WWE Raw Report CALDWELL'S WWE RAW RESULTS 12/24: Christmas Eve episode features Cena vs. Del Rio cartoon brawl, Santa injury angle with "Owen Hart tone" throughout
Dec 24, 2012 - 11:03:54 PM
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WWE Raw Supershow Results
December 24, 2012 - Episode #1,021
Taped 12/18 in Pittsburgh, Pa.
Aired on USA Network
Report by James Caldwell, PWTorch assistant editor
This week's pre-taped three-hour Raw opened with the YouTube video of WWE stars singing a WWE version of Jingle Bells conducted by John Cena. This included animation of John Cena smashing C.M. Punk before lighting the WWE Christmas Tree.
Arena: Michael Cole introduced a special edition of Raw from Pittsburgh. In the ring, Justin Roberts introduced tonight's guest host Santa Claus. Out came Santa as Michael Cole tried to sing on commentary, drawing a reprimand from Jerry Lawler. Santa then dropped off the stage and handed out presents to fans around the side stage area.
Suddenly, Alberto Del Rio's music interrupted. As Ricardo Rodriguez walked out on-stage to introduce Del Rio, Del Rio's car of the week ran over Santa. Cole and Lawler sold with hushed tones as Del Rio walked out of his car over-selling being distraught about running over Santa. Ricardo, crying like a child, tried to console Del Rio as the crowd chanted, "You Killed Santa." One fan on the front row mocked the scene by mockingly crying, "Nooooo! Not Santa!" Cole then did more of the Owen Hart Has Died voice to sell Santa being "run over" by Del Rio. After a replay, they showed Del Rio still selling concern as Santa was placed on a stretcher and tended to by WWE medics. They stayed with Santa being stretchered away for a while before Santa threw up a thumbs up. Scared children in the crowd tried to muster applause for Santa as he was wheeled to the back.
Back from break, yellow police tape was surrounding the area where Santa was "run over" by Del Rio. Cole again used hushed tones to sell the "accident" as a replay aired. How did this angle make it past the bathroom stall where the idea was thought up?
Backstage: Wrestlers, Divas, and Teddy Long were shown selling concern as they waited for word on Santa. Booker T then walked out of the trainer's room and said things don't look good. "Ah no, what about the kids?" Titus O'Neil said. Booker said Santa would want the show to go on, then Del Rio barged in and got whistled by Titus. John Cena then tongue-in-cheek mocked Del Rio, who tried to defend himself. Booker calmed everyone down and claimed that Santa's final wish was to book Del Rio in a match tonight... a Miracle on 34th Street Fight against John Cena. Booker shouted at Cena to do it for Santa. Cena did the far-away look to draw inspiration before shouting, "Do it for Cena!" as Yoshi Tatsu cheered him on.
1 -- CODY RHODES vs. WWE tag champion KANE
The announcers sold trying to "move on" to call this match after Santa was "run over" at the top of the show. Cole noted Kane has a "special relationship" with Santa, making this tough for Kane. Two minutes in, Cody removed the top turnbuckle pad. Rhodes worked on Kane's left shoulder, then tried to remove another turnbuckle pad. He ended up distracting himself, as Kane came back with a one-hand chokeslam for the pin and the win.
WINNER: Kane at 5:55. Sloppy and it looked like both men were moving in slow-motion. The effect of so many shows over a series of three days was apparent here.
Royal Rumble plug: The Rock is coming in January.
2 -- KAITLYN & LAYLA & ALICIA FOX & NATALYA vs. Divas champion EVE & ROSA MENDES & TAMINA & AKSANA -- eight-Divas Santa's Little Helper tag match
After basic back and forth trying to get everyone involved, Kaitlyn pinned Eve to keep their Divas Title feud going. The face team stood tall in the ring to celebrate after the match.
WINNERS: Team Kaitlyn at 5:05.
Still to come: Big Show vs. Sheamus in a Lumberjack match.
Up Next: Santa Claus update. Cole dramatically hyped an update on Santa Claus on the other side of the break.
Backstage: WWE zoomed in on a Christmas Tree, fire, and presents, then showed Dolph Ziggler and A.J. Lee snuggled up next to the fire. A.J. got excited watching her "favorite Christmas movie," which was a clip of A.J. shoving John Cena off a ladder at TLC to help Ziggler win. Zigger and A.J. giggled about their new partnership, then resumed cuddling. The chemistry was just not there.
