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What a difference a year makes

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25-Man Dual Brand Battle Royal

There were only six matches on the show, and it doesn’t look like The Rock’s gonna show up, so... here’s a stakes-free bout with as many dudes as the number of years it’s been since his debut:

Ricochet, T-BAR, Mansoor, Cesaro, Montez Ford, Angelo Dawkins, Erik, Ivar, R-Truth, Drew Gulak, AJ Styles, Omos, Sami Zayn, Humberto, Angel, Apollo Crews, Commander Azeez, Otis, Chad Gable, Shelton Benjamin, Cedric Alexander, Dolph Ziggler, Robert Roode, Jinder Mahal & Shanky

The Road to Survivor Series

There’s really not much. To the extent there’s any build to this, it’s that most of Raw and SmackDown’s tag team divisions are in this match. Which means there’s history between a lot of these guys, and some eliminations that take place in Barclays Center on Sun., Nov. 21 could fuel storylines over the next month of television.

Beyond that reminder of where tag wrestling is in the WWE pecking order, AJ Styles presence in this battle royal has also caught a lot of people’s eyes. And seeing the captain of Survivor Series 2020’s victorious Raw team here sent me down a mini-rabbit hole to see how others have fared over the last 12 months.

As you can see in the picture above, two members of Styles’ squad are no longer with WWE. Braun Strowman and Keith Lee were both featured in big angles coming out of Survivor Series last year, too. Strowman was suspended by Adam Pearce on the fallout edition of Raw, something that eventually played into his WrestleMania 37 feud with Shane McMahon.

Lee and Riddle lost to AJ in the main event of that show, with the Phenomenal One earning a match against then WWE champion Drew McIntyre. That feud lasted until Elimination Chamber, at which point Styles primary focus became the tag scene.

Bro’s done pretty well, getting a short title reign and representing Raw as the brand’s tag champ alongside Randy Orton this weekend in Brooklyn. Of course, that’s what Street Profits were doing last year, and now they’re here, so we’ll see how that works out for him. Maybe he’ll be like Sheamus, and make a lateral move... the Celtic Warrior is following up his appearance on Team Raw in 2020 with one for Team SmackDown in 2021.

What’s the point? I guess just that unless your name is Roman Reigns, a lot can change over 365 days in World Wrestling Entertainment.

What to watch for

The aforementioned jockeying for position in the tag scene, I suppose. It’s also worth keeping an eye on AJ’s tag partner. WWE is gonna have to see if Omos sinks or swims as a singles act at some point — a PPV undercard battle royal would be as good a time as any to start that experiment.

We can also wonder who might fall down the card the way Styles has when we get to Survivor Series 2022. Could we see guys like Finn Bálor or Drew McIntyre in a future “all hands on deck” card-filler-outer?

Let us know what you think. And also let us know...

Poll

Who will win?

This poll is closed

  • 4%
    Ricochet
    (30 votes)
  • 18%
    T-BAR
    (115 votes)
  • 0%
    Mansoor
    (3 votes)
  • 6%
    Cesaro
    (38 votes)
  • 2%
    Montez Ford
    (13 votes)
  • 0%
    Angelo Dawkins
    (0 votes)
  • 0%
    Erik
    (2 votes)
  • 0%
    Ivar
    (2 votes)
  • 0%
    R-Truth
    (5 votes)
  • 0%
    Drew Gulak
    (0 votes)
  • 18%
    AJ Styles
    (118 votes)
  • 31%
    Omos
    (195 votes)
  • 4%
    Sami Zayn
    (28 votes)
  • 0%
    Humberto
    (0 votes)
  • 0%
    Angel
    (1 vote)
  • 0%
    Apollo Crews
    (6 votes)
  • 0%
    Commander Azeez
    (6 votes)
  • 2%
    Otis
    (16 votes)
  • 0%
    Chad Gable
    (3 votes)
  • 0%
    Shelton Benjamin
    (2 votes)
  • 0%
    Cedric Alexander
    (2 votes)
  • 0%
    Dolph Ziggler
    (5 votes)
  • 0%
    Robert Roode
    (4 votes)
  • 1%
    Jinder Mahal
    (8 votes)
  • 3%
    Shanky
    (20 votes)
622 votes total Vote Now