WWE Survivor Series 2021 is finally in the history books. It was the promotion’s last pay-per-view of the year and accounted for a decent show. The battle for brand supremacy ended 5-2 in favor of RAW.
SmackDown Superstars only won one match on the main show with the other victory coming on the pre-show, that too as a result of a disqualification. Although WWE writers delivered several memorable instances at the pay-per-view, the major highlights also included several bad calls in terms of overall booking.
Here, we look at some of the biggest hits and flops from Survivor Series 2021. So, without further ado, let’s begin.
#7 Hit on WWE Survivor Series 2021: Becky Lynch steals the show with clever tricks
The opening match of Survivor Series 2021 witnessed an epic match featuring two former best friends, Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair. The RAW and SmackDown Women's Champions were involved in the most intense and personal storyline leading up to the pay-per-view.
The two superstars were determined to push each other to their limits. Their match was the best of the night and arguably one of the best in-ring bouts we have seen this year.
The action that unfolded inside the ring mirrored the history behind Lynch and Flair. Both superstars were involved in countless chaotic spots that made their fight look real instead of usual choreographed bouts. The entire arena erupted in "This is Awesome" chants on multiple occasions during this match at Survivor Series.
There was no dull part in their bout which speaks volumes about the prowess of The Man and The Queen, who have been each other's biggest rivals over the last couple of years.
Since both Lynch and Charlotte are extremely familiar with each other's in-ring work, they knew exactly what to do to avoid losing their edge during this match at Survivor Series. Big Time Becks borrowed moves from Flair and used them against her opponent.
The latter was quick to fire back with more creative maneuvers. In all honestly, Charlotte Flair seemed to have better offenses in her arsenal, but Becky Lynch's resilience kept her in the match until the very end.
The match's closing moments saw Flair take help from the rope to pin Lynch. However, the official spotted her tricks and stopped counting. As the referee told off the SmackDown Women's Champion, Becky Lynch saw the right opportunity and rolled her up for a pinfall.
She waited until the referee got to the second count and then used help from the ropes while ensuring her angle was hidden. She successfully used The Queen's tricks against her to seal her victory at Survivor Series 2021 and put a momentary pause to her feud with her long-term nemesis.
It should be noted that Charlotte Flair walked away with a smile following her loss at the pay-per-view. It was unclear if she had simply accepted her fate or was just proud that her former trusted ally truly learned the essence of her dominance. Given the depth of the story-telling, this match should have been the main event of Survivor Series pay-per-view.
This may be the last battle that we see between Flair and Lynch in the next few months unless one of them wins Royal Rumble and decides to switch brands again. Regardless, their effort at tonight's event deserves special accolades, and it has successfully associated itself with the second-oldest pay-per-view in WWE history.
#6 Flop on WWE Survivor Series 2021: Damian Priest makes a blunder
Survivor Series 2021’s pre-show witnessed an entertaining match between United States Champion Damian Priest and Intercontinental Champion Shinsuke Nakamura. They did an excellent job at representing RAW and SmackDown, respectively.
Unfortunately, the finish to this clash was quite underwhelming and could prove to be a huge mistake in the coming weeks.
The build-up for Priest and Nakamura was polar opposite before Survivor Series. On one hand, the US Champion got more brutal with each passing week on RAW, picking up significant victories along the way. On the other hand, Nakamura’s run was uneventful on SmackDown as the Intercontinental Champion was primarily involved in tag team feuds.
Thus, Priest was a clear favorite to win the clash with his counterpart, and he had the right momentum to back his cause.
Although the match was a pre-show, both superstars left no stone unturned to deliver a memorable bout. It was a well-balanced encounter that saw both Priest and Nakamura take turns to dominate the match.
Rick Boogs was at ringside during Survivor Series, playing his electric guitar to either motivate his partner or help him out by distracting his opponent. A frustrated Priest warned Boogs to refrain from playing his instrument again.
The crowd was anticipating a victory for Damian Priest. However, he shocked the viewers when he broke Boogs’ electric guitar and then attacked him using the same.
He then committed a blunder when he used the same piece of the instrument to attack Nakamura, ending his Survivor Series match in disqualification. As a result, the Japanese superstar won the match while an angry Priest walked backstage.
This booking was a mistake for two major reasons. Damian Priest deserved to win this bout because of his performance and recent run, but he seemingly failed the biggest test on the main roster so far. Shinsuke Nakamura didn’t deserve to win, but if he was going to beat Priest, it should have at least been clean.
We hope the creative team will capitalize on this Survivor Series result by turning The Archer of Infamy into a heel on RAW. Additionally, they should also use this match as a reset for The King of Strong Style's title reign and have him engage in credible feuds on SmackDown.
#5 Hit on WWE Survivor Series 2021: Roman Reigns beats Big E
Survivor Series 2021's main event saw an epic clash between Roman Reigns and Big E. The two powerhouses looked to make a strong statement in the battle for brand supremacy.
It was a well-booked match that ended the show on a good note. The rivalry between the two superstars genuinely looked personal, especially after everything unfolded between The Bloodline and The New Day over the last couple of weeks.