Announcers: Cole and Lawler recapped Santa getting "run over" by Del Rio. Lawler sang a tune about Santa getting run over by Del Rio. Cole said that's speculation. Huh? Cole then delivered an update in hushed tones that the North Pole has been informed of Santa's condition and they believe Santa will "kick out of this."
Trainer's Room: Matt Striker was shown sanding outside the trainer's room as a heart monitor beeped ominously in the background. Striker quietly said they hope to have an update later.
It's like WWE wanted to run a three-hour SNL sketch parodying themselves or a real-life Scooby-Doo cartoon, but they don't have the ability to pull either off.
In-ring: Mid-carders dressed in Santa hats made their way to ringside to serve as lumberjacks for Big Show vs. Sheamus.
This Wednesday: 20-man battle royal on Main Event. The winner will be #1 contender to U.S. champion Antonio Cesaro.
3 -- World Hvt. champion BIG SHOW vs. SHEAMUS -- non-title Lumberjack match
Big Show ducked an early Brogue Kick and bailed to the floor. He was in good hands standing next to heels, so they didn't touch him. Raw cut to break with Show regrouping on the floor.
Back on Raw, Show was in control. Show then applied a keylock and sang a song as he worked the hold. Show couldn't finish the song, though, as Sheamus fought back. Sheamus was then dumped to the outside, setting off a big mid-card brawl ringside. Back in the ring, Show headbutted Sheamus to restore order and resume control. Show tried to execute Ten Punches in the corner, but Sheamus ducked underneath and dropped Show with a giant Electric Chair that shook the ring.
Show resumed control moments later and screamed at lumberjack Santino, whose feelings were hurt. Clay consoled Santino, who did a sad-face before Show went back to attacking Sheamus. Show couldn't put away a resilient Sheamus, though. Sheamus delivered White Noise, but Show kicked out of a pin in-time. Show then avoided a Brogue Kick and dumped Sheamus over the top rope, setting off another mid-card brawl. Tensai eventually rolled Sheamus back into the ring, where Show missed with a big KO Punch and turned into a Brogue Kick. Show fell over like a tree, then Sheamus pinned him for the win.
After the bell rang, all of the jacks hit the ring for another big brawl. The faces cleared out the heels, then celebrated with Sheamus.
WINNER: Sheamus at 16:02. Another solid match between Show and Sheamus. (**1/2)
Announcers: Cole provided an obvious voice-over inserted into the broadcast to plug a video recap of this year's Tribute to the Troops show. This led to a long recap of the Miz TV segment with Kermit the Frog and Miss Piggy.
Tonight: Cena vs. Del Rio in a Miracle on 34th Street Fight.
Friday on Smackdown: The Shield's mission for justice continues after they took out Sin Cara and Rey Mysterio last week.
In-ring: David Otunga was standing by to introduce himself to the crowd. Otunga said he's here to comment on the events involving Santa and Alberto Del Rio earlier tonight. Otunga accused the crowd of pre-judging the facts. He said there's a case to be made that Del Rio is the victim because he was fulfilling his contractual obligations as a WWE star. Whereas, Santa is guilty of working without a permit, trespassing, and other offenses. Zack Ryder then interrupted and said Del Rio ran right over Santa.
4 -- DAVID OTUNGA vs. ZACK RYDER
Cole continued to sell Santa's "injuries" by saying, "Man, I hope he pulls through," trying to do his job selling this angle. As the match unfolded, the announcers traded lawyer jokes, reflecting Vince McMahon mocking the profession of anyone who holds him accountable. The announcers then mocked Ryder as Otunga dominated him. Ryder teased a comeback, then delivered a missile dropkick to take control. Ryder followed with a Broski Boot that missed Otunga's head. Ryder then hit Rough Ryder moments later for the pin and the win.
WINNER: Ryder at 4:42. Faces continue to pick up wins on this Christmas Eve episode.
Backstage: Booker T and Teddy Long were shown watching the TV monitor. They excitedly talked about Otunga losing again, then Brad Maddox walked in with his personal cameraman. Maddox said he heard Booker wants to give him a contract, and he won't let him down. Booker reminded Maddox that he sucked last week, but said he will give him another shot...against one of Santa's elves. Booker said he's sure it will make for great television, just like Maddox wants. Booker told Teddy to wait until he sees this, then laughed.
