TD Garden – Boston, MA – Sunday, November 24, 2013
Michael Cole, Hall of Famer Jerry Lawler, and JBL are on commentary.
The Miz defeats Kofi Kingston at 8:34. These two were put together as a team for some reason and they couldn’t get along, so they’re going to fight instead. Kingston appears to have Miz’s number in the early going as they head into the inexplicable pre-show commercial break. When we come back Kingston still has control, but Miz quickly remedies that. Due to their many battles over the years, Kingston and Miz know each other well and counter several of each other’s moves. Miz goes for the Skull Crushing Finale and Kingston counters to a victory roll, which Miz reverses into one of his own to get the pin. Kingston and Miz generally worked well together, and this was a perfectly solid pre-show match.
Before the show can begin, Triple H and Stephanie McMahon come out and literally promise no interference tonight.
The Shield (Dean Ambrose, Roman Reigns & Seth Rollins) & The Real Americans (Jack Swagger & Antonio Cesaro, w/ Zeb Colter) defeat Cody Rhodes, Goldust, Rey Mysterio & The Usos (Jimmy Uso & Jey Uso) at 23:28 in a Survivor Series Match. Rhodes and Goldust are the current WWE Tag Team Champions, and Ambrose is the United States Champion. Ambrose gets a little too cocky when battling Rhodes, and while he’s arguing with the referee, Rhodes rolls him up for the first elimination at 2:15. Both teams show impressive continuity in the early going. The next to go Is Swagger, via a Superfly Splash from Jey Uso at 8:12. Cesaro dishes out a couple of Cesaro Swings on the Usos, and Rhodes comes in to take advantage of his dizziness with a sunset flip to send him to the locker room at 9:57. It’s five on two now. Reigns strikes back and eliminate Jimmy with a Spear at 14:38. Rhodes takes a Spear as well and he’s gone at 15:47. Rollins evens the score with a Curb Stomp on Jey for an elimination at 16:50. Now it’s Rollins and Reigns against Goldust and Mysterio. Rollins tries putting Mysterio in position for an Electric Chair Drop but Mysterio counters into a rollup to get the pin at 19:47. Goldust tries a Bulldog but Reigns pushes him off and hits a Spear to eliminate him at 23:02. Mysterio tries a 619 but Reigns pops up and delivers another Spear to win the match. Great choice for an opener here, with plenty of fast-paced action and a clear motive in getting Reigns over. The crowd was hot for it.
Intercontinental Champion Big E Langston defeats Curtis Axel at 5:57 to retain the title. Langston has been the Champion since 11.18.13, and this is his first defense. Axel is the previous Champion, so this is his rematch and he’s got plenty to prove here. He gets in a bit of offense, even busting out the Perfect-plex, but it’s not enough to keep Langston down. The Champion comes back and hits The Big Ending to get the pin and end the Axel push, pretty much for good. Match was typical TV stuff, not at all worthy of being on a pay-per-view, especially a pre-Network PPV.
The Bella Twins (Brie Bella & Nikki Bella), The Funkadactyls (Naomi & Cameron), Natalya, Eva Marie & JoJo defeat AJ Lee, Aksana, Alicia Fox, Kaitlyn, Rosa Mendes, Summer Rae & Tamina Snuka at 11:29 in a Survivor Series Match. Naomi and Fox start the match and Naomi quickly puts her away with the split-legged moonsault at 1:25. Mendes evens the score when she avoids a Cameron charge in the corner and her face slams into the turnbuckle. That’s enough for Mendes to get the pin at 2:28. Nikki comes in and hits Mendes with the Bella Buster to eliminate her at 2:47. Rae comes in and dances. When she does the splits, Nikki kicks her in the face for the elimination at 3:27. Marie comes in and Kaitlyn pins her with a gutbuster at 4:02. Naomi comes in and Kaitlyn takes her out with another gutbuster at 4:34. Brie comes in and hits a missile dropkick to pin Kaitlyn at 5:14. Aksana gets a little help from Lee and she flattens Brie with a spinebuster to score the elimination at 5:42. Nikki gets quick revenge with the Rack Attack for a pin at 6:04. Snuka comes in and slows the pace considerably. JoJo makes her debut and almost eliminates Snuka but falls prey to a Samoan Drop. Lee tags in and picks the bones to eliminate JoJo at 9:27. Natalya comes in for the first time and Snuka misses the Superfly Splash. That gives Natalya the chance to lock on the Sharpshooter for the tap out at 10:51. Lee tries a sneak attack but Natalya traps her in the Sharpshooter to make her tap out. Natalya and Nikki Bella survive. There were 12 eliminations in less than 12 minutes, so it wasn’t like they got a lot of time to work with here. It wasn’t bad, it just wasn’t much of anything.
