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CALDWELL'S WWE SURVIVOR SERIES PPV RESULTS 11/21: Complete "virtual time" coverage of live PPV - Cena's decision, six title matches

Nov 21, 2010 - 9:56:39 PM
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WWE Survivor Series PPV Results
November 21, 2010
Miami, Fla.
Report by James Caldwell, PWTorch assistant editor


Monday through Friday, join Wade Keller or James Caldwell and a guest co-host for the PWTorch Livecast, featuring live callers, live chat room questions, and conversation on the latest breaking news in pro wrestling from WWE, TNA, and other organizations. The show launched in late-December 2009 and is already one of the top sports talk shows at the Blog Talk Radio network.

***

The 24th Survivor Series opened with a video package on Old School Survivor Series moments (and logos), starting with the main event from Survivor Series 1987 leading to more recent clips. They transitioned into John Cena's dilemma and his "WWE life" on the line tonight. Splinter's voice could be heard in the form of Roddy Piper telling Cena not to spit in his face. The video included clips of Cena sitting in an empty arena contemplating his future. Also, Cena sitting on the ring apron contemplating what to do. It's Orton vs. Barrett with Cena as special referee in the main event.

Arena: Michael Cole introduced the show and noted Survivor Series is the second longest-running WWE PPV. Justin Roberts then introduced the first match of the PPV for the U.S. Title as Cole set things up with Jerry Lawler and Matt Striker. Ted DiBiase was out first with Maryse and Cole noted DiBiase is looking for his first major singles title in WWE. Daniel Bryan then came out to defend the U.S. Title and the announcers started bickering. And bickering.

1 -- U.S. champion DANIEL BRYAN vs. TED DIBIASE (w/Maryse) -- U.S. Title match

DiBiase and Bryan started trading holds, then the lights suddenly turned out. Bryan and DiBiase kept wrestling, then the lights came back on a few seconds later. Bryan landed a kick strike to the gut that cleared DiBiase to the apron, but DiBiase came back with a suplex clear over the top rope dropping Bryan to the floor. Back in the ring, DiBiase landed an elbow smash while Bryan was draped across the ring apron and the announcers noted DiBiase's new aggression post-Goldust situation.

DiBiase settled into a side headlock as the crowd chanted for Bryan. Cole and Striker bickered some more regarding Bryan before Bryan landed a double foot kick to the chest that decked DiBiase. Bryan then landed trademark kick strikes and backflipped over DiBiase to land another blow. Bryan proceeded to smash DiBiase to the outside and immediately followed with a suicide dive onto DiBiase. Bryan immediately began selling a right shoulder injury before rolling DiBiase back in the ring. Bryan went up top and landed a signature double foot thrust kick to the chest that resulted in a two count. Bryan continued to sell the right shoulder before landing multiple kick strikes to the chest. And some more. DiBiase grabbed Bryan's leg, but Bryan countered into a small package for a two count. Bryan teased the LeBell Lock, but DiBiase blocked and smashed Bryan with a clothesline for a two count. Pause for everyone to catch their breath.

DiBiase fired himself up and kind of started doing a Randy Orton IED pump-up before attempting Dream Street. Bryan rolled out, though, and scored a nearfall while maintaining contact. DiBiase followed with a spinebuster once they broke contact and scored another nearfall. DiBiase then pounded on Bryan with right hands, but Bryan countered a top turnbuckle offensive attempt into a super back drop as they seemed to float in the air for several moments. Bryan scored a nearfall, then tried the LeBell Lock, but DiBiase countered into a corner catapult for a nearfall. Bryan then immediately transitioned into the LeBell Lock out of nowhere and DiBiase was forced to tap out, giving Bryan the win. Cole said he doesn't get it.

WINNER: Bryan at 9:58 to retain the U.S. Title. Excellent opening match. Bryan showed those marketable gritty babyface characteristics while DiBiase showed a more aggressive in-ring side that's been missing form his singles run. (***)

Post-match: Bryan went back to selling the shoulder while receiving the U.S. Title belt in victory while Maryse sold frustration ringside. They replayed the high points of the match before Bryan celebrated on the way out. Suddenly, The Mi zand Daniel Bryan jumped Bryan from behind with the MITB briefcase. Miz then sauntered to the ring as the lights faded out on him. Light issues tonight.

