Survivor Series 2004
Date: November 14, 2004
Location: Gund Arena, Cleveland, Ohio
Commentators: Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler, Michael Cole, Tazz
It’s another year and the main thing that has changed is a few people rising up the card. For instance, Cena and Batista are about six months away from taking over the company while Orton is currently the top face on Raw, feuding with who else but HHH. Other than that we’ve got JBL as world champion which was pretty dreadful stuff. Hopefully this is more inspired than last year. Let’s get to it.
We open with a video about the seventeen years this show has run already.
The set looks cool here as it’s made of six screens which I guess will act like the Tron tonight. That’s the annoying thing about WWE today: all of the shows look the same.
Cruiserweight Title: Spike Dudley vs. Rey Mysterio vs. Chavo Guerrero vs. Billy Kidman
Spike is defending and is a heel here. This is one fall to a finish. Kidman hurt Chavo on a Shooting Star Press and seemed to be proud of it, which resulted in a heel turn for him. The other good thing here is that they don’t have to tag. That’s always a waste of time in these things as you just wait for things to break down. Kidman and Spike form a quick alliance, only to have Kidman dropkick the champ out to the floor.
Rey sends Kidman to the floor and it’s off to Rey vs. Chavo who are apparently friends at this point. Oh please, like these two could EVER get along. Rey spins Chavo around with a headscissors before Spike sends Rey into the corner and stomps away while screaming. Chavo comes back in and a double clothesline puts himself and Spike down. With Kidman on the apron, Rey hits a rana to send him out to the floor in a cool looking spot.
Back in and Rey tries the sitout bulldog on Chavo but Guerrero throws him onto Kidman in a seated senton. Chavo dives on both of them, leaving Spike standing ta….short actually. Anyway the champ dives on all of them but they step aside to let him crash. Chavo finally gets his hands on Billy back in the ring but Spike comes back in to break up a pinfall attempt.
Rey misses a moonsault over Spike’s head and gets thrown to the floor as a result. We get a Tower of Doom with everyone minus Rey involved, so Rey comes in and tries to steal a pin. Rey charges at Kidman but gets caught in a BK Bomb (Sky High) for two but Chavo breaks up the Shooting Star. Spike hits a running headbutt to Rey’s ribs but the Dudley Dog is broken up. 619 hits Spike but Billy breaks up the West Coast Pop. Chavo hits the Gory Bomb on Spike but Kidman hits a slingshot legdrop on Chavo. Rey takes out Kidman and Spike steals the pin on Chavo to retain.
Rating: B-. Not a great match or anything here but it was fine for an opener. Rey was insanely popular still but Spike keeping the title was a great way to tick off the fans. There’s nothing wrong with a heel winning, as long as the opener fires up the crowd, which this did. Good choice.
Heidenreich is getting fired up by Heyman when Paul goes to get his jacket. Snitsky, another creepy heel of the day, comes in. He says he likes Heidenreich’s poetry and Heidenreich likes what Snitsky does to babies. There’s WAY too much deep breathing here. By the way, this was almost who Taker and Kane fought at Mania before the company woke up and stuck Orton against Taker instead.
Intercontinental Title: Shelton Benjamin vs. Christian
Shelton is defending but the Waterproof Blonde version of Christian’s theme makes him far more awesome. Shelton is at the point in his career when he’s about to get on one of the biggest rolls in years but it never went anywhere past the IC Title. The champ cranks on the arm to start before they head to the mat. Keeping in mind that Shelton was a legit All-American wrestler, he’s just fine being on the mat with Christian.
Christian cranks on the arm but Shelton drops to the mat and immediately nips up which looked great. It didn’t do anything but it looked great. Christian talks trash and gets punched in the face for his efforts. Shelton skins the cat before hitting a great looking springboard clothesline for two. A HARD chop slows Benjamin down and Christian talks some more trash. Shelton counters a monkey flip by casually landing on his feet and grabs an Oklahoma Roll for two.
