|Date: December 18, 2011
|Venue: 1st Mariner Arena |City: Baltimore, Maryland
|Attendance: 9,000 |Buys: 179,000
|tweet me: @BastionBlogger
Tables, Ladders and Chairs, oh my! TLC returns as the December PPV and tonight we have a loaded card ahead of us. CM Punk defends the WWE Championship in a triple threat match. There were four men who had to win singles matches in order to earn an opportunity and they were Alberto Del Rio, The Miz, John Cena and Dolph Ziggler. Alberto, The Miz and John Cena won their matches but Cena would go on to relinquish his opportunity so Zack Ryder could get a shot at the United States Championship. That means Ryder will face Dolph Ziggler for the title tonight. But in the WWE championship match CM Punk mist defend against The Miz and Alberto Del Rio in a match that was made the first ever triple threat tables, ladders and chairs match.
The World Heavyweight Championship held by Mark Henry will also be defended as he puts the title on the line against The Big Show once more. Big Show beat Mark Henry when Henry got himself intentionally disqualified at Survivor Series so the match between the two tonight will be contested as a chairs match where the two men can use chairs as they please. A ladder match is scheduled for tonight as Triple H finally returned to get revenge on the man that attacked him, his old friend Kevin Nash. Nash took Triple H out with a sledgehammer so this ladder match will feature a sledgehammer hanging from the ceiling which is free to use for whoever retrieves it.
The Divas Championship will be on the line as Beth Phoenix defends against Kelly Kelly. At the Slammy awards on Raw last week it was Kelly Kelly that won the Diva of the year award. Beth Phoenix came out to steal the award but Kelly managed to fight her off. This sets up a rematch between champion and former champion. The Intercontinental Championship is due to be defended as Cody Rhodes goaded Booker T back into the ring following multiple attacks. Cody hasn’t been happy with Booker’s commentary and challenged Booker to a match, a match that the former World Heavyweight Champion accepted. Also tonight the rivalry between Randy Orton and Wade Barrett comes to a head in a tables match. Orton beat Barrett to pick the stipulation but Barrett would show his card by putting Randy through a table.
In a dark match prior to the event Drew McIntyre defeated Alex Riley.
A video package kicks us off with a Christmas tale. John Cena and Triple H get a mention as do CM Punk, The Miz and Alberto Del Rio. Th match between Mark Henry and The Big Show also gets a mention.
Michael Cole welcomes us to Baltimore, he’s just joined by Jerry “The King” Lawler in a two man commentary team.
Dolph Ziggler (c) vs. Zack Ryder – United States Championship match
Vickie Guerrero is out to introduce her man Dolph Ziggler. This is the second PPV match between these two men, Dolph beat Ryder at Vengeance. Dolph is 1-0 at TLC events, he beat Jack Swagger and Kofi Kingston in a triple threat ladder match that opened last years show. Dolph takes down Zack early, sweeping his foot. The crowd are behind Ryder but Dolph takes him down again. Ryder hits a couple of arm drags but Ziggler hits an elbow and a shoulder charge. Ryder ducks a clothesline and then slingshots the United States Champion into the top turnbuckle before clotheslining him to the outside and diving out at him! Ziggler hits a modified DDT on Ryder onto the apron and nearly gets a count out win. Ryder gets back into the ring but Ziggler drops him with a neckbreaker. Ziggler then hits nine elbow drops for the first near fall of the night.
Ryder fires back with some right hands but Ziggler drops him with a reverse elbow. Ziggler applies a sleeper and then drops Ryder when he tries to get out of it. Dolph then does a few sit-ups before locking in a version of a camel clutch. Ziggler hits an Angle slam for a two count and then pops Ryder onto the top rope but Ryder paws him away and then hits a missile dropkick for a two count. Ryder builds some momentum with clotheslines, a facebuster, running forearm and the broski boot! Ryder hooks the leg but Vickie Guerrero puts Dolphs foot on the bottom rope! The referee then sends Vickie to the back! The two men exchange pinfalls, Ziggler hits a fame-asser for a near fall and then a big dropkick. Ziggler heads to the top but Ryder crotches him and then hits a top rope hurricanrana for a near fall.
