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Thread: Half Luck, Half Skul: November Madness - The Greatest Survivor Series Match (Sweet 16)

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    Half Luck, Half Skul: November Madness - The Greatest Survivor Series Match (Sweet 16)

    It's Sweet Sixteen time! As November Madness rolls on, today we whittle the competition down from 16 to 8 matches in Survivor Series history, all battling to be named the greatest match in the history of the event. As always, the voting dais of mizfan, SkitZ, Oliver, SirSam, jeremydonovan, Steve, and myself will collectively determine the winner and loser of each match-up.

    Can Kidman's Cinderella run continue? Will Austin/Bischoff and last year's 20-man tag team bonanza continue to sweep the competition, having not received a vote against thus far?

    Here's the overall bracket as it stands!

    Let's get it on!

    Bracket A

    (1) Team Austin vs. Team Bischoff (’03) vs. (5) John Cena vs. Shawn Michaels vs. Triple H (’09)

    Steve: Team Austin vs Team Bischoff just may be the best Survivor style match there has ever been... though it is mainly due to Shawn Michaels' performance. It'll be interesting to see how this one stacks up against other strong matches when the time comes. Especially since it very well may come down to arguably the two most notable HBK matches in the show's history.

    mizfan: Let’s see, the best match in this tournament up against a big name triple threat that starts with an exciting first 30 seconds before descending into generic three way action? Surely there’s no real argument here, give me the classic ’03 match all the way down the line.

    SirSam: I haven’t decided if the 2003 Elimination match is my favourite in the whole competition but it has got to be close, it certainly has some of the best commentary from J.R. I just love how much he gets into KICK OUT SHAWN! KICK OUT!. As I said about the triple threat the previous round Michaels and Triple H work their hardest to make their match work but they are hampered by having to deal with someone who can’t keep up with them in the ring but is booked to look stronger than both.

    Oliver: Ah, now is where it starts to get tough, isn’t it? You have to start with Team Austin Vs Team Bischoff. I’ve said before I think it’s the best Survivor Series match of all time, and at least certainly of the last 30 years or so. In fact, the only one I can immediately think of that I would rank alongside it is the Team Bulldogs vs Team Hart Foundation match from the very first Survivor Series. And that wasn’t even in the running for this! What gives, Skul?! Anyhow, Austin vs Bischoff is as damned close to perfection as you get in this format, and a real testament to HBK's storytelling ability that he could rally the crowd. In fact, the only real black mark against it is the ending being a bit of a downer and the post-match shenanigans with Austin that go on a little too long.

    The Triple Threat is a bit of an oddity, given that it’s face vs face vs face and really only built around the hook of whether or not DX could co-exist when they had the opportunity to take the title. HBK immediately gets pops for suckering HHH with a Sweet Chin Music and then the ride is off. The main criticism is that it leans almost too much on that trope of taking one guy out so two can do a one on one match for long periods of time in the build to a really hot ending. They do damn well at keeping everyone invested, especially when it always felt like the outcome was a foregone conclusion, so well done to them for that I guess?

    In the end, I can’t look past Team Austin vs Team Bischoff.

    Skulduggery: Shawn Michaels has 6 matches in the Sweet 16, the most of any wrestler, but he's getting his wings clipped one way or another in this match-up. Not a terribly tough choice for me that it's Hunter and Cena going down with the ship while Team Austin and Team Bischoff stay afloat - the triple threat is pretty great, but the 2003 match is elite. Michaels in particular set the bar, and everything from the last elimination of the Dudleys to the finish line is nothing short of perfection.

