Marquesas quickly went downhill after B-Rob was booted. Yeah, there were a bunch of players in the mix. That's what happens when you have mediocrity- parity.
It had the most boring F2 of all time.
The coconut chop was the final nail in the coffin for Rotu. Unfortunately, that gambit was really only good for a one time use, but that hasn't stopped it from being used again and again.
Axing Gabe obviously started the downward trend for Rotu, but John was in a tough spot there.
michel, I'm sure you know that in Survivor, if you aren't with us, then you're against us.
John could have easily interpreted Gabe's denial of game play as meaning that he was actually with Rob, Sean and V, or considering it. Gabe going the other way splits the tribe evenly into halves of 4. Like B-Rob would later do with Matt, John saw eliminating Gabe as the easiest way to guarantee a Rotu majority in the new Rotu.
It definitely sent a signal to Paschal and Neleh that the old Rotu alliance was dead, but I wouldn't say it was a mortal error from which there was no recovery. A final alliance of 4, as we have seen, is vulnerable. If John would have recruited Kathy into a F5 deal, then they don't need Paschal and Neleh at all.