If you want something done right, then do it yourself. That’s the approach SmackDown Live commissioner Shane McMahon will take regarding Survivor Series.
SmackDown Live general manager Daniel Bryan announced during Tuesday night’s edition of SmackDown Live that McMahon will replace Baron Corbin for Team SmackDown’s five-on-five Survivor Series-style elimination match against Team Raw.
Bryan had a list of all the potential wrestlers who could substitute for Corbin. In the event, he opted for McMahon, courtesy of WWE:
"On the list, there is ANOTHER name … the name of our COMMISSIONER!" – @WWEDanielBryan to @shanemcmahon #SDLive pic.twitter.com/dCTBoUJSWA
— WWE (@WWE) November 9, 2016
Here’s a look at the two teams following the switch:
Team Raw vs. Team SmackDown Five-on-Five Elimination Match
Team Wrestlers Raw Kevin Owens, Chris Jericho, Seth Rollins, Roman Reigns and Braun Stroman SmackDown AJ Styles, Dean Ambrose, Bray Wyatt, Randy Orton and Shane McMahon
An injury forced Corbin out of Survivor Series. Prior to his match against Kalisto, Corbin slipped off the ring apron and tweaked his knee. Kalisto delivered a dropkick and Frog Splash to Corbin’s knee, causing even more damage. WWE shared a replay of the incident:
You know what they say, "what comes around, goes around" as @BaronCorbinWWE learns a little something about karma on #SDLive! @KalistoWWE pic.twitter.com/HIzR8sjEk5
— WWE (@WWE) November 9, 2016
On one hand, it’s a shame Corbin is the wrestler for whom McMahon will be subbing in. It’s doubtful Corbin would’ve played a big role in the match, but featuring in some way on Survivor Series could’ve provided a nice bump for the former NXT star after he’s done little of note since his WWE call-up.
On the other hand, Corbin is easily the most replaceable member of Team SmackDown for that very reason. Few fans would’ve watched the match solely to see The Lone Wolf, and he was a lock to be among the first wrestlers eliminated.
Inserting McMahon into the bout adds more intrigue and drives home how personal Survivor Series is for Shane-O-Mac.
It’s one thing for him to be an outside observer and pick the wrestlers who will be on Team SmackDown. Now, he’ll be stepping in the ring and putting his body on the line to defend SmackDown’s honor.
Along with that, it will be interesting to see if McMahon has another stunt up his sleeve for Survivor Series. Despite turning 46 in January and being out of the company for seven years, McMahon continues to throw caution to the wind.
On the March 28 edition of Raw, he leaped from the top rope to deliver an elbow to The Undertaker on the announce table, via WWE:
Then, at WrestleMania 32, he tried and failed with an attempted aerial attack on The Deadman from the top of Hell in a Cell, courtesy of WWE:
A big match like the five-on-five clash at Survivor Series will be perfect for McMahon.
He won’t have to carry too much of the action, which was definitely a problem in his singles match against The Undertaker. McMahon can stand on the apron for much of Team Raw vs. Team SmackDown, and when the time is right, he could deliver the one memorable moment fans will be expecting.
Survivor Series was already shaping up to be a strong show, especially with the addition of Dolph Ziggler vs. Sami Zayn on Monday night. Bringing McMahon into the mix should add to the entertainment.