Ryder motions for the rough-Ryder but Ziggler counters and rolls Ryder up for a two count. Ryder hits a double knee to the face and then the rough-Ryder for the three! Zack Ryder wins the match and the United States Championship! Ryders father and friends are shown celebrating. The biggest win of Zack Ryders career by some way tonight!
Booker T is backstage with Alicia Fox. Booker is getting ready for his match but Cody Rhodes shows up and beats the hell out of Booker!
Air Boom (Kofi Kingston & Evan Bourne) (c) vs. Primo & Epico – WWE Tag Team Championship match
This is a first time tag team match between these two teams. Kofi is 0-2 at TLC PPV’s, the other three men make their TLC debut tonight. It’s also a PPV debut for Epico. Primo looks for his first PPV victory tonight. Primo and Epico are joined by Rosa Mendes. Epico starts the match against Evan Bourne and we get some nice wrestling between the two. Lots of reversals until Bourne hits a hurricanrana and lays in some kicks before tagging out to Kofi Kingston. Kofi hits a dropkick for a two count and Epico then tags out to Primo. Kofi takes down both men with a dropkick and pins Primo for a one count. Primo hits a monkey flip but Kofi lands on his feet and hits a monkey flip of his own for a two count. Kofi tags in Bourne who hits a hurricanrana for a two count. Primo tags Epico and they dump Bourne out of the ring. Primo rolls Evan back into the ring and Epico gets a two count.
Epico tags Primo who lays in some stomps before tagging Epico back in. Quick tags from the challengers now as they take it in turns to stomp down Evan Bourne. Primo applies a front facelock, stopping Bourne from making a tag. Primo rams Bourne into the corner and tags in Epico who hits a dropkick for a two count. Epico hits a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker for a two count and then a three suplexes for a two count. Bourne fires back with a double knees and both men are down. Primo tags Epico and Bourne tags in Kofi! Kofi takes down both challengers. He drops Primo with a clothesline and then the boom drop. Kofi motions for trouble in paradise but Primo backs off. Kofi hits a high cross body for a near fall. Epico gets involved but Evan Bourne sees him off and then dives to the outside. Kofi hits trouble in paradise on Primo and that’s enough for the three! Air Boom retain the Tag Team Championships!
Josh Mathews is backstage with an update on Booker T. He doesn’t have an update but says that he did see Cody Rhodes walk past with a smile on his face.
Teddy Long is backstage dressed as Santa. Hornswoggle arrives dressed as an elf and doesn’t take too kindly to being called a little boy. Teddy says that he isn’t happy with Hornswoggle talking jive and then hands him a present. Rosettas Stone “Ebonics” which I think is help to talking like a black man. Hornswoggle stomps on his foot and leaves.
Randy Orton vs. Wade Barrett – Tables match
This is a third pay per view match between these two men. They have both won one a pice back in 2010. Randy Orton is 1-1 at TLC PPV’s, Wade Barrett is 0-1. This is Randy Ortons 42nd PPV in a row, which is a record. The two men slug it out in the early going but Orton takes the advantage with a backbreaker. Orton then leaves the ring and picks up a table but Barrett kicks it into his face. Barrett rolls Randy back into the ring and then slides a table in but Randy rams that into Barretts gut. Barrett is already bleeding from the head. Orton bashes Wade’s head off the ring steps and then hits him with an uppercut. The two battle up the entranceway and Barrett sets up for a pumphandle slam through the table but Orton counters. Orton smashes Barrett off the ring apron and then sets up for a suplex through a table but Barrett counters.
Barrett pushes Orton into the ringpost and then slides a table into the ring and sets another up on the outside. Barrett smashes Ortons head off the table on the outside and then lays him onto it before going up to the middle rope but Orton rolls off the table. Wade rams Randy into the ring apron a couple of times and then rolls him back into the ring. Barrett hits an elbow drop and then chokes Orton on the middle rope, Barrett hits some big knees to the head and then a running big boot. Barrett lays a table in the corner and then looks to powerslam Orton into it but Orton slips down the back and hits a couple of clotheslines, a powerslam and then looks for a hangmans DDT but Barrett counters. Wade misses with a running boot and the two men slug it out on the apron above a table. Barrett sets up for wasteland but Orton counters and hits a hangmans DDT.