We head to the floor for a quick distraction by Tomko but Christian gets punched in the face instead. Tomko tries to cheat again and this time the distraction is enough to let Christian get in a shot. Why that creepy little bas…..never mind. A cross body gets two for Shelton but Christian immediately puts him back down with a neckbreaker. Off to a chinlock (Tomko: “BREAK HIS NECK!”) by Christian and he launches Benjamin to the floor as he tries to break the hold.
Shelton comes back with a hard whip into the corner to put Christian down. A Russian legsweep gets two for the champ as does a slingshot reverse suplex (called a reverse fisherman’s suplex by JR for some reason). Benjamin misses a Stinger Splash and gets caught in a reverse DDT for two. Tomko slides the belt in (hitting the referee in the foot in the process) but Shelton kicks Christian in the face.
The referee sees Christian holding the belt, which lets Benjamin hit a top rope clothesline for two. As the belt is being put out, Tomko kicks Benjamin in the face for two. The Exploder Suplex (a snap floatover T-Bone suplex which is Benjamin’s finisher) is countered but Benjamin kicks Tomko down. The Unprettier is countered into the Exploder for the pin to keep the title on Benjamin.
Rating: B. I really got into this match at the end even though Christian didn’t have much of a chance at winning. The Tomko and belt stuff didn’t help anything but they had to try to slow Shelton down a bit. Benjamin was in the beginning of a very long run with the belt that would last until June, which I think was the longest reign in about six years.
Really good match here as Christian put Shelton over strong. There’s a reason this guy basically had the world title waiting for him on a plate whenever he stepped up enough to take it, but that never happened for various reasons. Namely he just stopped trying and coasted on his reputation, but that’s another story.
Angle complains to Edge about something Edge wrote in his book about Angle. Kurt makes fun of Edge for never winning the world title. Just wait another fifteen months or so Kurtski. They trade some insults before Kurt leaves and runs into Eugene. Eugene lists off (slowly) some of Angle’s accomplishments before singing the You Suck version of his theme song.
Team Angle vs. Team Guerrero
Kurt Angle, Carlito Caribbean Cool, Luther Reigns, Mark Jindrak
Eddie Guerrero, John Cena, Rob Van Dam, Big Show
Eddie and Angle have been feuding since Wrestlemania, Carlito debuted and beat Cena for the US Title before injuring Cena in a nightclub (or having someone do it. The attacker was never revealed I don’t think but it might have been Carlito’s buddy Jesus. Make your own jokes because Cena destroyed Jesus at Armageddon), Show is feuding with Reigns and Jindrak and Angle for shaving his head, and Van Dam is there as a warm body.
Before the bell, Cena chases Carlito and Jesus to the back and gets in a brawl with them. Carlito and Jesus steal a car and speed away, which is an elimination apparently. Back at ringside there’s a big brawl until Show (on a bad ankle) pulls Jindrak into the ring. Here’s Cena back to the ring to make it 4-3. Off to Van Dam who hits a spin kick before it’s off to Eddie for the slingshot hilo, followed by Rolling Thunder from Van Dam.
Eddie suplexes Jindrak down and armdrags Reigns as he headscissors Jindrak in a cool move. Angle comes in to stop his team’s bleeding but it’s quickly back to Reigns for a bunch of backbreakers for two. Off to Jindrak for a full nelson but Eddie sends him into the buckle. Eddie dives for the corner but Angle literally tackles Guerrero to break it up. Kurt hits a belly to belly before bringing in Reigns for more stomping.
Off to a chinlock from Jindrak but Eddie eventually grabs a jawbreaker to escape. Angle again blocks the tag and puts on a front facelock. One thing to note here: the entire time the hold is on, Cena is reaching out for a tag and encouraging Eddie. It doesn’t mean much, but it helps things from getting really boring. Little things like that can make a big difference. Watch guys like Rock and Hogan when they’re on the apron in tag matches. They’re ALWAYS doing something, even if it’s minor like clapping. It can make a difference.
