If you haven’t read my compilation of the 25 greatest Survivor Series matches in WWE history, check it out some time here http://bit.ly/tEjRx6. I don’t know what a “Hunico” is, but I have a feeling I won’t be updating my list after tonight to include his name. Then again, with the incomparable Dolph Ziggler involved, anything is certainly possible. Ziggler’s like Jennifer Love Hewitt’s breasts on Party of Five: he makes the unwatchable watchable.
-Live from Madison Square Garden, with doors that will unlock for Cena and Rock, but not Melo and Amare.
-This Flo Rida song makes me feel like I’m playing DDR on an easy level. Also, with a name like “Flo Rida”, I could make a joke there that involves “intercourse” and “Kotex”, but since Eric mandates that I keep my writing clean, I’ll leave this as an exercise to the reader.
8:01 – Love the history montage that opens tonight’s show. Of course, they highlight a number of moments (Rock’s 1996 debut, the screwjob, Hogan and Andre colliding in ’87) that didn’t get 1/10th of the hype that Rock and John Cena as a tag team get, and those moments weren’t hyped at the exclusion of virtually everything else on the show. When Vince McMahon dies, his epitaph should include, “Sold his common sense in 2008 in exchange for a box of CLIF bars.”
8:03 – Michael Cole welcomes us to the show, immediately says “Twitter.” 400 to 1 odds he doesn’t say “Twitter” again for the rest of the night. Anyone wanna take it?
8:05 – After a thoroughly pointless appearance by Johnny Ace, we have the John Morrison-Dolph Ziggler US Title match to kick things off. I’m looking forward to seeing Morrison in TNA in about three weeks as Johnny Hendrix or John Joplin. By the way, tonight’s show is sponsored by NFL.com, who is allowing me to follow the Eagles-Giants game simultaneously. Go Shady McCoy. Get me 157 yards and 2 TDs on your Andy Reid-standard four carries.
8:08 – “We Want Ryder” chant. Don’t worry guys, Vince McMahon has an extensive track record of listening to what the fans want. Crowd even chants “BORING” for a moment sardonically. Or maybe they were chanting “DORING” for former ECW Tag Team Champion Danny Doring, who I understand is the arena’s most skilled cotton candy vendor.
8:10 – Beautiful corkscrew plancha by Morrison, but the grace is tempered by Vickie Guerrero shrieking in what can only be described as a combination of “Beaker” and “Mouse tortured by knitting needles”.
8:15 – Ziggler cleanly kicks out of Moonlight Drive. See you in Orlando, John.
8:16 – Vickie gets tossed for putting Dolph’s foot on the bottom rope. That never gets old: the heel manager being ejected for some infraction. Billy Martin and Sparky Anderson missed their calling as wrestling managers. Martin could have just worn the “Future Endeavors” shirt all the time, really.
8:18 – Starship Pain fails, and Ziggler wins with the Zig Zag. Good opener, even if the result wasn’t in doubt. I’m gonna miss Morrison in WWE. Sadly, he and Santino never got to form the team ‘Cobra Starship.’ Oh, wait: Zack Ryder IS here. Ruff Ryder for Ziggler as the crowd gets their moment. Of course, this probably means that Ryder’s jobbing clean tomorrow night, but still: the crowd got their moment!
8:22 – Lumberjills Divas Title match is next, with Beth Phoenix defending against Eve, and the generic Lumberjills all make their entrance to Kelly Kelly’s interminable music. That’s topped moments later with Eve’s horrible 80’s power-pop entrance music. It can only be worse if Beth Phoenix comes out to Dire Straits’ “Walk of Life”. Please, WWE, it’s been a long weekend.
8:25 – Booker T’s “Shucky ducky, quack quack” is cut off by Lawler. I smell dissension.
8:26 – Lawler: “I think Beth and Natalya are jealous of the so called ‘Barbie doll’ look.” I’m sure Natalya loses sleep over not having enough Botox in her cheekbones to slow down an out-of-control freighter.