5 -- IC champion KOFI KINGSTON & THE MIZ vs. U.S. champion ANTONIO CESARO & WADE BARRETT
The announcers noted they never thought they would see Kofi and Miz team up after their recent feud. As Miz started things off for the face team, the announcers talked up Miz's big 2013 with a theatrical movie and TV movie on the horizon. Kofi then tagged in and drove Barrett to the outside for a breather. Barrett re-entered the ring and quickly tagged in Cesaro to lock up with Kofi. Cole enhanced Cesaro by saying he put up a good fight against Ryback last Tuesday on Smackdown.
Tags to Barrett and Miz, who unloaded on Wade with right hands. Kofi then kicked Barrett in the head from the outside, which set up Miz to deliver Skullcrushing Finale to Barrett. Miz pinned Barrett for the win to keep Barrett's losing streak going. After the match, Cesaro yelled at Barrett for losing as they exited the ringside area.
WINNERS: Kofi & Miz at 7:01. Face-heavy victories continues.
Up Next: Update on Santa Claus.
Backstage: A.J. Lee and Dolph Ziggler continued to celebrate Christmas. A.J. presented Ziggler with his Christmas present - the Money in the Bank briefcase. Ziggler seductively asked how he can ever repay A.J. for helping him retain the briefcase. Before they kissed, A.J. removed her robe to reveal another "present." It was a cut-up version of Ziggler's t-shirt. Their noses rubbed up next to each other, but no kiss.
Announcers: Cole again sold concern over Santa's condition as Lawler acted dejected. Cole then fed to a replay of the opening segment when Del Rio "ran over" Santa in his car. "An absolutely shocking turn of events," Cole said in hushed tones. Cole said there was a glimmer of hope when Santa gave a thumbs up.
Backstage: Striker provided an update that there's not a lot to report about Santa's condition as the heart monitor continued to beep in the background.
On-stage: Brad Maddox sang his way out to the ring. "Happy Holidays, ladies," Brad casually said as he leaned against the ring leading to break.
In-ring: Back from break, Hornswoggle's music played to bring out Hornswoggle. Lawler said this will be too easy for Maddox. But, Swoggle stopped mid-way down the ramp and brought out Great Khali, who was dressed as a giant elf.
6 -- BRAD MADDOX vs. GREAT KHALI (w/Hornswoggle) -- Maddox wins a WWE contract if he wins
Maddox ducked Khali and slapped him, shouting, "You're not an elf." Khali responded with a chop to the head before slapping Maddox across the chest. And again. A third knocked Maddox out of the ring, where Swoggle could have gotten Khali DQ'ed and given Maddox a contract by splashing Maddox with his butt. But, the ref did not call for a DQ, so the match continued in the ring.
Maddox managed to land offense, then he stopped to do a Hogan pose while leaning next to Khali. Maddox tried to follow with a second-rope move, but Khali slapped him in mid-air. Khali made his comeback, then dropped Maddox with the Punjabi Plunge for the pin and the win. After the match, Khali took the mic and offered Merry Christmas and Happy New Year before selling confusion. Khali then danced to make everything right.
WINNER: Khali at 3:11. Maddox's quest continues on Smackdown.
Backstage: WWE champion C.M. Punk and Paul Heyman were shown walking down the hallway, with Punk on crutches. Punk speaks next.
On-stage: Just before the top of the hour, Punk's music played to bring out the WWE champion and Paul Heyman. As Punk hobbled to the ring, Cole plugged Punk vs. Ryback for the WWE Title on the first Raw of 2013 on January 7. Punk struggled to make his entrance into the ring, shouting at Heyman to do something about it. Punk eventually entered the ring and hobbled to the middle of the ring to begin a promo.
Punk joked around a bit, then paused for a "Here We Go Steelers" chant. Punk mocked the Steelers, shook his head, and said Christmas has been ruined. For once, it's not his fault. He said it's the very serious situation that has developed involving his injury. Punk told the crowd to boo Ryback, not himself. He said Ryback tore his knee up and now he can't even walk without the use of crutches. So, what do they do with someone who ruined Christmas and Hannukah? Fire him? Suspend him? Fine him? No, no punishment. He gets rewarded with a title match. Punk said he could maybe understand if it were proven that he worked with Brad Maddox or The Shield in previous title matches, but that has not been proven. Punk said Ryback is living a lie and believing his own crap. Punk then heeled on the crowd for being drunk and bar-hoppers around this time of the year.
