With the success of WrestleMania 3, the PPV industry was seen as a new source of revenue for the wrestling promotions. The Survivor Series began in 1987 as a way to ensure that Jim Crockett's Starrcade would not be televised on PPV. Jim Crockett had been running the Starrcade events every Thanksgiving night since 1983. Vince McMahon would not let any cable system that showed Starrcade to show the Survivor Series. He then threatened the cable operators further by saying that if they didn't broadcast the Survivor Series they wouldn't be allowed to broadcast WrestleMania 4. As a result of these threats, only a handful of companies showed Starrcade and within a year Crockett was forced to sell his company to Ted Turner.
The original Survivor Series concept was that teams of 5 would fight in elimination tag team matches. This concept lasted for two years when the matches were changed to 4 on 4. In 1991, the event was moved to the night before Thanksgiving and featured the first 1 on 1 match in the event's history. By 1992, the concept of the event had changed and it was just like any other PPV with an occasional "Classic Survivor Series" match thrown in. In 1995, the event was moved to Sunday Night and no longer had any mention of being involved with the Thanksgiving holiday.
Top 3 Survivor Series Moments
1 - The Montreal Screwjob took place at Survivor Series 1997. The finish of the Bret Hart vs Shawn Michaels match is still debated about to this day.
2 - The Survivor Series has been the event that has featured the WWE debuts of Kurt Angle, the Rock, and the Undertaker.
3 - The debut of the Elimination Chamber in 2002. This match has proved to be very popular with the fans and has been used as the main event of different PPV's every year since.
Three Worst Survivor Series Moments
1 - The hatching of the Gobbledy Gooker. This event was so bad that it is the name of the award given to the worst event of the year at wrestlecrap.com.
2 - The ending of the Steve Austin vs Triple H match at Survivor Series 2000. This match finished when Triple H was trapped in a car that Austin lifted over 50 feet in the air with a crane and dropped to the ground.
3 - The bait and switch of Steve Austin in 1999. Austin was supposed to be in the main event but was scheduled for neck surgery. Instead of letting the fans know this in advance, Steve was run over by a car in the back as a way to get him out of the match.
1991 - WWF Title: The Undertaker pinned Hulk Hogan
1993 - Smoky Mountain Wrestling Tag Team Title: The Heavenly Bodies beat The Rock-n-Roll Express
1994 - WWF Title: Bob Backlund won the title from Bret Hart when Bret's mother, Helen threw in the towel for her son
1995 - WWF Title: Bret Hart beat Diesel
1996 - WWF Title: Sid beat Shawn Michaels
1997 - I-C Title: Steve Austin beat Owen Hart
1997 - WWF Title: In the most discussed match ever, Shawn Michaels won the title in the "Montreal Screw job" by making Bret Hart "submit"
1998 - WWF Title: The Rock beat Mankind in the tournament final to win the vacant title
1998 - Women's Title: Sable beat Jacqueline
1999 - Three-Way Match for WWF Title: The Big Show (subbing for Steve Austin who was run over earlier) beat Triple H & The Rock
2001 - Unification Match: US Champ Edge beat I-C Champ Test
2001 - Steel Cage Unification Match: WCW Tag champs The Dudley Boyz beat WWF Tag Champs The Hardy Boyz
2001 - Women's Title: Trish Stratus beat Ivory, Molly, Lita, Jacqueline, & Jazz to win the vacant title
2002 - Cruiserweight Title: Billy Kidman beat Jamie Knoble
2002 - Hardcore Match for Women's Title: Victoria beat Trish Stratus
2002 - WWE Title: The Big Show beat Brock Lesnar
2002 - WWE Tag Team Titles: Eddie & Chavo Guerrero beat Champs Edge & Rey Mysterio and Kurt Angle & Chris Benoit
2002 - Elimination Chamber for the World Heavyweight Championship: Shawn Michaels beat champ Triple H, Booker T, Rob Van Dam, Chris Jericho & Kane
2006 - Women's Title: Mickie James beat Lita
2006 - World Heavyweight Championship: Batista beat King Booker
2008 - WWE Championship: Edge beat Champion Triple H and Vladimir Kozlov
2008 - World Heavyweight Championship: John Cena beat Chris Jericho
2010 - Divas Championship: Natalya beat Co-Champions LayCool in a Handicap Match
2011 - WWE Championship: CM Punk beat Alberto Del Rio
Match results are on the following page