WWE rolls into Denver, CO tonight as we begin the road to the Thanksgiving weekend tradition – Survivor Series. All signs point to Undertaker and Kane taking on the Wyatt Family at the fall quarter major event. Wyatt has gotten the better of both of the Brothers of Destruction within the past week. Will the Family continue to flex their muscle over them, or will the Brothers find a way to rebound? Also, last week we saw Roman Reigns become the new No. 1 Contender to Seth Rollins’ WWE Championship. How will the two former Shield partners build their story? Will Dean Ambrose continue to stand beside his friend, or will he turn?
Show Open, Live from the Pepsi Center in Denver, CO.
We go right in the arena and welcome Roman Reigns to the ring as he makes his way through the crowd. Nice ovation for Reigns as Cole puts him over as the new number one contender. Cole continues, saying that Reigns has had a “career defining week” by beating Bray Wyatt and moving on to win the fatal four way match to become the new No. 1 Contender. They show highlights of the match.
“Based of of your energy I am proud to be here in Denver Colorado, and I am proud to be the new No. 1 Contender to the WWE Championship.” He credits Rollins for being good in the ring, but calls him a brown noser and says he kisses the Authority’s ass. He says he doesn’t like people who pucker up, lie, and stab him in the back. He says Rollins has been lucky, but his luck’s about to run out. He says no force around will stop him from becoming the new WWE World Heavyweight Champion. “Believe…that.”
Rollins’ music hits and he comes to the stage. He laughs and says that Reigns wants him to believe that he will do what no one else has done and take the title from him. He steps back to acknowledge the compliment that Reigns paid, and says that Reigns “is good as well” and Rollins would not have recruited him to the Shield if he weren’t.
Rollins recounts Wrestlemania, saying that Reigns stood toe to toe with Brock Lesnar and took everything he had and dished it back. “But how did that night work out for you, Roman?” Rollins laughs and says that he cashed in his Money in the Bank contract and won the match that night. Rollins talks about Reigns’ accomplishments, and calls him “good” but he will always be remembered as second best and “the guy who used to carry (Rollins’) bags.”
Cue Stephanie and Hunter. They stop at the stage, while Rollins is about halfway down the ramp. Stephanie trolls the crowd, asking if they want to see Reigns vs. Rollins for the title. Of course the fans want to see it, but she tells them it won’t happen.
Hunter laughs and says he knew the fans would fall for it. He says he knows they are in high altitude, but wasn’t sure how high the fans are. Stephanie mocks giving that match away in Denver. She says that the title match will take place at Survivor Series.
Hunter then sets up a traditional Survivor Series match for later. He says Rollins will captain a team, and Reigns will captain the other. He tells Reigns to pick his team wisely, as his survival might depend on it.
So, it’s clear that Hunter and Stephanie are heels tonight. Will this change later? We shall see. Anyhow, I think it should be a good main event, but how on earth do they plan on keeping this show interesting by tying up ten people with the match? Also, this match will be tricky as you can only assume that they will set Survivor Series up out of this main event match. Let’s see how this goes…
Cole hypes the match, then moves on to shill that there will be a four way Divas match to determine the new number one contender to Charlotte’s Divas championship. They recount Bray Wyatt and the Family carting out Undertaker and Kane and ask if he will continue to dominate them tonight. They show Kevin Owens and Dolph Ziggler walking backstage, and they’re up next for the first match.
Back live, they show that Triple H has sent a WWE Championship belt to the Kansas City Royals for winning the World Series.
Match #1 – Dolph Ziggler vs. Kevin Owens;
As Ziggler comes to the ring the announcers talk about Tyler Breeze being a thorn in the side of Ziggler since he debuted. Owens cuts a picture-in-picture promo, calling himself the greatest Intercontinental champion of all time.
In the early going, Owens targets Dolph’s knee that he sells. Ziggler comes back with a DDT that sends Owens to ringside. As we go to break, Tyler Breeze makes his entrance with Summer Rae.
Back live, Breeze and Rae are sitting in VIP at ringside. They recount that the distraction let Owens take control, hitting a fallaway slam into the barrier. Back live in the ring, Owens controls the offense with a back splash and a headlock. They talk about Summer streaming things live on Facebook Mentions from ringside.
