Commentators: Michael Cole & The Miz
Championship’s roll call: WWE Champion: CM Punk… World Champion: Sheamus… Intercontinental Champion: The Miz… United States Champion: Antonio Cesaro… Tag Team Champions: Team Hell No… NXT Champion: Seth Rollins… Diva’s Champion: Eve Torres
Michael Cole opens the show in the ring with The Miz. They go over the card. They talk about CM Punk; Miz puts him over. Cole calls him controversial. We get a video package for him including clips from Ring of Honor. Joey Mercury, Michael Hayes and Paul Heyman discuss Punk. They go over how the WWE did not know what to really do with him in the beginning. In his locker room, Matt Striker talks to Punk who complains of disrespect. Back in the ring, Miz and Cole throw it to Sheamus who is interviewed by Josh Matthews. Sheamus plans on showing Punk respect with a Brogue Kick. We now get a competing video package for Sheamus. He discusses winning the title and doing the talk show circuit to promote the WWE. We get a bunch of WWE Superstars putting him over.
Sheamus vs. CM Punk (w/Paul Heyman) champion vs. champion: Non-title (either title). I guess the “Main Event” is early on this show; gives it a Saturday Night’s Main Event feel to it with the big matches early on. We get the special ring announcements for the occasion. Sheamus, in all red ring gear, gets caught in a side headlock; he quickly reverses and applies his own chinlock. Punk tries to fire him off the ropes but Sheamus won’t let go. Sheamus hits a shoulderblock and gets a one count; he snags Punk in another headlock. Punk fires back with a leg lariat off a leapfrog and Heyman shows off the WWE title to the crowd. Punk tries the knee strike in the corner but runs into a boot. Sheamus skins-the-cat onto the top but Punk shoves him off the top all of the way to the floor. Back from commercial, Punk has Sheamus trapped in his version of O’Clubbering. Sheamus counters with a rope stunner. He unloads with heavy blows and entraps Punk in the corner; CM manages to pull the overaggressive Sheamus into the buckles and kicks the back of his head. He drops a knee and methodically works him over as Michael Cole mentions the next person for Punk to pass in title reign longevity is Diesel. Punk hits a neckbreaker and gets two. Punk goes for a chinlock but Sheamus fires his way free and hits Irish Hammers. He hits a shoulder in the corner and the Million Dollar Kneelift. A Bulldog Powerslam nets two for the World champ. Punk counters O’Clubbering with a roundhouse kick for two. Back from the second commercial, Sheamus is down and out on the floor; Punk looks for a suicide dive but it’s countered with a forearm; Sheamus slingshots himself back into the ring with a Battering Ram for two. He readies for the Brogue but Punk retreats to the buckles; he pulls Punk out of the corner but also pull the turnbuckle pad off as well. Sheamus hits O’Clubbering for all ten blows. He plants the WWE champ with White Noise as the ref fumbles around trying to put the buckle pad back on. White Noise gets two. Sheamus drops knees and tries the Texas Cloverleaf; Punk forces himself free. Punk hits the corner knee strike and a short-clothesline. The Macho Man Elbow gets two more. Cole gives the proper credit to Randy Savage he even alludes to John Cena’s identity promo of a few weeks ago. Punk signals for GTS but Sheamus blocks and counters into the Texas Cloverleaf. Punk makes the ropes. Good match. Punk notices the padless PINK turnbuckle. Sheamus goes after him and hits the Irish Curse. Sheamus sets up for the Brogue Kick but Punk smartly sidesteps him and drop-toeholds Sheamus into the EXPOSED STEEL buckle to get the pinfall (with trunks). Post-match, Matt Striker asks Sheamus how he feels about the loss. Sheamus says he’ll make no excuses and take the loss on the chin. He promises to beat Punk with a Brogue Kick. 7/10 Very entertaining match here; both champions looked great and Punk uses his brain and chicanery to beat Sheamus BY PINFALL. Rare pinfall loss for Sheamus but Punk’s the WWE Champion so he’s not exactly jobbing to some random ham-and-egger.
Here is your winner… CM Punk @ about 17:45 via drop-toehold onto exposed steel turnbuckle pinfall.
In his locker room, Josh Matthews asks CM Punk about respect. Paul Heyman says he beat the World champion what more does he need. Heyman gives Punk the verbal blowjob and dismisses Matthews. Matt Striker talks to Big Show about his match with Randy Orton next week no Main Event. Show threatens a WMD.
Santino Marella & Zack Ryder vs. Tyson Kidd & Justin Gabriel number one contender’s tournament, first round: The babyfaces discuss team unity, pre-match. This should be a fun match despite it getting about eight minutes. Santino begins with Gabriel. The Miz puts over his team with John Morrison and the tag team division as well. They shake hands and they trade waistlocks. Gabriel applies a side headlock; Santino tries a hiptoss but Gabriel flips free. Gabriel tries to SWEEP THE LEG but Santino jumps over it. Ryder receives a tag as does Kidd. Kidd gets a side headlock; they both run the ropes swiftly for a fifteen second counter-counter sequence until Ryder ends with a flapjack, for two. Gabriel gets a blind tag and Team Energy gets a nice rolling chinlock (Gabriel) into a soccer kick (Kidd). Gabriel forearms Ryder and hits a Euro uppercut; Kidd tags back in and he and Gabriel show off some nice (and unique) tandem offense. Kidd handstands on the buckles, so Gabriel tosses Ryder into him for a mule kick, and then finishes him off with a roundhouse kick; Tyson gets a two count and applies a front facelock. Gabriel gets another two off a sunset; Kidd blind tags in off an attempted O’Connor roll from Ryder and levels him with a pendulum kick, he hits the springboard elbow drop for two (Santino interfered). Gabriel runs in and Marella wipes him out. Kidd tosses Santino and Ryder tries a schoolboy but Kidd rolls through and kicks him right in the Facebook. Kidd hits a stacked self-sunset for two. Kidd charges in the corner but meets a pair of knees; Santino tags and then Ryder hits the Broski Boot. Ryder somersault pescados onto Gabriel. Santino finishes Kidd off with the Cobra. 6.5/10 Also a fun match; I was hoping for a Kidd/Gabriel advance but it seems the mismatched teams are advancing over the more established teams, which I find alarming. I like Ryder and Santino so it’s not all bad; they’re going to job to the Rhodes Scholars anyway, which Kidd and Gabriel would have done as well.
Here are your winners… Santino Marella and Zack Ryder @ about 10:15 (broadcast) via Cobra strike pinfall.
OVERALL 7/10 Now, I don’t think the WWE needs anymore television time but this was a pretty entertaining hour of wrestling programming. It was a great debut for a show that should be on Saturday night; two highly entertaining marches that were given ample time to develop and flourish. I hope this stays like this instead of turning into WWE Superstars II, remember the main event of the first WWE Superstars was Matt Hardy versus the Undertaker.