    SkitZ: The triple threat is a little too paint-by-numbers to hold up against a masterpiece like the Austin/Bischoff 5-on-5. Any combination of Cena/Trips/Shawn by that point was no longer fresh but traditional elimination matches with big stakes riding on them certainly were. Considering the second DX Reunion Tour was in full swing when they pit stopped at Survivor Series '09, there wasn't any doubt in my mind that Cena would retain that night. 2003's main event on the other hand had me hanging on every elimination as if my own job depended on it. Hence why I'm promoting the RAW GM Battle to a seat in the Elite Eight (that's right, I make the big decisions around here).

    jeremydonovan: (5) John Cena vs. Shawn Michaels vs. Triple H (’09)

    (1) Team Austin vs. Team Bischoff (’03) wins 6-1

    (2) Batista vs. Undertaker (’07) vs. (3) Shawn Michaels vs. Bret Hart (’97)

    SkitZ: Proving once again that age is just a number, I suspect the second seed's about to be knocked out of the tournament by a match 15 years its senior. Hopefully that's just the senile old man in me talking though and I'm not as far off the mark as Vince. If it were the Bret/Shawn match from 1992 up against Bats/Taker, I think you could make a stronger case for why Hart and HBK should advance but eh. Due to circumstances outside of The Hitman's control, he and Michaels never really delved into the playbook in '97 whereas Big Dave and The Deadman expanded upon theirs en route to delivering another winning performance.

    Steve: Gotta stick with the Deadman. Not just because it's Taker, though. While the Screwjob is obviously one of the most momentous occasions in wrestling history, it's not exactly a great match. It's good, but I'd argue that Bret and Shawn's '92 encounter was actually better. I'm curious to see how long it sticks around due to sheer notoriety. I may be the only one who votes this way (maybe mizfan, too), but yeah, Batista vs Undertaker is almost unarguably a superior match in terms of sheer quality.

    SirSam: Two brawls, both have controversial endings. I’ll have to go with the first ever Hell in a Cell match I saw for its pure intensity and also the platform it gave Edge to fight The Undertaker afterwards. From two guys who at the time weren’t known for putting on the best matches Batista and The Undertaker really had some fantastic matches together.

    jeremydonovan: (3) Shawn Michaels vs. Bret Hart (’97)

    mizfan: Both excellent matches, both have flaws. Batista/Taker has those damn unprotected chairshots to the skull with Benoit’s family scant months in the ground. HBK/Bret is exciting and intense, but the end is a complete hash, an iconic hash but still a barely comprehensible mess in real time. Still, I quite like both and this isn’t an easy choice. I think I have to narrowly go with Bats/Taker on this one, though I expect neither has a chance to take the bracket when all is said and done.

    Skulduggery: Undertaker was one of Batista's best dance partners, and though this one doesn't top Dave's Cell war with Triple H in '05, it's still a sadistic, entertaining match. I'll take Hell in a Cell by a decent margin, and hopefully it does go through. Oliver, any change of heart on the Screwjob?

    Oliver: Still can’t believe that Michaels vs Hart has got this far. Throw it on the trash heap, burn it in a dumpster, castrate it like a monk. Piece of garbage shit.

    Batista vs Undertaker, and never make me talk about the Screwjob again please.

    (2) Batista vs. Undertaker (’07) wins 6-1

    Bracket B

    (1) Bret Hart vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin (’96) vs. (4) Team RAW vs. Team SmackDown (’05)

    SirSam: The ‘05 Elimination match really does very little for me and I struggle to think how it got through the last round. It sits entirely in a vacuum, utilizing and referencing zero of the history between its combatants despite there being plenty and then developing no significant stories going out of it. Compared to an Austin who you could see was just starting to get some big cheers despite still being a stone cold heel against Brett on the way to a heel turn, already getting a mixed response. Great pace to the match too with it starting as a technical exchange and escalating to a brawl on the outside and ending with Austin losing when he refuses to release the submission hold he has on Hart, something that would be famously reversed months down the line.

