WWE Survivor Series 2019 – Review

On the whole I really enjoyed Survivor Series 2019. Sure it wasn’t perfect but it was a star-making night for a few people, we had some pretty decent wrestling and a lot of potential future stories they could now tell. So without wasting anymore time let me get into reviewing the show!!!

KICK OFF SHOW

So… basically I watched the show in a sports bar with some friends, and we only caught bits of the kick off show on our phones. Aside from the three matches the big news to come from the TWO HOUR pre-cursor to the main show, was the announcement by Shawn Michaels of who would make up Team NXT for the men’s 5v5v5 match later in the night… that team was comprised of: Tomasso Ciampa, Keith Lee, Matt Riddle, Damien Priest… and the current United Kingdom WALTER!!!!!!!!!! Absolute scenes!!! And for the record here’s a brief summary of the three matches that took place before the main card got underway:

Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode (SmackDown) defeated The Forgotten Sons (Steve Cutler and Wesley Blake) (NXT), Lucha House Party (Gran Metalik and Lince Dorado) (SmackDown), Curt Hawkins and Zack Ryder (Raw), Imperium (Fabian Aichner and Marcel Barthel) (NXT), Heavy Machinery (Otis and Tucker) (SmackDown), Breezango (Fandango and Tyler Breeze) (NXT), The Revival (Dash Wilder and Scott Dawson) (SmackDown), The O.C. (Karl Anderson and Luke Gallows) (Raw) and Street Profits (Montez Ford and Angelo Dawkins) (Raw) in a 10 team Interbrand Tag Team Battle Royal = SmackDown 1 – Raw 0 – NXT 0 

The order I’ve listed the teams were the order they were eliminated in. Don’t ask me why this took place. Other than for the sake of it, to get the tag teams on the show, and to get SmackDown a win on the kick off show… Looked fine enough a match for me for what it was… But it was a pre-show battle royal so was never going to be a classic match was it? … For the finish the final team to be eliminated were Street Profits after Montez Ford hit a frog splash on Dolph, but then Roode came and threw Ford out for the win. Expect ROO-DOLPH to challenge The New Day some time soon.

**1/4

Lio Rush (c) (NXT) defeated Kalisto (SmackDown) and Akira Tozawa (Raw) in a triple threat match to retain the NXT Cruiserweight Championship = NXT 1 – SmackDown 1 – Raw 0 

I liked how they had their token Cruiserweight match but still were able to do it tri-branded. Didn’t see much of this one at all but it went about 8 minutes and was alright in-ring wise without much crowd heat, so just like all the previous Cruiserweight PPV matches then… Rush retained by pinning Kalisto after a big splash.

Viking Raiders (Erik and Ivar) (Raw Tag Team Champions) defeated New Day (Big E and Kofi Kingston) (SmackDown Tag Team Champions) and Undisputed Era (Bobby Fish and Kyle O’Reilly) (NXT Tag Team Champions) in a Triple Threat Tag Team match = Raw 1 – NXT 1 – SmackDown 1 

All tied up scorewise going into the main show… obviously… the vikings won hitting their finish on Kyle O’Reilly onto Bobby Fish and then Ivar pinned Fish. Kingston was taken out after hitting Trouble in Paradise on a ringpost, and Big E was taken OOA via a double team move from Viking Raiders.


Team NXT (Rhea Ripley, Bianca Belair, Candice LeRae, Io Shirai and Toni Storm) defeated Team Raw (Charlotte Flair, Natalya, Asuka, Kairi Sane and Sarah Logan) and Team SmackDown (Sasha Banks, Carmella, Dana Brooke, Lacey Evans and Nikki Cross) in a 5v5v5 Women’s Survivor Series Triple Threat elimination match = NXT 2 – Raw 1 – SmackDown 1

It became very clear very quickly that this was a pro NXT crowd, and this was a theme for the evening. Rhea Ripley was a megastar to these fans and this match only solidified this. In fact I now think WWE need to have Rhea not just win the NXT Women’s title from Shayna but have her lose it somehow before the Royal Rumble, WIN the Royal Rumble, and have her win the title on WWE’s A show of SmackDown. Put you best foot forward WWE and right now the success story of this whole tri-brand invasion thing is Rhea Ripley.

