Welcome to LIVE PPV coverage of the 2016 Survivor Series, courtesy of "The Wrestling Kennection!"
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Traditional 5-on-5 Survivor Series Women's Elimination Match Team RAW (Charlotte, Sasha, Nia Jax, Bayley & Alicia Fox) vs. Team Smackdown (Natalya, Becky Lynch, Alexa Bliss, Carmella & Naomi)
RESULTS: Team RAW wins; Charlotte & Bayley remaining for RAW, Bayley last pinned Becky Lynch with the Bayley-to-Belly for the win.
THOUGHTS: Good for the ladies to get the start for Survivor Series. Nia looked every bit as dominant as she should've been throughout the first half of the match. The botched double DDT didn't help though, and neither did her quick tap out to the Dis-Arm-Her, as I would've had her go the Rusev route from 2 years back by getting her counted out and keeping her monster cred intact.
That aside, they made the right move by replacing Nikki with Natalya last minute to get a hometown rub for Nattie and Team Smackdown, and it'll create a little intrigue for the Smackdown Women's division as to who took out Nikki backstage.
Bayley picking up the final pinfall was the right call as well; it gives her a big boost and puts her firmly in the spotlight of the RAW Women's Divsion, and Charlotte's post-match assault on Bayley basically affirms that Bayley will be the next challenger for the RAW Women's Title.
WK KING OF PPV: Ken - 1/10 (RAW) Brian - 2/10 (RAW, 2) Greg - 0/10 Nick - 2/10 (RAW, 2) Julie - 2/10 (RAW) (LOCK)
(SS Elimination Match scoring: 1 point for winning team, 1 point for correct # of members remaining)
WWE Intercontinental Championship The Miz (c) w/Maryse vs. Sami Zayn
RESULT: The Miz wins via pinfall; Miz pinned Zayn following a roll-up.
THOUGHTS: A fun, fast-paced match with lots of intensity and plenty of near falls; Miz interspersing Bryan's offense among his typical moves is a great call back to their continuing rivalry and really helps keep him relevant and fresh as the IC Champion. Zayn turning the Figure Four on Miz was a big-time spot that really had the crowd going for the moment.
The finish, though, leaves a LOT to be desired. Firstly, the ringing-the-bell fake out is a very cliche distraction; secondly, it only served to make Zayn look like a big fool for falling for it, and really killed the crowd buzz the match had going for itself.
WK KING OF PPV: Ken - 1/10 Brian - 1/10 Greg - 2/10 (LOCK) Nick - 4/10 (LOCK) Julie - 3/10
Traditional 10-on-10 Survivor Series Tag Team Elimination Match Team Raw vs. Team Smackdown
RESULTS: Team RAW wins; Cesaro & Sheamus are the Sole Survivors, last eliminating The Usos when Cesaro submitted Jey Uso with the Sharpshooter.
THOUGHTS: New Day getting eliminated to start things off showed this wasn't going to be a straightforward sort of Survivor Series match and caught the attention of the crowd, which it needed to do after the dismal ending to the IC Title match. It was a big-time mess to start out, as you could expect with 10 men competing pretty much all at once. Once things started winding down with the eliminations though, the match really started to take off and the crowd grew more restless as to which brand would come out on top.
The final two teams, Cesaro & Sheamus versus the Usos, really showed their stuff here, Cesaro breaking out the 619 and springboard uppercut, and the Usos showing the subtle but effective tactics that their heel turn brought about. The final segment was something to behold and probably could've stood on its own as a show-stealing tag team match. As it is, it helped bring the messy multi-man chaos to a satisfying, straight-up conclusion.
WK KING OF PPV: Ken - 1/10 Brian - 5/10 (RAW, 1) (LOCK) Greg - 4/10 (RAW, 1) Nick - 6/10 (RAW, 1) Julie - 4/10 (RAW)
WWE Cruiserweight Championship The Brian Kendrick (c) vs. Kalisto (If Kalisto wins, the CW Division moves to Smackdown)
RESULT: The Brian Kendrick wins via DQ; Baron Corbin first assaulted Kendrick from behind, which led to the disqualification.
THOUGHTS: I really feel for Kendrick and Kalisto here; they tried to put on a physically intense match, with quite a few big spots such as the apron-assisted Spanish Fly, and a top-rope takeover into the Captain's Hook, but the crowd, coming off of the insane 10-man tag team elimination match, simply could not have cared less.
