Survivor Series Count-Up – 2005 (2020): Back When It Meant Something

Survivor Series 2005
Date: November 27, 2005
Location: Joe Louis Arena, Detroit, Michigan
Attendance: 15,000
Commentators: Joey Styles, Jerry Lawler, Jonathan Coachman, Michael Cole, Tazz

It’s all about Raw vs. Smackdown as the big elimination tag is all that matters around here. That’s in addition to the Raw World Title match, which should be another good but not exactly thrilling showdown. I’m not sure what to expect for most of the show, but that elimination tag is the centerpiece of the show. Let’s get to it.

The opening sequence is almost all about Raw vs. Smackdown, as it should be.

Booker T. vs. Chris Benoit

Match #1 in a best of seven series for the vacant US Title. Benoit gets backed into the corner to start and it’s a surprisingly clean break. Booker slams him down but Benoit pops back up for a standoff. Some forearms puts Booker on the floor and we’re still in low first gear. They go to the mat with Benoit easily getting the better of things and cranking on the leg to limited success.

That’s enough for Booker to take another breather on the floor. Back in and Booker elbows him in the face so Benoit hits him with a running forearm. That just earns Benoit a side slam for two and the armbar goes on. Make that an abdominal stretch but Benoit fights out again and hits an elbow. Booker elbows him into the corner and gets two off a neckbreaker.

A reverse chinlock doesn’t last long so Booker goes with the jumping kick to the face instead. Benoit grabs a quick dragon screw legwhip but the Sharpshooter is countered into a small package for two. The rolling German suplexes work a bit better but Sharmell’s distraction delays the Swanton, allowing Booker to roll away. A rollup with feet on the ropes and Sharmell grabbing the leg is enough for Booker to get the pin.

Rating: B. This was better than their Smackdown match as they were able to build things up a bit better. It’s a good way to start off the show, though it’s not like these matches matter all that much until we get to what is more than likely going to be a seventh match. That sounds good in theory, but it wouldn’t surprise me to see the match get a little boring by that point.

Eric Bischoff meets with Vince McMahon in the back and talks about the history of screwjobs at Survivor Series. Tonight, Bischoff Screws Cena. Cue Cena: “So Eric Bischoff screws guys.” Bischoff leaves and Cena shakes Vince’s hand. In a legendary line, Vince: “Keep it up my n****.” Vince struts off as Booker and Sharmell look flabbergasted. I can’t believe this is uncensored on the Network.

Women’s Title: Melina vs. Trish Stratus

Trish is defending and this is interpromotional after Melina and MNM kidnapped Trish on Raw. Mickie James and Melina are here as well. Trish jumps her to start and sends Melina outside for the big dive onto all three of them. Back in and a hair toss sends Melina down and the headscissors does the same. Melina gets in a knee to the back and a kick to the ribs.

They trade boot chokes in the corner and but Melina goes after Mickie, leaving MNM to try the Snapshot on Trish. That’s broken up by a referee actually paying attention and the two of them are ejected. We hit a modified surfboard, which I’m sure is not just an excuse to put Trish in various positions. The Matrish is broken up with a shot to the ribs for two but the Stratusphere works just fine. Stratusfaction is broken up but Mickie saves Trish from a cheap shot to the back. A top rope bulldog retains the title.

Rating: D+. There was only so much you could do here as there is no secret to the fact that this is setting up Mickie challenging Trish for the title at some point in the future. Melina hadn’t gotten good in the ring yet so for now she’s glorified eye candy who can do a passable match. In other words, she’s a traditional Diva of the era.

We recap HHH vs. Ric Flair in a Last Man Standing match. Flair beat him last month in a cage match so now it’s about ending each other in the way WWE ends people.

