Well, your votes have been counted. You have picked the latest live retro blog. You have chosen a Survivor Series from Madison Square Garden.
But not the 1996 edition. That had more than a few good moments. You've decided on the 2002 Survivor Series, taking place November 17, 2002 from Madison Square Garden in New York City, aka the capital of the WWE Universe.
The show, taking place almost a year to the day of the Invasion storyline ended, will believe it or not, feature a traditional elimination tag match. But it will feature an elimination match. An Elimination Chamber match, a WWE first. Triple H will defend the World Heavyweight Championship against Rob Van Dam, Booker T, Chris Jericho, Kane, and in his first match since Summerslam, Shawn Michaels.
It's not the only title on the line on the show. The WWE Championship will be at stake as Brock Lesnar's unpinned run will be put to the test against the 7'2”, 500 pound Big Show. Also on the Smackdown side, Edge and Rey Mysterio must turn back not one, but two teams, as Los Guerreros and the tenuous duo of Chris Benoit and Kurt Angle both look to take the titles. The WWE divas will get hardcore as Trish Stratus defends the Women's Championship against Victoria, and Jamie Noble defends the Cruiserweight title against Billy Kidman.
Oh, and there is an elimination tag on this show. But with a twist: TABLES. The Dudley Boyz and Jeff Hardy will face 3 Minute Warning and Rico in an elimination tables match.
Go time for the live retro blog will be 8pm ET. That's 7pm CT, 5pm PT, 3pm Hawaiian, and 1am in Britain. Everywhere else, you can figure it out. Active WWE Network subscription is required, but if you don't have one, you can get one here or if you don't feel like giving your credit card number out, you can pick up a WWE Network subscription card at any 7-Eleven, Wal-Mart, or Gamestop near you.
So... I'll see you all there, yeah?
Howdy! Eddie Mac here. Let's have some fun with some retro wrestling.
- ELIMINATION CHAMBER FOR THE WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP: Triple H [c] vs. Booker T vs. Chris Jericho vs. Kane vs. Rob Van Dam vs. Shawn Michaels
- WWE CHAMPIONSHIP: Brock Lesnar [c] vs. Big Show
- THREE TEAM ELIMINATION MATCH FOR THE WWE TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP: Edge & Rey Mysterio [c] vs. Los Guerreros (Eddie & Chavo) vs. Chris Benoit & Kurt Angle
- HARDCORE MATCH FOR THE WWE WOMEN'S CHAMPIONSHIP: Trish Stratus [c] vs. Victoria
- WWE CRUISERWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP: Jamie Noble vs. Billy Kidman
- 6-MAN ELIMINATION TABLES MATCH: The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray and Spike) and Jeff Hardy vs. 3 Minute Warning (Jamal & Rosey) and Rico
PYRO AND BALLYHOO!
Xbox presents Survivor Series. November 17, 2002 from Madison Square Garden in New York City. (FUTURE EDDIE ALERT: As I write this, history is again being made in that building; a major mixed martial arts event is being held in the state of New York for the first time in the Garden tonight. A long time coming if you ask me.) 17,930 fans in attendance with 340,000 homes watching on PPV. (FUTURE EDDIE AGAIN: Though still a solid number, the last four Survivor Series had—going in reverse from 2001--450K, 400K, 448K, and 478K.)
Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler handling the RAW matches, while Michael Cole and Tazz do the Smackdown stuff.
Match 1: The Dudley Boyz and Jeff Hardy defeated 3 Minute Warning and Rico 3-2 in an elimination tables match in 14:22. The big story: the return of D-Von Dudley, effectively correcting the error of five months earlier, splitting up the Dudleys. Neither Bubba nor D-Von were a runaway success in singles, so why not bring them back together. (FUTURE EDDIE ALERT: TNA split them up a decade later, with a much different result. D-Von had a solid, yet unspectacular run, while Bubba—Bully--Ray went on to one of the better post-tag team runs of the 21st century.)
Meanwhile at the restaurant formerly known as WWF New York, Stacy Keibler talks about Test and his Testicles. That's the name of Test's fans. Get your minds out of the gutter, people. Saliva performs "Always", the theme forSurvivor Series while a video package of the events leading to tonight play.
Rob Van Dam doing stretches before he gets in THE ELIMINATION CHAMBER OF DEATH later tonight.
Match 2: Billy Kidman defeated Jamie Noble to win the WWE Cruiserweight Championship in 7:29. Show-stealing match? Show-stealing match. It's three straight L's Noble's taken against Kidman. Three strikes and your ass is out.
Backstage, Kurt Angle tells Chris Benoit if Billy freaking Kidman can win a title tonight, so can they. Chris Jericho prepares for THE ELIMINATION CHAMBER OF DEATH, while Victoria on the F-VIEW In a different locker room does her best Maleficient before fighting a cardboard cutout of Trish Stratus. Recap of the feud brings us to the following contest.
Match 3: Victoria defeated Trish Stratus in a hardcore match to win the WWE Women's Championship in 7:01.Snap suplex wins the title. In a hardcore match. Ummm... okay. Victoria bleeds from the nose and these two did beat the piss out of each other, so there's that. Is she the first woman to bleed on WWE programming? If someone knows, reply in the comments.