Ziggler uses a jawjacker to break free of Owens. Ziggler mounts a comeback with a clothesline and a neckbreaker. An elbow drop gets him two. Ziggler tries the Fameasser but Owens counters. Ziggler rolls Owens up for two twice in a row, but eats a suplex from Owens.
Owens tries the Cannonball but Ziggler superkicks him and falls into a cover. Breeze takes a selfie with Owens and Ziggler in the background. Ziggler goes after Breeze, and turns right into the Pop-Up Powerbomb for the win. Cole says to give Breeze the assist.
Breeze and Summer take pictures then Breeze slides in the ring to take a selfie over the fallen Dolph. Dolph throws a right hand but takes the Beauty Shot. They do the selfie thing again, this time with Summer joining them, with Ziggler down and out.
They accomplished a couple things here, and that is the forwarding of the Ziggler/Breeze feud primarily. One complaint I have is from covering the Smackdown spoilers is that Breeze is showing a mean streak on that show, and we’re not seeing it on Raw. We need to see more of that. Also, good to see Owens get a win.
Cole recounts the Authority talking about this being the 29th Survivor Series. He feeds it into a video package from 1987, and the very first Survivor Series. That event pitted teams led by Honky Tonk Man and Macho Man Randy Savage. Back live, they hype the Survivor Series style main event of Team Reigns vs. Team Rollins to come later tonight.
Backstage, Kevin Owens is taking his tape off when Seth Rollins approaches him. Rollins compliments him on the win but Owens asks where things are going. Rollins laughs and talks about Wrestlemania season being around the corner. He asks if Owens would be into the idea of a champion vs. champion match between he and Owens at Mania. Owens likes it, and Rollins says “how about we start with you joining me tonight on Team Rollins.” Owens says that he likes it and he’s in. “But just remember, you owe me one.”
Back with the announcers, they recap the goings on from last week between Paige, Becky Lynch, and Charlotte. They hype up the four way match between Becky, Paige, Brie Bella and Sasha Banks.
Renee Young interviews Becky Lynch, calling her the “B in PCB.” Becky takes joking exception, then calls Paige’s attack an eye opener. She says she can’t wait to get her hands on Paige. Renee points out that if Becky wins she’ll have to face her friend Charlotte. Brie interrupts and says that Becky doesn’t have to worry about facing her friend, saying she will win, not “Charlotte’s whacky sidekick.” Becky says that she takes that as a compliment coming from Nikki Bella’s “pathetic doormat of a sister.”
Good that their characters got mic time but the insults were just horrible.
Cesaro gets his entrance just before the break. There are a lot of “Cesaro Section” signs.
Match #2 – The Miz vs. Cesaro;
Cole tells us that the thing on Miz’s head is an Infinity scarf. Off in the crowd, the Ascension and Stardust hold up “Stardust Section” signs. Miz tries to quiet an already quiet crowd to take his glasses off. Early on, Miz locks an arm bar on but Cesaro does several kip-ups, which draws “Cesaro” chants.
Cesaro catches Miz and hits him with a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker. Time to go on the Uppercut Express, and Cesaro hits a couple before Miz bails to ringside. Miz uses the opportunity to drag Cesaro into the post, then runs him into the barricade. Back in the ring Miz hits a big boot for two.
A bit later, Miz tries to set up the Skull Crushing Finale. Cesaro counters and plants Miz on the apron. He sets up the swing, swinging Miz around some 25 times. He finishes Miz off with the Sharpshooter for the win. Cesaro plays to the fans, while Stardust applauds politely from his position.
This was another good showcase for Cesaro here. Lots of signs for Cesaro on the hard cam side. Interesting that Stardust just floats around in the backdrop of Cesaro and Neville.
Cole hypes up the Wyatts appearing next to address claims that they have “destroyed the souls of the Brothers of Destruction.”
They recap the two angles involving the Wyatts and Undertaker and Kane from Hell in a Cell and the following Raw.
The Wyatts make their entrance. Cole says that Wyatt claims that the spirit that once dominated the Brothers of Destruction now belongs to Wyatt.
“Every night is a special night, but tonight I wanted to know that everyone in this building and everyone watching – I wanted to give them something they’d never forget.” Wyatt says he plans to give something truly special. He says we all bore witness to him and his brothers carrying out the rotting carcass of the Undertaker. “And you have all witnessed me and my brothers carrying out the scorched body of Kane.”