Miz, from Cleveland, cut a promo on Miami since they took LeBron James. He said Nexus is similar to the Heat in that they're "hopelessly mediocre." More local heel promo before equating James to Wade Barrett. He said James feels he's entitled to a championship, like Barrett. Miz said James needs to go back to Cleveland and apologize. A chant of "Let's go Heat" interrupted. Miz then said he's tired of carrying the MITB briefcase, so, right now, it's not a matter of if, but when. The lights faded out again as Miz said the audience are all witnesses to his awesomeness.

Backstage: After a video package on the Sheamus vs. John Morrison feud, they cut to Sheamus standing by with Josh Mathews for a pre-match interview. He mocked Morrison calling him a bully and said Morrison must be jealous of him being a former and soon-to-be WWE champion. Sheamus vowed to break Morrison's will and body. Cole said from ringside he believes him.

In-ring: Sheamus came out first as Lawler told a story about bullying everyone in high school. And this is their babyface commentator voice. Cole continued to talk up Sheamus while heeling on Morrison, who came out second and threw his jacket across the ring to show he meant business.

2 -- SHEAMUS vs. JOHN MORRISON

Sheamus opened with a slap to the face that fired up Morrison, who landed a head scissors and dropkcik sending Sheamus to the outside. Morrison then nailed a corkscrew plancha on the floor and landed right hand strikes to the jaw. Sheamus shoved Morrison into the barricade, though, followed by a Polish Hammer to the face. Back in the ring, Sheamus resumed control of the action and cut off Morrison's comeback attempts. Sheamus deliberately slowed down the pace and did his Ronald McDonald smile to the crowd, which drew boos. Sheamus became upset moments later and showed a change of emotion pounding on Morrison with clubbing forearms to the back. Morrison fired back with big right hand strikes before hitting a cross-body block from the top rope. Sheamus rolled through, though, and landed a front slam for a two count.

At 6:00, Sheamus turned evil and measured Morrison for the Brogue Kick, but Morrison ducked and hit an enziguiri. Both men fell to the mat, then came to their feet trading bombs. Morrison then nailed successive clotheslines followed by a leg whip for a two count. Moments later, Morrison ran into Sheamus, who dropped him with the Irish Curse backbreaker for a nearfall. Morrison and Sheamus traded control a bit before Sheamus began focusing on Morrison's left knee to cut off his aerial attack.

Morrison suddenly decked Sheamus in the corner and wanted Starship Pain, but Sheamus grabbed Morrison and teased the Irish Curse. Morrison escaped, though, then avoided the Brogue Kick for a second time. Morrison nailed the flash kick before hitting a flying knee strike to the chin for the pin and the win. Striker sent a message to the kids at home to fight back against bullies, like Morrison did against Sheamus.

WINNER: Morrison at 11:11. Good singles match at times. It's not clear if this is a sign of Morrison in line for a stronger babyface push on Raw or just receiving a victory as part of bullying being a hot topic and Sheamus getting his comeuppance. (**)

Backstage: Cena was pacing around in the locker room looking a bit worn. R-Truth then walked in and Cena cut him off. Cena wanted to know what's up. No, not that what's up. Truth said he has a solution. Truth said Nexus is banned from ringside, but he is not. Truth suggested something could "accidentally" happen to Randy Orton. Cena smiled and said that sounds great...then changed emotion to saying, "No way!" Cena said he made a promise to call it down the middle. He said that's the truth. R-Truth said he'll believe it when he sees it. More drama leading to the main event.

In-ring: Kaval came out first for the IC Title match up next. Before Dolph Ziggler came out, they replayed Kaval's surprise victory over Ziggler on Smackdown this Friday setting up the title match tonight. Cole said he thinks Friday was a fluke. Vickie Guerrero then came out on stage, excused herself, and introduced the greatest Intercontinental champion. Out came Ziggler acting cocky pointing to the IC Title belt around his waist. Cole and Lawler gave shout-outs to various U.S. military bases around the world watching Survivor Series on AFN.

3 -- IC champion DOLPH ZIGGLER (w/Vickie Guerrero) vs. KAVAL -- Intercontinental Title match

Cole did his NXT Season 2 anti-Internet spiel to begin the match as Kaval quickly scored a one count on Ziggler. Ziggler then scored a one count and they began exchanging control of the match. Ziggler settled into control of the match as the announcers filled air time with worthless banter. Kaval then popped Ziggler with a kick strike before coming off the top rope with a springboard moonsault for a two count. Someone was bleeding, as Kaval had a touch of blood on his upper chest. Kaval then absolutely blasted Ziggler in the corner with a springboard kick strike as Ziggler seemed to be looking to counter the move. Kaval communicated with Ziggler, rolled him over, and scored a nearfall.

