi, Alexa Bliss, Carmella and Natalya). Before the match Nikki Bella was attacked backstage and was left unable to compete. The mystery attacker remains at large which is bound to set up a classic “Who Shot Mr Burns?” type episode amongst the SmackDown Women on Tuesday’s episode. Replacing Nikki was the hometown girl, Natalya. Almost as if she was meant to compete in front of her fellow Canadians in the first place. As the match went on Alicia Fox picked up the first elimination by hitting Carmella with a Scissor Kick. Naomi was then eliminated by count-out after being smashed into the ring post by Nia Jax. Natalya got the crowd pumped as she eliminated Sasha Banks with a surprise roll-up. In response Charlotte eliminated Natalya with a big boot. Becky Lynch went all “straight fire” (sighs) on us and made Nia Jax tap out to the Dis-arm-her. Bad idea to have Jax tap out and she thought so too as the Big Beautiful Woman attacked Lynch to let out her anger. Another big boot from Charlotte then eliminated Alexa Bliss. Bayley won the match for Team Raw by getting the final elimination on Becky Lynch with a Bayley-to-Belly. After the match, Charlotte attacked Bayley, just to remind us all they’re still feuding.
After successfully winning the Intercontinental Championship with no help from his wife Maryse whatsoever, The Miz, faced Raw’s Sami Zayn to keep the Intercontinental Championship at SmackDown. It looked as though Zayn has the Miz beaten with his own move, the figure-four, but bizarrely, Maryse rang the bell, making Zayn let go of the hold. Amongst all the confusion Miz rolled up Zayn and won the match. Typical win for the Miz but not like any of us care when he’s just so entertaining.
The second of the Elimination matches had the Tag Teams of Raw (Enzo Amore and Big Cass, The Shining Stars, Anderson and Gallows, Sheamus and Cesaro and The New Day) go head to head with the Tag Teams of SmackDown (Heath Slater and Rhyno, Breezango, The Usos, The Hype Bros and American Alpha). Instantly after the bell rang Fandango was eliminated with a Midnight Hour which meant Tyler Breeze didn’t even get to compete. Jimmy Uso then sprung into action with a superkick to pin Kofi Kingston and shockingly eliminate the New Day. A Magic Killer to Zack Ryder meant we didn’t have to put up with Mojo Rawley for too long as the Hype Bros were then eliminated. A doomsday bulldog from American Alpha eliminated the experienced Shining Stars. A second Magic Killer from Anderson and Gallows ensured that American Alpha were sent packing. Rhyno then came out of nowhere and gored Gallows, eliminating the Club. Tiny Enzo Amore then hit a splash on big Rhyno to eliminate the SmackDown Tag Team Champions, Rhyno and Slater. With Jey Uso eliminating Enzo it was then a straight contest between The “Urban” Usos and the unlikely partnership of Cesaro and Sheamus (or Sheasaro as I keep calling them). A Sharpshooter from the Swiss Superman was enough to force the tap and give Team Raw’s Tag Team division the win.
Brian Kendrick put his Cruiserweight title and the whole division on the line against Kalisto. The match was a spot-fest that was selfishly ruined by the leader of the Labour Party, Baron Corbin, who attacked Kalisto (remember, they’re feuding?) and caused a disqualification. Yet another win for Captain Kendrick who refuses to win a match under any normal circumstances.
The final Elimination Match of the night had SmackDown’s AJ Styles, Dean Ambrose, Shane McMahon, Randy Orton and Bray Wyatt face of with Team Raw’s Kevin Owens, Chris Jericho, Braun Strowman, Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns. The match went on for quite some time before Dean Ambrose was the first man eliminated after brawling with his teammate, AJ Styles, and getting Powerslammed by the big man, Strowman. Shane McMahon groggily climbed to the top turnbuckle and leaped on top of Strowman who was lying flat on the announce table. Strowman was eliminated as he couldn’t make the 10 count due to James Ellsworth clinging onto Strowman’s leg from under the apron. As a result Strowman chased him up the ramp and launched him off the stage through a table. The fans weren’t happy as Kevin Owens got himself eliminated by disqualification for attacking Styles with Chris Jericho’s list. Upset with the list now being all over the place Chris Jericho was caught unawares by Orton who hit Y2J with an RKO to eliminate the Greatest of all Time. A fascinating counter by Roman Reigns saw him convert Shane McMahon’s coast-to-coast into a spear. Yet the Big Dog didn’t get a pin but Shane was instead eliminated by knock out and had to be carried to the back. The Shield then reunited to attempt to give Reigns the first positive reaction he’s received since before the Royal Rumble in 2015. Ambrose returned to complete the full reunion and helped his compadres with a triple team powerbomb through the Spanish announce table to eliminate Styles. Another RKO outta nowhere then eliminated Rollins and left little Roman Reigns all by himself against the new Wyatt Family who had been joined by Luke Harper. Reigns charged towards Wyatt for the spear but Orton pushed his leader, Bray, out the way and took the ultimate sacrifice. Wyatt followed up before Reigns could get the pin on Orton and hit him with a Sister Abigail to pin Reigns and win the match for Team SmackDown. The Wyatt’s were the only remaining members. Now remember, this means SmackDown get the choice of any member of the Raw roster for their winning efforts and also means I’ll be trading places (like Eddie Murphy and Dan Aykroyd) with our very own SmackDown Live reviewer, Elliot Dyson. Good luck with that mammoth task.
The most hyped match since the debut of the Hype Bros finally saw Goldberg take on Brock Lesnar after a months long build up of “fantasy warfare”. Goldberg surprised us all by hitting Lesnar with two spears and a Jackhammer for a very quick pinfall victory. Less than a minute and a half to be precise. Now, this result may have angered some but why? It’s understandable to feel cheated after the build up was constant promos using the 2K17 video game to demonstrate all the damage these two monsters can do to each other. Yet, if you think of the wider picture this was a monumental moment for us all and more importantly every one of the men on the WWE roster. Lesnar has dominated all of his opponents since his return to WWE in 2012 with this being his first pinfall loss in three years. This marks important change in the company’s way of booking as it shows Lesnar is vulnerable. The top spot is now owned by a 50 year old who has wrestled one match in the WWE in 12 years and I’m sure he won’t be around for long.
By and large it was a very enjoyable pay per view. Lesnar losing was the right choice even if it probably cost the company an arm and a leg. I’m left wondering what next for Goldberg. Something only our very own Erin Dick can explain. Join me later this week where I’ll be taking the helm of the good ship SmackDown Live Recap from that little pest that is Elliot Dyson.