He says the bodies are not what they wanted, calling it temporary and eventually useless. “But a soul lives forever, unless that soul is consumed by a higher power.” Wyatt calls himself that higher power. He says he wants to give us something that we will never forget. He says that he and his family have successfully harvested the souls of Undertaker and Kane.
He says that power is surging in his veins, and it feels really good. He says that power has become inconceivable, and it belongs to him. He says he summons the thunder and the lightning. Pyro and sound effects go off. He says he summons the forces of darkness “because I am Bray Wyatt, and I am the eater of worlds.”
He says it is within his power to scorch “your world” straight to hell. Wyatt poses like the Undertaker and pyro goes off at the stage. A video package starts to roll, highlighting Undertaker and Kane as the Brothers of Destruction. Wyatt pauses and looks on. The video disappears, Wyatt laughs and yells “Follow the Buzzards.” Cut out to break.
There’s gotta be some eye rolling from anyone above the age of about 7 with the hocus-pocus of the segment. The promo itself was fine, but the other stuff could have been done without. I expected it, but it’s just not working for me.
Back live, Cole hypes the Divas four way, then we get hype for Team Reigns vs. Team Rollins. Time for the next match!
Match #3 – Lucha Dragons vs. King Barrett and Sheamus;
As they make their entrance, Cole feeds it into a video package giving us a look at the Lucha Dragons. As Barrett and Sheamus come out they discuss the previous segment.
Early on, Sheamus shoves Kalisto around. Cole tells us that Rusev got hurt and will be out of action a couple weeks. Kalisto unloads some kicks and takes Sheamus down for a one count. Sheamus comes back with offense to take Kalisto down. Barrett tags in and goes to work.
Barrett tries a belly to back but Kalisto lands on his feet and tags in Sin Cara. He takes Barrett down then tags in Kalisto again, and they team up for a monkey flip splash. Kalisto goes up top and gets his legs swept out from under him. Barrett throws him into the barrier going into break.
Cole tells us that it’s been all Barrett and Sheamus during the break. They control Kalisto. The announcers talk about Sheamus possibly cashing in the MITB briefcase on Seth Rollins. Meanwhile, Kalisto dives over Sheamus and gets the hot tag.
Sin Cara takes out Barrett, then unloads offense on Sheamus. He hits a DDT, then follows with a dive on Barrett. He sets up a springboard move, but Sheamus catches him. Cara counters out, falling to a corner. Sheamus charges but eats the post. Sin Cara goes up top but Barrett crotches him. Sin Cara falls onto Sheamus’ knees.
Sin Cara chops away, but Sheamus takes him back down for two. Sheamus confronts the official, then ties Sin Cara up in the ropes for Ten Beats of the Battern. He tags in Barrett, who lands some knee shots and a big boot for two. Sheamus tags back in and tries for a delay vertical suplex, but Sin Cara counters for a DDT. Both men sell, then hot tags both ways.
Kalisto unleashes kicks then a springboard shoulder tackle. Short huracanrana on Barrett gets two. Sin Cara takes Sheamus over the ropes clumsily with a cross body, and Barrett cues up the Bull Hammer. Kalisto ducks it and delivers Salina Del Sol for the victory. The Dragons play to the fans during the recap.
Character development is important, and that video package didn’t do much for it. We still only know the Lucha Dragons do high spots. That development is important to connect with fans, and it’s just not there – something we’ve talked about at length. The match was fine, but the video was a tell that the Dragons would go over.
Backstage, Jack Swagger approaches Zeb Colter. He says it’s been too long, then questions Alberto and Colter joining forces. Colter tells him to not get judgmental and says it’s time to unite rather than divide. He says he would ask Canadians if they weren’t so simple minded. He says that Mexico and the US have great people and resources and he’s trying to unite them.
Swagger tells Colter that “it’s him” and he wants to understand what’s going on with Colter and Del Rio. Del Rio enters and tells Swagger to stay out of their business. Colter again reiterates his desire to unite countries. Del Rio tells Swagger about looking for trouble, saying he came to the right place. “Viva, MexAmerica.”