Jindrak comes in but Eddie knocks him away and it’s off to Van Dam. Rob goes off (Cole: “He’s supple!”) and hits an enziguri on Angle to set up the Five Star but Jindrak pulls him away. The Splash hits Jindrak, allowing Angle to roll up Rob (using the ropes) for the pin. Angle heads to the floor so Eddie rolls up the illegal Jindrak, using the ropes as well, for an elimination to make it 3-2 (Eddie/Show/Cena vs. Reigns/Angle).
Eddie tells Angle to bring it on and there go the straps. Eddie tags in Show, making Angle tag in Reigns. Reigns gets in one or two shots but a chokeslam beats him quickly. Kurt rolls through a chokeslam into the ankle lock but Show sends him through the ropes to escape. Angle starts to walk up the aisle but Van Dam is waiting on him. Kurt backs up while still looking at RVD, and backs into Show. He reaches up to see how tall what he backed into is and shakes his head. Show throws Kurt back in to face Cena (in for the first time legally) and it’s an FU and Frog Splash for the final elimination.
Rating: C+. This wasn’t a good match but it was entertaining, which is more than you got from almost all of last year’s show. I’m guessing Cena and Carlito were injured as they didn’t do anything for the most part. Angle was great here and the look on his face when he backed into Big Show always makes me chuckle. Fun match here which is what you need sometimes.
Maven, who for some reason likely related to drug intoxication is in the main event tonight, offers to demonstrate his skills to Coach (the West Virginia accent was a killer for him) but Snitsky jumps Maven and Maven is badly busted open. This would be how they would keep Maven out of a PPV main event for most of the match when they realized OH SNAP WE PUT MAVEN IN A MAIN EVENT!
Video on Heidenreich vs. Undertaker, where Heidenreich is the latest guy to try to kill Taker at Paul Heyman’s direction. This was one of those matches where they were trying to make it seem like Undertaker was in trouble but Heidenreich comes off like the villain in the fifth direct to video sequel in a horror series that has overstayed its welcome by two movies.
Heidenreich vs. Undertaker
Heidenreich comes out in a straightjacket because he might attack more plants. Taker does the big long entrance as is his custom. Taker stares at Heidenreich for awhile before the beating begins. A charge in the corner runs into a Heidenreich elbow but the Dead Man will have none of this being on defense stuff. Taker works on the arm but a Heyman distraction lets Heidenreich crotch Undertaker to break up Old School. He crotches Taker against the post again and we head to the floor.
Heidenreich pounds away on Taker against the barricade while shouting that he can beat Undertaker. Taker again shrugs that off and hits the legdrop on the apron for two back in the ring. Old School hits the second time followed by a modified Downward Spiral for two. A big boot misses Heidenreich in the corner and it’s time for more punching on the floor. This isn’t one of those matches where the fans are worried about Undertaker as I don’t think anyone believes Heidenreich is a real threat.
A kick to Taker’s face sets up a chinlock and a clothesline for two. Another clothesline stops Taker’s comeback but a suplex stops the stopping of the comeback. Heidenreich sends him to the apron but Taker stuns him on the top rope. Taker channels his inner Kane (he had the name first) and hits a top rope clothesline for two. Back in and Snake Eyes/the big boot takes Heidenreich down again.
The chokeslam is broken up and Heidenreich gets two off a Boss Man Slam. Then like an idiot, Heidenreich punches away in the corner while Taker’s arms are down. The obvious Last Ride only gets two though as Heidenreich grabs the rope. Heidenreich tries a sleeper but Taker is like boy please and suplexes out of it almost immediately. Chokeslam and Tombstone finish this quick.