Kaval wanted a top rope attack, flung Ziggler to the mat, and measured Ziggler for twisting corkscrew plancha, but Ziggler moved. Kaval landed on his feet anyways and scored a nearfall on a small package. Ziggler then came back with the Fameasser for a two count. They reset as Vickie screamed at Ziggler to finish him. Ziggler tried the sleeperhold, but Kaval escaped, then ran off the top turnbuckle and hit a turnaround flying kick for a two count. Nice sequence.

Both men came to their feet at 8:30 and Kaval landed a strike to the mid-section before Ziggler came back with headbutts. They seemed to be trying to feel out the next move and Kaval shot off Ziggler to the ropes. He tried a victory roll, but Ziggler rolled through and grabbed Kaval's tights to to secure a three count. Vickie screamed in delight as Kaval cursed his bad luck. Ziggler, meanwhile, was bleeding from the nose and selling the effects of Kaval's offense as he left with the belt and Vickie.

WINNER: Kaval at 9:32. Not quite long enough to reach the three-star level, but good action. They seemed to be a bit off at times and the crowd was waiting for something to get excited for early on before the string of nearfalls at the end. (**1/2)

Backstage: Todd Grisham brought in Jack Swagger to talk about Team Del Rio. Swagger said he's the only former World Hvt. champion on Team Del Rio, so it should be called Team All-American Americans. Cody Rhodes interrupted and said he caught Swagger trying to get into a club last night in Miami sporting some broken shoes. Del Rio then interrpted with "Drew" and "Tyler." Del Rio said them interrupting each other is boring. Drew seemed bored standing in the background. Del Rio said he wants to see kids crying when Rey Mysterio is destroyed. He sounded like a director: "I want tears." Del Rio said he'll buy a round of beers when they win. He told them not to worry because he's the captain. Del Rio walked off and Cody said he's onboard.

In-ring: Big Show was the first man out for the traditional Survivor Series match on the card tonight. No headband. No Knucklehead t-shirt. Chris Masters was out second for Team Rey Mysterio, followed by Kofi Kingston and MVP, who got the big hometown pop in Miami. Rey Mysterio then rounded out the babyface team sporting old school WCW colors with the blue and yellow.

Cue up Cody Rhodes's music to bring out the first member of the heel team. Jack Swagger was out next as Rhodes said he thought he was funny backstage. Drew McIntyre was out third, followed by Tyler Reks to zero reaction. Tony Chimel then handed things over to Ricardo Rodriguez to formally introduce Alberto Del Rio. Cody and Del Rio shook hands on the way to the ring as Cole continued to endorse the heels. Cole said The Rock, Randy Orton, and The Miz made a name for themselves at Survivor Series.

4 -- TEAM MYSTERIO (Rey Mysterio & Big Show & MVP & Kofi Kingston & Chris Masters) vs. TEAM DEL RIO (Alberto Del Rio & Cody Rhodes & Jack Swagger & Tyler Reks & Drew McIntyre) -- Survivor Series elimination match

The crowd was hot with an MVP chant after the opening bell. Del Rio was great selling disbelief over this sudden interest in MVP. Del Rio and Rey were set to start things off, but Del Rio backed off to the heel corner and smiled. Del Rio pointed at Rey, smiled, and tagged in Rhodes. Suddenly, the announcers bickered over Ricky Henderson. In 2010. Lawler begged them to talk about Survivor Series. Cody smashed Rey with a springboard flash kick for a two count, then Del Rio took an opening to tag in and stomp away on Rey. Rey came back with a head scissors before landing a running dropkick to the chest.

Rey tagged in MVP, who came in hot. MVP scored with a boot to the face and scored a two count. MVP landed kick strikes in the corner followed by a Chono boot on Del Rio for a nearfall. Kofi then tagged in and went to work on Del Rio as Lawler recapped his Survivor Series '94 victory over Doink. You knew it was coming. More men tagged in and out as a few members of the audience chanted for either pizza or Big Show. It was MVP, instead, who came in hot on Drew with multiple clotheslines.