Paul Heyman took the mic next and told the crowd not to boo Punk. He said Punk has been the reigning, defending WWE champion for 400 days. And throughout his title reign, Punk has been victimized by a documented conspiracy to take away the WWE Title. Heyman said if you don't believe him, just look at Ryback, who has been given two excellent opportunities to take away the WWE Title, but he has failed each time.
Punk spoke next, telling Ryback to listen up. He said he's better than Ryback on one leg, one arm, two legs, an amputated leg, or any other circumstance. Ryback's music interrupted to bring out Ryback to confront Punk on his claims. Heyman reminded Ryback that Punk is not medically cleared to wrestle and they will sue Ryback for assault if he touches Punk. Ryback said he doesn't need to lay a finger on Punk because if Punk is physically able in two weeks, they will wrestle for the WWE Title...in a TLC match - the match they were originally supposed to have. Punk shook his head no as Ryback repeated, "T-L-C," which he turned into a crowd chant. Punk and Heyman then slipped out of the ring as Ryback eyed the WWE champion.
7 -- WWE tag champion DANIEL BRYAN vs. DAMIEN SANDOW
After the bell sounded, Sandow demanded silence, but Bryan shouted, "No!" in his face. This continued for several exchanges before Sandow bailed from the ring, where he accepted a baseball slide kick from Bryan. Back in the ring, Sandow dominated as Cole and Lawler bantered about Christmas presents. Sandow dropped the Elbow of Disdain, then wanted his neckbreaker finisher, but Bryan turned it into the No! Lock. Sandow fought the hold momentarily, but tapped out.
WINNER: Bryan at 5:38. Basic TV match to set up another face victory.
Up Next: The 12 men who brawled during the earlier lumberjack match will be in a 12-man tag match up next.
8 -- BRODUS CLAY & JUSTIN GABRIEL & TYSON KIDD & SANTINO & THE USOS vs. PRIME TIME PLAYERS & 3MB & TENSAI -- 12-man tag match
Brodus Clay got his ring entrance on the way back from break to join the other 11 wrestlers already in the ring for the match. The heels controlled the match early on, working on Uso. Tensai mocked the Usos's chant, then the heels continued their in and out tags. Uso eventually broke free and tagged in Uso, who dropped Slater with quick offense. Uso nailed a running butt bomb, which brought several people into the ring for another brawl.
More wrestlers entered the ring for the next wave of brawling. Tensai then ate the Cobra from Santino, but Santino ate a DDT from Slater. But, Uso superkicked Slater. Gabriel then nailed a springboard moonsault, Kidd dropped a springboard elbow, and Uso came off the top rope with a big splash on Slater for the pin and the win. Cue up another babyface celebration to close out the match segment.
WINNERS: Team Usos at 6:15.
[Commercial Break. During the break, a local ad for Raw in Houston on Jan. 14 officially advertised the show as the 20th Anniversary of Raw. No special stars were advertised; just the current roster stars.]
Announcers: Cole reset the show and plugged the Cena vs. Del Rio main event.
Backstage: Daniel Bryan was shown talking to Kane about how great it was that they won their matches tonight. Bryan said Christmas is his favorite day of the year tomorrow, but Kane said he hates Christmas. However, he got Bryan a present. Kane puled out a box and presented Bryan with his own Slammy. Bryan said this is awesome. He also got Kane a present. Bryan disappeared, then returned with a small dog. Kane wasn't sure what to make of it, then said he's starving. "No!" Bryan shouted, saying animals are their friends, not food. Bryan stomped off.
Backstage: A.J. Lee read a story to Dolph Ziggler as they sat next to a fire. A.J. ripped Cena, Vickie, Punk, Bryan, and Kane, but mostly Cena. A.J. then rhymed about Ziggler, saying he's the man who stuffs her stocking. Ziggler approached A.J. for a kiss, but A.J. pushed her away under the mistletoe. They then made out, knocking over the Christmas Tree and giggling.
Off-stage: WWE showd the "crime scene" where Santa was "run over" by Del Rio. Cole talked in hushed tones about it being an extremely disturbing scene. Cole asked what this means for everyone around the world wondering if Santa will be able to deliver presents this year. "Will Santa Claus make it?" Cole quietly asked.