Rating: D. Like I said at the end of the day, did ANYONE buy Heidenreich as a real threat to Taker? The guy just wasn’t that good and he came off as more silly than a serious threat. Not much to see here and Heidenreich never got higher than he did in this match. Taker would move on to a much better feud with Orton soon enough.
Bischoff says Maven is out of the main event and if he allows Orton to add a replacement, HHH will complain and Eric will lose his vacation, which is the point of the main event.
We recap Trish vs. Lita, which is happening because….well who else are they going to fight? Lita got pregnant with Baby Kane but lost it because of Snitsky. Trish made fun of Lita for being a slut, having a dead baby, and for being fat.
Women’s Title: Trish Stratus vs. Lita
Trish is defending. Lita is all ticked off and punches Trish as soon as she gets in. Trish gets pounded even more and they head to the floor where Trish goes into a table and gets cracked with a chair 80 seconds into the match. Trish apparently has a broken nose. This wasn’t much, but these two would main event Raw in a few weeks. I don’t mean a match that went on last and then they had the promo that closed the show. I mean they spent the whole show hyping up Trish Stratus vs. Lita as the main event and Lita won the title and celebrated to end the show. It was actually pretty awesome.
Teddy comes in to congratulate Team Guerrero while Show is in a towel. Show hands the towel to Teddy and walks off. Cena: “THAT’S DISGUSTING!” Teddy makes Cena vs. Carlito for the title on Thursday. Why is Cena in his underwear?
We recap Booker T vs. JBL. Booker pinned JBL in a tag match but JBL says Booker isn’t in his league. Booker beat up Orlando Jordan and pinned him to earn the title shot. There really isn’t much to this one.
Smackdown World Title: John Bradshaw Layfield vs. Booker T
Booker’s big yellow gloves don’t really do him any favors. Feeling out process to start as they trade really basic stuff for the first minute and a half or so. Booker knocks him to the floor and JBL gets the advantage coming back in. Back to the floor and Booker gets sent over the announce table. As they head back in, Jordan gets in a cheap shot to give JBL two. Still in first gear at best.
JBL hooks in a cobra clutch followed by an elbow drop and a chinlock. After that VICIOUS offense, Booker easily fights back and hits a superplex to put both guys down. Orlando gets in some more cheap shots on the floor but JBL walks into a Book End out there to give Booker his first real advantage. Back in and a missile dropkick gets two for Booker. They’re into second gear now but it’s just not an interesting match.
Booker goes up but another Jordan distraction lets JBL avoid a Houston Hangover (flip legdrop). Another sleeper by JBL is escaped but Jordan breaks up the ax kick. JBL hits a quick DDT for two and there goes the referee. Jordan comes in and pounds on Booker but Josh Matthews comes out to help Booker for reasons that aren’t important enough to explain. JBL destroys Josh but there’s the side kick to JBL. The ax kick takes him down as well but Jordan takes out the referee. Booker hits the Book End on Jordan but JBL clocks Booker with the belt to retain.
Rating: D. This just didn’t work. Basically they were redoing the HHH/Flair run from 2003 with Jordan interfering every ten seconds and the matches sucking and the crowd groaning when JBL retains the title. JBL is a hilarious commentator and a solid main event jobber, but as champion the guy was painfully boring.
Batista and HHH are ready for the main event.
We recap the main event which is Team HHH vs. Team Orton. Team Orton has united to oppose HHH’s tyranny and the winning team gets to run Raw for a week each. Snitsky has said that when Team HHH wins, he’s coming for HHH’s world title, as has Edge. Batista has been looking at the title too. This gets the music video treatment for the night. Maven and Snitsky stick out like two shattered thumbs in this video.
Team HHH vs. Team Orton
HHH, Edge, Batista, Gene Snitsky
Randy Orton, Chris Jericho, Chris Benoit, Maven
HHH is world champion. Maven isn’t here due to the earlier attack. It’s interesting to think that it would be Batista rather than Orton that would rise up out of this match as the real star. Not that Orton isn’t a star, but Batista was without a doubt the biggest star in the company in 2005 and part of 2006. For some reason Edge comes out last. Benoit vs. Edge to start which is fine with me. Benoit destroys Edge and knocks him to the floor to start but it’s off to Orton vs. Snitsky.
