Road to Survivor Series 2007 - 3
Set up in Parts 1 and 2:
NWA Championship: Fit Finlay v. Johnny Nitro
WWF Championship: Rey Mysterio v. Undertaker
And in that order; a point of contention on the road to survivor series was card placement as emblematic of title status - neither the WWF belt nor the NWA belt has had a main event slot in the year since the company got busted up at Survivor Series '06 - the main event of SNME (although not the end of the show, that comes in this section) was Fit and Nitro gaining the main event spot for their title match by going over Rey/Undertaker (after Juggernaut interference). Nitro pinned Rey, a startling result, Nitro's maintained the character of not wanting to be hit, not wanting contact, not wanting to have his features marked up in any way - the opposite of the ethos of Fight Night spread by Fit and Dean.
But Nitro slithered his way not only into keeping his job after walking out on the title match at SSlam, but now has a rematch, in the main event of Survivor Series '07.
Rey/Undertaker is all babyface - although after Rey gets pinned there's tension between he and the Dead Man, it has been assumed by all, including Steamboat, that Rey is clearly the man to return the WWF to glory, as its slide has occurred while Rey has been out, but fluky though it may be, Rey's losing to Nitro has opened the door for others - including the Taker, to openly speculate if they might be better choices.
Not engaging in that speculation is Steamboat (here's where, for those of you who read parts 1 and 2 already and know all of the aforementioned, there's new stuff) he has two things to add here; one - after Little's interference at SNME, costing WWF the match, Steamboat, as did he at Summer Slam - books him in 2 matches at Survivor Series. The Juggernaut slags off his Slam opponents, Kennedy and Cena, as vanilla midgets - Steamboat says he'll do Little a favor, he'll stick him in the ring, at Survivor Series, with two mystery opponents - both of whom - both of whom are bigger...a lot bigger...than the Juggernaut.
So, that's 4 matches named - two title matches - and Eddie Little, The Juggernaut - in two separate matches against mystery opponents.
The other thing Steamboat's involved in dovetails into the discussion of the third World Title match, the ECW title and GDI.
At Survivor Series, CM Punk will defend his title against The Blood Dragon
Part of the promo from part 1, when the WWF match was set up, included Steamboat resetting the idea that it's his mission to reunite the 3 title belts and return the WWF to glory. That theme continues - and continues even though there's an obstacle, as was set up by Rey in that promo - Punk isn't obligated to defend the title against WWF wrestlers anymore, which allowed him to keep over GDI's Paul London at Summer Slam.
How will WWF ever get the belts reunited when Punk will obviously never fight a WWF wrestler again?
This is a good question.
The other element of that Steamboat promo from RAW (it's in part 1) was a clip from the first ever Survivor Series - 20 years ago - when Steamboat kept the WWF title over Dynamite. Clips of Steamboat will appear more often in this stretch, his working style should be familiar to the newer viewers.
Keep both of those things in mind as we return to just after Summer Slam.
Punk and Maria only appear once in the first month.
They are in celebration after the win over London - Punk says they're going on vacation so he can put the wood to Maria. Mmmm. Maria. He says he wants to clear the way for the new blood to pump its way through GDI - new blood like like The Yakuza (who started before Summer Slam, it's Jimmy Yang with a black suit and spiked hair and mirrored sunglasses and a prosthetic missing pinky finger) like The Little Warrior (that's Shannon Moore, who we'll never acknowledge as Shannon Moore, dressed like Great Sasuke) like Matt Sydal (total white meat babyface, effectively taking London's place on the GDI roster) like Colt Cabana (Colt's Punk's walkaround guy; like a comedic Arn Anderson to Punk's Flair).
Punk says he'll return on the season premiere of GDI, on Sci Fi, in a month, to cleanse the old GDI blood - it'll be Punk/London, the final chapter - and not only will he run Paul London out of GDI - it'll be time for the rest of the old guard to declare their allegiance to the movement.
During the month that Punk's gone, another guy debuts - a guy dressed like Jushin Liger, so in a full costume - a guy using Ricky Steamboat's moveset. His name - The Blood Dragon.
The connection between he and Steamboat won't be pushed by the announce; Steamboat will be on RAW, making cryptic comments about needing to reunite the belts - needing to get the WWF on top - "taking matters into his own hands"
The clips of Steamboat will be shown to remind people of his signature spots.
