Craig Wilson, John Carbery, Brian Damage, Jamie Lithgow, Amerigo Diehl and Russ Morgan
This year’s Survivor Series is being hyped around the return match pitting Goldberg vs. Brock Lesnar, 12 years after their WrestleMania XX bout. In this latest Sunday Sermon the team discuss the build-up and whether or not they even care for the match.
Craig: So the countdown is well and truly on to this year’s Survivor Series and the much-anticipated bout putting Brock Lesnar against WCW icon Goldberg.
Now, there’s no doubting he remains a draw, even after all these years. It is, after all, part of the reason he’s been front and centre of the WWE 2K17 advertising campaign with his face on the game’s cover.
But is this a dream match and what sort of quality will it have? The latter popped into my mind after seeing Goldberg blown up after hitting a jackhammer on Rusev on Raw and a spear on Paul Heyman.
Will this match help make this year’s event a huge success or is it yet another attempt from the WWE to recreate past glories?
John: Sadly, I couldn’t care less. I was a huge Goldberg fan during his first run in WCW, as was everybody seemingly, but I just can’t be bothered with this match. Goldberg was something else during his initial “Streak” but he was never the most versatile performer. He was probably fortunate that WCW perished when it did as there really wasn’t anything left for him to do. From 99 to 01 he was either injured or involved in one of the Bischoff/Russo booked debacles.
In WWE he didn’t, and wasn’t allowed to, do anything substantial either. Basically, I find it hard to be nostalgic about the man for whatever reason. His match with Brock at WrestleMania XX was uninspiring, to say the least, and certainly didn’t call for a rematch 12 years later. Goldberg just happens to be a guy people haven’t seen in a long time and who’ll pop a novelty buy rate.
If anything it’s another example of how nothing has changed during the “New Era”, on RAW anyways.
Brian: I am with John on this one too, I couldn’t care less. I was never a big Goldberg fan. I felt his rise to super-stardom came at the expense of many other capable talents that WCW just simply didn’t give a crap about. Yeah, he did defeat Hollywood Hogan, but after that, it was all downhill.
Goldberg is in tremendous shape at age 49, but does that also mean ring shape? Brock Lesnar is not even the same wrestler he was 12 years ago. He is an attraction, but very limited to what he can do inside a ring. I wouldn’t be shocked at all if fans turn on this match as they did in the pair’s WrestleMania match all those years ago.
John: I’d say given that the event is taking place in Toronto isn’t going to help with any crowd hostilities if they occur. The Canadians have always been smarky and merciless to anything WWE wants to present as a positive for the most part. Which usually makes shows filmed there very interesting at the least.
If this does turn out to be a car wreck in front of a hostile crowd I’d actually be more inclined to watch it.
Jamie: Jamie: Am I excited for Goldberg vs. Lesnar? Another one bites the dust because I honestly don’t care. I didn’t care first-time around in 2004 and I definitely don’t care now. Let’s say a miracle happens and the pair contest a five-star classic, then what? Goldberg won’t be sticking around and we probably won’t see Brock until Wrestlemania. Part of the beauty of wrestling, and sport in general is that there should always be a reason to get invested. Like almost all of Brock’s matches in the last two years, this one doesn’t matter. It’s the equivalent of a pre-season friendly/tune-up match. I’m afraid the only thing that will get me invested in this match is a trip to the bookies.
Also, is anyone else getting sick of ageing Attitude Era guys being wheeled out to pop ratings? Just because Goldberg is in good shape for a middle aged man doesn’t mean he should be wrestling, it’s not like it turned out well for Sting, did it? When I got back into wrestling at the height of the Attitude Era not once did I see Randy Savage vs. Butch Reed, Ted DiBiase vs. Jim Duggan or any other WrestleMania mid-card match from 12 years previous being pushed as a headline attraction.
Amerigo: Couldn’t agree more with the consensus. While this match does elicit some nostalgic feelings for me (Goldberg’s WCW days), overall it doesn’t excite me mostly due to the fact, as far as I’m concerned, it’s a dead end angle. Sure, as John stated it might help boost the buy rate, I don’t think it will have a long-term effect.
Adding to what Brian said, looks can be deceiving. Goldberg may look in great shape for his age, however, that doesn’t always translate to great stamina.
Jamie: It’s a pretty damning assessment of this match that none of us gives a crap about it when you have to imagine we are probably the demographic WWE hope are most interested in it. If this feeling is universal than just us then I hope this match doesn’t go on last at Survivor Series.
Russ: I love Goldberg, but wheeling him out 12 years after the fact doesn’t install me with enthusiasm. His comeback speech on RAW was very well scripted, but he is almost 50 now, so some of that awesome power has no doubt left him.
Craig: I genuinely didn’t anticipate this would be quite so one-sided. So there’s no enthusiasm at all from this blog for the match? As Jamie says, we are probably one of their key demographics as well. I guess the other will be those lapsed fans that used to tune in week in, week out at the height of the Monday Night Wars. Are they likely to be drawn back in by this match? I don’t envisage so. After all, it wasn’t just Goldberg that made WCW what it was, he was a part, but he wasn’t the only thing so I don’t think that if you haven’t watched wrestling since WCW went under that you would now buy the WWE Network for this event. Right?
John: Are they making a push to promote WCW content on the Network now that they have Goldberg on TV? If so it’d be a smart move to go double-barrelled on the nostalgia front.
Russ: I think we will watch the match, that’s a given. I just hope Goldberg can quickly get up to scratch in the ring. He wants to put on a show for his wife and son. I think he will work his arse off to live with Brock and deliver. This is a different Goldberg with a different mindset.
Craig: Oh, absolutely we will. And I suspect it will be better than we expect, which isn’t exactly a high bar and there is no doubt that in terms of star-power, it is a big match. I just feel that the continual return to focus on part-time performers is part of the reason indeed that the company has to rely on these type of wrestlers.
But undoubtedly the answer to the title of this Sunday Sermon: ‘Are You Excited About Brock Lesnar vs. Goldberg at Survivor Series?’ is certainly a no from us.
Got a different take? What are your thoughts on the Lesnar vs. Goldberg bout? Leave your comments below.
You can read all previous Sunday Sermons here.