I should mention also that they had the theme in the matches of having it be a three way at all times, so there was always a legal participant from Raw, SmackDown and NXT at all times to it really was a triple threat match. In parts this match was fun and had some really cool spots and mini matches, but naturally given it had FIFTEEN participants it was a bit messy and a bit of a clusterfuck at times. I did enjoy it though. Fairly early on they did a spot where both Io Shirai and Candice LeRae were taken out ‘injured’ meaning Team NXT had to fight from underneath. I’ll run you through the eliminations: Bianca rolled up Nikki Cross whilst having Ripley pull Belair’s feet onto the ropes for extra leverage, Bianca pinned Sarah Logan after a 450 splash that looked awesome, Charlotte pinned Carmella, Sasha eliminated Kairi, Asuka pinned Dana Brooke, Asuka and Charlotte both of Team Raw seemed to argue and this led Asuka to blow her green mist into her own team captain’s eyes (this is part of the build to an apparent women’s tag title match at TLC between the Kabuki Warriors and Charlotte and Becky), Lacey hit Charlotte with the Women’s Right to pin her, Natalya pinned Lacey, in a really cool spot that protected Toni Storm loads she tapped out whilst having Natalya have her in the sharpshooter and Banks have the Bank Statement locked in at the same time, Raw’s Natalya and SmackDown’s Banks teamed up to eliminate Bianca Belair, but Banks then turned on Natalya and eliminated her. This left Rhea Ripley of NXT and Sasha Banks of SmackDown… or so we thought… Sasha looked at one stage as if she would disappoint the crowd as she had Rhea in the Bank Statement… but Io and Candice came back out, LeRae was able to distract the ref and this allowed for Io Shirai to do a springboard dropkick on Sasha and then Ripley followed that by hitting the Riptide FOR THE WIN! What an amazing few days for Rhea Ripley. A STAR has been born. And I could not be happier about it.

***

There was a really fun backstage segment where Kevin Owens appeared on the screen (he was super over with the crowd), and he was approached by Raw team captain Seth Rollins (he was not super over with the crowd, let me just put it like that). Rollins basically addressed how Owens helped Team Ciampa in the War Games match the previous night and where his loyalties lay tonight? Owens said he loves NXT but tonight Raw needs him so Rollins shouldn’t worry. He then asked how Rollins could possibly question anyone’s history and loyalty, and then did the Shield fist pose. This was great.

Roderick Strong (NXT North American Champion) defeated Raw’s AJ Styles (United States Champion) and SmackDown’s Shinsuke Nakamura (Intercontinental Champion) with Sami Zayn in a Triple Threat match = NXT 3 – Raw 1 – SmackDown 1 

Good match but you knew that already surely? Strong got his entrance cut short which the crowd didn’t like at all. Yeah this was just really really good stuff. Solid in ring work all round as you’d expect, but the crowd was semi-flat given all the shenanigans of the previous match. Strong won after AJ hit the Phenomenal Forearm on Nakamura and Strong came in and chucked AJ out the ring to get the pin for himself. I cheered very loudly as did my friends. The one Shinsuke Nakamura fan in the bar did not… HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!!!

****

Daniel Bryan was backstage when The Miz came into shot. Miz tried to give Bryan a pep talk about how he had to be the one to stop The Fiend. With one line DBryan basically told Miz to get out of his face. Both guys were great here.

Adam Cole (C) defeated Pete Dunne to retain the NXT Championship

Really good good match for the time they had. Wasn’t like a blowaway TakeOver main event level match but definitely a top NXT TV show main event for sure. Pete Dunne was really over in Chicago, and of course so was Cole. Both hit all their big moves on eachother and there were a lot of nearfalls. Pete Dunne tried his finger break spot and attempted for the Bitter End after, but Cole was able to turn it into a Panama Sunrise and then hit the Last Shot knee for the win. What an insane run of matches this has been for Adam Cole recently.

****1/4

‘The Fiend’ Bray Wyatt (C) defeated Daniel Bryan to retain the Universal Championship

Now this is LOW praise of course, coming from me Bray Wyatt’s number 1 fan, but this was by a country mile the best match of The Fiend so far. They still did the red lighting thing, but as they didn’t have a giant cell around the ring and they didn’t move around the arena, this was a lot lot easier to follow the action still. Although as we discussed amongst the friends I was with it must be an absolute nightmare to follow the match if you’re in the arena… although they did this time have the match on the big screen. The Fiend wore the belt around his neck on the way to the ring. The story of the match was Bryan tried and tried to beatdown The Fiend but Wyatt just kept getting up. Bryan even summoned on the power of the YES Movement after his reluctance in recent weeks… and even hit the big running knee finish… but eventually succumb the Wyatt’s Mandible Claw to give The Fiend the win in about 10 minutes. I thought this was FINE.

