Phillips Arena – Atlanta, GA – Sunday, November 22, 2015
Goldust, Neville, The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray Dudley & D-Von Dudley) & Titus O’Neil defeat The Cosmic Wasteland (Stardust, Konnor & Viktor), The Miz & Bo Dallas in a Survivor Series match at 18:10. Apparently Goldust was a mystery partner returning from injury, but I have no memory of that. He’s the team captain Goldust hits Viktor with a quick powerslam to eliminate him at 0:30. They take a commercial break for reasons that still elude me, and we come back to Konnor in control of Bubba. That doesn’t last long, as Bubba hits a uranage slam to eliminate Konnor at 5:27. When Neville gets a hot tag he flies all over the ring, but gets caught in a Bo-Dog by Dallas, and Miz tags himself in and hits a Skull Crushing Finale to eliminate Neville at 8:40. Miz celebrates too much and Goldust roll him up for the pin at 9:05. We take another commercial break for some reason. Even at a four-on-two disadvantage, Stardust and Bo keep Goldust in their half of the ring and wear him down. Eventually, Titus gets the hot tag and a he’s a Gator afire. Titus hits Bo with Clash of the Titus to eliminate him at 17:20. Stardust tries to bail but his big brother chases him right into a 3D and D-Von gets the pin. Not sure why Neville had to be the only one eliminated on his team, but that was otherwise solid preshow stuff.
Roman Reigns defeats Alberto Del Rio (w/ Zeb Colter) at 14:05 in a tournament semifinal match. Reigns beat Big Show and Cesaro in earlier rounds, while Del Rio got by Stardust and Kalisto. Reigns starts off hot, but Del Rio quickly slows him down and tries to keep the powerhouse grounded. Del Rio works the arm, which is smart on multiple levels, given that it helps Del Rio’s finisher and hurts both of Reigns’. Whenever Reigns appears to be making a comeback, Del Rio cuts him off, but he can’t quite put The Big Juggernaut away. When Del Rio goes for a jumping something off the top rope, Reigns avoids it and flattens Del Rio with the Spear to get the pin. Solid match here with a foregone conclusion.
Dean Ambrose defeats Kevin Owens at 11:20 in a tournament semifinal match. Ambrose beat Tyler Breeze and Dolph Ziggler to get here, while Owens bested Titus O’Neil and Neville. Owens is the current Intercontinental Champion. Both men are aggressive, as they work a fast pace and trade control back and forth. The fight spills outside the ring briefly, as Owens delivers a majority of the punishment in this match. In the end, when Owens tries the Pop-up Powerbomb, Ambrose counters with a hurricanrana and then hits Dirty Deeds to get the pin. Good match here with some cool spots and reversals. These two have great chemistry together.
Ryback, The Lucha Dragons (Sin Cara & Kalisto) & The Usos (Jimmy Uso & Jey Uso) defeat Sheamus, King Barrett & The New Day (Big E, Kofi Kingston & Xavier Woods) at 17:33 in a Survivor Series match. The Good Guys control the early going, despite the obvious fact that New Day Rocks. Momentum swings back and forth, and Barrett has the unfortunate distinction of being eliminated first at 8:00, via an Uso-assisted senton from the top rope by Sin Cara. Jimmy comes in and gets hit with a decapitation double stomp by Kingston and Woods, and Woods gets the pin at 9:25. Sin Cara is next to go, when Sheamus takes his head off with a Brogue Kick at 10:45. Ryback comes in and destroys Big E with a Meat Hook. Kalisto hits the mini rana, and Jey follows with a Superfly Splash to eliminate Big E at 11:32. Woods and Kingston show solidarity and help their partner to the back, eliminating themselves and leaving Sheamus at a three-on-one disadvantage. Sheamus does what he can, but the numbers game overwhelms him and Ryback hits the Shell Shocked to get the pin. Ryback, Kalisto, and Jey Uso survive. I love Survivor Series matches as a rule, and this one was fine enough from an action standpoint, but didn’t do anything memorable or even particularly logical.
Divas Champion Charlotte defeats Paige at 14:18 to retain the title. Charlotte has been the Champion since 9.20.15, and this is her second defense. Paige is the aggressor early on, as she was Charlotte’s former teammate and didn’t appreciate being overshadowed by her, so she has reason to be angry. They battle back and forth, both women making the title seem like something important and worth fighting over. Eventually, Charlotte traps Paige in the Figure-Eight Leglock and the challenger is forced to tap out. The effort was certainly there, but it wasn’t very cohesive. At least it was a nice clean finish.
Tyler Breeze (w/ Summer Rae) defeats Dolph Ziggler at 6:41. These two have similar looks and styles, so on paper this is an intriguing matchup. Although it’s sad to note that Ziggler kayfabe saved the entire company with his performance at this event last year and now he’s in a meaningless mid-card match with an ice-cold NXT callup. After a back-and-forth TV-style contest, Breeze hits the Unprettier to get the pin. Acceptable, albeit pointless.
The Brothers of Destruction (Undertaker & Kane) defeat The Wyatt Family (Bray Wyatt & Luke Harper, w/ Braun Strowman) at 10:18. The point of this match was literally just celebrating that the Undertaker has been around for 25 years. He already dominated Bray Wyatt at WrestleMania 31, so there was nothing for him to prove against the Family. Rowan tries to attack before the bell but gets hit with a double chokeslam. So, Wyatt and Harper are the official participants, while Strowman watches from ringside. Of course, Strowman interferes the first chance he gets. As he continues to interfere, the Brothers of Destruction get fed up and send him through a table with a double chokeslam. This follows the tag team formula, though a squashier version, and they build up to a big spot where both Kane and Undertaker sit up. Both Harper and Wyatt get hit with chokeslams, and then Undertaker flattens Harper with the Tombstone Piledriver to get the pin. Extended squash here, that did nothing for the Wyatt Family.
Roman Reigns defeats Dean Ambrose at 9:01 in a tournament final to win the vacant WWE World Heavyweight Title. Both men start off aggressively, wasting no time tearing into each other. They fight both in and out of the ring, each man desperate to win their first WWE Championship. Finishers are hit and kicked out of, as neither man will give in to the other. In the end Reigns hits a Spear from out of nowhere to get the pin and win the title. This was energetic for the short time they had, but it felt like they packed a great 15-20 minute match into an okay nine minutes instead. Disappointing stuff, but it’s not really on the wrestlers.
As Reigns celebrates and confetti falls, Triple H comes out and offers a congratulatory handshake. Reigns refuses and hits “The Game” with a Spear! In the confusion, Sheamus comes out and hits Reigns with a Brogue Kick! Sheamus is cashing in!
Sheamus defeats WWE World Heavyweight Champion Roman Reigns at 0:34 to win the title. Reigns has been Champion for about 5 minutes, so this is his first defense. Reigns kicks out after the first Brogue Kick, but Sheamus lands one more and this time gets the pin. Ugh, this would’ve been a great time to have Reigns fight off the cash-in, because as much as people don’t like Reigns they REALLY didn’t like Sheamus at this point either. Big missed opportunity here.
The show starts off fine enough with the semifinal matches, but pretty much dies a slow, painful death the rest of the way. Nothing after the second match reaches three stars, and the cash-in at the end was just flaming hot death that further hurt Reigns as they tried to push him into the Face of the Company spot. Major bummer of a show with no real redeeming qualities.