WWE fans were expecting an exciting TLC: Tables, Ladders, and Chairs event at Houston's Toyota Center on Sunday night, and they got excitement and a lot of drama as the night unfolded. And it would all be highlighted by one man becoming "Champion of Champions."
The night kicked off with a special preshow match between Dolph Ziggler and the dancing star known as Fandango. As part of the WWE "Kickoff" event that takes place 30 minutes prior to the actual pay per view, fans were given a solid outing between two of the more entertaining stars on the roster. After a back-and-forth encounter, a well-timed distraction from Summer Rae gave Fandango the open door to hit his signature leg drop from the top for the win.
The PPV officially opened with Triple H and Stephanie McMahon addressing the fans and briefly speaking about the history behind both the WWE Championship as well as the World Heavyweight Title. Afterwards, it was time for the first match of TLC.
That first match featured former WWE Champion CM Punk, as he was handed the unenviable task of facing off against all three members of The Shield in a handicap match. Punk took a lot of abuse early on from the trio of Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins, and Roman Reigns, but was able to survive. After Reigns accidentally speared Ambrose, Punk was able to capitalize and cover Ambrose to pick up the win.
WWE Divas Champion AJ Lee has been on the bad side of a lot of females lately, even recently having a reported confrontation with ESPN's Michelle Beadle at last week's "Tribute To The Troops" event. But she has remained dominant throughout, and geared up for a big title defense against a very determined third-generation star in Natalya. AJ was more than up for the challenge, and picked up a shocking victory after rolling up Natalya after a second Sharpshooter attempt.
After failing to successfully cash in his Money In The Bank briefcase recently, Damien Sandow has been looking for redemption. Unfortunately that road to redemption led him to a Toyota Center showdown with Intercontinental Champion Big E Langston. The champion was able to overpower Sandow and put him down with the Big Ending, leaving Sandow to suffer defeat.
The WWE Tag Team Titles were up for grabs in a brutal Fatal Four-Way Elimination Match at TLC, as Cody Rhodes and Goldust put the gold on the line against the combinations of Curtis Axel and Ryback, Rey Mysterio and Big Show, and finally The Real Americans. After a grueling elimination contest, Rhodes and Goldust were able to retain their titles after Rhodes hit Mysterio with Cross Rhodes for the win.
It appears as the lights have been turned out on the party at Planet Funk, as the usually fun-loving Brodus Clay chalked up another loss in Houston. This time the win goes to R-Truth, after he rolled up Clay. During the match, Clay broke out a vicious and ugly side that we haven't seen in awhile. It was enough that his teammates, Tensai and the Funkadactyls, walked off in disgust. While he was distracted by their leaving, R-Truth took advantage and picked up a big win. The future of the team known as "Tons of Funk" is definitely in question now, and will be interesting to see how this plays out over the next couple of weeks.
During "WWE Kickoff," The Miz proclaimed that Kofi Kingston had no "killer instinct." He would ultimately be proved wrong, as the two faced off at TLC in a No Disqualification match. The two battered each other in and out of the ring, and at one point Miz removed one of the top turnbuckle pads. With the steel exposed, he had intentions of relocating Kofi's head to the corner, but it backfired. He countered and sent Miz head-first into the turnbuckle, causing him to stumble back and fall victim to the Trouble In Paradise kick. Kofi picks up the win, and proved that he can definitely get the job done.
One of the most bizarre groups in recent memory have descended upon the WWE landscape, as The Wyatt Family entered TLC with pain on their minds. A 3-on-1 handicap match against the ultra-popular Daniel Bryan left many wondering how well the bearded superstar would fare against the most unpredictable force in all of WWE. Bray Wyatt was able to break loose out of the Yes Lock and put him away with the move he calls Sister Abigail. The spinning facebuster drove Bryan's face viciously into the mat, as Bray made the cover and picked up the win.
With all of that, it was finally time for the main event. A special title vs. title match would pit WWE Champion Randy Orton against World Heavyweight Champion John Cena in a Tables, Ladders, and Chairs contest. The winner would be declared the "Champion of Champions. These two pulled out every trick in the book to get a clear advantage. With all rules out the window, we saw every element of the PPV's name get brought into the match. Cena had a golden opportunity to put Orton away, after he hit the Attitude Adjustment through the Spanish announce table.
But Orton fought back, and even handcuffed Cena to the bottom rope. In a moment of ingenious anger, Cena unscrewed the bottom turnbuckle to allow him to move around the ring and go after Orton. But the WWE Champion grabbed Cena and sent him crashing furiously into the edge of a table. The impact knocked Cena unconscious, allowing Orton to again climb the ladder in the ring and claim both championship belts.
Orton was declared the new and first-ever WWE World Heavyweight Champion, as he celebrated alongside Triple H, Stephanie McMahon, and even the WWE Chairman, Vince McMahon.
With TLC now in the books, what will happen on Monday as WWE invades Dallas for a live edition of "Raw" at the American Airlines Center? All of the fallout from Sunday's explosive pay per view will be felt as the road to the Royal Rumble kicks off in Dallas!