The final two segments of WWE Survivor Series 2020 were drastic opposites, with a main-event match that spoke to a potential bright future for the promotion followed by a closing ceremony to say goodbye to an all-time great.
In Sunday night’s in-ring main event, universal champion Roman Reigns and WWE champion Drew McIntyre met in an outstanding battle of dominant powerhouses. After a lengthy match that ranks with the greatest bouts in WWE in 2020, Reigns was able to pick up the victory, though not without the help of a ref bump and interference from Jey Uso.
The annual show closed with the “Final Farewell” of The Undertaker, a ceremony that dominated the promotion for the event. The Undertaker debuted on-screen in WWE at Survivor Series 1990, and 30 years to the day, he said goodbye after making his iconic ring walk one final time and delivering a short message that it was time for him to “rest in peace.” There were no extracurricular dramatics or tears shed — simply one of the best to ever set foot in a WWE ring retiring his character after a storied career.
CBS Sports was with you the entire way on Sunday night, providing match results, grades and highlights as the action went down at Survivor Series.
2020 WWE Survivor Series results, grades
Dual-Branded Battle Royal — Murphy entered the match by making his entrance alongside Rey and Dominik Mysterio and was defensive of Rey, attacking Dolph Ziggler for eliminating the former world champion. Chad Gable, Jeff Hardy, The Miz, Elias and Dominik Mysterio were the final five men in the match, with Hardy and Elias having an active storyline; they may have figured to be the final two, but Hardy managed to eliminate Elias. Hardy was out next, leaving Miz, Gable and Dominik Mysterio. Miz appeared to have been eliminated but had barely reentered the ring before being knocked to the floor by Mysterio. Mysterio and Gable had an extended “final two” segment before Mysterio scored the elimination. As Mysterio celebrated, Miz slid back in the ring to score the win. WWE leans a little heavy on the false elimination these days, including very recently running the finish with Lana, so that knocks some points off for creativity. Otherwise, a battle royal is a battle royal and it’s hard to get too much or too little out of it. The Miz wins the battle royal by eliminating Dominik Mysterio. Grade: C-
Men’s Survivor Series Elimination Match — AJ Styles, Keith Lee, Braun Strowman, Riddle & Sheamus (Raw) vs. Kevin Owens, Jey Uso, King Corbin, Seth Rollins & Otis (SD): After the initial run with everyone getting in early offense, Rollins asked to be tagged in after Sheamus entered for Team Raw. Rollins turned and said to his corner, “For the greater good.” He then kneeled and allowed Sheamus to hit him with a Brogue kick and was the first man eliminated. The middle of the match got a big segment with Otis and Lee doing some beef spots, with big collisions and power clashes in one of the more interesting bits in the match. Owens would hit stunners on almost all of Team Raw before Styles hit him with a Phenomenal Forearm for the elimination. A Riddle twisting senton on Corbin scored an elimination moments later, giving Raw the five-on-two advantage. Otis had a nice run of suplexes, but he was next out after a running powerslam from Strowman, leaving Uso alone against the entire Raw team. Uso was about to hit a splash on Styles when Styles’ bodyguard pulled him from the ring, allowing Lee to get a blind tag, catch Uso coming off the top rope and hit a Spirit Bomb for a clean sweep for Team Raw. Raw had the stronger story for their team coming into the event, so it seemed inevitable they would win, but to get the clean sweep was a surprise — and a welcome one at that. That the match remained compelling as it was clear the sweep was coming is a nice bonus. Team Raw def. Team SmackDown 5-0. Grade: B
