December 19, 2012
WWE delivers again with Tribute to the Troops
By MATT BISHOP - SLAM! Wrestling
WWE's annual holiday tradition rolls on for the 10th edition of Tribute to the Troops, producing several feel good moments on one of the most important nights of the year for the company. In the main event, John Cena faces off with Antonio Cesaro.
The show opens with Justin Roberts kicking it to the TitanTron for a message from United States President Barack Obama.
And we are TAPED! from Norfolk, Va. Michael Cole and John "Bradshaw" Layfield are our hosts. This show is presented in WWEHD (TV-PG,V).
Match #1 - Sheamus (Dublin, Ireland) & Randy Orton (St. Louis, Mo.) vs. Dolph Ziggler (Hollywood, Fla.) & The Big Show (Tampa, Fla.)
Hot start for Orton. He throws Ziggler over the top and then dropkicks Show off the apron. Show into the ring, upset, and Sheamus comes flying in and goes for a Brogue Kick but Show bails. Then Show and Ziggler take off and get counted out.
Before an official decision can announced, Booker T comes out and says the match will be restarted and will go until there is a decisive winner.
We're back and Sheamus and Orton are in control of Ziggler. Ziggler breaks free for a second and goes to tag Show, but Show hops off the apron, wanting no part of Sheamus, pretending to check his boots. Sheamus clobbers Ziggler some more, including hitting the clubbing blows. Orton in and he goes to work until Show gets in and he is doing well until his shoulder acts up. Ziggler in and he locks in a very feeble headlock as Orton is hurt. Show gets a tag as does Sheamus.
Sheamus goes to work on Show and knocks him down with a shoulder tackle. He goes to the top and comes down, but comes right into the choke slam. He breaks it and hits White Noise but Ziggler breaks it up, only to eat an RKO from Orton. Orton now lines Show up and hits it on him, too. Sheamus up and he drills Show with the Brogue Kick and that does it.
Winners via pinfall: Sheamus & Randy Orton
Next up is a performance from Flo Rida.
Match #2 - Alberto Del Rio (San Luis Potosi, Mexico) vs. Ryback (Sin City)
Ryback with a huge press slam to kick things off. Ricardo Rodriguez gets up on the apron and provides a distraction for Del Rio to jump in and land some kicks. However, that doesn't last long. Ryback gears up for the Meat Hook lariat but Rodriguez jumps on his back.
Winner via disqualification: Ryback
Ryback hits the Meat Hook on both Del Rio and Rodriguez and just for good measure, hits Shell Shock on Rodriguez. And then Del Rio gets one, too.
Up next is a performance from Kid Rock.
Match #3 - The Miz (Cleveland, Ohio) vs. Damien Sandow (Palo Alto, Calif.)
This match comes about from their confrontation earlier on Miz TV with Miss Piggy and Kermit. After going back and forth, The Miz picks up the win.
Winner via pinfall: The Miz
Flo Rida performs once again.
Match #4 - R-Truth (Charlotte, NC), Kane (Hell, Fire & Brimstone) & Daniel Bryan (Aberdeen, Wash.) vs. Heath Slater (Pineville, WV), Jinder Mahal (Nashville, India) & Drew McIntyre (Nashville, Scotland)
Bryan hits McIntyre with a knee off the apron, Kane choke slams Mahal and this one doesn't last long after Truth pins Slater with the Little Jimmy. Then Kane blows his pyro up.
Winners via pinfall: R-Truth, Kane & Daniel Bryan
Match #5 - Antonio Cesaro (Lucerne, Switzerland) vs. John Cena (West Newbury, Mass.)
Cesaro tries to take a walk, but of course that backfires. Crowd firmly behind Cena, who goes and knocks Cesaro down and brings him back to the ring. Cesaro, though, turns the tide and goes to work, sending Cena to the outside. While on the outside, he throws Cena into the steel steps.
Back in the ring, Cesaro hits a gut-wrench suplex and works a modified Cobra Clutch. Cena works back to a vertical base and they start slugging it out. Cena comes out of it and hits two shoulder tackles and a side suplex. He follows that with the Five Knuckle Shuffle and the Attitude Adjustment and that does it.
Winner via pinfall: John Cena