    Skulduggery: Third straight time that a bonafide classic in Hart/Austin has encountered a mid-00s elimination match, and I have to say, those are a bit of a guilty pleasure of mine! It's almost a bit of a battle between heart vs. head, and be damned, I have to pick the RAW vs. SmackDown elimination match. Incredible story leading into it, with RAW playing the conniving bully, first by turning the lights out on the brief spotlight SmackDown had on RAW Homecoming, and later by putting Batista in a brilliant trap spearheaded by Edge, Kane and the Big Show. SmackDown, meanwhile, took on the role of chip-on-the-shoulder, pissed off underdogs, with the blue squad at one point challenging Team RAW to a parking lot brawl. Come match time, and the tribal animosity was displayed wonderfully at the onset. As the chips fell, though, the bullies fell in the numbers 3-1, but 2 of SmackDown's 3 remaining members, despite fighting under a valiant banner, were outright dickheads (Orton and JBL). Couple this with another classic Shawn Michaels 3-on-1 disadvantage, and the heat target of the match had altered. Spectacular story, great match, and I'm giving it a razor thin nod over an elite 90s battle.

    jeremydonovan: (1) Bret Hart vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin (’96)

    Oliver: I’ve always thought the 2005 match moved a little too quickly, and that’s true on rewatching it as well. I like it as a match a lot, and it’s really very good, but they really speed through it in the middle stretch, going from 5 on 4 to 1 on 1 in what feels like a matter of moments. It just all moves a little quickly and kind of becomes a tad chaotic really, which is a real black mark against it. And you really, really can’t have any black marks when you’re going up simply the best in Hart vs Austin, which should progress quite comfortably.

    Steve: I finally have to vote against one of my beloved SD v Raw matches. Dammit. I really have no choice here, though, as the first Hart v Austin encounter is just ridiculously good and stands as one of my very favorite matches that's ever happened at the show. In a feud that produced multiple classics, there's an argument to be made for this one being the possible best of the bunch, up to and including the legendary WM 13 encounter.

    SkitZ: If Plan were part of this series, we sure as hell know who he'd be voting for here. His Bret boner is too pronounced to ignore but I'll be the bigger man and show Plan a little love because it's at least pointed in the right direction. This Austin/Hart classic has stood the test of time while the 2005 main event hasn't aged quite so gracefully. I feel like it kinda rips off the Austin/Bischoff 5-on-5 down the stretch and comes up short as a result. Steve/Bret have been head and shoulders above their competition thus far and this round is no exception. I blame Bobby Lashley for some unjustified reason.

    mizfan: Another challenge not to be underestimated. I really do enjoy the ’05 match, it’s easily the best “brand war” match WWE has ever put on, with lots of personalities uniquely intertwining and lots of match ups that felt fresh at the time and still do years later. But man, Bret/Austin is Bret/Austin, and I’ve got to give it my vote in the end.

    (1) Bret Hart vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin (’96) wins 6-1

    (2) Bret Hart vs. Shawn Michaels (’92) vs. (11) Billy Kidman vs. Jamie Noble (’02)

    mizfan: Haha, I absolutely love that another early 00s cruiserweight match is making it’s way crazily deep into the ranks. And you know what? It absolutely should continue here, I easily cast my vote to Kidman/Noble. The cruiserweights took 10 brief minutes and absolutely maximized them, whereas Bret and Shawn took nearly 30 and came up with something that dragged noticeably in the middle. Bret/HBK I is still pretty good, but there’s no real competition in my mind.

    SkitZ: SkitZ is happy to see the underdogs hanging in there and will continue to root for them. I was just praising Shawn/Bret a couple matches ago and now I'm about to do them a serious disservice by pledging my allegiance to the Cruiserweight Title bout. Disgraceful right? This guy has no sense of loyalty whatsoever. I feel no shame in voting for Kidman/Noble though as sometimes great things come in small packages (just ask my ex-wife) and they manage to reach a satisfying climax in under eight minutes. That's damn impressive. It takes me like 15 minutes to really get into HBK/Hart... I could've gotten off to Kidman/Noble twice in that timeframe!

