In the wake of WWE's Over the Limit pay-per-view, a new Intercontinental champion has been crowned, four other champions continue to hold onto their titles and John Laurinaitis remains employed.
Sunday night's show delivered an evening of quality entertainment and good in-ring performances. On a non-major PPV event, WWE delivered a product that surpassed the expectations of many.
Here's a match-by-match look at the show:
This last-minute addition to the card was a means of crowning a No. 1 contender for one of the midcard titles. The returning Christian gained some early momentum, last eliminating The Miz. For the most part, this was standard fair for a battle royale. Some stories were established, such as Titus O'Neil and Darren Young mixing it up and sharing eliminations with The Usos, and others were rekindled, such as The Miz and Alex Riley facing off. The ending few minutes featured some quality action, but in the end, the right man won.
Result: Christian won the battle royale
WWE Tag Team Championship
Kofi Kingston and R-Truth (c) vs. Dolph Ziggler and Jack Swagger
This match was the first time in 2012 that the tag titles have been defended on pay-per-view, but hopefully it won't be the last. These two teams work extremely well together, and they put on a good match that was given time to play out. There were some good false finishes that really made it seem as if new champions could be crowned, but in the end, Kofi reversed a splash to the corner from Ziggler into the Trouble in Paradise for the victory. Seeing matches like this only makes one wonder even more why the tag division is treated so lowly by WWE brass.
Result: Kofi Kingston and R-Truth retain the WWE Tag Team Championship
Layla (c) vs. Beth Phoenix
For many, this might have been the surprise of the night. The match went more than six minutes (considered long for a WWE divas match) and featured good psychology, as Phoenix continued to work over the injured knee of the champion. These two put together a good match that saw Layla reverse the Glam Slam into a roll-up. They would exchange rolling covers from there before Layla would nail a neckbreaker out of nowhere to score a pin. A lot of fans are clamoring for a Kharma return, but Layla's reign seems to have legs, and a rematch with Phoenix would be a welcome addition.
Result: Layla retains the Divas Championship
World Heavyweight Championship
Sheamus (c) vs. Randy Orton vs. Chris Jericho vs. Alberto Del Rio
This match was a lot of fun. It won't go down in history as a classic or an epic contest by any means, but it featured a lot of good spots and each man had his chance to shine. The early goings featured Sheamus vs. Orton, playing off their recent turmoil, and the heels working together to keep the champ out of the action. As things wound down, every man got to hit his signature moves, leading to an all-out finishers for everyone ending that saw Sheamus hit White Noise on Jericho for the pin. After the match, the cameras showed a close-up of Orton's face, so it seems likely that we may be seeing a renewed Orton vs. Sheamus feud moving forward.
Result: Sheamus retains the World Heavyweight Championship
Brodus Clay vs. The Miz
The Miz came to the ring and declared himself a better dancer than Clay. He proceeded to show off his moves by performing the "Thriller" dance. Clay, apparently not amused, came to the ring for an unannounced match. This was the low point so far on the pay-per-view. Maybe it's just me, but the Funkasaurus act is running its course; at least as long as all we continue to get are extended squash victories. This match was at least a good cool down at the mid-point of the show.
Result: Brodus Clay d. The Miz
Cody Rhodes (c) vs. Christian
Christian's momentum continued, as he dethroned Rhodes as the new Intercontinental Champion. They put together a good match, and the ending came as a surprise, as a dirty finish to create a longer feud seemed like the safe bet. It will be interesting to see how long this feud continues, and if Rhodes will ultimately move up the card now, as fans have been begging for. Regardless, Christian is a good veteran to anchor the Smackdown midcard. He's much better suited for that role than the Big Show.
Result: Christian won the Intercontinental Championship
CM Punk (c) vs. Daniel Bryan