Credit for this great animated photo to Wrestling 101.
Today, we’re going to give you our favorite Survivor Series moment. And no, no one picked the Montreal Screw-job.
Favorite Survivor Series Moments
The Undertaker’s debut (1990)
It’s a moment that matters much more in retrospect than it did at the time, but I have to go with Undertaker’s debut. I have said before that I think he has had the best WWE career of anyone, and in 1990 at this show is where it all began. It’s one of the two great stories which have come to define Survivor Series, and we’ve all heard enough about the other one at this point. Had that gimmick not caught on the way it did from day one, we probably would have never had the legendary 20+ year career, all the various iterations of the character or the WrestleMania streak; which has been the best thing the federation has produced for the best part of a decade. The Undertaker is WWE as far as I’m concerned – this was his origins story and that remains important.
Macho Man vs. Crush brawl (1993)
My favourite Survivor Series moment is probably Macho Man Randy Savage gettin’ him some of Crush in 1993. A pull apart brawl like this, was to me the craziest thing ever when I was eight years old. They really had one of the more underrated hot feuds in history.
Diesel vs. Bret Hart (1995)
There’s a lot to choose from. Lots of great stuff happened at the 1998 Deadly Games Tournament, the apex of Vince Russo’s booking tenure. Also, the 1996 Survivor Series was an amazing show top to bottom. 1995 had the Wildcard Match. 1991 had the SHOCKING moment of having Hulk Hogan’s shoulders pinned to the mat 1-2-3 by the Undertaker one year after his WWF debut. More recently, 2002 had Shawn Michaels win the title, making us all believe in miracles. I would say from 2004 to today, nothing much happened until 2012 when we saw the debut of the SHIELD in the WWE.
But without a doubt, my favorite moment or match comes from the finale of the 1995 Survivor Series in Washington. No, not Sunny on Bill Clinton’s lap, but rather the final closing spots of the main event title match; a No Disqualification, No Countout, No Time Limit Match between Big Daddy Cool Diesel and Bret Hart for the WWF Championship. The psychology of the match was absolutely brilliant, ending with a spot where Diesel pushes Bret off the apron through the Spanish announce table. This was the first table spot in WWF history to my knowledge and would begin a long standing tradition of the Spanish announce table being torn to bits PPV after PPV. Anyways, Bret sold it like he was dead. Diesel picked him back up. He had him beat. JR implored for Diesel to turn him over and pin him on commentary. But no, Diesel wanted to end it with the Jackknife. Suddenly, Bret Hart, who had been playing possum the entire time, rolls up the 7 footer in a small package for the 1-2-3. New champ. Place went nuts. I went nuts. Diesel went nuts – as he would demolish Bret afterward, cementing his place as the company’s first true tweener, a year before Steve Austin would go into that territory (ironically WITH Bret).
As a Bret mark. It was awesome. As a fan of good pro wrestling – it was incredible and a showcase of how to do things right!
Stone Cold Steve Austin vs. Bret Hart (1996)
The more famous match is the WrestleMania 13 match, but if I had to choose which was the better overall match, I’d choose this one. The WrestleMania 13 match had the more dramatic finish, the double turn, and was the start of something really special in Stone Cold Steve Austin. Bret Hart should get more props for helping that happen.
But if I have to watch one Bret Hart vs. Steve Austin match, it’s this one. As I remember the story, Bret took time off after dropping the strap to Shawn Michaels at WrestleMania XII and this was his comeback match. There were talks about him leaving WWF for good, going into acting, and even going into WCW. I remember at the time, Bret saying that even if the offer from WCW was wildly better than WWF’s, he’d still see it as secondary promotion.
The ending sequence of this match was excellent. After a long match that turned into a brawl at certain points, Austin used Bret’s own Sharpshooter and a bow and arrow move for submission attempts. And then in the end, he tried for the Million Dollar Dream. Bret uses his feet to climb to the top rope while still in the hold and push back on Austin to pin his shoulders to the match. It was awesome.