The Farrand Five: Survivor Series Teams

Wrestlemania has the sheer size and spectacle fit for the phenomenon it has become and the annual Royal Rumble match has an entire PPV named after it. So, what comes […]

Wrestlemania has the sheer size and spectacle fit for the phenomenon it has become and the annual Royal Rumble match has an entire PPV named after it. So, what comes to mind when we think about Survivor Series? Undertaker’s Debut? Montreal Screwjob? Team WWF defeating The Alliance? For me, the main selling point of Survivor Series is the ten man tag team elimination matches where, typically, stakes are high and we get to see some strange bedfellows working together towards a common goal. The stipulations for these matches can vary whether it’s abolishing The Authority, taking control of Raw or even trying to prove which show is best.

The battle for brand supremacy isn’t something new to the November tradition, in 2005 teams from both Raw and Smackdown battled it out to find out which brand was truly superior in a match that brought together the very best from each roster. This Sunday, the red and the blue of WWE collide once more to determine which is the ‘A’ show.

With that in mind, I’m going to look back at past Survivor Series and my Top 5 Survivor Series Teams.

No. 5 – Eddie Guerrero, Big Show, Rob Van Dam & John Cena – Survivor Series 2004
Team Guerrero had their hands full in the 2004 edition of Survivor Series, squaring off against the team of United States Champion Carlito, Kurt Angle, Luther Reigns and Mark Jindrak. Carlito and John Cena had their own feud going on as the young Caribbean defeated Cena in his debut match on Smackdown to win the United States Championship. Survivor Series would become the place where the Doctor Of Thuganomics made his return to action after a (storyline) injury took him out of action. Team Captain Guerrero was in the middle of a rivalry with Angle and his two cronies, as was Big Show who had previously suffered huge embarrassment when the Olympic Gold Medalist took out Show with a tranquilliser dart and proceeded to shave his head in the middle of the ring.

The combination of former World Champions (Guerrero and Show) and future World Champions (RVD and Cena) made for an incomparable one. The dynamic between the four was well presented during the match as Big Show’s size, Eddie’s technical ability, RVD’s high flying skills and Cena’s brawling aptitude all came into play. Angle’s team didn’t stand a chance.

No. 4 – The Alliance: Stone Cold Steve Austin, Rob Van Dam, Kurt Angle, Booker T & Shane McMahon – Survivor Series 2001
For the majority of 2001, the Invasion storyline dominated WWF programming. Vince McMahon had supposedly just bought WCW although his son Shane beat him to the punch “The name on the contract does read McMahon…” and acquired World Championship Wrestling for himself.

Not to be outdone by her brother, Stephanie McMahon aligned with Paul Heyman to bring a little extreme flavour to proceedings by inserting ECW into the rivalry. Together, the companies became known as The Alliance and the war for dominance began.

The Invasion came to an end at the 2001 Survivor Series when a team consisting of Shane McMahon, WCW and ECW icons Booker T & Rob Van Dam and WWF turncoats Stone Cold Steve Austin & Kurt Angle squared of against the best team WWF could put together. While The Alliance was on the losing side of this one, the star power in the team was only rivalled by their opponents. Speaking of which….

No. 3 – Team WWF: The Rock, Chris Jericho, The Undertaker, Kane & Big Show – Survivor Series 2001
On the opposite side of the ring to The Alliance was Team WWF. An extremely formidable team, Vince McMahon’s men marched into Survivor Series with only one goal; to keep WWF alive.

Big Show was beginning to truly find his feet with his character, the Brothers Of Destruction were as dominant as ever, Chris Jericho was only a month shy of becoming the first ever Undisputed Champion and while The Rock may have been slowing down with the company, he proved why he is one of the best when it comes to a big match environment.

On paper, they were a dream team and when it came down to business, they didn’t disappoint.

No. 2 – Team Austin: Shawn Michaels, Rob Van Dam, Booker T, Bubba Ray Dudley & D’Von Dudley – Survivor Series 2003
In 2003, everyone’s favourite Rattlesnake was made Co-General Manager of Raw by Linda McMahon much to the chagrin of Eric Bischoff who, up until that point, was running Raw on his own.

In the Autumn of the same year, Bischoff was becoming tired of Austin’s ways and lobbied for a match at Survivor Series for ultimate control of Raw. Austin picks a team, Bischoff picks a team. Austin accepted and thus made what Jim Ross called “The biggest match Stone Cold has never competed in” Bischoff was no slouch and picked an intimidatingly competitive team consisting of Randy Orton, Scott Steiner, Mark Henry, Chris Jericho and Christian.

The match, and performances from both teams were exceptional. RVD and Booker T demonstrated their technical ability, The Dudleys were out to prove why they were the most decorated tag team in professional wrestling history and while his introduction to the match was later than most would have liked, once Shawn Michaels entered the fray, the excitement and drama rose to an extremely high level.

In what goes down as one of, if not the best Traditional 5-On-5 Elimination Match in Survivor Series history, Randy Orton was the sole survivor for Eric Bischoff’s team meaning Stone Cold lost his job and was never to be seen on WWE TV again. Well, at least for a few weeks.

No. 1 – Team DX: Triple H, Shawn Michaels, Jeff Hardy, Matt Hardy & CM Punk – Survivor Series 2006
After feuding on and off for four years, in the summer of 2006, Shawn Michaels and Triple H put their differences aside and once again donned the green and black of D-Generation X.

Moving into the latter part of the year another super duo came to fruition as Edge & Randy Orton joined forces to create Rated RKO. It was inevitable at the two powerful tandems were going to clash at some point. Thing escalated enough after their first meeting at Cyber Sunday that the rivalry continued into WWE’s big November show meaning that both pairings would recruit extra members for their next clash.

World Tag Team Champions at the time, Edge & Orton found help in Cruiserweight Champion Gregory Helms, Johnny Nitro and Mike Knox whilst DX acquired the services of Intercontinental Champion Jeff Hardy, his brother Matt Hardy and ECW’s newest superstar, CM Punk.

The reason why Team DX top my list is twofold. One is because of the members. I’ve always been a fan of CM Punk, The Hardys are my favourite tag team of all time and the charisma of both Triple H and Shawn Michaels made the quintet a dream combination.

Second, the match itself was possibly one of the most dominating performances from any team assembled for Survivor Series. Team DX defeated Team Rated RKO in a full clean sweep, all five members remained after the bell rang and most importantly after they all were given an individual spotlight, something that proved very important for Punk’s WWE Run.