8:28 – It was nice of WWE to time this match to coincide with the start of the Giants game, so that the fans could run to the bathroom AND check their phones for early stats and score updates. WWE really is a fan-friendly place after all.
8:29 – Yeesh, Beth pancaked Eve with a top rope Glam Slam to retain. The Lumberjills didn’t even play into the match much; they’re just they’re for a decoration, like…..well, like Eve in most instances. Still, what a finish.
8:31 – David Otunga grills CM Punk backstage over Punk’s recent random assaults. If Punk was Stone Cold Steve Austin, Otunga would be caught in the gears of a combine driven by Punk, while JR raved openly about how Otunga deserved to be ground up into bow-tied hamburger.
8:33 – The Rock electrifies people at about 75% power. It isn’t the same without Kevin Kelly to accuse of being a hermaphrodite. Of course, because of “Be a Star” and someone’s Senate campaign, we probably couldn’t do that now.
8:38 – Rock is singing, Rock is singing, Rock is singing…..hey, the Eagles aren’t losing!
8:39 – The Rock has it made. He can do ridiculous things like talk about “lady parts” and sing Sinatra songs in small tights, but he knows he’s going back to California first chance he gets, leaving the other jabronies to try and carry the company while Vince McMahon and Michael Cole milk Twitter like a cancerous cow. What would happen if Rock told Vince “Leave me alone and focus on the talent you DO have!”? Would Vince melt? Explode? Who knows?
8:41 – Traditional Survivor Series time! Wade Barrett, Jack Swagger, Dolph Ziggler (double duty soldier!), Hunico (Spanish for “quick elimination”), and Cody Rhodes vs. Randy Orton, Sheamus, Kofi Kingston, Sin Cara (Spanish for “quick elimination after Hunico goes”), and Mason Ryan (Welsh for “Get Vince a new pair of boxer briefs”). Who will get the honor of laying down after a clothesline or elbow drop? And where’s Jim Duggan to get counted out/DQed for using the 2X4?
8:48: Impressive: the mat sequence between Kingston and Ziggler. Also impressive: 54 seconds in, and Hunico hasn’t been eliminated.
8:49 – Ziggler pinned with the RKO. Well, it WAS a long night….
8:50 – Sin Cara seems to have blown a plancha and blew out his knee in the process. The crowd is so sympathetic that they begin chanting “WE WANT RYDER!” Well, no one ever said New Yorkers were caring people. Sure enough, Cara is eliminated via stoppage. Guess the injury was legit.
8:52 – The fact that the crowd is cheering Mason Ryan means a) they have absolutely no taste in talent, b) they’re drunk and think he’s Batista or c) they think he’s Mark Gastineau. Sack dances for everyone!
8:54 – Double clothesline spot between Barrett and Kingston. I watched that with Jesse the Body’s “THEY CLOTHESLINED EACH OTHER!” in my head. By the way, I’m a total geek.
8:56 – Rhodes eliminates Mason Gastineau with the Cross Rhodes, and the crowd is CHEERING Cody with feeling. He’s thin unlike his dad, and is more socially friendly than his brother. He’s got a great future, I think.
8:59 – Match slows down a bit to finally build some decent heat, with Sheamus playing monster in peril. Why not Kofi? Isn’t Sheamus supposed to be a more coherent Ultimate Warrior in terms of ruthless brutality? Why not have Kofi take the beating, then bring Sheamus in to bulldoze the heels? WWE’s got me acting smarky and bitter during an event that’s supposed to make me whimsical for the wrestling of my innocent youth. LOOK WHAT YOU DID, VINCE!
9:01 – Kingston bites the dust after Barrett’s Wasteland, after taking a sick boot to the head preceding it. Good thing WWE banned chairs to the head; the one and only cause of concussions that there is in wrestling these days.
9:03 – Rhodes and Orton battle for supremacy in the ring. Meanwhile, Ted Dibiase is backstage arguing with Tyler Reks over whose turn it is to sit in the “good chair”. And hey, Rhodes is busted open. I guess this means Linda’s losing in 2012, right?