    SirSam: Does the fairytale end here for Kidman? I think unfortunately instead of going against more cerebral matches this round it just runs into a better version of itself ( (2) Bret Hart vs. Shawn Michaels (’92) ).

    jeremydonovan: (2) Bret Hart vs. Shawn Michaels (’92)

    Steve: Nothing but love for that great Cruiserweight match, but as I mentioned earlier, the 1992 version of Bret vs Shawn is a superior match to the 1997 rendition, regardless the latter's place in history. It was two hungry young talents busting ass and trying to prove that the burgeoning New Generation could carry the WWF banner excellently. It's not an all time classic or anything, but certainly a rock solid bout between two of the all-time greats.

    Skulduggery: This little engine just keeps chugging, doesn't it? Knocked off a pretty heavy favorite in Triple H/Flair Last Man Standing last round, and you know what, despite really loving Hart and Michaels, I'm once again voting for Billy Kidman and Jamie Noble. The chemistry between the two is just so fluid, not a single part of the match feels awkward or disjointed, and there are some frighteningly wonderful impact moves, particularly that top rope spike DDT. Kidman just had this knack of squeezing out so much material in a short time frame, especially with ample dance partners.

    Oliver: OK, so this is really tricky. On the one hand you’ve got the fairytale run of Kidman vs Noble, a match that achieves a hell of a lot in a seven minute run time. Is it flawed? Sure thing – Kidman basically pops up after a tornado DDT at one point which feels a little bit over the top on the no selling, but if you’ve only got seven minutes to make an impression you kind of have to go nuts on it I guess.

    On the other side you’ve got the better Hart vs Michaels Survivor Series match. It, too, is flawed and the opening 15 minutes or so is almost frustratingly slow as they jockey for position. It picks up a lot in the closing straight, though, and whilst possibly not the best Hart vs Michaels match (a pairing I personally have always felt to be a little overrated anyway) it definitely earns its strong seeding.

    But after watching them back to back, I know which one I prefer. Take a bow, Kidman vs Noble.

    (11) Billy Kidman vs. Jamie Noble (’02) wins 4-3

    Bracket C

    (1) Elimination Chamber (’02) vs. (4) CM Punk & Daniel Bryan vs. The Wyatt Family (’13)

    Skulduggery: Oh, god damn that Daniel Bryan match for knocking out my beloved Show/Lesnar! Little goat-faced bastard. To avenge Show/Lesnar, hopefully another match from the '02 card eliminates BeardFest 2013. I'll take the Chamber comfortably in this match-up, with innovations such as the shattering of the lexon pods, RVD pulling a Spiderman, numerous harrowing landings onto that grated floor, oh, and Shawn Michaels actually completing a massive comeback! Now piss off, Punk and Bryan (I'm sorry Wyatts...).

    mizfan: The first Chamber match has begrudgingly taken my vote in past rounds because it is a pretty great match, despite the fact that it’s overrated, but I think it’s about time I give up that trend and give my vote for something I really like, such as the 2013 tag match. The Chamber match is another that comes off a bit bloated on a close watch, and I really can’t stress enough how damn awkward some of those spots were in an unfamiliar environment. Poor RVD! The tag match is a unique collection of talent and features some spectacular exchanges between Bryan and Harper especially. I have a feeling I will be arguing against the Chamber again in this tournament, but here’s my attempt to stop it here!

    Steve: Despite how cool it was to see two of my favorites in Punk and Bryan combine forces to face off with another of my favorites in Bray Wyatt, the first Chamber match is just straight up better. Hell, all these years later I still think it stands right up there as one of the best examples of the gimmick we've seen.

    Oliver: Elimination Chamber. No questions asked.

