The following results, courtesy of WWE’s official website, are from a recent WWE pay-per-view event. WWE Tables, Ladders and Chairs took place at the 1st Mariner Arena on December 18th, 2011 in Baltimore, Maryland and aired live at 8pm Eastern on pay-per-view.
WWE Champion CM Punk def. The Miz and Alberto Del Rio in a Triple Threat TLC Match
If the WWE Universe didn’t think CM Punk was a superhero already, they will after witnessing his daring performance in a Tables, Ladders & Chairs Match at WWE TLC. Up against the rogues’ gallery of the treacherous Miz and the underhanded Alberto Del Rio, The Straight Edge Superstar miraculously broke free of handcuffs after being latched to the ropes by The Awesome One. The WWE Champion then fought his way to the top of a ladder and snatched his title before celebrating high above the carnage he’d just created. It was the kind of fearless, in-your-face showing that has defined The Straight Edge Superstar’s run since he resigned with WWE in the late summer. Outspoken about his frustrations with the sports-entertainment empire in the past, Punk chose to be an agent of change instead of sitting around and waiting for one to appear. The “Voice of the Voiceless” wanted to see a more entertaining WWE Champion? At WWE TLC, he became it.
No stranger to Tables, Ladders & Chairs Matches, Punk defeated Jeff Hardy in this dangerous environment to win the World Heavyweight Title at SummerSlam in 2009. But where Hardy was an honorable, if not reckless, competitor, the champion’s opponents in the 1st Mariner Arena were a breed of Superstar who would step over their own mothers to claim victory. Alberto Del Rio — who used his Money in the Bank briefcase to steal Punk’s WWE Title at SummerSlam — was willing to sacrifice his manservant Ricardo Rodriguez to get to the top of the ladder. The Miz — who maimed both R-Truth and John Morrison on his way to this bout — went even further, using handcuffs Rodriguez brought to the ring in order to incapacitate the counterculture champion. Still, no matter what his opponents threw at him, Punk fired back with even more intensity. The Awesome One grabbed a chair? The Second City Savior kicked it into his face. The Mexican Aristocrat brought in a ladder? Punk drove him right into it. Even when he found himself shackled to the ringpost with no hope of stopping The Miz from grabbing his championship, the tattooed Superstar continued to fight. Ingeniously removing the turnbuckle in order to release himself, Punk charged up a ladder, smashed his opponents and triumphantly grabbed the title. In that moment, it was clear that the WWE Champion is often outnumbered, but never outmatched.
Big Show def. Mark Henry; Daniel Bryan cashed in Money in the Bank (New World Heavyweight Champion)
At WWE TLC, Big Show reigned supreme over World Heavyweight Champion Mark Henry in a brutal World Title Chairs Match of gigantic proportions. But, just when it looked like his nine-year drought had come to a close, Daniel Bryan stunned the WWE Universe, cashing in his Money in the Bank briefcase to walk away with his first World Heavyweight Championship! A showdown between colossal competitors the caliber of The World’s Strongest Champion and The World’s Largest Athlete was already destructive on its own. However, with steal chairs at their disposal in every direction, the carnage quickly became completely uncontrollable. Both massive Superstars used the weapons to unleash absolute brutality from the word go. However, in a crucial moment when Henry was attempting to swing the chair at his gigantic foe, Show delivered the WMD to claim his championship victory.
Despite losing the title, Henry would give Big Show no time to celebrate, executing a vicious post-match assault on the unsuspecting new champion and leaving him lying in the middle of the ring. Then, just when it seemed the excitement couldn’t get any more intense, Daniel Bryan sent shockwaves through the WWE Universe – cashing in his Money in the Bank briefcase on the downed giant to claim the biggest moment of his career. It was fitting that Henry and Big Show would wield the dangerous the steel weapons of mayhem against each other, since steel chairs had played an important role in their heated rivalry from the beginning. At Money in the Bank, it was Henry that put The World’s Largest Athlete out of action and into his infamous Hall of Pain for months, trapping his leg inside a chair before dropping down onto it from the ropes.
