A shocking championship win has changed the landscape of WWE Survivor Series: Best of the Best, where the main event will now see Roman Reigns face the new WWE Champion, Drew McIntyre in a champion versus champion match to see which brand will reign supreme. All of the other champions will face off with their intra-brand contemporaries, including Bobby Lashley and Sami Zayn facing off, Asuka doing battle with Sasha Banks, and a first time ever meeting between The New Day and the Street Profits. Two five-person teams will face another from the rival brand in both the men’s and women’s divisions, as the top competitors of each brand face off to determine who is the best of the best.
+ Drew McIntyre (WWE Champion) vs Roman Reigns (Universal Champion) (w/ Paul Heyman): part of me was interested as to how Randy Orton/Roman Reigns was going to go down, but this was definitely the better match of the two. Both of these guys absolutely look like champions, the winner looked great and the non-winner didn’t look like a loser, so this had to be considered a success. I expect to see another big rematch between the two down the road, if not at an upcoming Wrestlemania, and I think with a live crowd and a title on the line, this would be huge
+ Asuka (Raw Women’s Champion) vs Sasha Banks (SmackDown Women’s Champion): this was a lot of fun, but I can’t say I cared much for the ending. These two have wrestled a lot this year, and off the top of my head all of them have had good in-ring action, only marred by some sloppy storytelling. This match, therefore, was great, because the story was simple and left all the room in the world for wrestling
+ The New Day (Kofi Kingston & Xavier Woods) (Raw Tag Team Champions) vs The Street Profits (Montez Ford & Angelo Dawkins) (Smackdown Tag Team Champions): this match was great. The New Day are such a great team, even if I have somewhat soured on their characters, but pairing them up with the new blood, so to speak, was a genius move. Both of the Profits have finally found their groove, and while their pre-match promo was as garbage as ever, the match itself was a lot of fun
+ Kickoff Battle Royale: this was the same standard battle royale garbage, but at least the final six or so was kind of interesting. I’m giving it a positive just for that, though I don’t much care for the notion that Chad Gable is a newcomer in WWE
– The Undertaker’s Retirement Ceremony: this was an awkward, self-fellating and unfitting end to one of the WWE’s longest tenured, and most imposing figures. Put simply, the simple fact this was the last part of the show, instead of the buffer before the match between the two current top champions in your company, should tell you all you need to know about current WWE
– Team Raw (Shayna Baszler, Nia Jax, Lana, Peyton Royce & Lacey Evans) vs Team Smackdown (Bianca Belair, Ruby Riott, Liv Morgan, Bayley & Natalya) (5-on-5 Elimination Match): yeah, nah, this was another dumb match that made almost nobody look good. Peyton, Belair, Riott and Baszler were all good, because either they are good already or are steadily improving, but almost nobody else did anything for me. I absolutely hate everything about Nia Jax, and I can’t decide if that’s because she’s good at her job, or terrible at it. Give this a miss, as well
– Bobby Lashley (United States Champion) (w/ MVP, Shelton Benjamin & Cedric Alexander) vs Sami Zayn (Intercontinental Champion): these two have wrestled once before, but this was such an ass-backwards story to tell I can hardly fathom it. Sami has been complaining that things are unfair for him, and so Lashley coming out with the entire Hurt Business in his corner only proved that point. The match was passable, but I hated the circumstances so much I can’t recommend this
– Team Raw (AJ Styles, Braun Strowman, Sheamus, Keith Lee & Riddle) vs Team SmackDown (Jey Uso, Kevin Owens, Baron Corbin, Seth Rollins & Otis) (5-on-5 Elimination Match): I cannot stress how much I hated this match. Both teams looked entirely incompetent as singles wrestlers or as a team, and nobody came out of this looking particularly good. A few Otis/Riddle, Otis/Lee and Otis/Strowman moments were fun, but that’s just because Otis is a treasure and should be protected at all costs. Otherwise, this was a major bust
> this was never the plan, but imagine if they had done the NXT Champion vs the NXT UK Champion, and we got Finn Balor vs WALTER. Hopefully they’ll do another ‘When Worlds Collide’ show, once they are able. A fish can only dream…
Should you watch this event: I would not call this a bad show, overall, but it was an entirely inconsequential show, to the point that there was not even a show-long scorecard keeping track of this much vaunted “brand supremacy”. The inclusion of NXT last year felt special, the lack of stakes in any match made this not special, and the storytelling in each match individually ranged from great to horrendous. Seek out the New Day/Street Profits match and McIntyre/Reigns, but don’t bother with the rest.