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Why Goldberg vs. Brock Lesnar was booked perfectly to end Survivor Series 2016

Daniel Massey
9.43K   //    22 Nov 2016, 04:47 IST
Blink and you’ll miss it...

Survivor Series 2016 ended in a somewhat controversial fashion last night with Goldberg pulling off one of the biggest upsets since Lesnar breaking The Undertaker’s streak. The Myth returned to in ring action after a 12 year absence and, in front of his wife and son, victimised, bullied and beat Brock Lesnar into the ground in the 86 second main event of the night.

Naturally, the WWE Universe was shocked to the core. All the dirt sheets were wrong, all the Lesnar fans were wrong and all the people thinking Goldberg was just coming back to ‘do the honours’ were wrong. What a brilliant moment.

With the age of the Internet dirt sheets it’s not often that WWE can surprise its fans, but last night at Survivor Series it happened on several occasions. No-one expected the Miz to come away with a victory, no-one expected Raw to keep the Cruiserweight division and no-one expected the Beast and the Conqueror to be squashed quicker than CM Punk in UFC.

The collective sound of everyone’s jaw hitting the floor in the arena was brilliant and Michael Cole really sold the fact that this was an unprecedented upset. It’s a moment I certainly won’t forget in a hurry.

More importantly than this, I’m going to go out on a limb here and say this was the absolute perfect decision on WWE’s part.

It was a piece of brilliant booking that not all fans appreciated last night; heck, most of them are still fuming about it this morning, but when the story begins to unfold, I feel that the WWE Universe will change its mind and see this for what it really was.

It is the start of something bigger.

I think the biggest disappointment came from the fact that people thought this was a one-time deal but it has since come to light that Goldberg will be stepping inside the squared circle again at the Royal Rumble.

This means this feud will be continuing and what better way to shake up a Lesnar storyline, to deviate from the norm, than to have him beaten, on the ropes and wondering what to do next? Comments were rife on fan pages saying Lesnar looks weak and now everyone he beat looks weak. This could not be further from the truth. A wounded animal is a dangerous animal and that’s what Lesnar is right now.


He will be out for revenge and vengeance and the results are likely to be catastrophic. This hasn’t happened before, this is something new and it’s refreshing to see from WWE. I’m glad they had the confidence to go with that particular ending to the main event.

A slayed beast

Goldberg has never lost a one on one match on WWE TV as far as I know. This is yet another reason for him not to lose to Lesnar yet. Lesnar has lost to the likes of John Cena and Triple H in his current run so I’m not quite sure why everyone is so up in arms about a Goldberg victory.

The man is in fantastic shape. Comparing his latest promotional shots to the ones from over 12 years ago, the only difference now is his beard is grey. Why wouldn’t he still be unstoppable? He is the most legitimate threat WWE could throw up against Lesnar until Samoa Joe is ready to make the move to the main roster, but he’s currently loving life on the NXT brand as their current champion.

Goldberg was able to show the same intensity and fire when competing that he did when he was in his prime. He looked like he hadn’t missed a beat. Reports were rife that he injured his shoulder in training leading up to the event, a practical reason to keep the match short. If the match had gone for 10-15 minutes, the likelihood is, Goldberg would have ended up injured due to 10-15 German Suplexes, he may well have been gassed due to ring rust and the match certainly would not have gotten the attention it did last night.

Furthermore, let us not forget, the crowd had just sat through over 5 hours of the event including the pre-show. What I like to call the real main event of the night, the traditional 5 on 5 matchup between the best 5 Superstars of Raw and the best 5 Superstars of SmackDown, lasted 53 minutes and it was jam-packed with action from start to finish.

There was no breather match in between and we jumped straight into The Beast vs, The Myth.

This is another reason why WWE were extremely smart here in keeping the match short. I think the crowd were worn out by this point and if it had gone on for longer than it did, there would have been parts of the match met with silence. A dominant performance by Lesnar may have even got so boring, due to his current lack of moves, the crowd would start to turn on the match just as they did at WrestleMania XX.  

With the tag line ‘fantasy warfare comes to life’, I don’t think Vince would have been too happy to hear the crowd either get behind Lesnar or ruin the match completely by being disinterested. It’s happened before and it’s not enjoyable to watch.

86 seconds was more than enough to show Goldberg’s dominance and the fact that Lesnar is just a man, one who can be beaten. It left the crowd flabbergasted at the result, but the most important thing for WWE is the fact that people were talking about it.

Websites you wouldn’t normally associate with WWE or any wrestling were popping up with news about the unexpected victory. This is great for the product and fantastic for the sports entertainment world in general. It garners attention for WWE when they need it most, in the run up to WrestleMania season.

Lesnar is shocked as the crowd would be 60 seconds later....

Let’s face it as well, wrestling fans all around the world are always talking about how predictable the product is and how there are never any swerves. WWE pulls off an epic one like an 86 second squash match and the Internet loses its’ mind.

I think it is short-sighted to say this was a waste of a main event. Personally, I loved it. It brought back my childhood of watching Goldberg dominate in WCW so there was nostalgia there. It took me half an hour to realise I was sitting there with my mouth wide open due to the result it surprised me that much.

I was excited for the fallout of this match immediately. A million questions raced through my mind. What will Lesnar do? How will Paul Heyman turn this around? Will Goldberg be back for round 3? That is all I can ask for as a wrestling fan and I give props to WWE on this occasion for going ahead with something that was completely outside the box.

It created a very entertaining ending to what was quite frankly, a brilliant pay-per-view that had everything. Goldberg vs. Lesnar have removed the awful dark cloud that surrounded both their last matches in WWE and came back with something the fans will talk about for years.

Eventually, I think most –  if not all – the negativity surrounding the result will turn to admiration for what these guys did on this historic night.

What did you think of the main event? Are you livid? Did you mark out? Drop a comment below and let’s discuss!

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Daniel Massey
Dan joined Sportskeeda in August 2016 as a freelance WWE Featured Writer and is a former Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report. His aim is to become a full-time wrestling journalist.
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