Tag team champions — New Day (Raw) vs. Street Profits (SD): New Day entered with Big E, all three wearing Gears of War costumes in support of their appearance in the video game. The Profits cut a backstage promo about the importance of appearing on Survivor Series, with Montez Ford doing a fantastic job of making the team come across as more amped up than usual. Kofi Kingston hit a big early dive on Ford, with Angelo Dawkins ducking out of the way only to be hit by Xavier Woods coming off the apron. New Day worked a bit of a heel style, taunting a bit more frequently and isolating Ford with some grinding offense and adding a bit of a needed edge to the pairing of babyface teams. The eventual hot tag to Dawkins let the Profits hit their own strong comeback stretch, with Ford kicking off Dawkins’ body to hit a Sliced Bread as a highlight. Kingston and Woods cut the comeback off, hitting the Midnight Hour on Ford for a two count. After New Day had worked Ford’s ribs over throughout the match, he was unable to get the pin on Kingston after hitting his frog splash. Dawkins used a blind tag to get into the match, lifting Woods onto his shoulders and scoring the pin after Ford came off the top rope with a blockbuster. This was an excellent tag match with convincing near falls, big moves and work that meant something. Not only was Ford unable to get the pin after the splash because of the rib work, but he wasn’t the man to score the pin after coming off the top again for the finish. Working over a body part and having that carry weight through the rest of the match is rare in modern wrestling, but always appreciated. Street Profits def. New Day via pinfall. Grade: B+
Midcard champions — Bobby Lashley (U.S., Raw) vs. Sami Zayn (Intercontinental, SD): Zayn spent a lot of the early match yelling at The Hurt Business, who accompanied Lashley to surround the ring during the match. Zayn had a fair amount of early success, but every time Lashley was able to get the upper hand, he dominated with his power offense. Zayn claimed to have vertigo after a delayed suplex by Lashley, using the distraction for a roll-up that only got a one count. He then attempted to get any Hurt Business member to hit him for the disqualification. When that didn’t work, Zayn tried to get Lashley counted out after ramming him into the ring post. Shelton Benjamin stopped Zayn from exposing the turnbuckle behind the ref’s back as every attempt at a shortcut didn’t work out. Zayn ran into MVP on the outside, claiming to have been tripped and calling for the disqualification. MVP threw Zayn back into the ring as the ref was distracted. As Zayn complained to the ref about MVP’s involvement, Lashley locked up the Hurt Lock for the win. This was as good as could be expected from the pairing, making Zayn seem like a threat while being unable to use his tricks when outnumbered. Bobby Lashley def. Sami Zayn via submission. Grade: C+
Women’s champions — Asuka (Raw) vs. Sasha Banks (SD): Banks tried for a Banks Statement early, then in retaliation, Asuka tried to lock up the Asuka Lock at her earliest opportunity. Banks hit a Backstabber moments later but settled for a two count when she couldn’t grab the Banks Statement in the normal sequence of her moves. Banks focused a lot of her offense on Asuka’s arm, hitting armbreakers and armbars before locking in an octopus hold. Asuka came back with some heavy strike-based offense, eventually hitting a hip attack to knock Banks from the ring apron to the floor. Both women were nearly counted out after some more back-and-forth action on the floor, but they simultaneously beat the count. With both women hurt and tired, Banks hit another Backstabber, again only getting a two count. Banks tried to come off the top rope, Asuka got her knees up but Banks rolled her through to lock in the Banks Statement. Again, Banks could not finish off the Raw champion. After a series of pin exchanges, Banks caught Asuka coming off the ropes and scored the win with a jackknife pin. The final stretch got a little bit sloppy in the pins not going smoothly, but these two are always a good pairing in the ring and this showing was no different. Sasha Banks def. Asuka via pinfall. Grade: B+
Women’s Survivor Series Elimination Match — Nia Jax, Shayna Baszler, Lacey Evans, Peyton Royce & Lana (Raw) vs. Bayley, Natalya, Bianca Belair, Liv Morgan & Ruby Riott (SD): After the standard Survivor Series match opening stretch, Lana tagged herself in as Jax’s back was turned. This was after earlier segments where Jax and Baszler demanded Lana not be tagged into the match. Jax tagged herself back in, and the team made Lana stand on the ring steps where she was unable to tag herself back in. The first elimination of the match was a shock as Bayley was eliminated by Royce, who was forced to tap to Natalya’s Sharpshooter moments later for her own elimination. Natalya locked Baszler in the Sharpshooter but was dropped by Evans’ Woman’s Right for the elimination. Baszler locked up the Kirifuda Clutch on Riott, who tried to spin back into a pinning combination but was ultimately choked out, leading to her own