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WWE Survivor Series recap and review: Daniel Bryan vs. Brock Lesnar headlines a surprising WWE PPV

WWE Survivor Series recap and review: Daniel Bryan vs. Brock Lesnar headlines a surprising WWE PPV
Daniel Bryan vs. Brock Lesnar at Survivor Series. Pic credit: WWE

The WWE entered their 2018 Survivor Series with an interesting storyline. The Raw and SmackDown brands set up to battle for brand superiority and needed to do so with two huge changes to the top matches.

However, what occurred was one of the most surprising pay-per-view events this year for the WWE.

WWE Survivor Series Results

  • Tag Team Elimination: SmackDown Live wins (Usos sole survivors)
  • Women’s Elimination: Raw wins (Nia Jax sole survivor)
  • Seth Rollins beats Shinsuke Nakamura
  • Authors of Pain beat The Bar
  • Cruiserweight title: Buddy Murphy beats Mustafa Ali
  • Men’s Elimination: Raw wins (Braun, Drew and Lashley all survived)
  • Ronda Rousey beat Charlotte by DQ (followed by a monster beat down by Charlotte)
  • Brock Lesnar beat Daniel Bryan in a surprisingly good match

Quick Results from WWE Survivor Series* Tag Team Elimination: SmackDown Live wins (Usos sole survivors)* Women's…

Posted by Wrestling news and rumors: WWE and more on Sunday, November 18, 2018

WWE Survivor Series Review

The main story was which brand was better, Monday Night Raw or SmackDown Live. Stephanie McMahon was threatening people on Raw if they lost while Shane McMahon was trying to rally his troops on SmackDown.

What ended up happening was Monday Night Raw dominating the show and destroying SmackDown Live — outside of one match that all the announcers ignored and acted like didn’t count in the standings.

Was it the right decision?

That remains to be seen, but some interesting stories came out of this year’s Survivor Series that will carry the WWE through to TLC in December and then the Royal Rumble in January.

When it came to the matches themselves, it was up and down — often in the same match.

The biggest story of the night was easily Charlotte Flair going completely nuts and destroying Ronda Rousey. When it looked like Rousey was going to win, Charlotte went outside to get a breath.

When Rousey came out after her, Charlotte had a kendo stick and attacked her opponent with it. Charlotte lost by disqualification, but she didn’t care.

Instead, she just beat the heck out of Rousey to the point that the former UFC legend had cuts and whelps all over her body. Charlotte then wrapped a chair around Rousey’s head and then kicked it hard, attempting to injure the throat of the Baddest Woman on the Planet.

Rousey demanded to walk out on her own, but Charlotte Flair destroyed her and this should set up that rumored Four Horsewomen of the UFC vs. the Four Horsewomen of NXT match many have talked about.

For now, this is a brand new Charlotte Flair and one wonders if she gets the same reaction that Becky Lynch got when she became more aggressive earlier this year.

The second biggest question was how Daniel Bryan would fare against Brock Lesnar.

Most people didn’t give Bryan a chance but that has happened his entire career, and every time people count him out, Bryan steps up and proves them wrong.

He did that again at Survivor Series.

Brock Lesnar dominated most of the match, throwing Daniel Bryan around and doing so in a way that was almost uncomfortable to watch. However, then Bryan got a chance when the ref was distracted and he kicked Brock in the nuts.

Then, Bryan did the impossible. He had the fans in attendance believing he could not only beat Brock Lesnar but for a short time, many wondered if Brock would tap out.

Bryan proved to once again be the master of the little man trying to beat the odds match, and it was a spectacular effort.

Even Brock Lesnar looked impressed as he left the ring after he ended up winning with the F5. If anything, Bryan proved to everyone on SmackDown Live that he won’t be losing that world title anytime soon.

The third big story that came out involved Braun Strowman.

Braun Strowman was promised a world title match against Brock Lesnar if he helped his team win and a match with any stipulation he wanted against Baron Corbin if he didn’t touch him before winning.

Braun Strowman did that, pinning Rey Mysterio, The Miz and Shane McMahon, back-to-back-to-back for the win. However, after the match, Corbin attacked Braun Strowman from behind and then walked off to celebrate the win with Drew McIntyre and Bobby Lashley.

Strowman now will have a month to chase around Corbin (and do whatever the acting general manager wants) until TLC where he hopefully gets his revenge before moving on to Brock Lesnar maybe at the Royal Rumble in January.

Really, when looking at the matches, the only other one that had any implications on actual WWE storylines was the women’s elimination match.

Nia Jax, who legitimately injured Becky Lynch on Monday Night Raw last week, is getting rewarded for her mistake. Jax was the final survivor for the Raw women’s team when she turned on Sasha Banks and then pinned Asuka after that.

On Monday Night Raw, Nia Jax will have to answer to Sasha Banks but also will be next in line to fight Ronda Rousey — if Rousey is not stripped of her title due to the injuries she suffered at the hands of Charlotte Flair.

Nia Jax has a new nickname based on hurting Becky Lynch and it looks like the WWE is completely behind it.

Posted by Wrestling news and rumors: WWE and more on Sunday, November 18, 2018

As for the matches themselves, there were some good ones at Survivor Series.

Both Charlotte Flair vs. Ronda Rousey and Daniel Bryan vs. Brock Lesnar was better than anyone thought they would be. Charlotte’s match was great due to the beatdown after the match and Bryan’s due to him making the fans believe he could actually win.

Also fantastic was the Cruiserweight title match. Buddy Murphy and Mustafa Ali proved that the action on 205 Live is better than most of the main roster matches when given the chance. People who aren’t watching 205 Live are missing great wrestling action.

Also better than expected was Seth Rollins vs. Shinsuke Nakamura. Maybe one or two years ago, this would have been a match everyone wanted to see but Nakamura has not really done anything great in a while but Rollins brought out a solid, good match.

The women’s elimination match had a great moment where Sasha Banks and Asuka went toe-to-toe, making fans dream of the two of them facing each other, but ended with Nia Jax rewarded for her sloppiness with the win.

The Authors of Pain vs. The Bar was probably the worst match of Survivor Series and the men’s elimination match was not very good either, more concerned with inner turmoil than great wrestling. Shane McMahon doing stunts does not make a match good.

Oh yeah, and Enzo Amore showed up in the audience and had security knock the crap out of him before throwing him out.

Thanks to Ducky Russell for pointing this one out to us…

Posted by Wrestling news and rumors: WWE and more on Sunday, November 18, 2018

Survivor Series Grade

All in all, this was an above average WWE event and had enough great moments in the ring with some solid storytelling for the future to consider it a success.

Survivor Series Wrestling Grade: 7/10

Survivor Series Story Grade: 6/10


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