WWE Survivor Series is here and it presents its 2nd edition of the War Games concept for the Main Roster.
As we know, War Games was originally a WCW concept, created by Dusty Rhodes in 1987, the WarGames match was originally used in Jim Crockett Promotions of the National Wrestling Alliance, and later, held annually in WCW, usually at the Fall Brawl PPV event.
These original WarGames matches had a roof on the cage with no pinfalls as a win situation, although later WCW versions allowed pinfalls to win.
Since 2017, WWE, whom purchased the assets of WCW in 2001, has held annual WarGames matches at WarGames branded events, first at NXT WarGames from 2017 to 2021 and currently at Survivor Series: WarGames since 2022. WWE’s WarGames matches do not have a roof on the cage and also allow pinfalls as a win situation.
Prior to this, I do recall stories of Triple H trying to pitch the War Games idea to Vince McMahon during his Evolution days, but Vince was adamantly against doing anything from WCW. Now Triple H runs the show, it’s cool that we get the match, although, do we need two on one show?
WarGames Eight Man Tag Team Match
Becky Lynch, Bianca Belair, Charlotte Flair & Shotzi vs. Damage CTRL (Asuka, Bayley, IYO SKY & Kairi Sane) (w/Dakota Kai)
Damage CTRL have been on a long run as a group now, since last years Summerslam, and have clearly picked up some enemies along the way! IYO SKY is the current WWE Women’s Champion, and had been defending it against Bianca and Charlotte as of recently.
Shotzi has a dramatic past with Bayley, Kairi Sane returned to the company earlier this month to unite with IYO and join Damage CTRL, and surely you know the rest with Becky and Bayley. I don’t need to spoon feed you EVERYTHING do I?
Bayley started off the initial 5 minute period with Becky Lynch to reignite their storied rivalry. Ruffles is sponsoring this match it seems. Becky had a Disarmer locked in on Bayley, and that’s when Dakota Kai got involved and poked Becky with a kendo stick through the cage from the outside! Clever. Shotzi throws a bunch of chairs in the ring as she enters the match.
Shotzi shined well, and copped it sweet whilst she was at it! IYO SKY entered her 5th War Games match next, and IYO hit a cool double springboard missile dropkick! I think my issue with 2 War Games matches is the shoehorning they are required to do to make feuds with 2 teams just somehow be at that level. Like when they would have the Hell In A Cell PPV. Bianca was out next and got the usual shine.
The Babyfaces started to gain the advantage as Kairi Sane skipped to the ring, which was odd. Charlotte was in last as the heels had taken the advantage back. Kairi’s timing was a little bit off today!
Spot of the match was IYO SKY off the top of the cage whilst inside the trash can. That was amazing, and hilarious!
Charlotte hit a moonsault off the top of the cage which was also amazing but I did feel like some of the ladies were standing in a pile too long awaiting the bump.
The match is really long, which is okay, but that’s why I only like 1 War Games Match on a PPV. Becky hit a ManHandle Slam off the 2nd rope through a table on Bayley to get the pin.
The babyfaces get a measure of revenge over Damage CTRL, I don’t see these feuds really continuing, as this came across pretty definitive! I don’t see Asuka staying within Damage CTRL, but who knows!
Winner/s: Becky Lynch, Bianca Belair, Charlotte Flair & Shotzi in 33:36.
Sami Zayn and Jey Uso were backstage talking and Sami is stressed because Randy Orton hasn’t shown up yet. Randy making his return is a definite shot in the arm for WWE.
WWE Intercontinental Title Match
Gunther (c) vs. The Miz
The build up to this was tremendous! The Miz has had a rich history with the Intercontinental Title. You know I’m a big Imperium fan. Miz became #1 Contender, and they talked people into those seats with some promo confrontations on Monday Night RAW. It’s so simple.
The Miz hasn’t had a decent storyline in months, it’s about time he got back in the hunt on PPV. I can’t believe I’m a Miz fan these days, but he’s truly become one of the best in the WWE. To see Miz have to wrestle somebody like Gunther is a really interesting dynamic.
The hush that came over the crowd when Miz slapped Gunther was great – and the psychology of The Miz’s gameplan was throwing Gunther off his game! Gunther dominated for some time, and his cocky smiling was popping me. Miz has proven time and time again that he can work.
Miz pulls off the turnbuckle whilst in a sleeper from Gunther, and as he dropped the turnbuckle to the referee, he gave Gunther a HUGE field goal kick between the legs and hit the Skull Crushing Finale for a VERY near 2 count and the fans were LOSING it.
Gunther ended up locking in a Lion Tamer to retain, and that was once again a great IC title match. Gunther wins, Miz still gets put over because Gunther sold it right, looking bewildered that The Miz was such a tall task.
It’s gotta be over here! One and done, son.
Winner: STILL WWE Intercontinental Heavyweight Champio, Gunther in 12:20.
The Judgment Day are backstage, and they’re talking about the Main Event War Games battle with Team Cody.
Santos Escobar vs. Dragon Lee
Santos has turned his back on Rey Mysterio, and this is Santos’ big opportunity to rise through the ranks, and be put over.
Santos has gone crazy with jealousy over his hero Rey, he broke up with Zelina Vega, and then kicked his friends from Legado Del Phantasma to the curb. Enter Carlito into the fray, Santos took Carlito out too! Insert Dragon Lee. This story looks pretty good in highlights, I’m just surprised Dragon Lee is on PPV over Carlito.
