WWE Tribute for the Troops 12/13/11
1. Randy Orton vs. Wade Barrett - 4
2. Zack Ryder vs. Jack Swagger – 2
3. Maria Menounos/Eve Torres/Kelly Kelly/Alicia Fox vs. Bella Twins/Natalya/Beth Phoenix – 3
4. Daniel Bryan vs. Cody Rhodes – 4
5. Epico/Primo vs. Air Boom – 4
6. Sheamus vs. Drew McIntyre – 3
7. John Cena/CM Punk/Big Show vs. Alberto Del Rio/The Miz/Mark Henry – 4
Liked the physicality of the opener even if it had a "fuck finish" to set up their PPV match later that week. Ryder gets another squash and former champ Swagger looks like a jackass. Women's match kept short and Menounous comes off bigger than the Divas. Surprised champ Phoenix had to take the fall, though. Bryan sold his rib damage well but not as good as their past work and finish was a lame roll-up due to Booker T interference (although Booker and Cody's little skirmish post-match looked good and gave me hope for their match at TLC '11). Nice to see the heels go over clean, especially on a Tribute to the Troops show, since heels rarely win here, either Bourne being further punished for smoking fake pot or creative is actually behind the new duo. Either way I'm happy. Quick Sheamus squash but stiff -- need more McIntyre on my TV. Main event was fun, you could tell those guys were enjoying themselves, which in part, helps you enjoy it more. Finish run was hot with a bunch of big moves but disappointed to see Henry, who's been booked so strong and never pinned, beat twice in the span of 8 days on TV. This was the first year I fast-forwarded over all the patriotic pandering -- does that make me a bad American?
TNA Impact Wrestling 12/15/11
1. Bobby Roode vs. AJ Styles - 4
2. Bobby Roode vs. AJ Styles - 2
3. Scott Steiner/Abyss vs. Rob Terry/Hernandez –3
4. Zema Ion vs. Anthony Nese – 3
5. Jesse Neal vs. Gunner - 1
6. Samoa Joe/Magnus vs. Douglas Williams/Robbie E – 3
7. Madison Rayne vs. Traci Brooks – 2
8. Jeff Hardy vs. Bully Ray – 3
Opener was the five-minute restart we should have gotten on the PPV after their time-limit draw. It was actually a really damn good 5 min. with the highlight being AJ somehow hitting the Pelé kick from out on the floor on Roode while he was standing in the ring. Second "match" was really just a restart after nobody won but Bobby just took out Styles' leg from behind and made him tap. Not much as a standalone segment but in portraying Roode as despicable creep great. Next was the first of a new "Wild Card" tag tournament -- think a neutered Lethal Lottery. Steiner continues quietly being one of the best things about watching TNA. Nice to see Ion and Nese get a little TV time too bad the match blew. Zema going heel seems rushed and forced.
Neal's final TNA appearance as he got canned and they don't even let Gunner get a pin? Gunner gets a DQ but does DDT Jesse on the concrete floor which brought back memories of Roberts and Steamboat. Nice seeing Joe booked somewhat strong as he was a monster here, and I liked Magnus showing some backbone pre-match backstage telling Joe he didn't need friendship either. Rayne finally gets a win after losing all her credibility post-championship run. Brooks looks like a nightmarish evil scientist creation. Main event didn't even break 5 min. and didn't resonate at all. As soon as banged up Hardy returned all of Ray's push sizzled out. It took two Twist of Fates to finish him but he was still squashed here. My favorite segment was easily Eric Young finding out his partner in the Wild Card tournament was ODB backstage and their banter together, ODB flapping her own tits, "You like these?", etc. just comedic gold.