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SURVIVOR SERIES RETRO: LOOKING BACK AT EVERY SURVIVOR SERIES PPV

By Matt Shalk, Buck Woodward & Mike Johnson on 2010-11-20 09:00:00

SURVIVOR SERIES 2003

November 16, 2003

Location: Dallas, Texas

Arena: American Airlines Center
Attendance: 13, 457


RESULTS:

[Smackdown! Match] Team Angle: Kurt Angle, John Cena, Chris Benoit, Bradshaw, & Hardcore Holly defeated Team Lesnar: WWE Champion Brock Lesnar, Big Show, Nathan Jones, Matt Morgan, & A-Train in a team elimination match.

Eliminations: Hardcore Holly attacked Brock Lesnar before the bell and was disqualified before the match began. Once the match began, Bradshaw quickly pinned A-Train following a clothesline, and Big Show rebounded by eliminating Bradshaw after a chokeslam. Kurt Angle pinned Matt Morgan following an Angel Slam, then forced Nathan Jones to submit to the ankle lock. Brock Lesnar hit Kurt Angle with the F5, then covered him for the pin. Chris Benoit forced Brock Lesnar to submit with the Crippler Crossface. John Cena caught Big Show with the FU and made the pin to win the match for his team.

Survivors: John Cena & Chris Benoit

[RAW Match] Molly Holly pinned Lita to retain the WWE Women’s Championship.

[RAW Match] Kane defeated Shane McMahon in a hardcore-style "Ambulance Match" by forcing McMahon into the back of the ambulance and shutting the door.

Following the match, Brock Lesnar and Bill Goldberg had an exchange backstage, starting an issue that would ultimately lead to the match between the two at Wrestlemania XX.

[Smackdown! Match] The Basham Brothers (Doug & Danny Basham) successfully defended the WWE Tag Team Championship against Los Guerreros (Eddie & Chavo Guerrero) when Danny Basham pinned Chavo Guerrero. Shaniqua accompanied the Basham Brothers to ringside. The match forwarded the dissention between Los Guerreros.

[RAW Match] Team Bischoff: Chris Jericho, Randy Orton, Scott Steiner, Christian, & Mark Henry defeated Team Stone Cold: Shawn Michaels, Rob Van Dam, Booker T, & The Dudleys (D-Von & Bubba Ray Dudley) in a team elimination match.

Theodore Long accompanied Mark Henry to ringside. Stacy Keibler accompanied Scott Steiner. Eric Bischoff and "Stone Cold" Steve Austin accompanied their respective teams.

Eric Bischoff and Steve Austin were Co-General Managers of RAW at the time, and Austin had a habit of attacking and stunning the RAW talent. The stipulations for the match stated that If Team Austin won the match, Austin would be allowed to continue physically assaulting the RAW wrestlers at his leisure, but if Team Bischoff won the match Austin would lose his position as Co-General Manager of the RAW Brand.

Eliminations: Booker T pinned Scott Steiner following a Book End, but Mark Henry quickly rebounded and eliminated Booker T following a bodyslam. Bubba Ray & D-Von Dudley caught Mark Henry with a 3-D, and Bubba covered him for the pin. Randy Orton pinned RVD following an RKO. Chris Jericho pinned D-Von Dudley. Christian eliminated Bubba Ray Dudley following an Unprettier. Shawn Michaels hit Christian with a superkick and made the pin. Chris Jericho tried to put Michaels in the Walls of Jericho, but Michaels rolled him up for the pin instead. Following the elimination, Jericho leveled Michaels with a steel chair. The referee got bumped, and Eric Bischoff entered the ring to try and further incapacitate Michaels, prompting Steve Austin to get involved and hit Randy Orton with a Stone Cold Stunner before chasing Bischoff out of the ring. During the confusion, Batista interfered in the match and hit Michaels with a power bomb, allowing Randy Orton to make the pin and win the match for his team.

Survivor: Randy Orton

Following the match, Steve Austin returned to the ring and tried to give a farewell speech, but Jonathan Coachman interrupted. Austin hit Coachman with a Stone Cold Stunner, and toasted the crowd before leaving.

[Smackdown! Match] Vince McMahon defeated The Undertaker in a "Buried Alive" match. The Undertaker had the advantage throughout the match, but Kane interfered and attacked his brother, allowing McMahon to pour dirt on the Undertaker and win the match. The Undertaker would not return until Wrestlemania XX, where he reintroduced a version of his classic "Deadman" gimmick and faced Kane in an inter-brand match.

[RAW Match] Bill Goldberg retained the World Heavyweight Championship when he pinned Triple H following a spear and a jackhammer. "Nature Boy" Ric Flair accompanied Triple H to ringside.

NOTES: This show illustrated exactly where RAW and Smackdown brands rated in the WWE pecking order. The WWE Champion, Brock Lesnar, was featured in the opening match, while the RAW World Heavyweight Championship was contested in the main event and the RAW elimination match was in a featured position on the show. Even in the Smackdown hierarchy, the company made it clear that the "Buried Alive" match featuring Vince McMahon and the Undertaker was the real main event from that brand… Jim Ross and Jerry "The King" Lawler did commentary for the RAW matches, and Michael Cole and Tazz did commentary for the Smackdown matches. Carlos Cabrera and Hugo Savinovich did Spanish commentary. Josh Matthews handled backstage interviews. Howard Finkel & Tony Chimel were the ring announcers… Tajiri successfully defended the Cruiserweight Championship against Jamie Noble in a match featured on the live Sunday Night Heat prior to the pay-per-view… The theme song for the pay-per-view was "Build a Bridge" by Limp Bizkit, and promotional materials for the event featured Shane McMahon.

Buck Woodward: Wow, one year ago A-Train was in a feature match on a PPV. How times change. ... I remember John Cena making a good point in his pre-bout rap about the Smackdown main event being in the "curtain jerker" position. ... This was the end of Shane McMahon's run as an active on-screen character. ... Interesting how the seeds for Wrestlemania were planted here in so many ways. ... Another great performance by Shawn Michaels as well.

Mike Johnson: I remember thinking they did a good job with the Steve Austin retirement angle as it was played up to be a huge moment. Of course, it wasn’t as if Austin truly left the company or even the storylines but that night was a good deal....Man, Brock vs. Goldberg sure sounded like fun when they first teased it....The Smackdown elimination match was great here....Amazing how hot the John Cena character was then. It’s a shame that he’s cooled off this much and I place the blame into what I called the feudal society of WWE, where nothing is allowed to outshine anything else. Hopefully one day, that will change.


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