Orton motions for an RKO but Barrett counters and then hits a sidewalk slam. Barrett drops a table on Orton and then sets it up in the middle of the ring. Barrett lays Orton on the table and then goes up to the middle rope but Orton moves and hits an RKO on Barrett through the table! Randy Orton wins the match tonight!
The Bella Twins are backstage with Santa. Santa gives them both a phone number to his direct line. They leave and Jack Swagger shows up. Swagger has a moan about Teddy being in a job, saying Vickie Guerrero should be general manager. Sheamus then shows up and says that Swagger isn’t the brightest. Teddy makes the match between them for tonight.
Beth Phoenix (c) vs. Kelly Kelly – WWE Women’s Championship match
This is a fourth PPV match between these two girls. Kelly Kelly has won two of the previous three. Beth is 1-0 at TLC PPV’s, Kelly Kelly wrestles at this event for the first time. Kelly manages to avoid an attack in the early going and Beth falls to the outside. Kelly then hits a bulldog off the apron and smashes Beth off the apron. Kelly Kelly then applies an inverted tarantula and then hits a tilt-a-whirl headscissors. Beth gorilla press slams Kelly onto the top rope and then lays in some elbows for a two count. Three face wins so far so I think the heel will take this one. Beth chokes Kelly Kelly on the ropes. Kelly is making noises like she’s crying. Beth applies a camel clutch Kelly Kelly counters it and rolls Beth up for a two count before hitting a bulldog and repeatedly bashing Beth’s face off the canvas.
Kelly looks for a cross body but Beth catches her and dives her into the mat for a two count. Phoenix heads to the top and looks for a legdrop but Kelly Kelly rolls out of the way! Kelly looks for a fame-asser but Beth counters and looks for a glam slam but Kelly rolls through and the two girls exchange pinfalls. Kelly Kelly looks for a hurricanrana but Beth counters it with an inverted powerbomb for the three. Beth Phoenix wins the match and retains the Divas Championship tonight!
Alberto Del Rio is backstage with Ricardo Rodriguez. Del Rio tells Rodriguez that he needs to get his car ready. The Miz then shows up and says that they may have worked together before but once the bell rings the alliance is dead. Del Rio says there was never an alliance, he was just using The Miz. Ricardo returns with food for Del Rio but Miz flings it into Rodriguez’s face. Del Rio then pushes his interviewer to the floor.
Booker T makes his entrance for his match but Cody Rhodes attacks him from behind! Rhodes stomps Booker T down and it looks as though this match isn’t going to happen!
There’s a video package next for Triple H and Kevin Nash.
Triple H vs. Kevin Nash – Sledgehammer ladder match
These two men wrestled each other three time son PPV before, all in 2003 and Triple H won two of the three, Nash won one. Triple H is 1-0 at TLC PPV’s, Nash makes his TLC debut tonight. A sledgehammer hangs above the ring and is there to be used for the man that climbs the ladder to retrieve it. The bell rings and Kevin Nash goes right for Triple H. Triple H fires back with lefts and rights of his own. Nash hits some elbows as the two men exchange blows. Triple H knocks Kevin Nash out of the ring and follows him out. Triple H grabs a ladder but Nash kicks it out of his hand and then rams it right in his face. Nash slides a ladder in the ring which allows Triple H to attack him from behind and then clothesline him over the barricade. Nash hits an elbow before dropping Triple H on the barricade and ring steps. Triple H reverses an Irish whip, sending Nash into the ringpost before rolling him back into the ring.
Triple H slides another ladder into the ring and then bashes it into Nash’s knee. Triple H repeatedly smashes the ladder into Nash’s knee and then locks on a figure four with Nash’s knee locked up in a ladder! Triple H sets up ladders in opposite corners but Nash is the man that ends up Irish whipping Triple H into one of the ladders, sending Triple H all the way out to the floor. Nash rolls Triple H back into the ring and then hits a sidewalk slam on to a ladder. Triple H manages to knock Nash out of the ring and then set up a ladder and climb it but Nash pulls him down and hits him with a clothesline. Nash then moves the ladder out of the way and hits a chokeslam. This match has been bad. Very bad. Nash pulls a table out from under the ring and sets it up in the ring. Nash sets up for a jackknife through the table but Triple H counters, backing Nash into a ladder.
