Survivor Series 2023 recap & reactions: Hell freezes over

I had everything written in my mind for this year’s main event. Really, it all got imprinted on my mind. I had already made the point that Seth Rollins is almost ruining his team with his Cody Rhodes beef. I wrote a quick comment on Jey Uso’s statement about Randy Orton feeling guilty for not coming first and blaming it on himself. He kept it with him during the match, despite the fact that his teammates told him to stay quiet.

I wrote a particularly poetic piece about Judgment Day solidarity, which wasn’t even hampered by Drew McIntyre’s lone wolf behavior. And boy, did he try at least once. He almost had a fight with Damian Priest to enter the match before the team leader because he wanted Jey so much. Damien talked some sense into him and that was that. Drew eventually got his hands on Jay but even so, their confrontation disappointed me.

Of course I got into Randy’s eventual return and how WWE played it perfectly with cashing in on Damien right before. Judgment Day looked towards the entrance and did not see Randy. Rhea Ripley’s music played and she ran towards the ring with the briefcase in her hand and the referee right behind her. Damien chases that cash-in like Wil E. Coyote chases the Road Runner. If he opened the briefcase and pulled out a piece of paper that had “ACME” written on it instead of the WWE contract, I wouldn’t be surprised in the slightest. However, the wrong direction played brilliantly. Get everyone to look in one direction and then Randy’s music plays.

I had a lot of thoughts about Randy. The guy looks great, he barely took a fight in the match, and his short amount of screen time created a spark that I didn’t realize I missed. He tried to go after Jey for obvious reasons but Main Event saved him with a sneak attack. It’s not over yet but at least for one night, Randy has put it aside for a bigger threat.

I talked about Cody and Randy’s conversation, continuing the story of their legacy in a whole new way that felt like closing a loop. Loved his high five almost as much as I loved JD McDonagh getting the RKO off the top rope. They threw him into Randy’s clutches and he did the right thing.

especially Because the Jedi had apparently lost his mind. It’s 2023 and the guy thought it would be cool for him to rock cornrows. No sir, it is not like that. I don’t know who told him it was a good idea, but it’s clearly not someone who thinks too much about it. Either through questionable hairstyle or ring action, JD continues his role as a Judgment Day crash test dummy.

Oh, and Dom remains the biggest heel in the territory and I don’t think it’s even close.

But then the show’s graphics came up on the screen, the camera panned back to Allstate Arena, and “Cult of Personality” began playing through the speakers. It seemed as if a tidal wave had swept through Chicago on an incredibly cold night.

CM Punk is back in WWE. I never thought I’d type those words. Not the way he left all those moons ago. not after his style Two AEW’s tenure has ended. Not after the podcast, the lawsuits, and the alleged bad blood between all parties involved. Yet here we are, almost at the end of this calendar year and Chicago’s favorite son has appeared in Jerusalem like Jesus.

I have a lot of questions, as I’m sure you have too, and don’t even know which one to ask first. This is huge for obvious reasons. How this plays out and what it means for the roster as a whole is top of mind. Although I’m always an optimist, I can’t help but wonder how long it will take for this to appear on everyone’s faces. I don’t want this at all, but it feels like I was fooled four times, it’s a shame for me. However that is for later. I have at least a little hope that this time will work out for everyone involved. WWE isn’t the same place it was when he left and hopefully he’s still not the same person he was when all the drama happened in AEW. Oh, and let’s not even get to the AEW factor. I have ideas but I’ll leave it to Manolo.

Seriously, CM Punk is back in WWE. This is the biggest story in professional sports entertainment wrestling and I’m not sure how I feel about it.

And yet…CM Punk is back in WWE.


ride or die

Before the match started, IYO SKY did something I’ve never seen in any wrestling match. In the match, all the women – except Asuka – were fighting each other, with IYO standing on top of the cage holding a chain. He placed the chain into Dakota Kai’s welcoming hands and Dakota attached the chain to the trash can. After pulling the dustbin up, IYO placed it over his head. Well, on the upper half of her body. And then it did this: IYO launched itself 15 feet into the air like a missile and wiped out Team EST.

