Not since Brock Lesnar ended The Undertaker’s WrestleMania streak has there been a more surprising ending to a WWE match than the main event of Survivor Series 2016. Goldberg defeated Lesnar on Sunday night, dominating the former UFC champion in a way that no one could have seen coming.
Goldberg’s return to WWE was initially supposed to only involve one match, but it looks like the 49-year-old could make several appearances with the company in 2017. Pro Wrestling Sheet reported on Sunday that Goldberg recently agreed to work the Royal Rumble in January, which could be the reason for Sunday’s result.
Lesnar’s abrupt defeat was just one of a few surprises on the night. Belts were expected to change hands in two title matches, but both champions retained because of outside interference. Team Raw was victorious in two traditional Survivor Series matches, but WWE’s flagship show was defeated in the most important match of the three.
It was the first pay-per-view since SummerSlam that featured wrestlers from both “Monday Night Raw” and “SmackDown.”
Brock Lesnar vs. Goldberg
It took less than 90 seconds for Goldberg to pin Lesnar after the bell rang. Goldberg caught Lesnar off guard with a Spear, followed by a second Spear immediately afterward. The former WCW Champion ended the match with a Jackhammer, effectively squashing Lesnar. It was the first time Lesnar was pinned since he lost to Triple H at WrestleMania 29 in 2013.
Team Raw vs. Team SmackDown in a 5-on-5 Traditional Survivor Series Men’s Elimination Match
Shane McMahon might have been the star of the match, first putting Braun Strowman through the announcer’s table with an elbow off the top rope, then getting eliminated after he was speared by Roman Reigns during an attempted coast-to-coast. Dean Ambrose almost cost Team SmackDown the match, teaming up with Reigns and Seth Rollins to Powerbomb AJ Styles, who stood by as Ambrose was the first wrestler eliminated. But in the end, it was Randy Orton and Bray Wyatt who stood tall as Bray hit Reigns with Sister Abigail’s Kiss to end the match.
Winner: Team SmackDown
Team Raw vs. Team SmackDown in a 5-on-5 Traditional Survivor Series Women’s Elimination Match
Natalya replaced Nikki Bella at the start of the match after Nikki was attacked backstage by an unknown wrestler, and Natalya had one of the most shocking pins of the night when she eliminated Sasha Banks less than 11 minutes into the match. Bayley and Charlotte were the only women that didn’t get eliminated, and the match concluded when Becky Lynch was hit with a Bayley-to-Belly Supplex. Shortly after the victory, Charlotte attacked Bayley, likely setting up the next feud for the Raw Women’s Championship.
Winner: Team Raw
Team Raw vs. Team SmackDown in a 10-on-10 Traditional Survivor Series Tag Team Elimination Match
After The New Day was shockingly eliminated just 70 seconds into the match, it was the top challengers for the Raw Tag Team Titles that sealed the win for the red team. With help from Sheamus, Cesaro forced Jey Uso to tap to a Sharpshooter to end the match. The performance from Cesaro and Sheamus earned them a title shot against The New Day 24 hours later on “Monday Night Raw.”
Winner: Team Raw
Intercontinental Champion The Miz vs. Sami Zayn
The Miz kept the IC Title on “SmackDown” with help from Maryse. She rang the bell when Zayn had The Miz in a Figure-Four LegLock, even though The Miz never tapped. Zayn thought he got the victory, and when the ref restarted the match, The Miz was able to quickly roll up the challenger and keep his title.
Winner: The Miz
WWE Cruiserweight Champion The Brian Kendrick vs. Kalisto
Once the IC Title stayed with “SmackDown,” it became clear that the Cruiserweight division wasn’t going to leave “Monday Night Raw.” Kalisto wasn’t pinned or submitted, but the ref was forced to end the match when Baron Corbin interfered and attacked both wrestlers. Corbin was supposed to be a part of Team SmackDown in the Traditional Survivor Series Men’s Elimination Match, but he was replaced with Shane last week when he was injured by Kalisto.
Winner: The Brian Kendrick
Kane vs. Luke Harper (Pre-Show Match)
Kane pinned Harper after hitting a Chokeslam, though Harper would make an appearance later in the night, helping his fellow Wyatt Family members in the five-on-five elimination match.
TJ Perkins, Rich Swann & Noam Dar vs. Tony Nese, Drew Gulak & Ariya Daivari (Pre-Show Match)
Swann ended the match by pinning Daivari after hitting a Standing 450 Splash. Both Perkins and Swann could soon be getting opportunities to win the Cruiserweight Title.
Winner: TJ Perkins, Rich Swann & Noam Dar