The bout allowed both superstars to look strong, which was great. We saw Paul Heyman giving a passionate pep talk to Roman Reigns, which doesn't usually happen. It helped cement Big E as an equal threat to The Tribal Chief, making their match more enjoyable.
Both world champions used the entire squared circle and the area surrounding the ring, turning everything they could spot into a weapon. E came close to pinning Reigns, but the latter eventually emerged victorious at Survivor Series.
Although Reigns got a clean victory over Big E, the WWE Champion did not look weak, unlike some of the Tribal Chief's previous opponents like Finn Balor or his alter-ego, the Demon King. E will now prepare for his title bout against No.1 contender Seth Rollins.
On the other hand, we also learned on Survivor Series that Brock Lesnar's suspension is no longer in effect. Could we see The Beast Incarnate return to the Blue brand soon?
It's worth mentioning that Vince McMahon made multiple appearances at WWE Survivor Series, which rigorously promoted The Rock's new movie, Red Notice, starring Gal Gadot and Ryan Reynolds. The Great One apparently gifted the Golden Egg of Cleopatra, one of the props from the movie, to McMahon, and it was stolen after Roman Reigns visited the Chairman.
While The Tribal Chief denied any interest in the jewel-laden egg, he hinted that his next contract would be worth the same treasure. Vince McMahon demanded an investigation into who took his prized possession. We will find out more about it on this week's RAW.
Reigns used a modified version of Rock Bottom in his match at Survivor Series, prompting the entire arena to erupt with "Rocky" chants. He also refused to pay any heed when McMahon tried to talk to him about The Rock. Could it be some kind of foreshadowing in the process?
#4 Flop on WWE Survivor Series 2021: Everyone in the women's five-on-five match except Sasha banks and Bianca Belair
The women's Survivor Series match started on an underwhelming note tonight. Sasha Banks led Team SmackDown, including superstars like Shotzi, Shayna Baszler, Natalya, and Toni Storm against Queen Zelina's Team RAW. Apart from her, the Red brand was represented by Rhea Ripley, Liv Morgan, Bianca Belair, and Carmella.
The latter was the first to be eliminated from the match after she was distracted by her desperate need to wear a mask. We saw several superstars make questionable decisions throughout the night, but this was by far the worst one at Survivor Series.
Her elimination put Team RAW at an early disadvantage, after which the team fell like a deck of cards.
It would be fair to say that Belair's brief battle with Banks was the only good part of the five-on-five women's Survivor Series Elimination Match. The entire battle was completely one-sided in favor of the Blue brand until Team SmackDown became its own worst enemy.
Sasha Banks was close to pinning Bianca Belair, but Natalya, Baszler, and Shotzi stopped their captain from winning the bout for them. The Boss even got counted out because of her teammates.
Belair then pinned Natalya, Baszler, and Shotzi one by one to become the sole survivor and picked up an important victory for Team RAW at Survivor Series 2021. The booking made the EST of WWE look strong, but it ended up making most of her fellow women's competitors quite idiotic.
And that's a polite way to put it. Toni Storm and Rhea Ripley were decent, but their work amounted to nothing because their teammates were not very bright.
WWE's creative team had a huge opportunity to book a memorable batch, but this battle would be remembered for all the wrong reasons, one of which is the Mexican Wave that kept fans occupied throughout its duration.
#3 Hit on WWE Survivor Series 2021: Seth Rollins
One of the most entertaining matches of Survivor Series 2021 was the men’s five-on-five elimination match. The battle witnessed Team RAW’s Seth Rollins, Kevin Owens, Finn Balor, Bobby Lashley, and Austin Theory take on Team SmackDown’s Drew McIntyre, Jeff Hardy, Happy Corbin, King Woods, and Sheamus.
It was an excellent match for the most part, except for the initial shock when we saw Owens abandon his team and walk back to the locker room. We will discuss his actions further in detail in the later slides.
We saw Rollins engage in individual battles with almost every member of Team SmackDown, and he looked incredible in every single one of them. He was dominant against Corbin, moved smoothly against Woods, took Hardy by surprise on multiple occasions, mocked Sheamus, and even tried to poke fun at McIntyre during the Survivor Series match.
Unfortunately, the last one didn’t end well for him as he took a huge blow right in the face for laughing at The Scottish Warrior, who accidentally got himself eliminated.
Towards the end of the match, Seth Rollins and Austin Theory were left from Team RAW, while Jeff Hardy was the only one left from Team SmackDown. Fans in the arena rose to their feet to cheer for The Charismatic Enigma, who competed in his first big match since Elimination Chamber in February this year.
He ended up eliminating Theory while Rollins pinned him to remain the last one standing by the end of the traditional Survivor Series match.
Seth Rollins’ humility is no secret, and he is expected to remain the same when he arrives on RAW tomorrow night. The Visionary has the contract to challenge Big E for the WWE Championship, but he will most likely try to toot his own horn before he confronts the world champion.
