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CALDWELL'S WWE TLC PPV RESULTS 12/15: Live, in-person coverage of Cena vs. Orton unification match from Houston

Dec 15, 2013 - 9:45:03 PM
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WWE TLC PPV in-person results
December 15, 2013
Houston, Tex. at Toyota Center
Report by James Caldwell, PWTorch assistant editor


The arena is set up for 10,000 minus trapped off section for the pre-show studio panel of Mick Foley, Booker T, and The Miz.

During the pre-show, an interesting promo for The Shield aired where they dropped a seemingly out-of-left-field Rock reference.

Fandango came out for the pre-show match and opined on Texas line-dancing versus his dancing. Apparently WWE saving the easy Texans NFL material for the actual PPV. Dolph Ziggler was out next as the opposition.

A -- DOLPH ZIGGLER vs. FANDANGO (w/Summer Rae)

Lots of nearfalls early on got the crowd involved and playing along. Ziggler wanted the Zig-Zag, but Fandango blocked and hit the top-rope legdrop for a surprise three count. Afterward, Ziggler remained out cold in the ring for several moments to keep selling until the crowd cheered him to the back.

WINNER: Fandango at 4:21.

Of note, both title belts are hanging above the ring for the TLC main event.

Return date is Tuesday, March 18 for a Smackdown taping on the way to WM30. Pre-sale password is HOUSTON.

The pre-show ended with a backstage shot of Triple H, then Stephanie McMahon, then Mr. McMahon emerging from a limo. Strategic placement at the end of the free pre-show.

MAIN PPV RESULTS

The PPV opened with Triple H's music to bring out Hunter and Stephanie on-stage. Steph opened with hype for "history" tonight for WWE and pro wrestling. The crowd interjected "Yes!" chants for Daniel Bryan. Triple H then hyped the history of WWE and World champions. Tonight, Orton or Cena is The Man. Steph closed by saying they will determine the WWE World Hvt. champion in the main event.

A video package on top champions through history played. Tonight, the future will be revealed.

1 - C.M. PUNK vs. THE SHIELD - handicap match

Punk won by pinning Ambrose after Reigns missed Punk with a spear and smashed Ambrose. Reigns was tended to by the ringside doctor for the last five minutes before ref Chioda signaled him back in the ring for the finish.

WINNER: Punk at 13:42. Very crowd-friendly match putting Punk in jeopardy from the start and giving him a treacherous mountain to climb. Also, covered for Shield's loss by teasing more problems in the group.

2 - Divas champion A.J. LEE (w/Tamina Snuka) vs. NATALYA - Divas Title match

Before the match, A.J. cut a backstage promo saying everything is a joke - the Divas division, the audience, Total Divas, and the Slammys. The crowd was into the match by the end, which featured teased submissions to the Sharpshooter, but A.J. escaped each attempt and scored a pin for the win.

WINNER: A.J. Lee at 6:35 to retain the Divas Title. Surprising outcome following the Michelle Beadle news out today. Apparently no change in plans tonight since A.J. was the heavy betting favorite before today.

Big E. dropped the straps and nailed the Big Ending for the win. Straps and finish was over, but not much else.

WINNER: Langston at 6:28 to retain IC Title. Crowd didn't get into this one. Cold match with a babyface who isn't there yet.

Backstage: Mr. McMahon walked up to WWE champion Randy Orton to shake his hands. No audio in the arena.

4 - WWE tag champions GOLDUST & CODY RHODES vs. REAL AMERICANS vs. BIG SHOW & REY MYSTERIO vs. RYBACK & CURTIS AXEL - four-team match for Tag Titles

If WWE figured out what to do with Ryback and if he could develop cardio, he could be a big star for WWE again. Music and pre-match posing a la Brock Lesnar got the crowd fired up and energized. Biggest pre-match pop for Rhodes Bros. as the last team out.

Axel & Ryback were eliminated at 6:11 when Goldust pinned Ryback. Before the finish, Show got in three frying pan-like chops on Axel to get the crowd involved early on.

Real Americans dominated the next segment, isolating Goldust for several minutes. Built up a ton of heat for Big Show to eventually to get the tag. Show took care of the Americans with two KO Punches to pin Cesaro at 14:40. Very nice segment.

So, face vs. face for the final fall. Show showed good sportsmanship to Goldust before the final segment started. They built to Cody and Rey having a terrific finishing sequence that ended with Cross Rhodes for Rey for the pin and the win. Afterward, both teams showed the respect.

