Mark: It’s the final Big 5 WWE PPV of the year! And for this man, it gives me a real old-school feels… It’s Survivor Series time! Two traditional SS matches featuring all three WWE brands. Three “bragging rights” matches, and two title matches. I’m quietly confident that this will be a great PPV. It could possibly be a history-making event too. Read on to see my highlights, lowlights, and predictions of this year’s Survivor Series!
Marc: A fun night that features not only the best that Raw and Smackdown sport, but NXT as well. The NXT dynamic has certainly led to a more exciting build to this year’s battle for ‘brand supremacy’. It had to be said, we just beat Michael Cole and Vic Peters to the punch in saying it. The night poses a number of never before seen matchups and teasers for the future. All three brands singles titles are on the line which leads to something the previous Survivor Series in recent memory hasn’t had happened. Which brand walks out as the major force going into 2020?
NXT Championship Match
Adam Cole vs ???
Mark: Well this is a tasty morsel that I wasn’t expecting! Adam Cole (bay bay) on a major WWE PPV is massive for the leader of The Undisputed Era. He has had a standout match after standout match since claiming the NXT Championship. His foe could be Killian Dain, Pete Dunne or Damian Priest. And in all fairness, I would be happy with any of those guys. But if I had to choose…I‘d plump for Dunne. The chemistry between the two is off the charts, as seen in their War Games match from a few years back. Either way, this could be a show-stealer of a match.
Marc: Much like Mark said above it’s almost impossible to preview a match before the opponent has been decided. The cool thing about this is that we here like to make the impossible possible. Whether its Killian Dain, Pete Dunne or Damien Priest the challenge for Adam Cole is very real. As it stands right now, Cole’s biggest threat amongst the three is arguably Pete Dunne. The question is could these two face each other for the title at the beginning of the show and walk side by side with one another at the end as part of Team NXT? The possibility is very much there.
AJ Styles vs Roderick Strong vs Shinsuke Nakamura
Mark: Two years ago, this would have been one HELL of a match. But as WWE can’t book indie superstars properly, the Styles/Nakamura WWE feud just plain out sucked. Since then AJ has been on a tear with The OC and Nakamura is back in the public conscientiousness with Sami Zayn. Add in Roderick Strong who wrestles like he needs to prove himself each and every week, and you have the possibility of a great match here. I’m expecting plenty of shenanigans from The OC, Sami Zayn, and The UE, but I think AJ will stand tall as the smoke clears.
Marc: If any match stands out as the match of the night to watch it is this one. Fans know what AJ Styles and Shinsuke Nakamura are all about. However, if fans haven’t seen Roderick Strong they are in for a treat. Each of these men has faced one another in different promotions. Styles and Nakamura have squared off against one another in New Japan Pro Wrestling. Strong faced Nakamura in Ring of Honor and Styles faced Strong in Ring of Honor as well. This time however all three men come together to put their best foot forward and square off against one another. Each man comes into the matchup as singles champions.
This matchup is sure to showcase the striking and technical ability of each man. It could be the match that puts one of the promotions in the lead to stay on this evening. Strong could see the aid of the likes of the rest of the Undisputed Era that could support him along the way.
Viking Raiders vs Undisputed Era vs New Day
Mark: I was a bit surprised that the New Day wasn’t at NXT this week. Seeing The Raiders go at it with The UE at this week’s NXT was cool. Would have been cooler if New Day were there too, but maybe it’s being saved for Sunday? As for the match itself, I can see a slow build leading to multiple hot tags, to a hardcore feel finish. Winners? This is a tough one, but I think due to their lack of appearance at NXT, New Day will grab the W. A bit of positivity during the show is always good.
Marc: Three different teams with three very different approaches to how they compete at Survivor Series. All are long-time veterans of the sport. Each has evolved as units and individuals. In the case of the New Day, they are the most seasoned in-WWE tandem fans have seen. However, with the history both Undisputed Era (previously reDragon) and Viking Raiders (previously War Machine) had going for them it was only a matter of time before we would see a battle amongst them.
With each team representing their respective brands, the key here was who would stand out amongst the rest and be the dominant tandem? If any match up is likely to have a Raw or Smackdown tandem show their dominance it would be this one. Both Ivar and Erik and Bobby Fish and Kyle O’Reilly are as seasoned and experienced as a tag team that they pose a legitimate threat to New Day. If anything we could see either Undisputed Era or Viking Raiders that walk away as the victors this evening.
Team Smackdown vs. Team NXT vs. Team Smackdown (Women’s Teams)
Mark: I’ve already harped on about the lack of NXT announcement so I’ll bypass that here. What I will talk about is again the lack of star power. Having your champions face each other in a different match, takes away from your Survivor Series match up. Apart from the team captains, Flair, and Banks, it’s all a bit….meh. No long term character building is biting WWE on the ass here. More on that another time. I’m gonna call an NXT win here, even though I have no idea who’s on the team. Just because NXT needs to pick up some wins from somewhere.
Marc: With the Kairi Sane, Asuka, Natalya, Sarah Logan and Charlotte making up the Raw team and Nikki Cross, Lacey Evans, Carmella, Dana Brooke and Sasha Banks making up team Smackdown the question is who will make up the Team NXT group of women to challenge at Survivor Series? An early belief could be Rhea Ripley, Dakota Kai, Teagan Nox, Bianca Belair, and Mia Yim could make up the women’s group. These are fifteen premier talents that are set to go in a WWE ring and fans likely can’t be happier.
Who among them stands out the most?