This whole introduction of Del Rio can be summed up in one statement from Drew Koscelek. “I’m not feeling it.” It just feels odd, and I’m hoping that the longer term payoff is worth it. Del Rio could have come in as a major heel creating an injury angle with John Cena that would have had more impact than this has to date.
Match #4 – Alberto Del Rio (w/Zeb Colter) vs. R-Truth;
The announcers talk about how everyone’s confused about Colter and Del Rio aligning. Rare R-Truth sighting too.
Early on, Del Rio gets an armbar in the ropes, but Truth comes back with a spinning heel kick. He follows with a scissor kick. Del Rio came back with a running enzugiri in the corner. He eventually tied Truth up in the corner, kicked him a couple times, and hit the double stomp to win.
The fans were quiet for the biggest part of this match. I think that’s a sign that no one knows what to make of Del Rio right now. I think they wanted to like him going into his return, but right now have no idea what to think while they wait for it to play out. It needs to be a strong payoff.
They recap Survivor Series 2005, which featured Raw vs. Smackdown. Randy Orton won that match, eliminating Shawn Michaels in the end. (They didn’t include the part that Undertaker showed up to attack Orton afterward).
Back live, they hype the release of WWE 2K16. You can’t get the new Divas, but you can play Stone Cold mode.
Backstage, Seth Rollins is walking when Big E bellows out. They tell Rollins he needs partners, and offer their services. Rollins says that they’re in, but they play by his rules. He then says they’re short one guy. Kofi and Big E wish really hard on their unicorn horns and Xavier Woods pops up. Kofi puts it over to the power of positivity and the unicorn.
Rollins reluctantly agrees that they’re in. Woods sets up a tune on the trombone for him and Rollins dances with him momentarily. “Okay, we cool? See you out there.” Rollins exits.
Backstage elsewhere, JoJo asks Sasha Banks if she has anxiety about the match tonight. She quotes the fans chanting for her. Banks says that she always delivers. She refers to herself as the Boss, and says that she is coming for Charlotte and her title. She then tells JoJo that she didn’t get the memo that Halloween was Saturday based on her attire.
Match #5 – Becky Lynch vs. Paige vs. Brie Bella vs. Sasha Banks; Fatal Four Way for the right to face Charlotte at Survivor Series.
Becky Lynch got her entrance before the break. The rest come out after the break. As Paige makes her way to the ring they recap Paige attacking Becky and Charlotte last week on Raw. Cole hypes that Becky needs to keep her emotions in check tonight.
Paige sits back in the corner as Brie tries to cover Becky quickly. Banks breaks it up and covers for herself. Becky gets her shot at Paige, landing several hands. Becky settles in to work on Sasha, locking on an armbar. Brie attacks, and Sasha disposes of her to the corner where Brie looks like she got shot.
Becky rolls up Sasha, then they roll through for another two count. Becky uses a backslide for two. Becky and Sasha face off momentarily, then Becky takes Sasha down with a leg whip. Becky controls the early going with a couple leg drops.
Brie flies out of nowhere for a drop kick. She screams “Brie Mode” and lands running knees on Sasha and Becky. Paige superkicks Brie, then Becky takes her to ringside. Becky throws Paige to the barrier, then Paige returns the favor, throwing Becky to the steps.
Back in the ring, Banks sets Brie up for the double knees for two. Sasha kicks Paige to ringside and yells “this is my house now.” Brie slingshots Banks into the ropes and covers for two, then follows with a bulldog for two. Brie takes too long to set up a move off the ropes and Banks moves. Paige sneaks in for a cover that Sasha breaks up going to break.
Out of break, Brie is landing her husband’s famous kicks. Denver is chanting “yes!” with them? Really? She lands kicks to Paige, then lynch. Paige breaks things up, and Brie gets the better of her.
Paige perches Brie up on the ropes. Brie fights her off but Sasha grabs her by the hair and they fight up on the ropes. Paige gets back into the mix and the three of them exchange shots. Becky gets in the fray too, and it’s a tower of doom spot. All four women sell, with Banks rolling to ringside. Denver thinks it’s awesome. Good, but not awesome.
Becky, Paige and Brie go at it. Becky is the aggressor, hitting Paige with a T-bone suplex. Becky locks Brie in the Disarmer but Sasha breaks it up. They go at it from there. Sasha hits a backstabber and rolls it over into the Bank Statement. Paige breaks it up, throwing Sasha to the post. She hits Becky with the Ram Paige and covers for the win.