9:06 – Sheamus was disqualified for ignoring the referee’s count, leaving Orton four on one. Hey, it IS like an old Survivor Series, except Hercules didn’t get pinned by a transition move. Orton pins Swagger after Sheamus gave him the Brogue Kick, just to make it easier.
9:07 – Uh oh, they just turned off the “top babyface looks mortal” sign and Orton is taking on all three opponents with reckless abandon. Rhodes eats the rope DDT. It’s not looking good for the dastardly villains! Let’s rally behind the man who attacks people due to a brain disorder!
9:08 – RKO. See ya Hunico.
9:09 – Seconds later, Barrett pins Orton with the Wasteland, making him and Rhodes survivors. Good move. Orton doesn’t look weak, and Barrett and Rhodes have a big win to hang their hats on if you can keep their pushes from going stale. No sarcastic comments here, I promise.
9:12 – Johnny Ace and Del Rio plot while the crowd keeps chanting “CODY” in the background. Thanks, guys. Now they’re gonna turn Cody face and try to make him “goofy yet somehow efficient.” He’s ruined. I hope Carmelo Anthony is involved in a bizarre headband accident.
9:13 – WWE Be a Star ad. Yeah, don’t taunt others, especially if their name is Dick. Like, you know, Dick Blumenthal, Linda McMahon’s opponent in 2010 for the Senate seat, when Vince McMahon made fun of his name and……oh.
9:14 – In a nice bit of continuity, the ring has been reinforced for the Big Show-Mark Henry World Title match up next. Did Hornswoggle call FEMA or Extreme Makeover for their help?
9:17 – Mmmm, teriyaki skewers.
9:19 – I love during ring introductions when they announce Big Show’s height. I think they should do that for everyone, just to show that everyone’s height is special. Because really, we’re all snowflakes in the eyes of our peers.
9:21 – Match begins with the 1980’s-vintage “big men have a test of strength and shove each other around” routine. Come to think of it, this match really needs Gorilla Monsoon to inform us that the SRO signs went out early this morning.
9:24 – Current match speed: “mosey”. Current crowd level: “buzzing”. Current Eagles result: “winning”. Current thought on skewer I am eating: “yumtastic”.
9:25 – Mark Henry works a kneebar, which is considered dull in wrestling, but if you did it in UFC, there’d be a million beer-bellied guys on Sherdog’s message boards with crewcuts and Tapout shirts raving about what a skilled submission expert you are. Now can we stop comparing WWE and UFC, please?
9:26 – The crowd is chanting for Danny Doring again. That must be some delicious cotton candy.
9:27 – Big Show wakes the crowd up with a chokeslam scream, but Henry gets the World’s Strongest Slam for 2. Big Splash can’t finish either. The crowd is not sure whether to cheer or boo. I love a product that makes its audience think.
9:29 – Henry gores Show through a gimmicked part of the barricade and now the crowd is chanting about holy feces. This audience is on an emotional roller coaster, I tell you.
9:31 – Crowd is buzzing as Show and Henry head up for the superplex, but Show knocks Henry off and ends up hitting a superkick. Now the fans seem to be fully alive. Henry and Show win the trophy for “Crowd Exorcism of the Year”.
9:32 – HOLY—-BIG SHOW JUST HIT A TOP ROPE FLYING ELBOW SMASH! That was awesome! Henry kicks out, but still! Just to dick the crowd, Henry ends up giving Show a low blow to retain the title. As long as the subsequent rematch doesn’t have a boring first half like that, I’m game. Especially if Henry is stronger in the end.
9:34 – Henry tries to Pillmanize Show afterward, but Show escapes harm’s way and ends up nailing Henry with the big right hand. The crowd is so thrilled that they begin chanting “DANIEL BRYAN”. I love MSG crowds. They make life worth living. Show then Pillmanizes Henry himself for good measure. At least the angle hasn’t had any outright dumb moments and, these days, that’s all you can ask.
