As noted in the CM Punk column, I watched UFC 181 at my condo. I was a little perplexed by their decision to sign Phil “CM Punk” Brooks to a contract. Dana White doesn’t sound like Punk’s going to get thrown to the proverbial wolves but given a similarly inexperienced fighter. If it bumps their buy rate, good for them. The UFC won’t hesitate to cut him if he loses his first few fights so they don’t have much to lose either. The bigger head scratcher during UFC 181 was the decision of the main event. I re-watched the first four round of Robbie Lawler vs Johny Hendricks. I think Lawler took the first and the fifth with Hendricks taking the middle rounds. Hendricks ate some shots at the end of the fourth and you could tell he was tiring but I think he took four of five minutes in that round. Oh well, I’ll watch that fight a third time. The first two were terrific which is rare. A dud normally shows up. It could be the last. I’ll take my chances. I look forward to whichever of them has to take on Rory MacDonald who may have to wait longer for a shot with the title change. Let’s get to the choreographed variety.
Jerry “The King” Lawler gets to present the first Slammy of the night. He’s only announcing Seth Green. I have not watched the new episode of Robot Chicken yet. The Miz interrupts him to tell him about his awesomeness. Damien Mizdow gets put over by Green for being the “A Lister.” Dolph Ziggler is taking on Seth Rollins who has J & J Security. A drop kick leads to an early break. Bad pacing to start the show. (Next Day Note: At least go a few minutes into a match before breaking.)
Rollins is in control. Dear lord, Lawler swings and misses on defending Ziggler. Talk about the damn falls he had on Rollins when the ref got knocked out! Why is this so hard? Why?!?!? Ziggler DDT gets a two count. Rollins kicks Ziggler in the face. Ziggler back drops Rollins off the top rope. Joey Mercury throws Ziggler off the top rope. Curb Stomp for the win. Ziggler can’t be happy. The WWE couldn’t crap on him more. Seth Rollins is irate that Sting won the Slammy. So are we getting Rollins vs Sting at Wrestlemania? Or does this happen at Royal Rumble?
The New Day is taking on The Dust Brothers again. Kofi Kingston is actually taking on Stardust. Stardust is wearing down Kofi early in the match. Kofi with a head scissors take over. Kofi, please stop doing the jumping clothes line. New Day Boom Drop. Kofi gives Stardsut running knees into the corner. Kofi follows with a top rope cross body block for the win. What a weak endorsement of a group you re-branded. John Laurinitis is back to present some Slammy or another.
Paul Heyman has a chat with Seth Rollins. Rollins knows Heyman is wondering about him becoming the number one contender. Heyman ends up giving Rollins a pep talk that has gotten Rollins worked up. Be the future of the WWE by putting John Cena in the past. Nice work. (Next Day Note: This was the best thing that happened on the show.)
Charlotte Flair is taking on Natalya. Nattie gets distracted by Tyson Kidd who’s in a cat hoodie. Charlotte gives Nattie a back pack chin check. Nattie takes her down. Charlotte reverses. Charlotte tries to reverse the Sharpshooter into the Figure Four but Nattie turns it into a small package for the win. (Next Day Note: Who was this match supposed to get over? The NXT Diva’s Champ lost quickly and Tyson Kidd hogged Natalya’s spot light but no one cared because we haven’t been given a reason to dislike Kidd aside from his terrible choice in women.)
I promise to catch up by not listening to the award nominees and just listening to what happens to the victor or advocates for the victor. Heyman gets interrupted by Bray Wyatt. Interesting. (Next Day Note: I suppose Heyman was done talking up his client. Didn’t feel like an ending to me.) People love the entrance but nothing else about his gimmick. Of course it was Abigail’s chair. I missed the stuff on Smackdown with Dean Ambrose buzzing through the show. It appears as if he got a chair to the neck by way of the stairs. Ambrose shows up in an ambulance wearing a neck brace. This kind of action is why I never worry about someone being beat up. They showed the footage and he immediately no sells it. Ambrose chases Wyatt from the ring. Ambrose tells us Wyatt is leaving in an ambulance on Sunday. (Next Day Note: So is this an ambulance match or a TLC match?)