    SkitZ: 2013 felt like one of those managerial moves where they knew the diehard fanbase weren't gonna be thrilled about Big Show/Orton or Del Rio/Cena and thus gave them Punk & Bryan versus The Wyatts as a consolation prize. A tag match that probably shouldn't have even been that good but was bolstered by three outstanding workers (and a fourth who at the very least played his limited role well). It lacks both the visionary and historical impact of the first Elimination Chamber though which is what sets them apart. Well that and ol' HBK who's the undisputed king of the comeback.

    jeremydonovan: (1) Elimination Chamber (’02)

    SirSam: (1) Elimination Chamber (’02)

    (1) Elimination Chamber (’02) wins 6-1

    (2) Team RAW vs. Team SmackDown Men’s Match (’16) vs. (6) Los Guerreros vs. Edge & Rey Mysterio vs. Kurt Angle & Chris Benoit (’02)

    mizfan: Alas, all my arguments against this match did not reach our fellow judges in time to stop this damned 2016 match from getting this far in the tournament! I’m hoping some more 2002 love will burst forth and take that mess of a match down. Shane, old and stupid. Rules, inconsistent and frustrating. No dynamic, no flow, random shit happening. Boo! Give me the three way tag match every single time, three of the greatest teams ever duking it out in a super hot environment. Sure, the match dips a little after the first elimination, but by then it’s practically the home stretch and so many spectacular things have happened.

    Oliver: I’m sticking with the Smackdown Six here, and pondering whether Survivor Series 2002 is statistically the best Survivor Series PPV?

    jeremydonovan: (6) Los Guerreros vs. Edge & Rey Mysterio vs. Kurt Angle & Chris Benoit (’02)

    SirSam: Now this is going right down the the wire. I think on comparison the 2016 Men’s match just gets more time for the characters and the action of the match to breathe. The Smackdown Six is helter skelter wrestler, not a moment is wasted, it is either filled with a purposeful move, character interaction or piece of storytelling however the biggest strength the 2016 match has is how it got so much out of every single one of its competitors, each plays their part to perfection from Shane’s early attempt to get his team ahead, to Dean turning on AJ to Orton sacrificing himself to save Wyatt at the end. Even the seemingly token mascot ended up playing a pivotal role in the match. At 50 minutes plus it is extremely long for a WWE match but at no point am I left checking the time or feeling like it has overstayed its welcome.

    Steve: It almost hurts to vote against such a ridiculously stacked match in terms of sheer talent, but I gotta ride with SD vs Raw. Those matches are always fun and last year's was no different. While the tag contest may have been more technically sound, it just doesn't hold the same level of hype for me, probably because I remember watching it when it happened and recalling that it was not really that huge of a deal back then. It was great, of course, and everyone loved it and such, but SD v Raw just has more stank on it, if you will. At least for me.

    SkitZ: Let's face facts, folks... Survivor Series has only lasted this long because of WWE's obsession with tag matches. It's the perfect excuse to load up a pay per view with them and prolong any individual storytelling for another four weeks. The SmackDown Six had enough chemistry however to let their actions in the ring do all the talking. Last year's 5-on-5 has a handful of plot holes that have been pointed out throughout the tourney but they clearly didn't dig that deep of a hole around said match because it keeps surviving. Perhaps Mizfit's admiration towards the interbrand bout will someday grow. In the meantime, I'm picking the higher seed.

    Skulduggery: This is agonizingly close. The SmackDown Six is legendary, and this is the only PPV match that encapsulated all of them. It's incredibly fast-paced, the chemistry emanating between all six of them is on display, and the distinct traits of each team shines through - Benoit and Angle's friction, Los Guerreros' dastardliness, and Edge and Mysterio's heroics. I've said before, though, and I maintain that I don't feel this one quite reaches the levels of Benoit/Angle/Edge/Mysterio from No Mercy, or the Guerrero/Edge/Angle/Benoit Fatal 4Way from SmackDown, in terms of on-your-seat magnetism or sheer emotion. RAW vs. SmackDown, meanwhile, uses a hefty runtime to shine spotlight after spotlight on its competitors, and weaves 1-on-1 match-ups through each other extremely well - be they first-time match-ups or historically laden confrontations. And they handled just about everybody well. The way Strowman is eliminated is perfect; the way Shane is eliminated is perfect; the way Reigns is eliminated is perfect. That said, there is a period in the middle in which it can dawdle along for a little bit. It massively makes up for it in terms of overall warfare exhaustion, but you can't deny a tad of plodding will impact a match.