elimination. With that elimination, it was Evans, Baszler, Jax and Lana left for Raw and just Morgan and Belair for SmackDown. Evans was out after a crucifix bomb by Morgan. Belair was the last woman standing for SmackDown after Jax eliminated Morgan with a Samoan Drop. Belair gave a good run when trapped in the ring with Jax and Baszler before Jax took over briefly. Baszler tagged herself in as Belair knocked Jax from the ring and Belair managed to climb to her feet as Baszler had her locked in the Kirifuda Clutch. Belair got her arm over the bottom rope but Baszler didn’t release the hold, getting disqualified despite Belair going unconscious. Belair and Jax battled outside the ring, with both women ultimately being counted out. This meant that Lana was the sole survivor despite spending almost the entire match standing on the ring steps out of tagging range. The finish was clever in getting Lana the sole survivor spot without having her pull off any sort of actual in-ring miracle. Also of note: Jax was held back from the referees and did not deliver the customary Samoan Drop through the announce table to Lana. Team Raw def. Team SmackDown with Lana as the sole survivor. Grade: B
World champions — Roman Reigns (Universal, SD) vs. Drew McIntyre (WWE, Raw): McIntyre and Reigns went strength-for-strength early until McIntyre was able to drop Reigns with a big shoulder tackle, forcing Reigns to roll out of the ring and gather his composure. Things quickly broke down into a brawl with both men landing big strikes until Reigns was able to get the upper hand and drive McIntyre from the ring. Reigns maintained a methodical pace, grinding on McIntyre with strikes and chinlocks to keep McIntyre from getting into his usual explosive rhythm. McIntyre made his initial comeback by tossing Reigns across the length of the cage with a belly-to-belly suplex and setting up for a Future Shock DDT, only to end up taking a Samoan Drop from Reigns. McIntyre ducked a Superman Punch and hit a big spinebuster for a two count. Reigns ate a headbutt from McIntyre and fired back with a big kick to the face. As the action went back and forth, McIntyre managed to hit the Future Shock and get another two count. Reigns came back moments later with a Superman Punch but McIntyre didn’t go down to the strike and set Reigns flying with another belly-to-belly. Reigns almost hit a spear, but McIntyre rolled through and locked in a kimura for a near submission before Reigns grabbed the bottom rope. As the action spilled outside, Reigns hit two Samoan Drops on the announce table, the second sending McIntyre through the table. He followed up by driving McIntyre through the barricade with a spear. That would only get a two count, as would the follow-up spear counter to the Claymore shortly after. Reigns ran in for another spear but McIntyre countered with a Claymore. Reigns, however, collided with the referee, sending him spilling from the ring. Jey Uso ran in, was taken out by McIntyre and Reigns hit the WWE champion with a low blow. Uso also hit a superkick before Reigns locked in a guillotine choke. McIntyre tried to stand up in the choke but ended up going out in the hold, giving Reigns the victory. This was an outstanding match — a near-perfect example of WWE’s big-match style with two massive, talented men. The finish wasn’t likely to be clean with little aside from bragging rights on the line, so the finish was set up to protect McIntyre, which is entirely acceptable under the circumstances. Roman Reigns def. Drew McIntyre via submission with a guillotine choke. Grade: A+
The Undertaker’s Final Farewell: Shane McMahon, The Big Show, JBL, Jeff Hardy, Mick Foley, The Godfather, The Godwins, Savio Vega, Rikishi, Kevin Nash, Booker T, Shawn Michaels, Ric Flair, Triple H and Kane all entered the ring to start the segment, with each getting a full entrance. A video package then aired recapping the career of The Undertaker before Vince McMahon delivered a brief message about The Phenom’s contributions to the company before introducing The Deadman himself. Undertaker made a slow, elaborate ring walk in full costume. Undertaker stated that after putting so many people to rest, it was now his time to rest in peace. As he posed in the ring, a hologram image of Paul Bearer was shown as the bell tolled. After rising from his knee, Undertaker performed his trademark throat slash and left the ring, making his final walk up the ramp before pausing at the top to throw his fist up one last time.