Triple H knocks Kevin Nash out of the ring with a ladder before setting up the ladder and climbing it. Kevin Nash climbs up the other side of the ladder and slug it out at the top Triple H bashes Nash with the sledgehammer, sending Nash through the table below. Triple H unhooks the sledgehammer and then rams it into Nash’s knee and arm. Triple H hits a pedigree and then motions for a second. Kevin Nash raises the Kliq symbol but Triple H crotch chops him, nails him with the sledgehammer and then pins him for the three. This was terrible.
Matt Striker is backstage with CM Punk. Punk says that he has an issue with John Laurinaitis. Laurinaitis shows up and says that he should be more concerned with his match tonight.
Sheamus vs. Jack Swagger
This is a first time PPV singles match between these two men. Sheamus is 1-1 at TLC PPV’s, Jack Swagger is 0-1. Swagger lays into Sheamus with right hands in the early going but Sheamus knocks Jack down with a clothesline. Sheamus hits a few elbow drops for a one count and then hits more right hands. Sheamus drops Swagger with a shoulder charge and then hits ten big clubbing blows in the ropes. Sheamus clotheslines Swagger out of the ring and then follows him out but is distracted by Vickie Guerrero which allows Swagger to throws Sheamus into the barricade and lay in the boots. Back in the ring and Swagger hits a Vader bomb for a one count. Swagger hits some big forearms to the back and then screams at Sheamus who fires back with a clothesline. Sheamus hits another couple of clubbing blows and then a powerslam for a near fall. The crowd is pretty dead for this one. Sheamus heads to the outside but Swagger knocks him off the apron.
Sheamus rams Swagger into the ringpost and then into the barricade. He then rolls Jack back into the ring and goes to the top, hitting a battering ram for a near fall. Swagger looks for a brogue kick but Swagger avoids it and hits a big chopblock. Swagger hits a Vader bomb, targeting the knee of Sheamus and then locks on the ankle lock! Sheamus rolls out of it and then hits the brogue kick for the three! Sheamus beats Jack Swagger tonight.
Josh Mathews is backstage with The Big Show. Big show is confident of beating Mark Henry tonight and looking forward to hitting Henry with chairs tonight.
Mark Henry (c) vs. The Big Show – Chairs match for the World Heavyweight Championship
This is the fourth PPV match between these two men. They have a win each and a draw so far. Big Show is 0-1 at TLC PPV’s, Mark Henry makes his TLC debut tonight. Big Show leaves the ring straight away and throws as many chairs as he can into the ring!Henry’s ankle is still bandaged. The two men then grab a chair each but Henry drops the one he’s holding and leaves the ring. Mark asks for his title and says that this match isn’t happening before walking towards the back. Big Show goes after him and smashes him with a chair a few times. Big Show hits the World Heavyweight Champion with lefts and rights but Mark Henry fires back with a headbutt. Henry then lands a chair shot before smashing Big Shows hand into the ring steps. Back in the ring and the two men collide chairs and Mark Henry then another couple of chair shots.
Big Show hits some right hands but he looks like he’s in pain. Show looks for a chokeslam but Mark Henry fights him off and hits him with another chair shot. Henry jabs away at Big Show with a chair and then looks for a world’s strongest slam but Big Show fights him off. Henry looks for another chair shot but Big Show hits the WMD! Big Show rolls Mark Henry over and hooks the leg, getting the three! Big Show wins the match and the World Heavyweight Championship!
After the match Mark Henry jabs Big Show with a steel chair and then DDT’s the new World Heavyweight Champion onto a pile of chairs! A “Daniel Bryan” chant breaks out and then his music hits! Daniel Bryan is cashing in his Money In The Bank!
