WWE’s annual November classic, Survivor Series, lived up to the hype last night with two brutal WarGames matches stealing the show. CM Punk made his shocking return to WWE after a fiery exit in 2022, while legends like Randy Orton and dramatic title changes rounded out an action-packed event.
CM Punk Makes Epic WWE Comeback
In easily the most surprising moment of the night, former AEW star CM Punk made his return to WWE for the first time since his acrimonious exit in 2022. Punk left WWE in 2014 after a lengthy and popular title reign, only to join rival promotion AEW in 2021.
His AEW run imploded in infamous fashion last year after Punk lashed out in a press conference and ended up in a backstage fight with AEW Executive Vice Presidents The Young Bucks. After being suspended and having his title stripped, Punk was rumored to be negotiating his exit from AEW.
Still, no one expected the "Best in the World" to resurface in a WWE ring. But that’s exactly what happened last night after the men’s WarGames match when Punk’s iconic cult of personality entrance theme hit.
The Chicago crowd erupted with perhaps the loudest pop of the night as the Second City Saint walked out with his trademark smirk. Punk soaked in the response, even hugging commentator Corey Graves at ringside.
While Punk didn’t speak or get physically involved, his mere presence speaks volumes. Punk has had a rocky relationship with WWE since his original exit in 2014, including losing a lawsuit against WWE doctor Chris Amann in 2018. Time will tell what’s next for Punk in WWE, but if last night was any indication, the WWE Universe is ready to welcome him back with open arms.
WarGames Brings the Violence
The two WarGames matches anchored the show, continuing the recent WWE tradition of men’s and women’s WarGames bouts at Survivor Series. WarGames has its origins in old-school faction warfare from 1980s wrestling league Jim Crockett Promotions. WWE resurrected the brutal double-cage format in 2017 for its NXT brand before introducing it to the main roster in recent years.
The WarGames setup sees two rings side-by-side enclosed by a steel cage. Each team has 5 participants who enter the cage at timed intervals until all 10 combatants are inside and can battle under no disqualification rules. Victory goes to the team that forces an opponent to submit or surrender.
Bianca Belair and Co. Reign Supreme in Women’s WarGames Match
The EST of WWE Bianca Belair led her team of Asuka, Alexa Bliss, and Mia Yim to victory in an absolutely frenetic women’s WarGames match. They battled the heel team of Damage CTRL’s Bayley, Dakota Kai, and Iyo Sky along with Nikki Cross and Rhea Ripley.
In a surprise added stipulation, Ripley earned the WarGames advantage for her team by beating Asuka on the pre-show in a hard fought match. This allowed Ripley’s team to have the one-woman advantage entering the WarGames cage.
Once all 10 women entered the double cage, chaos ensued with bodies flying everywhere and competitors crashing through tables. Nikki Cross stood out with her unhinged style, while veterans like Asuka and Bayley pulled no punches.
In the closing moments, Damage CTRL shockingly betrayed Ripley and walked out on her after arguing throughout the match. This left Ripley by herself against Belair and friends, who capitalized on Ripley’s one-against-four disadvantage to claim victory via Belair pinning Ripley following a devastating KOD finisher.
|Women’s WarGames Match Order of Entry
|1. Dakota Kai
|3. Iyo Sky
|4. Alexa Bliss
|5. Nikki Cross
|6. Mia Yim
|8. Bianca Belair
|9. Rhea Ripley (with advantage)
The Brawling Brutes Beat The Bloodline in All-Star Men’s WarGames
The men’s WarGames match saw Roman Reigns’ dominant Bloodline faction of Undisputed WWE Universal Champion Reigns, Undisputed WWE Tag Team Champions The Usos, Solo Sikoa, and Sami Zayn battle bitter rivals Kevin Owens, Drew McIntyre, Sheamus, Butch, and Ridge Holland of The Brawling Brutes.
Adding even more star power to the mix, free agent Cody Rhodes returned from injury for the first time in months to align with Owens and friends in the WarGames match. This was a welcome sight for fans after Rhodes missed significant ring time rehabbing from a legitimate torn pectoral muscle suffered in June.
As expected, WarGames quickly dissolved into total mayhem with Reigns’ Bloodline faction bringing the fight. The finishing sequence was pure sports entertainment spectacle.
In one corner, Rhodes and Reigns went punch for punch before Rhodes landed his signature Cross Rhodes finisher. Meanwhile, McIntyre Claymored Jey Uso off the top turnbuckle through a table at ringside.
With bodies strewn everywhere and the cage door open, Kevin Owens finally sealed the deal by hitting a Stunner on Sami Zayn to score the win for his team.
|Men’s WarGames Match Order of Entry
|1. Sami Zayn
|2. Kevin Owens
|3. Jimmy Uso
|5. Solo Sikoa
|6. Ridge Holland
|7. Undisputed WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns
|9. Jey Uso
|10. Drew McIntyre
|11. Cody Rhodes
What’s Next After WarGames?
The WarGames matches and their outcomes plant plenty of seeds for future storylines on WWE’s road to WrestleMania 39.
For the women, Damage CTRL turning on Rhea Ripley could spark an intriguing feud between heel faction leader Bayley and the menacing Ripley. After Bianca Belair’s team earned bragging rights at WarGames, Bayley and Belair are also likely to continue their never-ending clash over the Raw Women’s Championship.
On the men’s side, Undisputed WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns took another rare pinfall loss after Kevin Owens pinned Sami Zayn. This furthers dissension in The Bloodline while keeping Reigns strong. Rumors continue to swirl about possible WrestleMania matches between Reigns and Owens or Reigns and The Rock. Cody Rhodes also re-established himself as a top contender after his fiery WarGames comeback.
Other Title Changes and Returns Spice Up Card
Beyond the WarGames spectacles, Survivor Series also featured a pair of new champions crowned.
On the women’s side, Shayna Baszler brutalized Shotzi to capture the SmackDown Women’s Championship. This marked Baszler’s first taste of WWE gold after previous main roster disappointments.
The Intercontinental Championship also changed hands as Gunther put away Shane McMahon’s handpicked challenger, The Miz, in dominant fashion. Count on Gunther to continue his seemingly unstoppable rise on SmackDown.
Finally, legendary 13-time World Champion Randy Orton made his anticipated return from injury to hit an RKO outta nowhere on Matt Riddle after Riddle’s win over Elias. This likely sets up a showdown between former tag team partners Riddle and Orton at WrestleMania 39.
Last night’s Survivor Series WarGames absolutely delivered with stunning returns, violent WarGames action, and key title changes blowing the roof off Chicago’s Allstate Arena. The road to WrestleMania picks up speed next month with the Royal Rumble, where we’re likely to learn even more about WWE’s biggest plans for their Showcase of the Immortals.
To err is human, but AI does it too. Whilst factual data is used in the production of these articles, the content is written entirely by AI. Double check any facts you intend to rely on with another source.