If the captains are the ones that will set the standard then we best look no farther than Charlotte, Sasha Banks, and Rhea Ripley to be the final three women standing. Each of these women brings a certain dynamic to this matchup that makes it as special as anyone contest this evening. This is a unique set of paths being crossed because each poses a rather unique obstacle.
Team Smackdown vs. Team NXT vs. Team Raw (Men’s team)
Mark: The traditional Survivor Series matches continue folks! I grew up on these back “in the day” and I love them now as much as I did then. But what I don’t love is that NXT hasn’t announced a single member of their team! Both the men’s and women’s haven’t been announced at the time of writing (Friday morning). So on that basis, I can’t give you a balanced review. I know, I know, it sucks. But what can I do? RAW for the win folks. Do you see the star power on that team? Rollins, Ricochet, Owens, Orton.….and (meh) McIntyre. Apart from Reigns and Strowman, SD is seriously lacking. Owens and Orton to be sole survivors and then begin a feud. Please?
Marc: Both the Raw and Smackdown live teams have been announced, but as of this writing, the NXT team has yet to be determined. For Smackdown, Mustafa Ali, Shorty G, Braun Strowman, King Corbin and Roman Reigns make up their group. On the Raw side Seth Rollins, Ricochet, Drew McIntyre, Kevin Owens, and Randy Orton make up their side.
As of now, the NXT team hasn’t been announced by one could speculate that Tommaso Ciampa, Matt Riddle, Keith Lee, Pete Dunne, and Adam Cole. Again, it’s a guessing game, but maybe that is how it is supposed to be. We are coming for you and you don’t know which combination you will face unless you have to face it. It’s unique as its being built on speculation and that has to be a selling point. With Seth Rollins attacking the likes of Adam Cole at the end of NXT it has set the stage for an exciting event this Sunday.
Brock Lesnar vs Rey Mysterio
Mark: The Ultimate Underdog will need every bit of skill and cunning to defeat The Beast Incarnate. But there’s nothing stronger than a parent’s love. And that’s what this boils down to. Rey avenging the beating that Brock put on Dominick. And don’t forget (although many actually have) that Rey has Cain Velasquez to call on if needed. It matters not though, as Brock is intent on destroying Rey. He “jumped” from SmackDown to Raw just to get his hands on him. I fear for Rey, but I’m calling a tainted victory for Rey here. Brock just won’t stop and will be DQ’d for his troubles. Expect a gimmick match between the two next month at TLC.
Marc: With the WWE championship on the line, could there be a greater David vs Goliath storyline being told than the one being shared here at Survivor Series? Over the past few weeks, we have seen Brock ‘victimize’ the likes of Mysterio and his son Dominik. The intention was clearly to show how outgunned Mysterio is. Despite the best efforts of Cain Velasquez, Mysterio had to be the one pushed to the forefront here in his battle with Brock.
The narrative being told here is that a father enraged will do just about anything to defend the honor of his child. Even if the size of the said father is clearly so beneath the challenge and threat. While Mysterio has used a pipe to take out the legs of Brock, he will need to do more than that in order to convince fans that this is going to be anything more than a squash. This wrestling fan wants to believe, so with baited breathe, we will do just that.
Becky Lynch vs. Shayna Baszler vs. Bayley
Mark: Oh boy! This little combustible package has been brewing for a few weeks now. And it is set to go OFF this Sunday! From snidey promos about each other to sneak attacks at the shows, this will be a flat out brawl. Bayley (with her old woman’s haircut, thanks Becky!) has embraced her dark side fully and may hope that her BFF Sasha Banks helps her pick up the win.
The Man on the other hand just wants to fight. She doesn’t care about the numbers. Which is why I think Shayna Baszler will walk away victorious here. The numbers are on her side with Marina Shafir and Jessamyn Duke not far behind her.
Don’t expect a technical classic here. Expect a war!
Marc: This may be the one match that stands out among all on the card for very different women. None of these women are considered simple or light in their presentation. When we consider the fact that they have all taken shots at one another in one way shape or form the build has been great. Whether they appear on Raw, Smackdown or NXT each of these women’s champions are going at one another full force.
We have seen attacks on each champions respective shows and they have been made to seem the victim each time. It hasn’t mattered who has looked strong on one week the question is who will look the strongest when all is said and done. This seems like its all about building stars and it could be a case of the NXT champion standing tall when the dust settles at Survivor Series.
WWE Universal Champion
‘The Fiend’ Bray Wyatt vs Daniel Bryan
Mark: People are complaining already that there was no build to this feud. To that, I simply say…2014! They don’t need a big build, as it has already happened! I’m hoping the chemistry is still there. The characters have changed, but deep, deep down it’s still Wyatt vs Bryan. The manipulative cult leader that brainwashed Bryan. The anger and resentment will still be there, the fire and passion will be on the show. And then the fireworks will happen. I don’t care about the winner of the match – I want and expect a great match!
Marc: It’s a pretty exciting match up between these two actually. When considering that their last matchup against one another was Bryan’s rise to the WWE championship and departure from the Wyatt Family. As soon as Wyatt said ‘he doesn’t forget’ fans of these two will recall Bryan’s betrayal of the Wyatt Family. Fans of Bryan realize that his character has now transitioned to crossroads and that he is conflicted.
Does he want to embrace the fans or does he want to remain one that doesn’t need the adulation of the fans?
He talks about his passion and that his passion combined with mental instability leads him into a dangerous place. So if one man is clearly shown that he isn’t of all his mental faculties and another is saying that he HAS mental instability, then the result is going to be something that all fans are going to want to sit up and take notice of throughout at Survivor Series.
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