The Big Show (c) vs. Daniel Bryan – World Heavyweight Championship match
Daniel Bryan immediately hooks the leg of Big Show and the referee counts the three! Daniel Bryan wins the World Heavyweight Championship! Bryan celebrates in the face of Michael Cole who can’t believe it! And nor can The Big Show!
Josh Mathews is backstage with Booker T. Mathews tries to convince Booker T not to go out and wrestle tonight. Booker doesn’t want to go out like a sucka.
Cody Rhodes (c) vs. Booker T – Intercontinental Championship match
This is a first time PPV match between these two men. Both men make their TLC debut tonight. The bell rings and the two men get right into it. Booker hits chops and right hands and then a reverse elbow. Booker hits a couple of powerslams and then tries for a second but Cody counters. Booker then hits a big side kick for a two count. Booker launches Rhodes out of the ring and hits him with another couple of chops before ramming the Intercontinental Champions face off the barricade. Booker rolls Cody back into the ring and looks to get back in himself but Cody smashes him off the apron and then throws him into the barricade. Cody rolls Booker back into the ring and then hits a snapmare and locks on a modified abdominal stretch. Booker gets out of it but Cody takes him right back down, pinning him for a two count.
Cody Rhodes applies a full nelson but Booker powers out of it. Booker hits an elbow and the two men then knock each other down with clotheslines. They both get to their feet and exchange right hands resulting in Booker taking Rhodes down with a sidewalk slam for a two count. Booker hits a spinebuster causing Rhodes to roll to the ropes. Booker then spin-er-oonies! Booker looks for an axe kick but Rhodes avoids it and hits the disaster kick for a two count. Cody hits a second disaster kick and this time Booker stays down for the three! A big win for Cody Rhodes tonight.
There’s an ad for a new Steve Austin DVD so expect to see him on TV soon.
CM Punk (c) vs. Alberto Del Rio vs. The Miz – Triple threat TLC match for the WWE Championship
This is a first time triple threat match between these three men. The Miz is 1-0 at TLC PPV’s, Alberto Del Rio is 0-1 and CM Punk makes his TLC debut tonight. CM Punk joins Randy Orton as the only two men to have wrestled on every PPV in 2011. Ricardo Rodriguez is present for Alberto Del Rio. The bell rings and Del Rio and The Miz double team CM Punk but Punk fights back, hitting both men with dropkicks. The numbers becomes too much though and Punk finds himself double teamed again. They hotshot CM Punk on to the top rope and lay in the boots. Miz and Del Rio hit a double suplex and lay in more boots before both men look towards the ladders. Del Rio then nails Miz with a chair. Del Rio picks up a small ladder but turns around into a suicide dive from CM Punk. Punk rolls Miz into the ring but Miz attacks the WWE Champion as he gets into the ring. Miz then jabs Punk with a chair before missing with a splash in the corner.
Punk hits a running knee on Miz and then looks for a bulldog but Miz counters it, hitting a side suplex on Punk onto a chair. On the outside Del Rio back body drops Miz on to a ladder. Punk boots a ladder into Del Rio’s face before dropping him with a neckbreaker. Punk then swings a chair into Miz’s back a few times. Punk sets up a ladder in the ring and climbs it, getting all the way to the top but it’s Ricardo Rodriguez that pulls Punk down! Rodriguez then handcuffs CM Punk to the bottom of the ladder! Alberto Del Rio goes right to work on CM Punk, stomping him into the mat and then climbing the ladder himself. Punk manages to break himself free and then swings the handcuffs into Del Rio. Punk then drops Alberto on the ladder. Miz slides a massive ladder into the ring and beats Punk with it. Miz then climbs the ladder but Punk pulls him down and sets up for a go to sleep but Miz counters it.