    By the hair on Mysterio's chinny chin chin, I have to opt for the Guerreros, Edge/Rey, and Benoit/Angle. Both matches have such great combinations with tiny flaws, so I basically give it to the triple threat for an accessory of breathtaking multi-person maneuvers that don't stand out as perfunctory or jutting.

    (6) Los Guerreros vs. Edge & Rey Mysterio vs. Kurt Angle & Chris Benoit (’02) wins 4-3

    Bracket D

    (1) Team WWF vs. Team Alliance (’01) vs. (5) Randy Orton vs. Shawn Michaels (’07)

    Oliver: I want to give props here to Orton vs Michaels, specifically Michaels. People rag on him a lot, but he’s a key part in a bunch of these matches that have gone deep into this conversation. And I actually think that this Orton match might just be his best WWE match, even up against the two Undertaker bouts and all the rest of his back catalogue. I mean, they took away the Sweet Chin Music in the gimmick of the match, and to sell all of that Michaels wrestled completely different match to the type we normally see him do. It’s his show, but Orton is a more than willing accomplice in the whole thing opposite him and the two work wonderfully together.

    I’m going to go ahead and let those two have the edge over their opponent here. Watching it back, I realised how much I love that bout and the style of it is pretty much flawless. Great work.

    Steve: I'm incredibly disappointed that Bret vs Diesel didn't carry through the previous round. That match is quite a bit superior to either of these, in my opinion, and was a sterling example of what Bret Hart was really all about. Orton vs Michaels is a good one, no doubt, but the high stakes and heat coming into the Alliance vs WWF match were off the chart. For as much as you hear now about how the Invasion angle flopped, you can't tell by going back and watching it. The crowd was red hot for it and I remember everyone being incredibly invested in the whole thing. The match itself is a bit wonky, with all the swerves and random crap going on, but it's still fun and carries a lot of weight as one of the most high profile matches in the event's history.

    mizfan: I’m seriously gutted that the overrated ’01 main event knocked out Diesel/Bret, the second best match in this whole damn tournament. Obvious outcome, takes ages to get there, no fresh interactions, bunch of guys came off as filler. I’m not saying it’s not good, but I can’t stand behind it as an all time great. I’ll gladly throw in for the unique Orton/HBK match on this one, there’s a bunch of stuff in that match that you just don’t see anywhere else. Probably the best headlock spot in WWE history, and that finish was so spot on.

    SkitZ: Deciding between these two proved a bit more difficult than I originally thought. The winner takes all 5-on-5 is not nearly as cohesive a group effort as many of the other traditional elimination matches that have headlined Survivor Series. It also has the stink of the Invasion angle lingering overhead. On the flip side, I'm not a huge fan of Randy's work during the Age of Orton but will admit that this serves as one of his better performances during 2007/8. Team WWF versus Team Alliance smells a bit like WrestleCrap but the product was still real to me then God dammit. I choose 2001's main event purely for the nostalgia!

    Skulduggery: Though I voted for it to be upset last round against Bret/Diesel, I now turn around and give WWF/Alliance the endorsement. Orton and Michaels wrestle a really great storytelling match, but it just doesn't have the level of magnitude and "epic" that the Alliance and WWF had.

    jeremydonovan: (5) Randy Orton vs. Shawn Michaels (’07)

    SirSam: This is where the problems with the invasion turn me against this match. Let’s start with one giant problem, Steve Austin, the flag bearer for the WWF throughout the Monday Night Wars, the man who won it for them is on Team Alliance. Add on Kurt Angle who only ever wrestled for the WWF and SHANE MCMAHON. Half the team are WWF guys and all the key players in the match are WWF guys as well. This utterly incomprehensible booking decision just cannot be overlooked at the pointy end of the competition. Orton vs. Shawn Michaels though is an example of taking a little and making it go a long way. They way they play around the no ‘Sweet Chin Music’ gimmick and how that plays into the finish is just masterful and indicative of the talent that is in the ring.