When Big Show returned for retribution, the two goliath Superstars battled to a no contest in a World Title Match at Vengeance, collapsing the ring beneath them. This paved the way for a rematch at Survivor Series, in which – following Henry’s purposeful disqualification to keep the gold – Big Show used a chair to injure the World’s Strongest Champion, making sure he could not walk out of the arena. On the Dec. 9 edition of SmackDown, things between the two massive foes reached a new level of anguish. After Henry sucker punched Show, The World’s Largest Athlete delivered a hellacious beating with a chair. One week later, Henry snatched back some momentum, taking out both Jack Swagger and helpless a cameraman, as his giant foe stood witness to the hellacious act of aggression. As Henry and Big Show were exchanging chair assaults, Daniel Bryan was steadily taking a stand of his own. Encouraged by The World’s Largest Athlete himself, Mr. Money in the Bank cashed-in and defeated Henry during the Nov. 25, 2011 edition of SmackDown – despite the fact that he had already proclaimed that he would not use his opportunity until WrestleMania XXVIII on April 1 in Miami. But, because Henry was not medically cleared to compete, GM Theodore Long declared the moment null and void.
The gutsy Superstar had gone on to battle Henry in a Steel Cage Match on a special live edition of SmackDown and on several other instances. No matter how many times he got knocked down, Bryan would not give up, refusing to lose sight of his goal. And at WWE TLC, the goal finally was realized. Daniel Bryan has cashed in the Money in the Bank to become the new World Heavyweight Champion! But, now that he has reached the top of the mountain, has he opened himself up to a very “big” problem? Find out on SmackDown on Syfy, Friday at 8/ 5 PT.
Intercontinental Champion Cody Rhodes def. Booker T
Two attacks and an injury at the hands of Intercontinental Champion Cody Rhodes were not enough to keep Booker T from stepping into the squared circle at WWE TLC. Although the former WCW and World Heavyweight Champion proved that even hurt, he can still compete with WWE’s finest, the injured Booker couldn’t best his nefarious enemy. Throughout his storied career, Booker T has clashed with the likes of The Rock, Triple H, “Stone Cold” Steve Austin, Scott Steiner and Sting, and with brother Stevie Ray, he was one half of the legendary tag team, Harlem Heat. Rhodes’ attacks on the five-time WCW Champion throughout the evening were brutal in nature but only brought out the drive and competitive spirit that brought Booker T success throughout the 1990s and early 2000s. After the first attack, there was a question about the bout even taking place. When Booker T shook off the assault and began to make his way to the ring for the match, Rhode struck again. Once more, the bout was called off due to Booker’s condition. Thus, the Intercontinental Champion almost seemed shell-shocked when the former WCW Tag Team Champion made his way to the ring ready for a fight later in the night.
The WWE Universe would have understood if Booker T did not compete, but the determined five-time WCW Champion gave Rhodes one of the toughest challenges of his career. Standing toe-to-toe with his opponent, and shifting momentum back and forth, Booker T kept the young Intercontinental Champion in a constant state of adjusting his strategy. The Booker T who fans remember from days past showed up at the 1st Mariner Arena, but the effects of Rhodes’ attacks would soon become evident. As Cody applied pressure to his opponent’s head and neck, the SmackDown commentator began to feel the effects. After the legend missed two scissor kicks, the Intercontinental Champion countered with two Beautiful Disasters to Booker’s head to capture the victory. This particular contest was interesting in nature as the young Intercontinental Champion had a chance to prove his clout against a veritable WWE Legend. Despite the 20-year age difference of the competitors, the only real advantage Rhodes possessed was the one he manufactured through his underhanded tactics. At first, it seemed Booker could endure and overcome his predicament. But as the match continued, it was evident that Booker’s condition was worsening. Finally, Rhodes’ strategy paid off and he was able to secure the victory and retain the title. The rivalry between the SmackDown announcer and the son of WWE Hall of Famer Dusty Rhodes has been brewing for quite some time. When Rhodes was accompanied to the ring by paper bag-toting individuals, they always made sure Booker T had a sack to put over his head. After the baggers went away and Rhodes dropped his protective mask, tossing water in the face of the former World Heavyweight Champion was enough for him to come out of retirement and teach Rhodes some respect.