AJ Lee was voted Diva of the Year. She puts over the ladies who can wrestle which is nice of her. She’s ready to win her title back on Sunday. The WWE loves John Cena with Renee Young. Cena mentions how flukey winning table matches can be. He goes preacher mode and says he’s ready to step up.
Luke Harper and Erick Rowan are taking each other on without any build up. Yuck. Super kick by Harper leads to an early two count. They spill out to ring side. Harper slams the ladder he brought into Rowan for the DQ. Harper jumps off the stairs but gets caught with a fore arm. Harper gets dropped face first onto the stairs. Rowan cracks Harper with the stairs. The WWE keeps running into the situation that both people need a boost but they’re on the same level. Rowan looked tough at the expense of Harper who is supposed to be the IC Champion. Jimmy Uso defends being over protective of Naomi. (Next Day Note: This segment was pretty solid with Jimmy doing a decent job of putting over his position without being senseless over protective guy.)
The Miz & Damien Mizdow won a Slammy Award for something or another. Jack Swagger tried to look impressive against Rusev but we all know he isn’t winning on Sunday so who cares. We get a six man tag match with the Usos & Ryback taking on The Miz, Damien Mizdow & Kane. Seth Green is on the head set. The announcers are embarrassing themselves. I’m not paying attention to the match because the announcers aren’t. Seth Green is awkwardly smiling while trying not to crap on your product because he’s making money off of you not “Loving this” as Michael Cole claimed. Ryback makes the match interesting by destroying the Miz. Jimmy Uso gets himself out of the ring he’s so mad at Miz. He looks down at Jimmy. Ryback attacks. Shellshock for the win. Seth Green tries to raise Ryback’s hand. The Usos put him on their shoulder.
Team Cena vs Team Authority won a Slammy for something. No one voted for this moment with the other nominees. Dolph Ziggler finally speaks. After losing earlier tonight. Why is he being humble guy? Who thinks this is a good idea? (Next Day Note: If Ziggler isn’t the next person to walk, I don’t know who is a good candidate. Grab for the brass ring but only if the WWE wants you to.) Summer Rae still exists in the WWE. She is taking on AJ Lee. I’m baffled as to why Lee is selling this much for Summer. AJ spins into the Black Widow for the win.
Even RVD didn’t get me to slow up on the Slammy nominees. Chris Jericho won the Extreme Moment of the year for a cross body. I hate the people that voted for that. Fandango is rebooting his gimmick. Mick Foley as Santa and Noelle as Naughty Elf shill the WWE Network. They’re funny spots. Big Show bitches like a little girl about the crowd. He brings it on at the end.
I’m almost caught up when Booker T gives us Roman Reigns as Superstar of the Year. He actually shows up. He keeps it short and tells us all to believe. Naturally.
John Cena vs Big Show is the main event. Big Show gets to play impervious to pain early. Cena turns it around with a DDT. Side slam by Big Show. So maybe he didn’t turn it around. Cena locks in a sleeper. Locks is a loosely used word. Belly to Back Suplex by Cena on Big Show. AA on Big Show. Seth Rollins & J & J Security attack Cena. Dolph Ziggler makes the save to finally make some sort of impact. Big Show KO punches both of them. Erick Rowan comes down. Luke Harper attacks. Rowan gets tossed into the stairs. Rowan gets choke slammed on the stairs ensuring his win on Sunday. Ryback takes out Big Show. Meat Hook clothes line on Harper. After everyone gets to hit their finisher spot, Cena gets Curb Stomped by Rollins. Cena gets put through the announcer’s table by Rollins and J & J Security. Looks like a clean sweep for baby faces on TLC. – Kevin