    (5) Randy Orton vs. Shawn Michaels (’07) wins 4-3

    (2) Team Cena vs. Team Authority (’14) vs. (3) Team RAW vs. Team SmackDown Tag Team Match (’16)

    jeremydonovan: (2) Team Cena vs. Team Authority (’14)

    SkitZ: Speaking of the company's fascination with lumping tag teams together, they had a field day with last year's 10-on-10 extravaganza. Yeah I'm pretty sure half of those teams haven't worked a Network special since then. John Cena felt like a defacto fill-in for the injured Daniel Bryan but one could argue that he served as a much more formidable captain (well right up until getting his lights punched out). Some will say the shenanigans down the stretch took away from the match but I loved the chaos. Therefore I side with Team Cena/Team Authority which is just exhausting to watch. And to wrestle apparently as Seth and Dolph both caught a quick nap while Sting made his drawn out debut.

    Skulduggery: Probably not a huge shocker who's getting my vote on this one, based on my glowing review of the 2014 main event from the last round. The 20 man tag match is a slowly building, excellently climaxing bout that deserves a ton of props for making it this far. But the New Day was eliminated so early! In all seriousness, I can pocket that little bit of petulance away and still unabashedly vote for Team Cena/Team Authority. Masterpiece.

    SirSam: The great Ziggler underdog story continues along here. If any young wrestler was saddled with an underdog face gimmick and they wanted to know how to use selling to connect with the audience I would tell them to watch this match 10 times over. The crowd is so into his comeback, when he starts getting eliminations. Michael Cole kills it throughout as well, really putting over firstly Ziggler’s comeback TAKE CONTROL REF!!! Then also making Sting’s debut as huge of a deal as it actually was. Lastly Seth Rollins deserves some praise for the intelligent prick he plays throughout. Whenever his team are losing control he jumps in to take control and show why he is the architect. I also love how he holds out Ziggler’s hand in his corner when he has no more partners left. Great heel move.

    Steve: I don't care at all for the big giant tag team Survivor style matches. They're too busy for my taste with just too damn many guys in the mix. Hell, you've got damn near an entire Royal Rumble just milling around the ring. Add to that just how fucking DONE I was with The Authority at the time of the 2014 Survivor Series and this one is an easy call.

    Oliver: I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – fuck the 2016 main event. It’s fuck awful. Team Cena vs Team Authority is emotionally and technically brilliant, so it wins by a landslide.

    mizfan: With my luck, I’ll end up having to pick between the poisons that are the 2016 and 2014 main event matches. Big Show turn is nonsense and handled horribly, and Sting coming in was the kind of mind bending lack of logic that would have had fans howling at the stupidity of it had it happened anywhere but WWE. Rollins is pinned by a Zig Zag that happened about 10 full minutes prior. Come on! I’m really hoping the massively superior tag match from last year knocks it off it’s undeserving perch. Cesaro with the fantastic performance for the win!!

    (2) Team Cena vs. Team Authority (’14) wins 6-1


    So! Only eight matches remain after halving the Sweet Sixteen, which was not kind to the two remaining '16 matches - both eliminated, maybe fittingly. We are seeing some diversity in seeding with a (5), a (6), and an (11) seed making it through ahead of one (1), half of the (2), and all of the (3) seeds. Shawn Michaels still has three matches in the final eight remaining, but the bigger surprise possibly is the clustering of years. With 30 years of Survivor Series history, 2002 and 2007 collectively boast more than half of the Elite Eight!

    Both matches that came into the Sweet 16 with a perfect record had those marred - though while Austin/Bischoff hit a speed bump, the 20-man tag team match from Series '16 was outright eliminated.