MVP set up for the Ballin' elbow drop and connected on Drew before clotheslining Del Rio off the ring apron. Suddenly, Drew came back with a pin attempt and Del Rio quietly trapped MVP's feet from the floor and Drew scored a pinfall on MVP, who was suddenly eliminated at 5:36. MVP complained about the cheat-to-win tactics as we all recall that it's never good to wrestle in your hometown. One minute later, Masters was eliminated via Del Rio's armbreaker submission.

Big Show entered the match for the first time to a big pop. Chris Masters also entered, but tagged out to Del Rio moments later. Del Rio landed a punch to the head, but Show no-sold. Del Rio celebrated, then turned around and found an angry giant. Del Rio went to his corner and tagged in Drew, who previously wanted nothing to do with it. Del Rio then cockily walked over to Show, who popped him with the KO Punch. Del Rio sold being out cold, but Drew was legal and Show went to work on him. Del Rio received some smelling salt treatment before he was helped away from ringside. No official elimination, though.

Kofi and Cody were in there and Kofi punched Cody in the face. Cody threw an absolute fit that his face was messed up. Cody stomped away to the floor and demanded Roberts held up his ring jacket. Cody checked on his face in the mirror, then kicked the ring steps. Cody yelled at Kofi that he has some nerve, but Kofi comically punched him in the face again. Big Show then tagged in and dropped Cody with the KO Punch for another elimination at 10:57.

Tyler Reks and Jack Swagger then flew into the ring trying to chop down Big Show as Cole recapped the official score of 4-3 Del Rio, but unofficially 3-3 with Del Rio taken away from ringside. Swagger and Big Show settled into a one-on-one battle and Swagger countered the chokeslam into an Anklelock submission center ring. Nice sequence. Show dragged himself toward the corner looking for a tag and Rey Mysterio was able to tag in. Rey came in hot on Swagger and scored a nearfall before running into a big boot from Swagger for a nearfall of his own.

Rey tried to come back with the 619, but Swagger grabbed Rey's leg and slapped on the Anklelock. Rey managed to counter by swinging Swagger around. He wanted the 619 again, but Reks tagged in for Swagger. Kofi tagged in for Rey and battled Reks, who took a boot to the face. Kofi then went up top and landed a big cross-body block for a close two count. Reks and Kofi continued to counter each other before Kofi smashed Reks with a kick strike for a pinfall to eliminate Reks at 15:08.

Swagger came in next and tried the gutwrench bomb on Kofi, but Kofi countered into the Trouble in Paradise, only to have Swagger block and apply the Anklelock. Kofi was forced to tap out at 15:55, giving the heels another elimination. Big Show entered next and tried to launch Rey off his shoulders, but Drew cut out Show at the knees. Rey was legal, though, and set up Swagger for the 619. Rey then climbed onto Show's shoulders and splashed Swagger for a pin to eliminate Swagger with a pin at 17:35.

It was unofficially down to Drew, who took a chokeslam from Big Show after Rey distracted him. Show made the pin and that was apparently the official finish despite Del Rio never being eliminated. Anyways, Big Show and Rey Mysterio win, just like in the battle royal on Smackdown.

WINNERS: Big Show & Rey Mysterio at 18:12. Good sequences throughout the match with standout performances from Jack Swagger with his variety of counters and Del Rio being Del Rio, who was protected by the non-official elimination. The end result in favor of Rey & Show was your classic mid-PPV "feel good moment" for the crowd. (***1/4)

Order of Elimination:
MVP via McIntyre at 5:36.
Masters via Del Rio at 6:44.
Rhodes via Show at 10:57.
Reks via Kingston at 15:08.
Kingston via Swagger at 15:55.
Swagger via Rey at 17:35.
Drew via Show at 18:12.
Del Rio never officially eliminated.

Locker room: Randy Orton was shown staring down at his WWE Title belt. Josh Mathews interrupted and brought up John Cena. Orton said he's sick and tired of talking about Cena. He said he feels for the guy, but Cena did this to himself. No, he is not thinking about Cena. He said he's looking out for himself and the WWE Title tonight.

In-ring: Lay-Cool came out to the ring first to defend the Unified Divas Title as Cole cackled about Lay-Cool putting "that old bat" Mae Young in her place on the Old School Raw. Natalya was out next to challenge. Interestingly, Natalya's Titantron entrance still features happy & smiling Tyson Kidd and D.H. Smith hanging out together.