For a Superstar who literally changed the face of the Intercontinental Title to be associated with the like of “Macho Man” Randy Savage and Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat, it seemed fitting that Rhodes became obsessed with battling Booker T, one of the most prominent former WCW Champions still in WWE. While Rhodes’ win at WWE TLC is questionable, it is still a victory. Needless to say, had Booker T been at 100 percent at WWE TLC, Rhodes would have had an even more competitive match and may have handily lost the coveted Intercontinental Title. Now that the champion’s strategy led to victory, it remains to be seen if the WWE Universe has seen the last of Booker T inside the squared circle.
Sheamus def. Jack Swagger
Jack Swagger got in Santa Claus’ face at WWE TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs, and he had to answer to the world’s angriest elf as a result (no, we don’t mean a chair-toting Hornswoggle). In a bonus match at WWE TLC, Swagger faced off against Sheamus just one month after The Great White’s aggression against The All-American American got him disqualified from the traditional Survivor Series 5-on-5 Tag Team Match. There were no referees to stop the fight this time, as The Celtic Warrior defeated his opponent and finished the job he started at Survivor Series.
The match came about in the locker room, after Swagger and SmackDown GM Teddy Long (who was dressed as St. Nick, handing out wishes to Superstars and Divas) got into an argument over Long’s refusal to levy punishment against World Heavyweight Champion Mark Henry for attacking Swagger with a chair on SmackDown. A compromise was reached: if the former World Champion would sit on Santa’s lap, Long would relent. Enter Sheamus, who poked fun at Swagger’s predicament and was placed into a match with Swagger after The All American-American got in The Great White’s face. The Celtic Warrior made good on the opportunity and defeated Swagger in a hard-hitting contest that saw the two Superstars trade vicious blows both in and out of the ring. Swagger seemed to briefly gain the upper hand after a strong offensive run outside the ring, after which he bombarded Sheamus with several attacks to the knees. Swagger administered the ankle lock to seemingly put the contest away, but The Great White hit The All-American American with a Brogue Kick to pick up the win while Vickie Guerrero screamed on the outside. The moral of the story? Do not insult Santa Claus, because he just might sic Sheamus on you.
Triple H def. Kevin Nash (Sledgehammer Ladder Match)
“Kliq” or no Kliq, Kevin Nash learned you never try to destroy The Cerebral Assassin with his own signature weapon. In a punishing contest between the best friends turned bitter enemies, Triple H showed no mercy at WWE TLC once he managed to grasp the sledgehammer hanging above a ladder. Blow after blow, The Game made Nash pay for injuring him on the Oct. 24 Raw SuperShow and causing havoc in WWE over the last four months. When the torment was through, Nash had to be stretchered out of 1st Mariner Arena. The match’s stipulation was simple yet vicious: the first competitor to climb a ladder and retrieve the sledgehammer would be legally allowed to use the weapon at will. With multiple ladders set up around the ring, finding a way to reach that goal wouldn’t be a problem. Still, that didn’t stop Triple H and Nash from dishing out as much pain as possible before it became a thought in their minds. At one point, Triple H wrapped Nash’s tree trunk-sized legs around a ladder in an agonizing figure four.