Given the diminished presence of the CW division lately, unless Kendrick and company lead off a PPV, they're not going to get the reactions they're hoping for. I wasn't a huge fan of the finish, but for once I give the WWE writers credit for having Corbin attack Kendrick first; that way, the title stays on RAW, and Corbin sticks it to Kalisto to further their feud on Smackdown. It's that sort of subtle storytelling I can at least appreciate.
WK KING OF PPV: Ken - 2/10 Brian - 5/10 Greg - 5/10 Nick - 7/10 Julie - 5/10
Traditional 5-on-5 Survivor Series Men's Elimination Match Team RAW vs. Team Smackdown
RESULT: Team Smackdown wins; Bray Wyatt & Randy Orton remaining for Smackdown, after Wyatt last pinned Reigns with the Sister Abigail for the win,
THOUGHTS: There's over an hour and 30 minutes left, and Goldberg vs. Lesnar isn't looking to be much of a long runner. You had to figure they were going to stretch this match out as much as humanly possible, so lots of rest spots and outside shenanigans in this one to be expected. That being said, it still went far too long for my tastes, and it also suffered from storyline overload, as they crossed a lot of wires with all the clashing storylines taking place on either brand. On the other hand, it did have a very "Civil War" vibe to it, and the built-up animosity made for some pretty good in-ring action.
The glaring spot among others is the "Shield Reunion." Yes, it did get a big-time pop to see Ambrose reunite with Rollins and Reigns for a brief moment in time, but it was neither the right time or place to do so. I get that Ambrose's character is the kind to wreak vengeance after being screwed with, and AJ certainly did, but save that for Smackdown and going into TLC. Doing it here was incredibly stupid, and there's no rhyme or reason to like Ambrose from an on-screen standpoint after his "revenge" nearly cost Smackdown the match.
On the flip side, I liked the Ellsworth spot here, him being responsible for Strowman's elimination, and Strowman thus taking Ellsworth out of the match, getting the unstoppable monster and WWE's version of "Rudy" out in one fell swoop. Shane was great here as well, taking a ton of punishment throughout the match, and only being eliminated after taking one risk too many (that Reigns spear looked like it jacked Shane's jaw, very nasty).
Randy taking the bullet (or spear) for Wyatt and paving the way for Bray and Smackdown's victory only further deepens the supposed alliance between Bray and Randy, which we can surmise will make his eventual "betrayal" all the sweeter to Randy once he has Wyatt completely bought in. I can appreciate that they're adding another layer to the Wyatt-Orton storyline by having Randy protect Bray multiple times throughout the match.
Long story short, this match certainly had its equal share of highs and lows, and there will be a LOT to discuss come this Wednesday...
WK KING OF PPV: Ken - 4/10 (SD, 2) Brian - 7/10 (SD) (LOCK) Greg - 6/10 (SD) Nick - 8/10 (SD) Julie - 5/10
(MAIN EVENT) Brock Lesnar w/Paul Heyman vs. Goldberg
RESULT: Goldberg wins via pinfall; Goldberg pinned Lesnar following two spears and a Jackhammer slam.
THOUGHTS: Can't say I'm personally happy about the result, but at the same time, I'm not really surprised. You had the ultimate feel-good build up with Goldberg stepping into the ring for the sake of both defending the honor of his family and showing his son what "Daddy" used to do for a living. Lesnar was the cocky, unstoppable, unflappable monster tearing through the WWE roster.
Goldberg needed the first shot to take the fight to Lesnar, and it ended up being exactly what he would need to lay waste to the Beast. Goldberg was pragmatic; he knew he wasn't going to be in it for the long run and he didn't waste a second to put Lesnar down with a pair of spears as soon as Brock had rolled out of the corner, and then put him down for the count with a Jackhammer.
There certainly was an inherent risk to doing a short "match" such as this for the main event, especially after all the build up, but the crowd ate it up and lost their minds at the surprising outcome, so it ended up being a pretty damn good payoff in spite of said risk. Just as much, now we can look forward to months of Lesnar fuming and obsessing about the demoralizing loss, ultimately leading to a rematch at WM 33.
Stay "Kennected", everybody, and Happy Thanksgiving!
WK KING OF PPV: Ken - 4/10 Brian - 7/10 Greg - 7/10 Nick - 8/10 (WINNER) Julie - 5/10
BIG 4 PPV TITLE MAIN EVENT TIME-BREAKER (Lesnar vs. Goldberg, 1:30)