As Booker T prepares for THE ELIMINATION CHAMBER OF DEATH, Jonathan Coachman interviews Eric Bischoff and tries to get some information on this ELIMINATION CHAMBER OF DEATH. Big Show walks in and tells Eric that's gonna be sorry for trading him to Smackdown because he's gonna win the WWE title tonight. Meanwhile, Brock Lesnar's back and Paul Heyman holds the WWE title like a teddy bear. Paul believes Brock can't beat Big Show.
A video package previewing the WWE title match prepares us for the forthcoming contest.
Match 4: Big Show defeated Brock Lesnar to win the WWE Championship in just 4:18. Yeah, you are seeing that right. Big Show got the honor of being the first man to defeat Brock Lesnar by pinfall. Not Undertaker. Not Triple H. Not The Rock. Not Steve Austin. THE BIG SHOW. THE FUCKING BIG SHOW. And in only four minutes. Heyman turned on Lesnar to initiate the face turn for Brock because he was crazy popular around this time because he just mowed people down. Lesnar had injured ribs at this point, and Brock put on a hell of a performance in his four minutes. (FUTURE EDDIE ALERT: I miss this Brock. He was a killer and looked like he gave a damn.)
Paul Wight. WWE Champion. I'm not okay with this.
Correction from Michael Cole: it’s actually three times in five years, seven of the last ten. The only three where the WWE title didn’t change hands: 1993, 2000, and 2001 (title wasn’t on the line in ‘93 and ‘01; Angle retained in 2000).
A recap of the three-team feud leads to the following contest.
Match 5: Los Guerreros defeated Edge and Rey Mysterio and Kurt Angle and Chris Benoit via submission in a three-team elimination match to win the WWE Tag Team Championship in 19:25. It wasn't as good as the all-timer at No Mercy, but that was going to be hard to top anyway. But this was good and you should watch it. (FUTURE EDDIE MAC ALERT: I believe the Smackdown Six essentially go their separate ways after this. Los Guerreros remain a tag team until late next year; at the same time, Eddie's singles career blossoms. Edge misses most of 2003 due to a neck injury. Rey goes into the Cruiserweight division. Angle the next month wins the WWE title. Benoit is mostly in the midcard, but is an occasional main eventer over the next couple years.)
Kane prepares for THE ELIMINATION CHAMBER OF DEATH.
Christopher Nowinski comes out and runs down New York's sports teams (because of course), then lowfat chocolate milk drinker Matt Hardy, Version One comes out. He also runs down New York, then a police siren. HOLY SHIT, IT'S SCOTT STEINER! And it's suplexes for everyone! MSG is losing their minds! And he gets a fucking mic. Big Poppa Pump is your hookup, hollar if you hear him. Could have been worse, all things considered.
Terri Runnels is with Shawn Michaels talking about THE ELIMINATION CHAMBER OF DEATH—BREAKING NEWS FROM THE RNN! Randy Orton updates us on his shoulder: not any worse from the flight. Keep those emails and cards coming. Glad your shoulder's doing better Randy, but state of your haircut, mate.
A video package of the events leading to THE ELIMINATION CHAMBER OF DEATH leads us to our main event. Since the promo was so good, I'll drop the video in. Right here.
Eric Bischoff comes out and puts over the match and the brutality that awaits them in THE ELIMINATION CHAMBER OF DEATH. That structure does kinda look dangerous though. There's a non-zero chance of a SHOOT MURDER, right? I mean, it's less than one percent. But it's not zero.
Chris Jericho gets his entrance music played in by Saliva who is at the restaurant formerly known as WWF New York.
Match 6: Shawn Michaels last defeated Triple H to win the Elimination Chamber match and the World Heavyweight Championship in 39:20. Elimination order: Rob Van Dam (13:20), Booker T (17:43), Kane (22:53), Chris Jericho (30:43), and Triple H. Shawn gets the massive confetti celebration, one of the greater visuals in WWE history. (FUTURE EDDIE ALERT: It sucks it had to be negated a month later by Triple H winning the title back. This was during the Haitch "Am I fucking going over?" era, where RAW was booked like mid-1980s NWA. Which is nice, except that in the big spots where the babyface absolutely has to win, no questions asked, they often don't. How's that territory doing?)
EDDIE MAC'S QUICK REVIEW
I legitimately forgot how good this show was before I watched it. I remember it being good, but this is not only among the best five Survivor Series shows ever, it's probably among the best 25 PPVs WWE's ever done. There's little to be disappointed about (looking at you, Big Show) and it's an easy watch. I recommend if you have WWE Network, seek this show out. If you do not, get WWE Network and seek this show out. Or buy the DVD. Or do both. Eddie Mac gives it his stamp of approval with a solid 9 out of 10.
Ok, on to some sad news. The Live Retro Blog is going away for a while. Before you start crying, it's not going away forever; just the remainder of the year. Next weekend is of course Survivor Series weekend, which includes NXT Takeover: Toronto the night before. Then there's Thanksgiving weekend, then TLC, and Roadblock two weeks after that. Then Christmas and New Year's weekends. I know that leaves like one open weekend in the next seven. Spend that with your family. Do something nice. It's the holiday season, so spread some of that good holiday cheer, because good Lord the world needs it more than ever.
The cSs Live Retro Blog will return Saturday, January 7, unless one of the higher-ups feels like doing one before then, in which case I won't stop them. Happy holidays!