After all the attempts to make new Latin stars, I think when you look at these two, they could very well be the future. Who needs Andrade when you have Santos?
Rey can’t be there forever, with Sin Cara not working out, Dragon Lee could be primed for that role. This is the biggest match of Dragon Lee’s career. Huge dive to the outside from Dragon Lee, and the fans are chanting his name which is a sign that he’s well on his way to being accepted by them, unlike Sin Cara.
Super Hurricanrana from Santos! Santos got some heat for ripping at Dragon Lee’s mask. HUGE superkick from Santos and Dragon Lee was turned inside out!
Escobar gets the big win with the Phantom Driver after hitting a destroyer to set Dragon Lee up. This was the right result, and I laughed that Santos immediately snatched his hand away rudely when the referee went to raise his hand.
Step 1 in getting Santos over as a heel – go over Dragon Lee. Next will be to win a feud over Carlito, and holding off the Santos Escobar/Rey Mysterio feud ending match till WrestleMania, Hair Vs Mask.
Winner: Santos Escobar in 8:20.
WWE Women’s World Title Match
Rhea Ripley (c) vs. Zoey Stark
Zoey Stark won a battle royal to face Ripley for the title one-on-one at Survivor Series: WarGames. They bickered a couple of times backstage and I don’t think much else, which is a bit ‘eh’.
We know Rhea is winning. I don’t know what they’re doing with Rhea’s title reign but it’s lacked a lot of story. I am yet to really see the ‘it’ factor from Zoey, she’s atheletic of course but what does she do that others can’t do? What is it about her character that stands out? The fans appear to be going for Rhea which was kind of funny. I don’t think Zoey is a natural babyface. They’re really trying with the near falls for Zoey but she’s just not likeable and over enough for fans to clamour for a pinfall victory. Stark hit a German out of a Riptide attempt from Ripley, again the fans weren’t with the count. Rhea hit Riptide and what do you know, the fans counted along! Rhea wins.
Here again, is another one and done story here.
Winner: STILL WWE Women’s World Champion, Rhea Ripley in 9:15.
Sami, Rollins, Jey are freaking out and Cody is trying to reassure them that Randy will be there.
WarGames Ten Man Tag Team Match
Drew McIntyre & The Judgment Day (Damian Priest, Dominik Mysterio, Finn Balor & JD McDonagh) vs. Cody Rhodes, Jey Uso, Randy Orton, Sami Zayn & Seth Rollins
This had a decent build to it, with Drew McIntyre turning heel to side with the Judgement Day, JD McDonagh being made an official member, and Randy Orton’s name thrown in the hat to join the Babyface team for his first match in over a year and a half.
Seth and Finn Balor started this one off with a bang when Seth dove from one ring to another onto Balor! JD McDonagh is next in there, and he must be excited as hell to be on Pay Per View! Finn and JD went to work on Rollins with 2 kendo sticks. I wouldn’t have minded if they just tuned him up for the full 3 minutes.
Jey Uso was in next and he entered the match with a steel chair. The crowd are chanting Yeet now every time Jey strikes an opponent which is going to get old soon. The running Spanish Fly has to be abolished, I’m sorry.
Drew went to leave the cage, and Priest stopped him. Damien Priest is a surefire future World Champion, he’s in next.
Priest got some heat using his baton. Judgement Day began to dominate, as Sami Zayn enters the match. They’ve actually got quite an array of Top Babyfaces that haven’t won the World Title yet! Cody, Jey, LA Knight, Sami, some heels too like Damien Priest.
Sami tunes up the Judgement Day with a lead pipe, and Drew McIntyre is next and the situaton just got a whole lot more lopsided. Cody comes out next, the big hero himself. Cody brings out a Bull Rope and Rollins barks at him asking if Randy Orton is going to be here or not. Dirty Dominik is the next one in and there’s immediate heat. He’s a triumph.
Dom gets surrounded and the crowd roar as he cops a beat down! Eventually the heels take over, as Priest and McIntyre hit a double chokeslam on Cody and Sami. McDonagh with a great array of moves one after another! Moonsault from JD, Coupe De Gras from Balor, and Dom hit’s a Frogsplash. Then, Priest hits a Razors Edge on Rollins through a table! That was amazing.
Rhea Ripley is going to Cash in for Priest Money in the Bank Contract, but of course the usual confusion from the referee causes the hesitation needed for Randy Orton to show up looking in great shape! Randy laid waste to begin, and the War Games have begun.
Everyone does the rope DDT at the same time which gets a rise from the fans. Randy Orton then got into it with Jey which was interesting, and the Babyfaces again took control.
The RKO from Orton on McDonagh was absolutely insane. Cody pins Priest with the Crossrhodes and they get the victory!
I have no idea where they go from here, but I am sure a lot of this will branch off.
Winner/s: Cody Rhodes, Jey Uso, Randy Orton, Sami Zayn & Seth Rollins in 34:22.
They were nearly off the air when suddenly…. CM Punks theme song hit! You have to be kidding me. I really didn’t see that coming, but man, that reaction from the audience was bonkers.
Punk walks out, and the crowd got louder, and it was absolutely tremendous. I am so, so glad he is back. We go off the air with Punk all fired up!
That was an alright show, I guess CM Punk returning was the biggest highlight for me, the Mens War Games was terrific, and I was into Santos Escobar’s presentation as well. I still think they could put 2 more matches on a show like this, but that’s just me.