Lee Maughan: Hosts are Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler for RAW brand matches, and Michael Cole and Tazz for SmackDown!
Kurt Angle, Chris Benoit, John Cena, Bradshaw & Hardcore Holly vs. Brock Lesnar, The Big Show, Nathan Jones & Matt Morgan & A-Train
This is Holly’s onscreen return after breaking his neck in a match with Lesnar fourteen months prior, so he goes right after him, shoves the referee down in the process, and gets disqualified immediately. That’s fine since the idea is to put more heat on Holly’s quest for revenge and build up a grudge match between them for the upcoming Royal Rumble undercard, but it sets an interesting precedent as the call comes before the opening bell has rung, setting his elimination time at minus four seconds. What’s the official line on how long a referee’s jurisdiction extends? Could he disqualify someone an hour before a match? How about a day? What about five years? Usually it’s not a disqualification until the bell has actually rung unless it plays to the whims of an angle, as it does in this case.
One of the main selling points of the match is that the heel team is the “biggest in Survivor Series history”, which I would wager is a complete misnomer if you calculate the mean, median and mode of their combined weight, height and girth and compare it to any of those ten-man teams made up of regular tag team partners that appeared at the first two Survivor Series events, and is rendered an even less relevant claim when A-Train is sent packing thanks to a Clothesline from Hell by Bradshaw after just thirty seconds. Ah, clotheslines, where would Survivor Series eliminations be without them? Things threaten to get silly as Bradshaw, fighting on behalf of injured partner Faarooq (who was originally part of Angle’s team until Lesnar and Big Show crushed his ankle on SmackDown!), gets chokeslammed and pinned by Show at 0:51. Less than a minute old and three guys have already been eliminated, which begs the question why they even bothered using them in the first place. Not only that, but even with those guys gone, there’s still too much dead weight, particularly on the heel team.
Things finally calm down for a few minutes with the heels getting some heat, first on Cena, then on Benoit. Big Show in particular electrifies the crowd with an abdominal stretch. What a big lazy sod. The match is barely five minutes old at this point, he’s got three partners to rely on, and one of those is super-athlete Lesnar, yet he chooses to slap on a rest hold. Thankfully Angle is at least up for it, and runs wild once he takes the hot tag, putting Morgan out with an Angle Slam at 9:08, then submitting Jones with an ankle lock at 9:34. Unfortunately, Angle himself goes just eleven seconds later thanks to an F-5 from Lesnar, capping off a second round of quick fire eliminations. Speaking of quick fire, Lesnar only hangs on for another couple of minutes before succumbing to the crossface, and that just leaves the freshly-turned Cena, previously a heel until turning down a spot on Lesnar’s team, to blast Show with a chain-assisted punch and an FU for the pin at 13:18. Remember when these things used to go thirty minutes?
Final Rating: **½