In the ring, Byron Saxton interviews Paige. “Oh, you like that, Denver?” She calls the other three women “losers” and says that anyone who cheered for them are losers. She says that anyone who cheers on “little baby Flair” will be losers too. “Because this is my house!”
A solid match. Probably one of the strongest we’ve seen since they’ve set up this “Divas Revolution.” Paige was the obvious winner from go out of all of them, but the match was entertaining from bell to bell. I would rather have seen Sasha win, though, because I feel like they’re dropping back to someone “established” rather than establishing a new character. Paige’s promo was short and effective.
They run another recap of traditional Survivor Series matches. This time, it’s the 2014 edition putting Team Cena vs. Team Authority. Dolph Ziggler put on a heroic effort (that was never followed up on) to send the Authority off of television for about 4 weeks. They hype the Survivor Series “Team Rollins vs. Team Reigns” match for next.
Surprised they’d go there because this was the match that put Hunter and Stephanie on the shelf for a while. More so, because it shows how stipulations mean absolutely nothing.
Backstage, Charlotte is interviewed by Renee Young. She says it’s obvious that Paige will do what she has to in order to win, but she will also. She begs Paige to keep beating the drum about her being there because she’s the daughter of Ric Flair. She says every time she hears that she works that much harder. She says that Paige made this about family, not just the title. She says she will show Paige the hard way that she has earned the Divas Championship.
Effective. No woo! either. Normal, spoken in her own personality, and believable.
New Day enters for the main event. They cut a promo, talking about being survivors with Woods surviving being put through a table, and the team having survived the Dudleys. They say their favorite band is Survivor, as is their favorite reality show and Destiny’s Child song as well. They say they will lead Team Rollins to victory because New Day Rocks.
Meh. Lukewarm stuff here. Not funny, nor heat drawing. The fans sat on their hands.
Match #6 – Seth Rollins, The New Day (Big E, Xavier Woods, and Kofi Kingston), and Kevin Owens vs. Roman Reigns, The Usos, Ryback, and Dean Ambrose; Five on Five Survivor Series Match;
The rest of the heel team comes out after the break. Reigns comes to the ring first, and waits for his partners. We get the surprise of the Usos returning for this one to a good reaction. Ryback plays to the fans and gets a nice reaction as well. Ambrose is last out, and he gets a nice pop also. Rollins looks concerned.
Woods insists he has it as he starts off with one of the Usos. He runs right into a superkick, and here’s the tag to Jey Uso and Woods is sent to the showers quickly as we go to commercial.
Xavier Woods eliminated.
Back live, the heels are controlling Jey. They work quick tags, with Big E helping Owens hit his cannonball. They talk about working on Jey’s shoulder, then digress into a conversation about Rick Rude and Randy Orton. Cole says that Orton has a shoulder injury and will be out a while.
Kofi comes off the ropes only to be greeted with a shot to the midsection. Jey tags to Jimmy and he goes to work, hitting a Samoan Drop. The Usos follow up with simultaneous dives onto Big E and Kofi at ringside. Back in the ring, Uso sets up a dive and hits it. Kofi’s off to the showers.
Kofi Kingston is eliminated.
Big E attacks, but Uso comes back with a superkick. He tries going up top, but Owens interjects. That allows Big E to crotch him and hit the Big Ending out of it. That sends Jey to the showers.
Jey Uso eliminated
Owens gets the legal tag, and he hits Jimmy Uso with the pop up powerbomb to quickly send him out of the match.
Jimmy Uso eliminated.
Three on three match now with Reigns going against Owens. He lands a big kick to Owens, then lands a shot on Rollins. Ambrose comes back with a clothesline to send Rollins to ringside, then follows with a dive. Chaos breaks loose with Ryback taking out Big E and Ambrose and Rollins fighting. Reigns hits a Samoan drop, then calls for the Superman punch. Rollins interjects, and that lets Owens hit a superkick. Both men sell going into the break.
Back live, Big E covers Roman Reigns for two. Rollins gets the tag and stomps away, then lands punches. Rollins taunts as Reigns struggles to his feet. Reigns fires back with right hands but Rollins hits a DDT for two. Rollins rolls it over into a sleeper-like hold. There’s a light “feed me more” chant starting.