And there will be The Blood Dragon, beating everyone on GDI.
I'd like the fans to put it together on their own, maybe start chanting.
As this stretch rolls along, I see occasions where Steamboat would be selling an injury on Monday that the Blood Dragon suffered on the previous Tuesday. And as we get closer and closer to SNME, then it's in full scale "Good god - Ricky Steamboat is the Blood Dragon" mode.
But that's not here yet.
Before that happens, Punk returns to go over London again in that promised match - and then has the cleansing - which, if you read Summer Slam, I referenced was coming -- London is cut open, hung upside down, while his blood drips down atop Punk - Punk bathing in the blood of London. It should be extra-violent.
And that's an act that will be too much for Jamie Noble - recall, he and Brian Kendrick have tagged up for the past year, they were instrumental in the ECW duo of Sandman/Dreamer (Dreamer is the color announce, as a babyface, for GDI) but their partnership ended as they feuded over who would get the IC shot against Orton at SSlam.
A choice has to be made, Punk's made clear - the old blood will have to be cleaned out - that old blood is Noble and Kendrick - and they stand in the aisle, looking on in horror while Punk drowns in London's blood - both conflicted - conflicted - it clearly shocks the conscience -- will they take a stand - so much history between London and Kendrick - so much history (they also tagged in ROH) between Noble and Kendrick - it's Noble who blinks - he runs to the ring to free London.
Kendrick follows - but follows to attack Noble from behind.
And so the cleansing of GDI isn't just Paul London (who I'm gonna send home until further notice) but it's also Jamie Noble.
Noble is going to be traded.
Noble is traded to WWF for Ulysses Morley.
WWF then trades Noble, Ken Kennedy and John Cena (recall, prior to Summer Slam, Steamboat told them that their matches against Juggernaut were their last chance) to the NWA for Shelton Benjamin and "future considerations."
Now - what all of that will result in we'll talk about on the Road to Royal Rumble 2008.
But one assumes it results in something.
Back to this show - after Punk's passed London, he notices the Blood Dragon, notices the crowd reaction - puts 2 and 2 together - there are satellite promos between Steamboat and Punk - Steamboat always denies he's the Bood Dragon, we do the "those two guys, Blood Dragon and Steamboat are never in the same place at the same time" stuff. Steamboat has a twinkle in his eye as he gets under Punk's skin - Punk has manipulated everyone for two years now - and now, Steamboat, apparently is coming out of retirement himself, in a mask, to invade GDI.
You could see how this would go.
It builds to SNME which will be a contract signing.
Punk finally decides it's a good thing - it's a great thing - he gets to beat up Ricky Steamboat (they had a program in ROH too, it was good) at Survivor Series. 20 years after Steamboat beat Dynamite at the first ever Survivor Series - he gets his ass kicked by CM Punk.
Punk says he'll give the Blood Dragon a title shot at Survivor Series.
But the qualifier is - he can't wrestle with the mask.
At SNME there's gonna be a contract signing - and at the contract signing - Blood Dragon will unmask.
And that's how SNME, at MSG, will close - so, you've got the big tag match between WWF and NWA - and then the contract signing.
The GDI before that will feature Blood Dragon again - again going over - and for the first time, as the show ends and he celebrates - Steamboat's last WWF music (you know - that they played as intro music for the Chicago Bulls during the Jordan era) plays.
And that's the music that plays when the Blood Dragon enters for the contract signing.
Punk signs. Blood Dragon signs.
Punk then yells at him to unmask - unmask Steamboat - "I want to see your face Steamboat! I want to see your face old man!"
And that's when Ricky Steamboat appears at the top of the aisle.
"You want to see my face, Punk? Here it is. Take a look - because at Survivor Series - it won't be my old face you'll be looking at across the ring -
-It'll be his..."
And at Madison Square Garden, with a couple of months of buildup, on Saturday Night's Main Event before Survivor Series 2007 - the Blood Dragon will unmask...
Jeff's been gone since Mania, when he was wiped out by Punk and GDI in the Cell after trying to save his brother after GDI attacked Matt and Edge after the main event of XXIII.
Jeff attacks the shocked Punk - Duped! (punked, if you will) - and we've got our third title match for Survivor Series.
ECW Title: CM Punk v. Jeff Hardy
That's 3 title matches, plus the 2 Juggernaut matches. 5 matches set up for Survivor Series 2007 as the build continues.