The two biggest builds heading into this past Sunday’s Survivor Series were without question the men’s traditional Survivor Series elimination match, featuring five of the top superstars from RAW against the best five SmackDown had to offer, and of course, the mega-match between Brock Lesnar and Goldberg. Both on-screen and behind the scenes, the focus was clearly on those two programs.
After all, the men’s Survivor Series elimination match lasted more than 50 minutes, while the main event fantasy warfare lasted less than two. In one night, the WWE managed to book the longest match in the history of the Survivor Series pay-per-view and the shortest main event of a marquee show ever.
The undercard needed to deliver in different ways as the Cruiserweight and Intercontinental Championship matches had major implications riding on them. The 20-man tag team Survivor Series elimination match was basically a throwaway, especially considering the RAW champions were eliminated early, but it proved entertaining nonetheless. And then there were the women.
Back in the second week of October, Daniel Bryan and Shane McMahon laid down the challenge to RAW that led to the three elimination matches on Sunday at Survivor Series. And surprisingly enough, considering how much back and forth was done in the creative room for the two main feuds on the card, the women’s Survivor Series match went almost exactly according to their original plan more than a month ago.
According to Daily Wrestling News, the backstage attack angle that took Nikki Bella out of the match was planned from the very first meeting in regards to the match at Survivor Series. It’s not known exactly when that meeting took place, but the plan all along was for Nikki to beat Natalya in that qualifying match on SmackDown, lead her team as its captain, and see Natalya be named the coach.
Nattie blurred the lines between face and heel ever since as the goal was to build a unified front on SmackDown for their match against the women from RAW at Survivor Series. Now that the brands will once again be split, the speculation is that the angle was done to set up a program between Natalya and Nikki. Whether they reveal Nattie as the attacker soon remains to be seen as SmackDown’s next brand-exclusive pay-per-view already comes our way in less than two weeks.
Revealing the secret that Natalya took Nikki out before she could compete at Survivor Series now would certainly speed up a showdown to TLC on December 4. They could also build it slowly and wait for the payoff until 2017, although no SmackDown-only pay-per-views have been confirmed beyond this December as of yet. It’s also safe to assume that Becky Lynch will continue her rivalry with Alexa Bliss, at least until TLC as well.
The only thing that didn’t go exactly as scripted at Survivor Series in the women’s elimination match was the way Nia Jax was eliminated. There was some speculation that Nia was not supposed to tap out, but that is, in fact, how they drew it up. However, Becky was supposed to lock in her disarm-her submission hold right after she and Alexa double-teamed Jax. Becky continued tangling before eventually applying the hold, which should have happened a few minutes earlier.
On the RAW side of things, the WWE made it clear after their Survivor Series victory that Charlotte will be entering a program with Bayley. However, she’ll first defend her championship against Sasha Banks again next week in Charlotte, North Carolina. The expectation is that Charlotte will retain and then move on to Bayley while Sasha enters a feud with Nia Jax.
WWE officials have been going back and forth on creative plans for Charlotte heading into WrestleMania. They have established the angle where she has not lost a singles match in 13 straight pay-per-views and will continue to exploit that. However, we reported earlier on Tuesday that the WWE is courting UFC star, Ronda Rousey hard with plans of putting her with Charlotte at WrestleMania. The title wouldn’t have to be involved if that feud unfolds, but the plan has been to kept the streak intact at least until WrestleMania, so we’ll see how it plays out.
[Featured Image by WWE]