By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
WWE Survivor Series 2018 Kickoff Show
Los Angeles, California at Staples Center
Aired live on November 18, 2018 on WWE Network and social media
-The Kickoff Show was hosted by Jonathan Coachman, who was joined by the panel of Jerry Lawler, Beth Phoenix, and David Otunga.
-After introductions, plugging the network being free for a month for new subscribers (twice), and running through the card, the hosts set up a video package on Daniel Bryan winning the WWE Championship and turning on Styles.
-Regarding Bryan, Lawler said evil is like diarrhea in that you can only hold it in for so long. Ugh. Phoenix said “evil” was a strong word. She said Bryan’s passion knows no bounds and it was an opportunity he took for himself. She said she respects that Bryan isn’t letting anything stand in his way of being the best.
-Alexa Bliss addressed the Raw women’s backstage and told them she wants total humiliation after what the Smackdown women did on Raw last week. “You want humiliation, did you see what I did to Becky’s face?” Nia Jax asked. Ruby Riott asked Natalya if she finished gluing her dad’s sunglasses back together. Natalya tackled Riott and punched her until they were pulled apart. Bliss said Natalya and Riott would be off the team if they can’t get along. Coachman questioned when Bliss would decide.
Powell’s POV: I love that they are having Jax turn a negative into a positive by gloating over what happened to Becky Lynch’s nose. Nia owed Lynch an apology and I assume she gave her one. Nia doesn’t owe fans an apology despite the outrage of some.
-General managers Paige and Baron Corbin joined Coachman and Lawler. Bobby Lashley and Lio Rush showed up. Rush spoke while Lashley flexed. Once Lashley and Rush left, the general managers took turns explaining why their brands would win. Paige boasted that Smackdown is a family. Corbin said they need their guys to get along for one night. Coachman asked Paige about the final spot on the Smackdown women’s team. She said they have a bunch of options and the person would be a perfect fit.
-Coachman and the panel discussed Rousey vs. Charlotte and the Rousey and Lynch social media jabs.
-Charly Caruso interviewed Charlotte Flair backstage and asked her how prepared she is. She spoke about how social media loves her one day and hates her the next. She said Rousey has labeled her a stand in and also mentioned that Rousey drops the Four Horsewomen. “Anyone can hold up the four, but I’m the only one who can hold up the four and have that birthright and make it mean something,” Charlotte said. Tessa Blanchard would disagree.
-Naomi spoke with Asuka, Carmella, and Sonya Deville. She said she could fill the captain’s role. She said they needed to remain united and welcome their fifth member. R-Truth entered the picture only to be told he wasn’t the fifth woman. Naomi introduced Mandy Rose as the fifth woman. Rose said the women may be upset with her for being too truthful. She said it could be one of the biggest nights of their careers and if they thought she would throw it away to fight with any of them then they were even more full of themselves than she thought.
-Coachman tried to claim the captain’s role is important because “there are a lot of different calls you have to make as the match continues.” Um, sure.
-A video package focused on the WWE Cruiserweight Championship match between Buddy Murphy and Mustafa Ali.
-Drake Maverick joined the panel and sang the praises of the cruiserweight division. He also spoke about AOP winning the Raw Tag Titles. He said The Bar seem more concerned with choreographing their entrance than winning championships. Maverick downplayed Big Show being at ringside. Lawler asked if the wizard got back to him about his brain. Maverick mistook it for a hobbit joke. Oops.
-Booker T replaced Lawler on the panel at the top of the hour. Booker said if he had to put money on it, he would bet that Brock Lesnar will squash Daniel Bryan like a grape.
-The broadcast team of Tom Phillips, Corey Graves, and Byron Saxton checked in from ringside and the ring entrances for the Kickoff Show match started with New Day, who delivered an in-ring promo. New Day introduced their teammates. Nikki Cross was not with Sanity, though Phillips did mention that she appeared on Smackdown recently. The Raw team made separate entrances and were introduced by a ring announcer…
1. “Team Raw” Chad Gable & Bobby Roode, The Ascension, Lucha House Party, The Revival, and B-Team vs. “Team Smackdown” The Usos, New Day, The Colons, Sanity, Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson) in a Survivor Series tag team elimination match. The wrestlers wore Raw and Smackdown t-shirts. Kalisto and Lince Dorado represented Lucha House Party, Eric Young and Killian Dain worked for Sanity, and New Day had Big E and Xavier Woods wrestling. The respective teammates were at ringside.
Kalisto sold a knee injury and took Shatter Machine. Gran Metalik replaced him while Graves questioned why it would be allowed by the referee. Karl Anderson pinned Bo Dallas to eliminate B-Team at 5:15. Gable and Roode hit their neckbreaker and moonsault finisher on Young to eliminate Sanity at 6:45.
Woods hoisted up E on his shoulders and dropped him on Viktor, which led to the Ascension being eliminated at 9:00. Metalik performed a top rope senton on Karl Anderson to eliminate Anderson and Luke Gallows at 11:05. The Usos evened things up by taking out Dorado to eliminate LHP at 12:15. New Day and the Usos were left to face Gable and Roode, and the Revival.
Gable and Roode performed a rolling suplex into a neckbreaker on Big E for a two count. Roode went for his finisher, but E cut him off. A short time later, E speared Dash Wilder off the apron. Roode launched Gable onto a pile of wrestlers at ringside. One of the Usos performed a dive onto the pile. Gable performed a German suplex on one of the Usos onto the pile in a wild spot.
New Day hit the up, up, down, down on Gable and pinned him. The Revival were Raw’s final hope. The Revival hit the Shatter Machine on Xavier Woods and pinned him to eliminate New Day. The match came down to the Revival and the Usos. Scott Dawson performed a top rope bulldog on Jimmy Uso for a two count. Jey had to break up another near fall following a superplex and splash combo by the Revival. The Usos came back. One of the Usos did a locked and loaded tribute to Roman Reigns while leaping off the top rope with a splash onto Dawson for the win…
The Usos were the survivors for Team Smackdown won the tag team elimination match in 22:20.
Powell’s POV: A cluster early, which is hardly a surprise. The big dives in the middle were fun and got a rise out of the live crowd. The final portion of the match between the Usos and Revival was entertaining, though it was hardly a surprise that the Usos went over. It was nice to see Revival stick around until the end, but it continues to be a shame that this terrific team is wasted on Raw.
-Backstage, Caruso interviewed Bliss and noted that she actually did kick Ruby Riott and Natalya off Team Raw. Bliss invited Sasha Banks and Bayley to join the team. Banks said they don’t owe them anything and haven’t forgotten what they did to them on Raw. She said they were coming after them after Survivor Series. Bayley explained that Smackdown crossed the line by invading Raw, so they accepted the open slots…
-The panel discussed the men’s elimination match and noted that the Raw team must win or everything Stephanie McMahon promised to Braun Strowman would be off the table. Coachman noted the women’s match would open the pay-per-view.
Join me for live coverage of the Survivor Series event on the main page.
Check below for the latest Pro Wrestling Boom Podcast with Jason Powell and John Moore discussing WWE Survivor Series.
The new edition of the Pro Wrestling Boom Podcast with Jason Powell and guest Brian Pillman Jr., who discusses his training, following his father's footsteps, his own career aspirations, being part of the Hart Foundation faction, his big match at the MLW Saturday Night SuperFight pay-per-view, working with Jushin Liger, touring the WWE Performance Center, and much more...