HHH vs. Ric Flair

Non-title and Last Man Standing. HHH jumps him in the aisle and the beating is on in a hurry with Flair’s robe and belt being ripped off. Flair gets in a kendo stick to the ribs (Flair using a kendo stick is just wrong) and they head into the crowd with HHH managing to backdrop him back to ringside. A suplex has Flair in more trouble inside and the pace slows a bit.

They go outside again and a screwdriver to the head busts Flair open in a hurry. Back in and some kneedrops make the blood flow even more and it’s already back to the floor. HHH takes too long setting up the announcers’ table though and Flair sends him face first into the steps. A spinebuster on the floor cuts Flair off again though as this has been one hope spot after another with HHH dropping him every time. HHH grabs a microphone to yell but Flair grabs him low.

That earns him a trip into the announcers’ table but Flair backdrops him through the other one in the first really big spot of the match. HHH is up at eight so Flair takes him back inside for some chops. Some right hands put Flair down as well so he hits HHH low to even things up. A chair to the head puts HHH down and Flair bites at the head, followed by a crotching against the post.

The chop block takes HHH down again but the Figure Four is broken up. Flair doesn’t seem to mind as he wraps the knee around the post and smashes it with a chair. NOW the Figure Four can go on and Flair even grabs the rope for a bonus. HHH taps so Flair can claim a bit of a moral victory and the hold is let go. A shot to the face knocks Flair into the corner and the steps to the head give HHH five.

There’s the drop toehold to send HHH face first into the steps but he staggers up and hits a Pedigree. Flair pulls himself up so there’s a second Pedigree. He’s up again so they hit the same sequence one more time. Flair gets to his feet a third time so it’s a sledgehammer shot to the….something well hidden by a camera cut but it’s finally enough to finish Flair off.

Rating: B. It’s good but it’s nowhere near as good as the cage match. As usual, the ending didn’t work very well as they were just doing the same stuff over and over again until a big hammer shot put Flair down. Thankfully they didn’t waste a lot of time with the near falls throughout the match, which are always annoying in a match like this. It wasn’t great and it should have been shorter but it worked well enough.

Randy Orton and JBL try to fire up Team Smackdown but Batista comes in and takes care of it for them.

Here are Edge and Lita for a chat. They’re changing things up around here because they are going to have their own talk show with the Cutting Edge. With that out of the way, Edge calls out Detroit Tiger Dmitri Young, who plays for a bad team and is fat you see. Detroit sports jokes abound but Young asks about Edge’s World Title. Edge and Lita are out of here, just like Ford and GM.

We recap John Cena vs. Kurt Angle. Kurt has beaten him a few times but never for the title so now he has Daivari as his personal referee. It’s the final showdown and this should be a good one.

Raw World Title: Kurt Angle vs. John Cena

Cena is defending and Daivari is guest referee. The place goes coconuts for Cena as the star power continues to rise. Angle wastes no time in taking him down by the leg and cranks on the ankle a bit. Some shoulders put Angle on the floor and DANG the fans are into Cena. Daivari won’t let him go after Angle though and things settle down a bit. Back in and Angle stomps him down in the corner until Cena snaps off a release fisherman’s suplex.

That’s not even worthy of a count so Angle grabs the ankle lock. Cena makes the rope so Daivari kicks his hand away. With that not working, Cena kicks him away and slaps Daivari in the face. Daivari is ready for the DQ but Angle gets sent into him for the double knockdown. Angle posts Cena and another referee comes down to count two. Some suplexes give Angle some twos and we hit the waistlock. Another suplex drops Cena again and the fans get even louder.

It’s off to the weird cousin of an STF on Cena but Angle switches to a regular chinlock pretty quickly. Cena suplexes his way to freedom and the comeback is on….so Angle clotheslines the referee on purpose. A low blow drops Cena and the Angle Slam gets two from the third referee. Angle’s top rope superplex gets two more but he misses the moonsault. The FU is broken up and Angle decks the third referee so here’s one from Smackdown. Angle tries to hold him back as Cena DDTs Daivari and then FU’s Angle to retain.