Nash had an opportunity late in the match to stop Triple H from getting to the sledgehammer, as both weary combatants met face to face atop the ladder, but The Game would not be denied. Triple H sent Nash flying off the ladder and through a table, then ruthlessly went to work on Nash with his weapon of choice. In a final act of desperation, Nash threw up the Kliq hand signal. Triple H’s response? The D-Generation X chop and one last mighty swing of the hammer. It was just eight weeks ago that Triple H suffered a concussion and fractured vertebrae due to a savage sledgehammer attack from Nash on Raw. That assault followed a series of high-profile disruptions at the hands of “Big Sexy,” including a Jackknife Powerbomb on CM Punk at SummerSlam and taking The Game out of a tag team match against The Miz and R-Truth at Vengeance. But Nash’s acts of destruction didn’t rattle the WWE COO’s resolve; it only fueled his fire for revenge.
The King of Kings was out to prove a point: that his authority would not be questioned, even if the man doing the questioning is a near 7-footer who once took him under his wing. While it took a twisted kind of match to settle the score, it’s brutally clear now that Triple H will not be crossed without retribution. And you can be sure the entire WWE locker room will think twice about voting “no confidence” and staging a walkout on his watch ever again. What remains to be seen, however, is if Nash is done trying to make Triple H’s life a living hell. The wounds from WWE TLC are still fresh and Big Kev’s anger runs deep.
Divas Champion Beth Phoenix def. Kelly Kelly
At a packed and electric 1st Mariner Arena, Divas Champion Beth Phoenix retained her title against a game Kelly Kelly in a rousing match at WWE: Tables, Ladders and Chairs. Fresh off her award for Divalicious Moment of the Year at the 2011 Slammy Awards, challenger Kelly Kelly entered the contest with both momentum and the support of the WWE Universe on her side, as the Baltimore crowd cheered loudly for the beautiful Diva. Evidently not forgetting the smack she received from the former Divas Champion at the Slammys, “pin-up strong” Beth Phoenix mockingly asked for another one from Kelly Kelly. She received it and more as Phoenix found herself on the wrong end of a beat down to start the match. However, the Divas Champion turned the tides and began imposing her will. The Glamazon battered her opponent with an array of strikes, submission attempts and slams, nearly getting the pinfall multiple times.
Kelly Kelly battled back courageously against the physically intimidating Phoenix, using everything in her arsenal. Plucky in the face of danger, she showed everyone again that she is tough and wily, in addition to being stunningly gorgeous. In the end though, The Glamazon gained control of the match with sheer power, utilizing a rare inverted electric chair to seal the victory over her Divalicious opponent. Kelly Kelly may not have won the title, but she made even more fans with her gutsy performance. Phoenix, meanwhile, continued her dominance over the Divas Division and again demonstrated what it means to be pin-up strong.
Randy Orton def. Wade Barrett (Tables Match)
At least after WWE TLC, Wade Barrett’s only Christmas wish may be a rematch against WWE’s Apex Predator. The “Barrett Barrage” was unable to withstand the sting of The Viper’s venom in a Tables Match as Randy Orton dropped Wade Barrett through the pine with a jaw-dropping mid-air RKO. The Tables Match was the perfect place for these competitors to settle the score and for The Viper to come uncoiled. In an environment that allows underhanded tactics, one of the Superstars could only earn victory in a very specific way, and no matter how fast the flurry of The “Barrett Barrage” came through, he couldn’t put Orton through a table. One year ago when Orton was WWE Champion, Barrett and The Viper squared-off at WWE Bragging Rights and again at Survivor Series for the title. However, the British grappler may have been more concerned with humiliating John Cena at the time and ultimately underestimated WWE’s Apex Predator. Tonight, inside the 1st Mariner Arena, Wade Barrett’s sole focus was on the third-generation Superstar, but he still couldn’t conquer The Viper. With an already sordid history between the two competitors, Barrett had built a fair share of momentum. After earning an underhanded victory against Orton on SmackDown, then leading Team Barrett to a triumph over Orton and his squad at Survivor Series, it seemed that momentum was clearly in favor of the “Barrett Barrage.” However, the inside of Orton’s head is a twisted and dangerous place, and it seemed that as Barrett stalked and taunted him over recent weeks, WWE’s Apex Predator simply became more enraged.