9:40 – WWE 12 commercial airs. Until they bring back Doink’s water bucket as a ringside weapon, I have little interest in the game. Meanwhile, Barrett is harassed backstage by Miz and R-Truth. Hey, they’re allowed to speak! This is an unprecedented moment! Did Vince and Cena step out for a cup of coffee or something? Who authorized this!
9:44 – WWE recognizes the New York national guardsmen in the front row. I’m almost surprised that didn’t lead to the fans chanting “WE WANT RYDER”.
9:45 – Punk/Del Rio video is about to air. Lawler: “And this all started at Survivor Series” *video begins* Faint voice: “…..Summerslam”. Somewhere, Dick Stockton is nodding. If this was 1997, this would be the equivalent of making Stone Cold and The Rock, your undeniable future, work the semi main while McMahon dragged Andre the Giant’s corpse back for the main event in the hopes of getting some extra buys.
9:48 – Punk/Del Rio time. Ricardo Rodriguez makes all of our lives worth living, it should be noted.
9:50 – CM Punk just brought out his personal ring announcer: HOWARD FINKEL! I LOVE THIS SHOW! HELL YES.
9:52 – *basks in Punk’s entrance*
9:54 – Alright, I’m good now.
9:58 – A nice technical clinic to kick things off, not unlike big matches with the likes of Steamboat, Hart, Santana, and others in the past. The MSG crowd and the basic wrestling is giving this a nice classic feel. Plus Finkel’s here, did I mention The Fink?
10:00 – Del Rio busts out a top rope Mongolian chop, thus making me happy for reasons I do not fully understand. Am I so jaded by wrestling that I now exalt over random happenings? Yes, yes I do believe so. It should be noted that Punk and Del Rio are taking turns working each other’s arms, so it looks like the Vice and Armbreaker will play into the finish. Punk winning by submission might just blow the roof off the Garden.
10:02 – Ooooh, Del Rio spills to the floor after a missed rope attack, and he slammed onto those mats hard. Good thing they banned chairs to the head to prevent concussions, since those are the only actions that cause deadly injuries.
10:04 – “Yay/boo” slugfest develops. Crowd’s having fun, and that counts for something. It’s not like they have the Knicks to drag them down with a long losing streak or anything.
10:08 – Punk counters a superplex by headbutting ADR off the top, but gets crotched, and Del Rio attacks the left arm, just to bring the psychology back around. Then he charges the post, but Punk moves and the champ eats steel shoulder first. Punk finishes the sequence with a Savage elbow for 2, and the crowd is hanging on every move. And WWE thinks they can’t survive without Cena. Hah!
10:09 – After an exchange of counters, Del Rio gets the Cross Armbreaker, and Punk struggles in the hold while the crowd rallies behind him. Ultimately, Punk gets his feet across the ropes to break. Del Rio seems frustrated as they reset.
10:10 – Punk can’t knock ADR out with the high roundhouse, but applies the Vice and Del Rio taps to give Punk the title. Finkel makes the winning announcement as Punk celebrates in the crowd. Great moment, perfect booking, awesome match, phenomenal everything. The only thing that could complete this night is 2000 fans jumping the rail in Punk shirts during the main event in a flash mob to show WWE how insignificant Rock and Cena are to WWE’s longterm future. But for now, we have this. And I’m fine with that.
10:16 – Main event is next, Cena and Rock vs. Awesome Truth. I’m surprised in the participants graphic for the match, that Miz and Truth aren’t postage-stamp sized compared to a looming shot of both Rock and Cena in the foreground. Even Richie Cunningham’s forgotten older brother wasn’t this diminished.
10:19 – Miz and Truth are out first with the “YOU SUCK” remix for the Garden fans, who are singing along. Rock and Cena getting booed while Punk gets the huge hero’s cheer will be interesting, because I understand that Vince uses MSG as a barometer for future booking, since they’re the zeitgeist of American thought, apparently. He has to be more confused than Zooey Deschanel at a bra fitting right now.