5 -- Unified Divas champions LAY-COOL (MICHELLE MCCOOL & LAYLA) vs. NATALYA -- handicap match -- Unified Divas Title match

Lay-Cool took advantage of the "numbers game" early on. Natalya found herself on the floor and took a kick to the back from Layla. They had a comical spot on the floor where Natalya knocked Layla over the guardrail, then chucked McCool over the guardrail onto Layla, sending Lay-Cool crashing to the floor. Natalya sold a variety of injuries trying to follow up, then Lay-Cool cut her off and sent her back into the ring. McCool tried to follow up, but Natalya dropped her center ring and slapped on the Sharpshooter. McCool instantly tapped out, giving Natalya the victory.

Post-match: Natalya sold the importance of the moment dropping to her knees and crying. She had her moment for a little bit before Lay-Cool jumped her from behind. They put a beating on Natalya building to...Beth Phoenix making her return from injury. Phoenix smashed Lay-Cool with Polish Hammers, then dropped Layla with the Glam Slam for an exclamation point on her return. Beth hoisted Layla on her shoulders to celebrate before tearing up a bit celebrating the title victory with Natalya.

WINNER: Natalya at 3:38 to capture the Divas Title. Another "feel good moment," this time for Natalya, followed by a surprise return. Beth returning from injury certainly adds another dimension to a women's division in desperate need of depth. We'll probably be seeing a round of Lay-Cool vs. Beth & Natalya type matches on Smackdown. (*)

In-ring: After a video package on Kane vs. Edge leading to Survivor Series, Kane came out alone to defend the World Title. The announcers wondered about Kane's mental state following Edge kidnapping Paul Bearer in the weeks leading up to the PPV. Lawler wanted to know "right now" where Bearer is. No one had an answer. Edge then came out to a noticeably strong reaction as the challenger. Edge noticed Kane bursting at the seems, then told him to hold on one second. Edge went to the back and brought out an empty wheelchair with no sign of Bearer.

6 -- World Hvt. champion KANE vs. EDGE -- World Hvt. Title match

Kane tried to be aggressive from the start, but Edge cut him off and slipped to the outside to mock Kane by rolling the wheelchair around the ringside area. Edge lured Kane into his trap and wrapped Kane's leg around the ringpost. Back in the ring, Edge went to work on Kane's left knee before Kane came back with leg smashes to the throat. Kane then hung Edge out to dry across the top rope and landed a boot to the head to send Edge to the floor.

On the outside, Kane smashed Edge into the barricade before taking him back into the ring. Kane screamed at Edge demanding to know where Bearer is. The quiet crowd woke up with a "Let's go Edge" chant as Kane continued to take out his frustration on Edge. Kane climbed up top looking for a clothesline, but Edge blocked with a mid-air dropkick that floored both men. Kane and Edge traded near-finishing holds, resulting in Edge scoring with an implant DDT. Edge then got that look in his eyes as he backed off to the corner. Edge wanted the Spear, but Kane blocked with a boot to the forehead. Kane followed with a chokeslam and made a cover, but Edge kicked out.

Kane then teased the Tombstone Piledriver, but Edge dropped Kane with the Spear. Edge kind of rolled over on his side and both men's arms were draped over each other. The ref started a three count and counted to three. Edge's music hit to signal a title change, but the ref waved it off and waved off Tony Chimel's announcement that Edge was the new champion. Chimel then announced the result was a "tie." Who uses the word "tie" anymore in sports? As a result, Kane is still World champ. No replay of the finish here.

Post-match: Kane jumped Edge from behind wanting to know what happened to Bearer. Edge shook off Kane and smashed him into the guardrail. Edge then placed Kane in the guardrail and sped him down the ringside area where he crashed through the gimmicked wall near the timekeeper's table for a loud noise and strong visual. And we're back to the WrestleMania 26 finish with Jericho. A replay of the No Contest finish was shown after the angle. They showed Edge and Kane locking their forearms together and both men's shoulders down on the pin.