Very good. This happened a few hours ago and I’m still shocked.

But the great opening match wasn’t just about big moves, although we got plenty of them (Charlotte’s moonsault). Damage: Questions regarding CTRL’s solidarity overshadowed their supposedly harmonious union. Will Bailey do the right thing for her team? Can she and Kairi Sane last long enough to overcome dangerous opponents?

And what about those opponents? Will Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair be together? An elephant in the room wearing a Babur-like crown threatens Team EST’s success.

And we got definite answers from both sides.

Charlotte and Becky? They teased the tension early on and Damaged CTRL disrupted anything that could have happened between them. But later, after cleaning the house, both of them tried to stare again. But instead of suppressing it, he embraced it. Becky hugs her former best friend. Huge moment considering the stakes and history. There’s no guarantee that they’re friends again, it just means that they’ve put their self-interests aside as war often makes strange companions.

Bailey showed his loyalty to the team. If you’re part of Damage Ctrl, you’re on his side. When Charlotte measured Kairi for the spear, Bayley pushed through like a mother protecting her child and took the proverbial bullet.

This began a series where Bayley ate up her opponents’ special moves, including a manhandle slam through the table by Becky. Appropriately, he took the pin for his team after laying himself on the sacrificial altar. The ending also worked because every single woman on Team EST wants revenge especially on Bayley. They each got something off their chest, while Belle once again showed that when the chips are down, she’s a ride or die kind of girl.

Loved the match, loved the ending, and especially loved the way the team celebrated at tea time at the end.

check technique

Like wrestlers, there are rappers who rely on charisma rather than technical skill. And there are people who do both. Miz’s goal survivor Series, Prove that you can walk in both the worlds. In addition to winning the Intercontinental Championship, having Gunther eat what he described as Thanksgiving leftovers no doubt gave Miz an extra boost.

Miz showed up, even if it wasn’t enough. Then again, that rarely happens when wrestling Gunther.

Miz pulled out some tributes to Bret Hart from his bag, underscoring the number of fans he was referencing. Raw Go home show, and showed that he is a true wrestling student. All his hints didn’t yield the desired results, but they proved the point. Miz stayed with a man who thought he was a joke and never backed down. He even got really close to the W after knocking out the champion with a low blow and then defeating him with a Skull Crushing Finale. I want them to protect more moves along the way. Gunther got hurt in his lower area And Fell face first on the mat. Despite all this, Gunther remains down for the count for three seconds. But alas, this is a big show and I know how finishers work in this setting.

Gunther sells well for Miz, as he usually does for everyone. During the match he looked like a man who underestimated his opponent. His facial expressions and body language are an underrated part of his game.

However, the winner remains the winner. He slaps Miz into the Lion Tamer, of course alluding to Chris Jericho’s position in the Intercontinental Championship pantheon, and Miz taps because oh.

Not the classic that Miz had promised but a fun match with good work from both men. They suspended disbelief because I doubt anyone watching before the bell rang questioned the outcome, they at least added suspense before we got there.

physical endurance

Rhea Ripley vs. Zoey Stark presented a puzzle. I loved the physicality because these two look great beating each other senseless. Rhea, on the other hand, really seems to be much bigger than that division and her opponents at the moment. I joke with Geno about this every other week, but give that woman the World Heavyweight Championship. It seemed as if Zoey was an afterthought and during the match, she never hit an extra gear to draw her opponent’s attention.

But this isn’t on Rhea or Zoey; There’s no heat behind any woman Raw No name of Rhea Ripley. They are basically fighting with both hands behind their back. Relying on Rhea’s magnetism for interest sounds fine in theory, but the implementation shows its limitations. Although both women fought hard for several minutes, the match never took place. Rhea needs credible competition and that means WWE investing more in the women on the red brand.

Apologies to Santos Escobar and Dragon Lee. I intended to cover their match, which I dug a lot, but that ending confused me. If I wrote any more words about this incident, it would become a CM Punk editorial. This is the story. That’s all I’m thinking about. And I’m sure this is everything anyone else is thinking about.

grade A-

What say you, Cagesiders? What happens to Punk in WWE? Does it work out for the better or is it a match made in hell?

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