10:21 – BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO —Cena’s here!
10:23 – CHEERBOOCHEERBOOCHEERBOOCHEERBOOCHEERBOOCHEERBOOCHEERBOO —and so’s Rock!
10:25 – Rock starts off with The Miz and dominates the early going. Lawler says that, fifteen years ago at MSG, the world knew that the Rock had it. Well, no, but they may have known it if he wasn’t a smiling goody-goody with a vertical jeri-fro. But eventually, yes we got it.
10:27 – With Miz unsuccessful, Truth demands a tag. Did you know that Rock and Truth were World Champs at the same time in 2002 for WWE and TNA respectively? The more you know *rainbow drifts by* Rock wins the exchange and gets a Perfect-Plex(!!), but Cena had the ref tied up inadvertently. Rock does a better Mr. Perfect than Perfect’s son! Then ago, don’t we all?
10:30 – BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO-Rock tags Cena!
10:32 – Cena busts out a monkey flip and dropkick to silence the “YOU CAN’T WRESTLE” chants, which turn into “CENA SUCKS” chants. Apparently, R-Truth is so insignificant that Cena can turn his back on for thirty seconds to stare down Rock. I guess you could say….that R-Truth…..*shades on* knows his role. (YEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAH)
10:34 – “CM PUNK” chant breaks out as Cena lays dead on the floor. Barometer….
10:37 – Cena turns into the face in peril as Miz and Truth take over. You know, this is like the main event of WrestleMania I. Cena is the megastar (Hogan), Rock is the celeb (Mr. T), Miz is the antagonistic heel (Piper), and Truth is the hanger-on that’ll probably get pinned (Orndorff). We need someone to be Snuka, the ugly mug whose face could scare the paint off a foot locker. Does his daughter still work here?
10:42 – Crowd is buzzing over the potential hot tag from Cena to Rock (the most Cena will be cheered tonight), and Miz delays the ecstasy by knocking Rock off the apron. Good stuff so far.
10:44 – Hot tag to Rock, which isn’t as loud as I perceived. Typical Rock offense ensues, and NOW the crowd picks up. I feel nostalgic for 2000 all of a sudden. I wanna go see Blair Witch 2; who wants in? Four man brawl breaks down, as you’d expect.
10:46 – Miz talks down to Rock, eats a spinebuster, followed by the People’s Elbow to give Rock and Cena the win. Crowd enjoyed it, and it hit the right spots, so huzzah. Besides, a fun main event is better than a plot-advancing one that ends the show on a sour note sometimes. I’ll take it.
10:48 – Rock invites Cena back to the ring to celebrate, but instead, he shows Cena how much the crowd prefers him in a ‘pose off’. Then Rock gives him the Rock Bottom, just because. Hey, give the fans, what they want, right?
OVERALL – Hey, what more can you ask for? Punk won the title in a great match, the main event was fun, and the Survivor Series match delivered in its typical fashion. Nothing on the show was stupid or terrible (save for the DQ ending in the World Title match, but we’ll see where it goes), and the hot crowd picked up some potentially dead spots. It’s a thumbs up show all around.
Full WWE Survivor Series 2011 results & winners….
The Rock and John Cena defeat The Miz and R-Truth
CM Punk defeated Alberto Del Rio to win the WWE championship
The Big Show defeated Mark Henry via DQ in a WWE heavyweight title match
Team Barrett (Wade Barrett, Cody Rhodes, Jack Swagger, Hunico & Dolph Ziggler) defeated Team Orton (Randy Orton, Sheamus, Mason Ryan, Kofi Kingston & Sin Cara) Traditional Survivor Series Elimination Tag Team match…Barrett & Rhodes are the lone survivors
Beth Phoenix defeated Eve in a Lumberjill match to retain the WWE Divas Championship
Dolph Ziggler defeated John Morrison to retain the WWE United States Championship