Punk looks to set Miz up for a superplex but Alberto hits a beautiful shining wizard on Punk sending him crashing through a table on the outside. Del Rio then lays into Miz on the outside and locks on a cross-arm breaker through a ladder. Del Rio goes back to work on Punk who is in a heap in a broken table. Del Rio locks a cross arm breaker on Punk and then climbs up the ladder but both Miz and Punk get back into the ring and push the ladder over, crotching Del Rio on the top rope. Punk and Miz then slug it out and they drop each other with clotheslines. Ricardo Rodriguez then climbs the ladder but Miz and Punk tip the ladder over, sending Rodriguez through a table set up on the outside. Punk hits some headbutts on Miz and then looks for a go to sleep but Miz counters, looking for a skull-crushing finale but Punk counters that. Miz then avoids a shoulder charge in the corner and Miz handcuffs Punk to the ringpost. Punk kicks Miz in the head and then starts taking apart the turnbuckle to try and free himself. Del Rio sets a ladder up in the ring and Miz sets up another. They both climb the respective ladders and Punk manages to free himself and get up the ladder himself. Punk kicks Miz off the ladder and then kicks off Del Rio.
Punk has his fingertips on the championship but Miz pulls him down. Punk then pulls down Miz and hits him with go to sleep! Punk climbs the ladder again and this time grabs the WWE Championship to win the match!
And that was the final pay per view of 2011. Technically there were 10 matches so it was a big card with more matches than usual for a PPV. It started with the fairytale win. Zack Ryder wins the United States Championship from Dolph Ziggler. I liked this result, Zack has earned his way to this title and it’s all thanks to self-promotion. Dolph has been United States Champion for a while so him losing it isn’t a big deal. He’ll probably win it back anyway. The match itself was ok but it was more about the story. Air Boom then beat Primo and Epico. This match was decent, all four men are talented. I’d like to see the tag team division get better and it’s nice to see what feels like a real team in Primo and Epico. Air Boom are getting a big push though and continue their title reign.
Randy Orton beats Wade Barrett with an RKO through the table. This match another decent enough effort, nothing spectacular. It would have been a huge win for Wade Barrett but it’s Randy Orton that picks up the victory. Orton is bound to be a favourite for the Royal Rumble next month. Beth Phoenix beats Kelly Kelly to retain her WWE Divas Championship. This match was below par but what we’ve come to expect form the current divas division. Beth Phoenix is far and away the star as a lot of the current division are models learning to wrestle. Beth deserves to be champion until somebody as good comes along.
Triple H beats Kevin Nash in a terrible ladder match. God this was boring. I’m not sure why they decided on this stipulation, it should have been falls count anywhere or something so it couldn’t been more entertaining. I have no idea where Kevin Nash goes from here but he was entertaining in TNA as the leader of the X Division so maybe a role like that would be better for him. Hopefully this is the end of this rivalry anyway. Sheamus beat Jack Swagger in a match that was announced earlier. Again, not a great match, it felt like it was filling time. It’s a good win for Sheamus and keeps him relevant. Jack Swagger is basically a jobber these days. Big Show beat Mark Henry in another bad match but the story came with Daniel Bryan cashing in the Money In The Bank after the bell and winning the World Heavyweight Championship! I love this result. It feels like the title is going in a new direction following months of Mark Henry, Big Show, Randy Orton and Christian. I was starting to doubt whether Daniel Bryan would cash in successfully but he did and I can’t wait to see his title reign.
Cody Rhodes beats Booker T to retain the Intercontinental Championship. I’m not sure if this is a one off for Booker T or whether he’ll be wrestling more but he is in great shape and I hope he continues. Cody has been on fire this year and I love him as IC champion so long may his reign continue. Average match between these two. CM Punk then retained his WWE Championship in a good TLC match. It’s nice to see some successful title defences for the WWE Championship as it’s been passed around like a hot potato as of late. Hopefully CM Punk will be champion going into Wrestlemania although you know that tends to be John Cena’s spot. This main event saved a pretty bad show overall and it’s the only match worth checking out on this card.
Overall Rating: 47.5/100 (ranked 250th out of 273)
Match Of The Night: CM Punk vs. The Miz vs. Alberto Del Rio
Worst Match Of The Night: Triple H vs. Kevin Nash
Surprise Of The Night: Daniel Bryan successfully cashes in Money In The Bank
Worst Booking Of The Night: Sledgehammer ladder match
Superstar Of The Night: Daniel Bryan
TLC 2011 Will Be Remembered For: Daniel Bryan winning the World Heavyweight Championship