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It’s tradition, I guess

Team Raw (Queen Zelina Vega, Carmella, Rhea Ripley, Bianca Belair, Liv Morgan) vs. Team SmackDown (Sasha Banks, Shayna Baszler, Shotzi, Toni Storm, Natalya)

Survivor Series Elimination Match

It’s the most magical time of year. The one where we pretend like Survivor Series is a “big deal” PPV and not just a sad grab at nostalgia for the days when it mattered. And this year, it doubly makes zero sense because RAW and SmackDown have the same general managers. Oh, wait, it makes triple zero sense because that whole “brand split thing”? Yeah, well, it’s more or less a lie, and anyone can show up on either show at any time.

It’s weird when the matches that share the title of the PPV are the filler matches, huh?

The Road to Survivor Series

It’s a short road. The teams were chosen randomly and announced online first before they were broadcast on TV. I assume, like me, the WWE writers forgot about Survivor Series entirely and then freaked out and turned in the assignment last minute. We’ve all been there.

There was a minor hiccup in the line-up when Sonya replaced the new main roster call-up, Aliyah, on the SmackDown team because she helped Naomi. Sonya is nothing if not consistent in her vitriol toward The Glow. The good news, however, is that Aliyah was replaced by Toni Storm, which means, maybe, quite possibly, if the stars are aligned, then it could, in fact, actually be Toni Time! Maybe. We’ll see.

Essentially, these teams are full of mini rivalries (like Carmella & Liv and Shotzi & Sasha), and we’ll have to hear the phrase “but can they put aside their differences and work together for the good of the brand” approximately 1,000 times.

On paper, Team SmackDown is more impressive, but when has that ever mattered?

What’s at stake?

Traditionally, the brand reputation is at stake, but, well, no one really cares about that anymore. On a more individualistic level, it’s a chance for the lone survivor (for assuredly there will be one) and the winner (if they’re different) to put themselves first in the pecking order for a future title shot.

These teams are a good(ish) mix of established former champion talent and newer, less established talent. Having someone like Shotzi Blackheart or Liv Morgan win (or at the very least show out) could do wonders for a push. Especially considering that Morgan and Shotzi have already called out the champions on their respective brands. Of course, it’s just as likely that Sasha Banks or Bianca Belair will bring it home for their team, and everything will remain the same.

Or maybe! Just maybe, it’ll finally be Toni Time! But probably not.

Raw and SmackDown will face each other in a traditional Survivor Series elimination match tonight at 8 PM on Peacock in the United States and the WWE Network everywhere else. Keep it here to CagesideSeats.com for all your Survivor Series coverage.

Poll

Who will win?

This poll is closed

  • 39%
    Team RAW
    (61 votes)
  • 60%
    Team SmackDown
    (92 votes)
153 votes total Vote Now