    Next column, we will see which matches of the Elite Eight will survive another round and take it to the Final Four. Madness continues!

  2. #2
    Wet Dream Machine SkitZ's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    To answer Oli's question in Bracket C, yes. Survivor Series 2002 has got to be the best show statistically speaking in the PPV's 30-year history. Hell, all 6 of the matches on that card made it into this tournament. Just a ridiculously stacked event from top to bottom and so well executed. If we were ranking shows instead of matches, it wouldn't make for much of a competition in my mind.

    The seven of us have some difficult decisions ahead of us however. Me thinks Kidman/Noble may have finally met their match in the next round. I'll have to up my game in the Elite Eight and give everything another watch. Love the varied opinions in these and knowing I can count on Mizfit to vote opposite of me in every category. Great work as always piecing this thing together, Skul. Reminds me of formatting my Christmas Wishlist columns which you better be taking part in next month. Actually you will one way or another since I now have leverage with my involvement in this series! Muhahahaha.

  3. #3
    Senior Junior SirSam's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2017
    Newcastle, Australia
    Once again it is fantastic reading what everyone else has written here.

    It is interesting seeing how much praise the 2005 Elimination match has got. I watched it having not seen any of the build up and really it fell flat to me but others who have more memory of the context seem to love it. Shows how important the build is for some matches.

    I am also stoked that the Shawn Michaels V Randy Orton match got through. I feel like it is one of the best 'odd' gimmick matches I've ever seen. Normally those kinds of gimmicks are a lead weight around the match but those two are so good that they let it enhance the match. Such a well constructed piece of work.

  4. #4
    The Brain
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    We very narrowly made some very good choices, and overwhelming made a few really bad ones.

    I'm a little surprised you hate the '97 HBK/Bret match, Oli. The end is a hash obviously and discussing it is annoying, but I do like the match up to that point. Also, sell me on the idea that the 2014 elimination match is "technically and emotionally brilliant". Skul couldn't do it but I'll give you a shot to change my mind.

    Also, Skul, maybe we can be friends again thanks to your last minute decision to throw in with the Smackdown Six. Despite knowing the result, was on the edge of my seat for that one!

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    SkitZ - Agreed with you and Oli - I've mentioned before that Series '02 is not only my favorite Survivor Series PPV, but it's my all-time favorite PPV of any kind. And yes, of course I'll be in for your traditional Dear Santa.

    SirSam - Yeah, I love the 2005 main event. The storyline going into the match is nothing short of phenomenal in my opinion; the match itself maybe not matching its immense build, but it's still a really great match. The commentary can be make or break for a lot of people, because the RAW and SD tables just bicker the whole time, but it adds to the match in my opinion.

    mizfan - There was a teensy part of me that wanted to vote for the Screwjob just to see how much more frustrated Oli could get, but obviously I wouldn't go that far to vote for a match that I didn't even opt for in its first round against a (14) seed. Still, though "Piece of garbage shit" had me cracking up! Also, that SmackDown 6/RAW vs SD '16 was a really tough decision. Couldn't go wrong with either choice, though (I know you disagree with that, of course!)

    Cheers all!

  6. #6
    Senior Junior SirSam's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2017
    Newcastle, Australia
    I AMA a massive fan of the 2016 match for all the reasons I've noted in past rounds so I'm sad to see it go but it is a damn close call. That Smackdown Six match is just balls to the wall from start to finish.

  7. #7
    Weed General D.O.N's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Looks like 03 Elimination Match finally got a vote against it, which did seem kinda random if I do say so myself. It will be interesting to see what that match goes up against in the next round.

    Batista and Undertaker had such a natural chemistry with each other and because of that chemistry they were always able to put on great matches together. Their 'Mania match really is one of my favourites.

    And the Cinderella run continues, albeit by the very briefest of margins. I'm not entirely sure if it will make it past the Elite Eight though.

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