Reigns starts to fight to his feet and sends Rollins into the ropes but Rollins hits a neckbreaker for two. Tag out to Owens, where Rollins gets in a few extra shots before Owens begins his offense. He hits a running senton for two. Owens taunts, which draws Ambrose’s attention. Rollins and Owens team up for a suplex on Reigns. Rollins hits a charge and Reigns sells on the mat.
Rollins throws some punches, but Reigns starts to hulk up. He starts landing shots, and Rollins takes a cheap shot on Ambrose. Reigns sends Rollins to ringside, then gets the tag to Ryback. He goes off on Big E, hitting a shoulder block then a spine buster. He sets up for the Meathook, but Big E takes him down. Big E teases his splash, but Ryback gets up and hits the Meathook out of it.
Chaos breaks loose for a few moments, with Owens hitting a back senton on both Big E and Ryback to break the cover. Owens takes a drop kick from Ambrose off the buckle and rolls to ringside. Ambrose follows with a dive, but Owens catches him and tries to feed him to the apron. Ambrose counters with his “sit and spin’ clothesline off the apron. Rollins throws Ambrose into the steps.
Back in the ring, Big E hits a belly to belly and gets two. He tries to set up the Big Ending, but Ryback slips out and hits Shellshocked. To the showers, Big Epsilon.
Big E eliminated.
Seth Rollins jumps Ryback from behind right away, hitting him with a double sledge to the back. He hurries up and hits the Pedigree on Ryback to send him packing.
We’re down to Reigns and Ambrose vs. Rollins and Owens. Ambrose gets a near fall after his flying elbow on a standing Owens. Rollins hits a kick then a superkick for a near fall, but Reigns breaks it up. Owens tags back in and hits a gutbuster.
Owens taunts, then throws strikes. Owens asks Rollins if he wants to finish Ambrose off, and tags him in. Rollins hits his flying knee then tags in Owens. “Why won’t you die, Dean?” Rollins asks from the corner.
Ambrose fires back with strikes but Owens cuts him off with a knee. Rollins jaws at Ambrose about being a third wheel while Owens holds him up. Owens asks Rollins what he’s doing. Ambrose breaks away and throws punches at both guys, but Owens lands a punch of his own. Rollins cues up another flying knee but Ambrose moves. Rollins collects Owens, then Ambrose follows with Dirty Deeds to send Owens to the showers.
Kevin Owens is eliminated.
It’s down to Rollins vs. Ambrose and Reigns. Rollins tries to escape, but Ambrose cuts him off. Reigns gets his hands on Rollins, rouging him up all around the ringside area. He hits the drive-by on the announce table, then feeds him back in the ring to hit his ten corner clotheslines.
Tag to Ambrose, and they set up the Doomsday Device. Rollins escapes and Ambrose gives chase. Rollins grabs a chair from ringside as Ambrose drags him back in. Rollins hits Ambrose with the chair to cause the DQ. He roughs Reigns and Ambrose up for good measure. Team Reigns picks up the victory.
He throws Ambrose into the timekeeper area, then hits Reigns with the chair again. He gets the chair and gets in the ring again as Cole says this is about making sure Reigns isn’t 100% for Survivor Series. As Rollins gets in the ring Reigns springs to his feet and hits a Superman punch that sends Rollins to ringside. Rollins runs with the title in hand.
Rollins gets to the stage and poses with the belt. Reigns eyes him up from the ring as the show ends.
Smart booking here to not have Reigns pin Rollins. They didn’t need to give that away and I wouldn’t as they build up to the match at Survivor Series. I enjoyed the main event and thought they did a good job of delivering a match that felt important. The Usos returning tonight was a nice surprise and they should instantly slot into somewhere prominent in the tag division, which I feel helps add more life there.
This show was good. I thought the pacing was fairly decent, and there were some things that happened with purpose. The women put on a solid effort, and we saw the beginnings of Survivor Series starting to come together. I think if they can keep delivering something like this, Survivor Series could turn into a very good show. Plus, there was minimal filler and minimal Authority, so that makes me happy.
Drew Koscelek will be by tomorrow with Around the Ring to discuss this show and more in detail. I’ll have your Smackdown spoilers tomorrow night, as well as Ring of Honor coverage on Wednesday. Thanks for watching along tonight.