Orton pounds him down with ease before it’s Jericho in off the tag. HHH comes in but Jericho immediately elbows him down and brings in Orton to no response. Orton can’t challenge for the world title because of some stipulation due to losing to Flair. Great way to make sure the fans get behind him there right? Make it clear that no matter how awesome he is, he’s not getting the title shot.
Batista comes in and has some better luck with Randy, firing off shoulders into the corner. Edge is in now and he mocks Orton’s pose in an often done bit. Edge draws in Jericho for no apparent reason, but it allows Orton to clothesline Edge back down. Off to Benoit as the fans are dead for this match for some reason. Benoit cleans house and suplexes everyone in sight. Edge prevents a Swan Dive onto HHH, so HHH suplexes Edge onto HHH and Swan Dives both of them for two.
Everything breaks down even more and HHH gets caught in the Sharpshooter by Benoit. Snitsky makes the save and Edge gets put in the Crossface. This time Batista saves, allowing HHH to Pedigree Benoit and give Edge the pin for the elimination. Jericho comes in to pound away on Edge but HHH and Snitsky get in an argument. Batista comes to HHH’s defense but has to break up the Walls on HHH instead.
Flair trips up Jericho and gets ejected for his efforts. Flair walks up the aisle but comes back a second later to allow Batista to kill Orton and Jericho. There’s the spinebuster to Jericho but Orton hits Big Dave with the belt, allowing Jericho to hit the enziguri on Batista for the pin. Jericho hits the springboard dropkick to knock Snitsky onto HHH on the floor but Batista kills Jericho with the clothesline before leaving.
It’s Snitsky vs. Jericho at the moment with Snitsky choking away. Edge comes in and pounds on his fellow Canadian but gets caught in the sleeper drop to put both guys down. Orton gets shoved to the floor and Edge and HHH double team him for a bit. Jericho DDTs Snitsky down….and here comes Maven. He goes right after Snitsky and takes him down with a forearm as things seem to go into slow motion.
Maven bulldogs HHH down and is all fired up, but Snitsky kills him with a chair shot for a DQ. HHH covers the dead Maven for the easy elimination. Edge keeps covering Jericho but can’t get more than a bunch of two’s. It’s Orton/Jericho vs. HHH/Edge if you’re keeping score. A spear puts Jericho out and it’s 2-1 with Orton in trouble. Orton says bring it on and is promptly beaten down in the corner.
Edge suplexes Orton down and holds him while HHH pounds away. Orton punches away at HHH but gets DDT’d down for two. Edge comes back in and gets slammed down before getting dropkicked into HHH on the apron. That gets two off a rollup from Orton but he walks into a HHH spinebuster. We get the required heel miscommunication as Edge spears HHH down and walks into an RKO for the pin. It’s down to Orton vs. HHH with the Game hitting Orton low as Edge leaves. The Pedigree is countered into the RKO for the final pin.
Rating: B. The match was good stuff but as I said earlier, Orton pinning HHH doesn’t mean anything. Somehow Orton would get a title match at the Rumble through means I don’t remember where HHH would destroy Orton once and for all. I think I’m the only person on the planet that liked Orton’s first main event face run so when I watched this I was digging it at the time. It turned out they got lucky with Batista, but the Orton face run could have been more if HHH hadn’t hacked the legs out from under it.
Overall Rating: B-. There’s some dull stuff here, but the good stuff really is solid as you can see the new generation ready to burst through. The main event was entertaining stuff and the fans did react to Orton pinning HHH clean. The Smackdown side of things was pretty lame but other than that, this was a solid show and I was digging it at the end. Good show.
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