Monday, December 19, 2011

12/18/11 TLC

Zack Ryder vs. Dolph Ziggler (U.S. Title): ***1/4

Kofi Kingston & Evan Bourne vs. Primo & Epico (Tag Team Titles): *3/4

Randy Orton vs. Wade Barrett (Tables): **1/4

Beth Phoenix vs. Kelly Kelly (Divas Title): *1/2

Triple H vs. Kevin Nash (Sledgehammer): **3/4

Sheamus vs. Jack Swagger: *1/4

Big Show vs. Mark Henry (Chairs; World Heavyweight Title): 1/2*

Daniel Bryan vs. Big Show (World Heavyweight Title): N/A

Cody Rhodes vs. Booker T (IC Title): *1/2

CM Punk vs. Alberto Del Rio vs. The Miz (TLC; WWE Title): ***3/4

Ziggler transitioning to the blue trunks tonight. Ryder was over as usual with the crowd. Ziggler now using the Angle Slam, huh? Well, it's just an Angle Slam, even for Ziggler, so it only got two. Vickie got caught and got the boot from the ref for more crowd cheers. Exciting, entertaining match here. Very well done. What more can you expect from an opener? Nice touch with Zack's dad in the stands. Even better...Cole shut up for a change.

Standard tag match here with Air Boom and Primo/Epico. I'm not sure if I back this decision. The cousins have been on a major roll, and this really stalled/hurt them more than anything else. I would have given them the titles on the first shot and let them run with it for a while. Mix some "heel cheat" wins with legit ones.

Tables match between Orton and Barrett was also very good. Nice physicality and counter spots, all while keeping aware of the table. Orton caught Barrett coming off the top and sent Barrett through the table with an RKO. Ending was cool.

Teddy Long dressed as Santa. First Hornswoggle, now the Bellas. Ha, Teddy wanted to get with the Bellas after the show. Entertaining. Swagger and Sheamus for later in the show.

They replayed the Slammy Awards segment with Kelly winning the Divalicious award. Again, nice to see Lita on the show. Didn't take long for Beth's headband thing to come off during this one. Kelly's gotten way more physical over the last year. Article online said Beth and Natalya are the two divas who can really work in the WWE. Couldn't agree more.

Booker came out for his IC Title match against Cody, but Cody ambushed Booker for the second time in the evening. So much for that.

It's Sledgehammer time. FYI, the sledgehammer hung just like a title or briefcase does in ladder/MITB matches; first one to get the sledgehammer could legally use it. Nash comes out to his nWo music, which people say is like porn music. HHH and Nash threw  a lot of fists in this one. Fans better watch out for falling ladders. HHH went after Nash's knee as the pace slowed to a crawl. Best part...figure four in the ladder! It woulda been painful to sit through this one if not for the extreme rules-like stipulation. A fairly vicious matchup utilizing the ladders. Nice spot with HHH and Nash on the ladder...HHH used the sledgehammer to send Nash through the table. Botch on the first Pedigree attempt, though. Loved the symbolic finish. Nash flashed thre Kliq sign...DX crotch chop from HHH and a final hammer shot for three. Overall match was fine.

Sheamus/Swagger was OK. Didn't really wow me, but figure it's two more guys that at least get on PPV.

Chairs match time. Main event intros. Show usually has a plain black singlet, but it's all designed this time with camouflage. Show littered the ring with chairs. Chair shots were dished out. Good grief, it was boring and painful. This one barely went five minutes (thankfully). I found out Mark Henry had a legit groin injury, so they had him drop the title to Show. Afterward, Henry still popped up (so much for the WMD really working) and attacked Show. "Daniel Bryan!" chants start up.

Wait! They get their wish! Daniel Bryan came out to cash in MITB! The internet world went bonkers, I guarantee. I'm just laughing because DB rubbed it in Cole's face afterward. The look on Show's face (after winning the title and after losing the belt) made some friends think a DB heel turn is in the works. I would be all for that. DB would really be a good heel. But a Show heel turn makes more sense. Cole was sympathetic to Show after being on his case all this time for "injuring" Henry. Also, DB's over with the crowd...why kill that? I'd like to see what DB can do against Show. It's a feat to work with larger guys. I'm just glad they didn't do the whole deal with the champ needing to get to his feet first.

Booker's still rarin' to go after all that. Cody came out first this time, so no ambush. Cole plays up Booker's accomplishments so it will really make Cody look good if he wins. It took two Beautiful Disasters to keep Booker down. Well, guess that's done with. Let Cody move on now.

Looked like WWE killed time by replaying Ryder's win and DB's win.

And that's why...main event time! Punk gets his huge pop, complete with "CM Punk!" chants. Whoa, ADR not coming out in a car? Hmm. TLC matches are akin to a demolition derby, and, while I've seen more chaotic TLC affairs, this was still packed with painful spots. ACR kicked btoh Miz and Punk while they were perched on the top. Punk went through the table for some "holy shit" chants. Cross armbreaker with the chair on the outside to Punk was a cool spot. ADR got pushed off the ladder and crotched himself...he's a soprano now I think. Ricardo tried to get the briefcase for Punk. Poor Ricardo. He basically got pushed off the ladder backwards through a table...damn.  Genius move by Miz to cuff Punk to the corner. Wow, Punk had to manually unscrew the turnbuckle and did it! That was pretty damn original. Great finish. Match of the night for sure.

An above-average show. The main event TLC match was close to MOTY level, but aside from that and the opener, it was a satisfactory show with no major blips. I personally liked it for the DB mark-out moment. ***1/4

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