WINNER: No Contest at 12:50, Kane retains the World Title. One of those frustratingly uninteresting Smackdown title matches where the TV storyline of Kane wanting to find Bearer doesn't match up with Kane trying to win a match to solve the issue. The non-finish was a groaner but apparently keeps Edge in the game to challenge Kane for the title again. (**)

Backstage: John Cena was shown holding his WWE referee t-shirt. Wade Barrett, who was apparently okay with Cena dropping him with the Attitude Adjustment on Raw this past Monday, quietly and cordially sat down next to Cena. Barrett asked Cena if he remembers June 7, 2010 in this building. Barrett said this is where Nexus chose to make their mark on history. He said they came down to the ring during his match and gave him a beating of a lifetime. Barrett asked Cena if he thought he would ever be part of Nexus and be instrumental in making him WWE champion. Cena waited out the monologue before saying he remembers every single thing Nexus has done to him. He told Barrett that no matter what happens tonight, when the time is right - they both stood up - he knows exactly what he's doing. Cena walked off.

In-ring: Nexus members stormed out together for Justin Gabriel and Heath Slater to defend the WWE Tag Titles. Santino and Kozlov then came out as the challengers. Santino's music is over

7 -- WWE Unified tag champions NEXUS (HEATH SLATER & JUSTIN GABRIEL w/David Otunga, Husky Harris, and Mike McGillicutty) vs. SANTINO & KOZLOV

The announcers noted Kozlov has been teaching Santino some Sambo moves. Why didn't this potentially great training video air on TV to hype the bonus title match? Santino greeted Slater with Arian Foster's Touchdown pose before landing a throw into a headlock to show off the Sambo training. Kozlov tagged in and Gabriel took him out at the knees. Nexus began a two-on-one attack as Santino complained to the referee. Kozlov eventually broke free from Nexus and tagged in Santino, who landed left hand jabs and fired himself up. Santino with a hip topss, then the Sailor's salute fist drop on Slater. Gabriel broke up a pin, then the action broke down. Santino suddenly warmed up the Cobra, but Nexus members ran interference. Slater then hit his necktie drop finisher that looks like a transition hold for the pin and the win.

WINNERS: Nexus at 5:11 to retain the WWE Tag Titles. Simply a placeholder leading to the main event. The non-Barrett members of Nexus just aren't there yet. (*1/4)

Post-match: Nexus attacked Santino and Kozlov. Suddenly, the Raw GM buzzed and the lights flashed. Cole stepped to the podium and read that at the upcoming WWE Title match, Nexus is banned from ringside. If any member of Nexus attempts to interfere, the entire group will be indefinitely suspended. Therefore, he advises Nexus to leave the ring immediately.

Video package: They aired a lengthy video on John Cena to promote his DVD and his role as referee in the title match to come. His life, his career, his legacy is at stake tonight.

In-ring: Justin Roberts told the crowd that up next is the "final contest of the evening," as opposed to the main event. John Cena was out first as the special referee for the WWE Title match. Cena sold the totality of the moment as Cole called it a "turning point" for Cena's career and life. Cena's music stopped and the crowd chanted his name. Pause. Nexus's music hit to bring out Wade Barrett as the challenger. Barrett smirked as he walked to the ring while Cole plugged the TLC PPV coming up December 19 from Houston. I'll be covering it live at Toyota Center. After another pause, Randy Orton's music hit to a strong reaction. Orton slowly walked out already looking like he had wrestled a 15-minute match breathing very heavily. So, here we go with Cena's Decision...

8 -- WWE champion RANDY ORTON vs. WADE BARRETT -- WWE Title match -- John Cena special referee -- Free or Fired for Cena -- Victory by pinfall or submission only

Before the bell sounded, Cena asked Orton to hand over the WWE Title belt. Cena showed it to Barrett, then held it up for the crowd to see. Cue the bell. All three men held their places in the ring before Orton and Barrett circled and locked up. The crowd chanted "RKO" as Orton drove Barrett to the corner, then backed away. Another lock up and stalemate. Orton then grabbed a headlock and put Barrett on the mat. Orton then landed a shoulder knock down and Barrett backed away to his corner.

The men circled the ring again before Orton landed a clothesline out of the corner. Cena became involved trying to apply the rules, which gave Orton an opening to land a classic dropkick. Orton then pounded on Barrett with right hands that Cena gave him leeway on. On the floor, Orton attacked Barrett and rammed him into the ring steps. Back in the ring, Barrett took control and whipped Orton hard into the corner turnbuckle before standing on his throat. Barrett then hit a boot to the head and settled into a chinlock.