Battling in and out of the ring, there were a few moments where the WWE Universe held their breath, waiting for one of the Superstars to crash through a table. But as the action continued, Barrett proved his fighting spirit and toughness, but the unpredictability of Randy Orton proved to be too much. Perhaps it is that same unpredictability that gave WWE’s Apex Predator an edge. Barrett believed he was inside Orton’s head, but with each explosive blow dealt by the nine-time champion, it was clearly not the case. That impulsive attitude and competitive style of the third-generation Superstar is what led to Barrett’s demise at WWE TLC. At any time and RKO can strike and be devastating, but the bare-knuckled brawler learned it can be much worse when a table is involved. As Barrett dove from the middle-rope, trying to put Orton through the table, The Viper rolled out of the way and caught the British Superstar with a mid-air RKO that split the table in two. How will The “Barrett Barrage” rebound? Will he still have his sights set on Orton? Find out on SmackDown, this Friday at 8/7 CT only on Syfy.
WWE Tag Team Champions Air Boom def. Primo and Epico
Though they were lacking in momentum heading into WWE TLC, Air Boom overcame the onslaught of Primo and Epico to retain their WWE Tag Team Championships. The sly challengers tried their best to outwit Kofi Kingston and Evan Bourne early in the contest, but the champions held on to their titles after Kingston leveled Primo with Trouble in Paradise. The Puerto Rican pair, always accompanied by the beautiful Rosa Mendes, burst on the scene several weeks ago and immediately proved they deserved an opportunity at the top team prize in sports-entertainment. Primo and Epico showed they could keep up with the fast-paced, high-flying style of the champions since their debut. The cousins seemed to have Air Boom’s number, defeating them twice in title-free matches in the past week at Tribute to the Troops and on “WWE Superstars.” However, the WWE Tag Team Champions showed that the third time would not be a charm for the challengers. Now that the top contenders have been vanquished, the door is wide open for another team to step up and try to end Kingston and Bourne’s reign. There’s no doubt that Air Boom will be ready and willing to answer the challenge.
Zack Ryder def. Dolph Ziggler (New United States Champion)
Do we have a new United States Champion? Woo Woo Woo! You know it! At WWE TLC: Tables Ladders and Chairs, the self-proclaimed Internet Champion, Zack Ryder, finally won his first official WWE singles championship when he defeated Dolph Ziggler for the title previously held by 14 WWE Hall of Famers including Harley Race, Terry Funk, Sgt. Slaughter and Mr. Perfect. On the Dec. 5 edition of Raw SuperShow, Cena selflessly agreed to John Laurinaitis’ stipulation that The Cenation Commander-in-Chief forego a WWE Championship Match himself in order for Long Island Iced-Z to get one last opportunity to earn a United States Title bout. All Ryder needed to do was defeat Mr. Laurinaitis’ handpicked opponent, World Heavyweight Champion Mark Henry, in a match with no disqualifications and no count-outs! During the match, Cena charged the ring, took advantage of the stipulation and assured that Ryder won the contest. In doing so, Ryder finally won the opportunity to challenge Dolph for the United States Championship.
The night before WWE TLC at a WWE live event on Long Island’s Nassau Coliseum, Ryder was robbed of the United States Championship when Vickie dove in the ring to break up the three-count following a Rough Ryder on Ziggler. The Woo Woo Woo Kid won the match by disqualification but Ziggler remained champion. Members of The Ryder Revolution nearly rioted but took consolation that The Long Island Iced-Z would have another opportunity on pay-per-view. The New York Islanders may not win another NHL Stanley Cup anytime soon but perhaps the Nassau Coliseum can hang an orange and purple Zack Ryder United States Championship banner above center ice that includes #WWWYKIUSCHAMP as a tribute to the millions of WWE fans that made Zack Ryder a star via Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.