He picked up a significant victory at Survivor Series but is still expected to cross paths with Kevin Owens on the show. It will be exciting to see what’s in store for the sole survivor this year.
#2 Flop on WWE Survivor Series 2021: Omos
Survivor Series 2021 featured a 25-Man Dual Brand Battle Royal to honor the 25th anniversary of The Rock’s debut. This match featured several top superstars, including a few former world champions, competing for pizza.
To make things worse, Omos ultimately won the match after eliminating 12 WWE Superstars from the Battle Royal, again for pizza. This match featured the likes of AJ Styles and Sami Zayn but let’s look at their respective strategies.
Styles slipped out of the ring early in the match and stood at the announce desk, waiting for his partner to clear the path. He then came back to the ring and was mistakenly eliminated by the giant.
This is a former world champion that we are talking about. Sami Zayn, who was removed from the traditional bout at the last minute, was in the match and his best moment saw him desperately trying convince Cesaro and Ricochet to work for him.
It is evident that WWE is trying to push Omos as the next monster on the main roster but at this point, he is looking like an immovable version of Braun Strowman. Despite 12 eliminations to his name, he didn’t have a single stand-out moment in the match.
He needs to work harder and make himself look more believable if he wants to pose as a dominant figure. Omos’ performance at Survivor Series was forgetful and so was this match.
While we are on the topic, wouldn’t it be better if AJ Styles and Omos parted ways on RAW now? The Phenomenal One has done everything he can to help his personal colossal and he no longer needs to spend time in the tag team division.
Between Survivor Series and Royal Rumble next year, WWE should genuinely consider moving Styles back into the world title picture or at least push him into bigger storylines involving the likes of Finn Balor.
#1 Hit on WWE Survivor Series 2021: Randy Orton’s historic night
Tonight, at Survivor Series 2021, Randy Orton broke Kane’s record to become the superstar with the most pay-per-view matches in WWE history. The Tag Team Champions of RAW and SmackDown faced each other in an engaging encounter that allowed both the duos to bring out their absolute best inside the ring.
Jey and Jimmy Uso worked arrogantly, as usual. However, Orton and Riddle looked different tonight.
Instead of being their usual fun selves, RK-Bro looked more focused than ever. This helped sell the narrative that the duo's six-month-old alliance will truly be tested by The Usos, one of the best tag teams in WWE history.
All four superstars took turns asserting their dominance inside the ring during their match at Survivor Series. Still, a momentary lapse in judgment caused Jimmy Uso to fall victim to a devastating RKO.
He mistakenly thought that he needed to take on Riddle and was completely distracted by the latter. He even hit him with a kick before going to the top rope and attempting a dive. Orton reciprocated with his finisher and capitalized on Jimmy Uso’s mistake by pinning him to glorify his historic night at Survivor Series.
The Viper has been one of the best performers on RAW over the last two years, but he has been a top talent for much-much longer. His impeccable longevity deserves a special accolade. Randy Orton is bound to go down in history as one of the greatest performers the pro-wrestling business has ever seen.
He deserved the moment at Survivor Series, and it was great to see Riddle celebrate his tag team partner’s victory. As far as Jimmy is concerned, this is the second time this month when his mistake has led to a big loss for The Usos. Will he have to answer Roaman Reigns’ frustrations after yet another error?
Honorable mentions from Survivor Series: Kevin Owens and Austin Theory
It would have been a huge mistake to end this Survivor Series feature without mentioning Kevin Owens and Austin Theory. Both these superstars were part of Team RAW for the five-on-five elimination match. As mentioned before, KO abandoned his team during the match. He argued with Rollins over who should start the bout and eventually decided to leave the ring.
Although Seth Rollins eventually won the Survivor Series match for the Red brand, he will remember Owens' actions. Both superstars have been involved in a feud lately. The Visionary can use KO’s actions as ammo, but the latter will be quick to remind how Rollins ‘sacrificed himself’ at Survivor Series last year.
Moreover, Kevin Owens returned to take the credit, establishing that he turned his back on those who have not supported him on the Red brand in the last few weeks. Many believe that this booking also confirms that he will be on his way out when his current contract ends in January.
However, WWE needs to understand that they can’t afford to lose a performer as good as KO. He can play a compelling babyface, a great anti-hero, and an unbeatable heel.
Next comes Austin Theory, who replaced Rey Mysterio in Team RAW at the very last minute. He recently returned to the main roster and is steadily carving a different niche for himself. He is arrogant but subtle and is brilliant at getting under someone’s skin.
Theory reunited with Rollins at Survivor Series, and both superstars worked well together. They might continue their alliance on the Monday night show even after the pay-per-view.
Austin Theory is good at playing the role that has been granted to him on television. But there’s something else that deserves the WWE Universe’s attention. If you go back to watch the men’s five-on-five Survivor Series match, you will notice a spot in which he delivered a dropkick to Sheamus right in the face while elevating himself to The Celtic Warrior’s level.
For context, Sheamus is 6ft 3in tall. If there’s one thing that you will take from the pay-per-view, let it be the fact that it would be a mistake to ignore Theory’s potential.