Rating: C+. They had a good match in there somewhere but egads they had too much going on at the same time here. When you have a fourth referee climbing over the three down referees, you’re only going to get so far. Cena needs a fresh opponent now as he’s beaten Angle more than once now so just let him do something else. That being said, who is there right now?

Eric Bischoff vs. Teddy Long

Palmer Cannon is here with Teddy and there is a referee from both shows. Long posts to start and then ducks a clothesline, meaning it’s time to dance. With that out of the way, it’s more dancing and the required crane pose. Cannon gets drawn onto the apron and Bischoff gets in some choking. A sleeper goes on until Long takes off his own shoe and hits Eric in the head. Eric is ticked….and we’ve got the Boogeyman. Choking into a pumphandle slam drops Bischoff and the one shoed Long gets the pin.

Rating: D-. Teddy’s dancing is the only thing that keeps this from failing because it always makes me smile. This was a complete waste of time but they had to have something in there to stretch the show out a bit. It wasn’t a match of course but what else were you expecting out of something like this?

Both teams get cheered to the ring by their locker rooms.

We recap Team Raw vs. Team Smackdown. Back at Homecoming, Bischoff turned out the lights on a Smackdown six man tag so a bunch of invasions started happening. Therefore, let’s have an elimination tag for brand supremacy.

Team Raw vs. Team Smackdown

Raw: Shawn Michaels, Kane, Big Show, Carlito, Chris Masters

Smackdown: Batista, Bobby Lashley, John Bradshaw Layfield, Randy Orton, Rey Mysterio

Entrances take forever of course and Rey gets some very loud EDDIE chants. Orton takes Shawn into the corner to start and then does it again for a bonus. Shawn gets in a whip to the other corner to set up some chops as commentary is already bickering. Orton gets in a slam but misses the knee drop so it’s off to Masters. The knee the face works fine on him but it’s quickly off to Lashley, who tosses Masters around.

Carlito gets the tag so Lashley pulls him in and hits a running powerslam for two. It’s back to Shawn, who gets knocked down as well. There’s the Dominator to Carlito but Kane saves Shawn from the same fate. A Kane chokeslam from the apron lets Shawn get rid of Lashley, who wasn’t nearly the factor you would have bet on after the last few weeks. Rey comes in and dropkicks Shawn in the knee as Cole says he’d love to see this dream match. I know he has a short attention span but he can’t remember something from less than two weeks ago?

Kane comes in and gets dropkicked down but is right back up for a big boot. A backbreaker gets two on Rey and we hit the backbreaker. Rey fights out in a hurry though and it’s off to Batista for the shoulders in the corner. A spear into the spinebuster gets rid of Kane but here’s Show for an immediate chokeslam. That’s good for two but Kane is back up for a double chokeslam to get rid of Batista. JBL’s middle rope shoulder is pulled out of the air by Big Show but Orton snaps his throat across the top.

The Clothesline From JBL into the 619 into the RKO into another Clothesline From JBL into the springboard seated senton FINALLY gets rid of Big Show and we’re down to 3-3. Everything breaks down and JBL hits Shawn with a fall away slam on the floor as Masters plants Rey. Carlito comes in for a legdrop and the chinlock goes on. Rey fights up and gets a blind tag from JBL, who blasts Carlito with the Clothesline for the pin.

Masters comes in next and gets hammered down as Shawn is still out on the floor. Rey comes back in and avoids a charge into the post, setting up the 619. Dropping the Dime gets rid of Masters and it’s down to Shawn vs. Orton/Mysterio/JBL. Rey throws Shawn back in and hits the 619 but the West Coast Pop is Sweet Chin Musiced out of the air for the pin. JBL tries the Clothesline but Shawn ducks and superkicks him out for the back to back pins in about fifteen seconds.