Mark Henry defeats Ryback at 4:47. Ryback interrupted the pre-show panel to make an open challenge, and Henry makes his return from a torn hamstring to answer said challenge. This is a power display from both men, who each have strength to spare. Ryback gets Henry set up for the Meat Hook, but Henry explodes out of the corner with a cross body! That was ridiculously awesome. Henry hits the World’s Strongest Slam to get the pin. That was another TV match masquerading as a PPV match, but Henry hitting a cross body made it worthwhile.
World Heavyweight Champion John Cena defeats Alberto Del Rio at 18:50 to retain the title. Cena has been the Champion since 10.27.13, and this is his second defense. Cena is 7-1 at Survivor Series, and I appreciate Cole adding neat little factoids like that. Del Rio works to keep Cena grounded, usually a good idea. He focuses on Cena’s previously injured arm, setting up for his Cross Armbreaker finish. Cena makes several comeback attempts but Del Rio has an answer for everything he tries. In the end Cena powers out of a Cross Armbreaker and hits the Attitude Adjustment to get the pin. This is one of the better Cena/ADR matches, as Del Rio did a great job focusing on the arm and cutting Cena off at every pass. Of course, #LOLCenaWins, but it was a good time getting there.
CM Punk & Daniel Bryan defeat The Wyatt Family (Erick Rowan & Luke Harper, w/ Bray Wyatt) at 16:54. Punk and Bryan use their speed to counteract the obvious size and power differential here. Bryan gets isolated that the Wyatt clan works him over for several minutes. Harper takes his eye off the ball and goes after Punk, and takes a kick to the dome for his troubles. That allows Bryan to make the hot tag. Punk is a house afire, flying all over in and out of the ring. The referee loses control, and Punk hits Harper with Go to Sleep to get the pin. Good tag team formula stuff here, and the crowd was really into everything Punk and Bryan did, which always helps.
WWE Heavyweight Champion Randy Orton defeats Big Show at 11:08 to retain the title. Orton has been the Champion since 10.27.13, and this is his first defense. Show dominates in the early going as Orton tries to avoid his challenger. Orton actually kicks out of a fairly early Chokeslam, which doesn’t happen too often. Orton rolls to the floor and Show follows him out. Referee Charles Robinson tries to tell them to get back in, but he ends up getting bumped. Orton and Show brawl on the floor and Show hits the Knockout Punch! Show rolls Orton back in the ring and Triple H’s music hits, and out he comes, along with Stephanie and Kane. The distraction allows Orton to hit the RKO. The crowd responds by chanting for Daniel Bryan. Orton delivers the Punt to the head and scores the pin to retain. This was garbage – not a good match, terrible finish, disinterested crowd.
After the match, John Cena comes out and holds up his World Heavyweight Title, as they try really hard to get the crowd excited to watch Cena v Orton AGAIN.
This was a frustrating show, as about half the matches were really enjoyable, and the other half were straight trash. This is a good one to watch on the Network and just fast forward through about half of. It’s never a good sign when a show peaks on the first match.