WINNERS: Rhodes Bros. at 21:05. Very nice three-segment structure. Good showcase for Cody at the end and WWE conserved Rey for the end after he fidgeted with his kneebrace for the first 15 minutes.

Backstage: Prime Time Players hyped a Rock brawling buddy. Great Khali then entered to hype a buddy. El Torito then jumped in before Vickie Guerrero entered to boos, followed by Brad Maddox. Vickie and Brad acted like five-year-olds until Kane's music interrupted. Kane scolded them for their behavior, then destroyed a Cena buddy.

5- BRODUS CLAY (w/Tensai, Cameron, and Naomi) vs. R-TRUTH (w/Xavier Woods)

Mass exodus to the concessions and restrooms at the start of this match half-way through the show. Tensai, Cameron, and Naomi couldn't take it any longer and decided to leave ringside, causing Clay to throw a fit and get rolled up by Truth. Clay showed more bad attitude afterward.

WINNER: Truth at 6:02. How this landed on PPV is incomprehensible.

Backstage, Mr. McMahon greeted World champion John Cena. Cena did not spontaneously combust.

For the next filler "bonus match," Kofi Kingston was introduced first followed by The Miz.

6 - KOFI KINGSTON vs. THE MIZ - No DQ match

The crowd chanted for tables early on, becoming restless by the lack of tables, ladders, and chairs six matches through a TLC-branded PPV. The restless crowd picked up "boring" and more "table" chants before they frantically went to the finish, which was Kofi winning with Trouble in Paradise.

WINNER: Kofi at 8:02. And Miz retains the title of Least Tough character on the roster. Another bland match filling the middle of the show. WWE has the roster, but if they don't build up the wrestlers and give them real purpose, you end up with matches like the last two.

7 - DANIEL BRYAN vs. THE WYATTS - handicap match

The crowd was initially hot for Bryan after the last two matches, but WWE lost this crowd from the previous two matches, sending the crowd into self-entertainment and not investing in the story of Bray trying to convince Bryan to join them.

Bryan got the crowd back with a top-rope suplex to Luke Harper before landing Yes! kicks. Then, Yes! kicks to Erick Rowan. But, Bray blocked the Yes! Lock and eventually transitioned to Sister Abigail for the pin and the win. Afterward, the Wyatts posed over Bryan to end the match segment.

WINNERS: Wyatts at 12:24. Strategic to have Bryan lose the match before the main event to take the wind of the sails of Bryan sentiment in the title picture.

After the match, the ring crew bright out a plethora of weapons for the TLC main event.

8 - WWE World Hvt. champion JOHN CENA vs. WWE champion RANDY ORTON -- TLC unification match

During ring introductions, two production members were quickly dispatched to the floor seats facing the hard camera to rip away a sign. The match then started with loud dueling chants for and against Cena.

They set up a big false finish 13 minutes in where Cena knocked Orton through a table on the floor, but took too long showboating, which allowed Orton enough time to recover and pull Cena down from the ladder and nail an RKO.

For the next phase, they moved to the outside for some floor-based brawling. Orton then missed on a Punt and took an AA through the Spanish announce table. Back in the ring, Cena found himself hanging on the belts when Orton kicked the ladder out. So, Orton treated like Cena like a piñata and chair-shotted him down to the mat.

Orton then pulled out the trusty old handcuffs to cuff Cena to the bottom rope. Orton taunted Cena with the key, then chucked it toward the sound booth. Orton proceeded to retrieve a ladder, taunt Cena, and climb. But Cena unhooked the turnbuckle and smashed Orton with it, which the crowd ate up. But Orton responded by shoving Cena down hard and awkwardly to the mat. Orton then slowly climbed the ladder and unhooked the entire deal holding both title belts to win clean.

WINNER: Orton at 24:36 to become Undisputed champion. All of the red herrings and non-clean PPV main event finishes set up a surprisingly decisive outcome here. Result is putting someone on the chase heading into Mania season. If match outcomes matter, then Punk is the only candidate who won tonight. Unless WWE enlists a part-timer.

Post-match: Cena sold various injuries and was helped out of the ring by six or seven refs. Mr. McMahon's music then played to bring out McMahon, Triple H, and Stephanie to pose with Orton, their hand-picked champion. More posing and smiling from The Authority to close the PPV. The McMahons eventually left the ring to leave Orton alone in the ring as his music played out.

***

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