That leaves us with Shawn vs. Orton but neither finisher can hit. Orton bails to the floor so Shawn hits a slingshot dive as the fans want Undertaker. Back in and Shawn hits the forearm into the nipup but JBL is still here and brings in a chair. That earns him another superkick but Shawn walks into the RKO for the final pin.

Rating: B. This was good enough and was absolutely the main event of the show. Even though this was for completely meaningless bragging rights, it worked this time because that was something fresh. It’s the difference between doing it once and doing it every year: this time felt like they had built something up instead of throwing it out there because it was November. It also helps when you have Shawn at his best playing the underdog and Orton being great at this match. This nearly identical formula worked in 2003 and it worked here too.

Post match the Smackdown locker room comes in to celebrate….and we’ve got druids. They bring out a casket and stand it upright as the gong hits. Lightning strikes the casket and it is lit on fire, with Undertaker walking out. Undertaker destroys the roster as the Ortons get to the outside. The big staredown with the throat slit ends the show.

Overall Rating: B+. For a show that was almost entirely about the main event, this was actually a very good show with only the Long vs. Bischoff non-match being bad. There are several good matches throughout and it doesn’t drag at all. The ending was a bit obvious as everyone was waiting on Undertaker, but that’s not always the worst thing. Check this out if you need something to watch as it’s a very impressive show.

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12 Responses

  1. FloDX says:

    Good but not Great. B is probably the right rating I think. Nevertheless I have to admit I’ve always have a lot of trouble with 2000’s Flair and post 2001 HHH so i’m a little biaised on this one.

    • Sebastian says:

      Well ok did you think the steel cage match was better because thats what kb is saying? And Keith isn’t the only person I’ve seen give this match a great rating to (Eric s praised it too), I don’t really think he’d go out of his way to blow a flair match more in this time period because he said he was coming into the match expecting not to like it. Regardless of your personal biases though you really only agree with kb if you think the cage match at taboo Tuesday was an a plus match but this one was only a b.

      • FloDX says:

        Not a fan of the cage match also… Probably B or even B- to me (according to my memories). I was just saying that (TO ME) Keith always was (is) too nice with some wrestlers…

  2. Sebastian Howard says:

    Even Keith blows the last man standing match,

    “HHH symbolically puts a bullet in him afterwards and Flair goes out on the stretcher. This was FANTASTIC, finally a Last Man Standing match that lives up to the gimmick, with Flair cheating and doing every shortcut he could think of given no restrictions on what he could do to hang with HHH. I wasn’t a huge fan of the gory bladejob, but it certainly fit the storyline. ****3/4”

  3. Sebastian Howard says:

    I go to complain about Angle’s you suck being censored and get censored lol

  4. Sebastian Howard says:

    Holy shit the censoring you suck for Angle’s entrance is obnoxious af.

  5. Sebastian Howard says:

    “Cena needs a fresh opponent now as he’s beaten Angle more than once now so just let him do something else. That being said, who is there right now?”

    Cena hadn’t actually beaten Angle cleanly yet, at Unforgiven he beat him by dq or I think he might’ve lost by dq, I don’t remember it was a screwy finish and Taboo Tuesday he beat angle and shawn in a triple threat but he pinned Shawn. Unless they blew Angle/Cena on tv he hadn’t beat him clean yet and I think at the time Cena was still considered such an underdog/weak wrestler that IWC were thinking Angle was going to win here.

  6. Sebastian Howard says:

    I think Trip Flair lms worked just as well as the cage match, it was just a slow ending with Trip trying everything he had to keep Flair down and none of it working so he had to pull out sledgehammer. Obviously the cage match had a more exciting win as it had an out for having Flair win and had to keep the feud going but I think the bulk of the match is just as intense and good as the cage match. Flair working over Trips legs is really brutal and makes sense as did Trip bringing up the violence level as he’s just done and mad that Flair beat him at Survivor Series. This also felt like a tribute to old WCW/NWA streetfight matches where the first one felt like a tribute the very early 80s cage matches Flair popularized.

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