At 9:00, both men came to their feet and started trading bombs trying to get the crowd involved. Orton then ran over Barrett with a knockdown clothesline followed by a powerslam. Orton fired himself up a bit, then clotheslined Barrett over the top rope to the floor. However, Barrett rammed Orton back-first into the ringpost. Back in the ring, Barrett ran into a fallaway backbreaker from Orton for a two count. Moments later, Barrett came back with a flying elbow drop from the second rope and scored a nearfall that Cena emphatically called out as a two count. Barrett with another nearfall, which led to Barrett questioning Cena's cadence.

Barrett set up Orton for the Wasteland, but Orton slipped out, only to run into the Black Hole Slam for a two count. Striker at first called it the Boss Man Slam before actually saying the phrase "Black Hole Slam." Silence for a while as Barrett and Cena intensified their discussion. The crowd began a dueling "Let's go Cena" and "Cena sucks" chant despite Cena not in the match. Orton tried to cut those off setting up for the RKO, but Barrett rolled to the outside. Orton then dropped him with a clothesline on the floor and rolled Barrett back into the ring.

Orton was slow re-entering the ring and Barrett hit him with a boot to the head. Barrett then dropped Orton with Wasteland center ring. Barrett rolled him over, but Orton grabbed the bottom rope just before three to break Cena's count. Barrett verified, but still had a word for Cena. Barrett suddenly shoved Cena, who looked away and tried to hold himself. Cena then bumped Barrett, which led to Orton dropping Barrett with the RKO. Orton made a cover, then Cena counted one...two...pause...three. Striker shouted, "Cena's Free!" Cole corrected him: "Cena's Fired." Striker muttered that he got caught up in the moment.

Post-match: Cena then sat down in the corner and contemplated this that he's fired. The moment didn't really have that momentous feel to it. Nexus hit the ring and tried to attack Cena, but Cena and Orton fought them all off. Cena and Orton were left alone in the ring, then Cena grabbed the WWE Title belt from ringside, re-entered the ring, and handed it back to Orton. They embraced, then Orton posed with the WWE Title. Cena was still in the corner as the announcers remained silent.

Orton walked out of the ring with possession of the WWE Title before looking back to the ring and holding his arms up in the air. Orton patted the entrance stage on the way out before the camera returned to Cena standing in the corner.

Cena took off his trademark wristbands and placed them in the center of the ring. Cena slowly looked around the arena before doing salutes to all four corners of the ring. Cena walked over to the announce table and hugged Michael Cole before hugging Sign Guy on the way out. Even Tye-Dye Guy got some TV time. Cena stood on the entrance ramp and smiled before pointing to someone and saying, "Thank you." Cena turned back up the entrance ramp and stood on the stage looking into the crowd. He surveyed the arena one more time before raising his hands in the air as the spotlight was on him.

The crowd chanted for him, then he left the stage and walked into the crowd shaking hands with fans. No sound from the announcers. Not much sound in the arena other than random shouts. Cena shook hands with as many fans as he could touch as a spotlight followed him around the arena. This wasn't something you normally see on WWE TV. Cena continued his victory lap as a single spotlight followed him around the arena. Cena eventually made it back to the entrance stage and saluted the crowd again before turning to leave backstage again. They faded to black at ten minutes before the top of the hour to conclude the PPV.

WINNER: Orton at 15:15 to retain the WWE Title, Cena "fired." The match itself was okay and will be forgotten by tomorrow night. The "swerve" here was Cena actually counting a clean pin for Orton and Cena being "fired." WWE sure played with the emotions of their audience with Cena trying to make it a "real" send-off. In actuality, it looks like Barrett reverses the stipulation (because he has booking power, apparently) either Monday on Raw or sometime down the road because he wants to get his hands on Cena. And he can't get his hands on Cena unless he's in WWE. So, overall, an anticlimactic finish to the PPV that felt more like a TV storyline stretching out to the next TV episode. (**)

FINAL THOUGHTS: The PPV peaked early and underwhelmed at the end. I wouldn't call it a let down, but it felt like a glorified TV episode at times with dependence on "TV storyline-driven" matches that felt more like Raw or Smackdown main events than PPV matches. That trend is likely to continue with WWE placing more and more emphasis on the "entertainment" aspect than the "sports/wrestling" aspect as evidenced by the hype for the WWE Title match pushing a competition for the glory and prestige of the WWE Title to the backseat in favor of Cena's storyline.

We welcome your 0-10 score and comments on this show for a "WWE PPV Reax" feature in the Torch Feedback section of PWTorch.com. To contribute your thoughts on the PPV, click here.


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