***3/4

Rey Mysterio cut a good babyface promo, he was holding a metal pipe and said he was going to take out Lesnar’s knees and he hoped his son Dominick was watching closely on.

Team SmackDown (Roman Reigns, King Corbin & Shorty G & Mustafa Ali & Braun Strowman) defeated Team NXT (Keith Lee, Tomasso Ciampa, Matt Riddle, Damien Priest & Walter) and Team Raw (Seth Rollins, Drew McIntyre, Ricochet, Randy Orton & Kevin Owens) in 5v5v5 Men’s Survivor Series Triple Threat Elimination match = NXT 3 – SmackDown 2 – Raw 1

This had a few really cool moments, a few moments that were such typical of the worse parts of WWE booking it was incredibly irritating, but overall I enjoyed it. Sure it was a little messy in parts but again 15 guys in one match isn’t all going to run smoothly is it? Anyway… Walter was by a long way the most popular guy with the crowd at the beginning. His chopping exchange with Drew was incredible… and then McIntyre hit the Claymore and pinned Walter. The most over guy out first. Crowd hated it. Ffs. KO eliminated the former Chad Gable (who had a really fun exchange with Riddle), playing off the War Games match the night before… Tomasso Ciampa hit the draping DDT on Owens and eliminated him. Randy Orton pinned Damien Priest after an RKO. Matt Riddle eliminated Orton after a roll up pin which was super super cool. Not long after King Corbin eliminated Riddle which was super super NOT cool. Braun Strowman did his “run around the outside of the ring and take everyone out” thing twice and people loved it, but he got caught by Drew with the Claymore kick. This was enough to keep Strowman out the ring for the 10 count and he was out. Corbin pinned Ricochet, Rolins pinned Ali, Reigns pinned McIntyre after a big Spear. Then after some in-fighting between Corbin and Reigns that saw Roman hit Corbin with a Spear, Tomasso Ciampa took advantage and eliminated Corbin. Then they had public enemy number 1 Seth Rollins eliminate Ciampa after a curb stomp and a Roman Spear before that. Then it was basically the Keith Lee show. And it was awesome. So one guy left for each team. And 300plus pound Keith Lee has Chicago well and truly basking in his glory. Lee hit a jackhammer and then eliminated Rollins to a huge pop. The final exchange between Reigns and Lee was awesome. Everyone was desperate for Lee to win and he nearly did with a spirit bomb for a very very close nearfall. But it was Roman who got the win for his team with a Spear. Roman showed respect for Keith Lee after. Even in defeat this was a star making performance for Keith Lee.

I think Roman might win the rumble and face The Fiend…

****

Becky cut a really good promo to the camera.

Brock Lesnar (c) with Paul Heyman defeated Rey Mysterio in a No Holds Barred match to retain the WWE Championship

Fun for what it was. Brock dominated and stood on Rey’s metal pipe so he couldn’t use it as a weapon. Eventually Rey’s son Dominick came out to try and help his Dad, he even went to throw in the towel but Lesnar stopped that. Eventually Rey and then Dominick both have Brock lo blows to huge pops. And they then hit a double 619, and each hit a frog splash (must say that Dominick’s splash looked really great). Brock got out of the pin despite both guys jumping on him. Dominick got laughed off the top rope with a German by Brock, and Rey got caught from the top rope and hit with a big F5 for Lesnar to retain. I liked this.

***1/2

NXT Women’s Champion Shayna Baszler defeated SmackDown Women’s Champion Bayley and Raw Women’s Champion Becky Lynch in a triple threat match

This was an alright match. It was very much your classic three way match in that it always seemed to be two people in the ring and one out of it and they’d rotate. For the finish Shayna threw Becky over the announcers table on the outside and then back in the ring Bayley came off the top rope looking for the elbow drop on out for Baszler to catch her in the kirafuda cltuch for the win. NXT WINS SURVIVOR SERIES!!! Praise the Lord!!! The after match stuff was interesting for me; Lynch got a takedown on Shayna and threw her over an announce table, then jumped off a barricade with a “butt splash” which put Baszler threw the table. Commentary made a point of saying that although Shayna won, she didn’t beat Becky. The long term booker in me now thinks Becky vs Shayna could be a big time WrestleMania match perhaps if a certain someone else doesn’t come back after all……..

***

FINAL SCORE:

NXT 4

SmackDown 2

Raw 2

NXT WON!!!!!!!!!!!!

NXT WON!!!!!!!!!!!!

NXT WON!!!!!!!!!!!!

That’s all. 😁

Josh.

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