Backstage: More of the heart monitor beeping. Striker said Santa has taken a turn for the worst and is being prepared for a trip to a local medical facility. Suddenly, the heart monitor's beeping turned into a Christmas carol ringtone. Santa's feet were shown clicking together before WWE cut to the ring.
In-ring: John Cena was introduced for the main event as Cole excitedly said there's hope. Cena entered the ring, then WWE cut to break as Lawler said Cena hopes to save Christmas next.
On-stage: Ricardo Rodriguez came out on-stage to introduce Alberto Del Rio, who walked on-stage and looked at the "crime scene" where his vehicle was resting after he "ran over" Santa. As Del Rio came to the ring, Cole recapped the segment at the top of the show when Santa was "injured" and it was "very touch and go" for a few moments.
9 -- JOHN CENA vs. ALBERTO DEL RIO -- Miracle on 34th Street Fight
After the bell sounded, Cena yelled at Del Rio for running over Santa, but Del Rio continued to plead with Cena that it was an accident. Del Rio shoved Cena, so Cena knocked Del Rio to the outside. They brawled on the floor, then returned to the ring with Del Rio in control. Del Rio asked for a mic, and said he did not try to hurt Santa, then popped Cena in the head with the mic. Del Rio said he likes Christmas, then tried to smash Cena with the mic again, but Cena blocked and shouted, "Santa!" into the mic before kicking Del Rio to the mat.
On the outside, Cena opened a present and found a steel chair. In the ring, Cena popped Del Rio with the chair before Ricardo interfered. Ricardo led Cena on a chase that led Cena into a right hand from Del Rio. Ricardo then retrieved another present and handed it to Del Rio, who received a pie. Del Rio tried to use the pie on Cena, but Cena ducked and Ricardo ate the pie.
Cena followed with trademark offense to Del Rio before throwing him through the ropes to the floor. On the outside, Cena punched Del Rio up the ramp to the stage. Cena looked at the boxes under the Christmas Tree and unwrapped a TV monitor. Cena used it as a weapon, knocking down Del Rio leading to break.
Back from break, Del Rio was in control as Cena sold on the stage. Del Rio then opened another present, which was a soft teddy bear. Del Rio, annoyed, angrily held it up in the air before mock throwing it at Cena's chest to try to "inflict punishment." Cena mockingly no-sold the teddy bear shot to the chest before dumping a giant box over Ricardo's head. Del Rio then blasted Cena down the entrance ramp back toward the ring. But, Cena reversed a whip into the guardrail before heading back to the stage. Cena retrieved the Christmas Tree upon the audience's request, then dragged it down the stage to drop on Del Rio's head.
Lawler quoted Clark W. Griswold as Cena walked back up the stage, where he opened a present with a bowling ball. Suddenly, Cena spotted his target, warmed up his bowling hand, measured Del Rio, and rolled the bowling ball down the ramp into Del Rio's crotch. Cena then opened another Christmas present at ringside, which contained a fire extinguisher.
Back in the ring, Del Rio begged off, but Cena sprayed Del Rio with the extinguisher. Suddenly, Ricardo re-entered the ring and hopped on Cena's back with a sleeperhold. But, Santa's music suddenly played. Out came Santa after recovering over the course of three hours. Ricardo excitedly met Santa ringside, but Santa popped him in the head with his sack. Santa then delivered Socko to Del Rio, who spun backward into Cena for an Attitude Adjustment. Cena covered Del Rio for the win.
WINNER: Cena at 14:50. A cartoon version of a Street Fight to conclude a cartoony episode of Raw.
Post-match: Santa sold shock that helped Cena win as he continued to flash the Mandible Claw hand gesture. In the ring, Cena celebrated for the crowd before Santa entered the ring and tossed presents into the crowd. Cole wished everyone a Merry Christmas as Cena and Santa hugged to conclude Raw three minutes past the top of the hour.
FINAL THOUGHT: If the target demographic was young children and the young-at-heart, how many of those people were still awake at 11:00 EST to see the payoff to Santa getting run over by seeing Santa "kick out?" And, how many poor kids in Pittsburgh left the TV taping before the start of the FIFTH HOUR thinking Santa was a goner? It's one thing to be tongue in cheek, but it's another thing to poorly execute it and turn away adults and frighten children without a resolution during their viewing window.
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