December 14, 2015
Aired on December 14, 2015

Let’s talk about last night — specifically the unholy walloping that Roman Reigns laid on Triple H after Sheamus’ League of Nations helped The Celtic champion retain his status as spiky-haired poster boy of The Authority. Turns out, 20 minutes of whaling on The Game is a good way to rile Stephanie McMahon up. So The Billionaire Princess made it her business to read Reigns the riot act before he set foot on Raw, and to give him a few slaps across the face. But rather than serve Reigns his walking papers on top of that, Stephanie instead handed down a more troubling revelation to the former WWE World Heavyweight Champion: that Reigns’ fate would be decided later in the night by none other than Mr. McMahon.

The Ambrose Asylum finally has gold on the walls again, but it’s unlikely the Kevin Owens Show is going away anytime soon. The deposed KO made it his business to spoil Dean Ambrose’s first night as Intercontinental Champion, bum-rushing Dolph Ziggler during Ambrose’s first match as champion to hand Zig Man the disqualification win. The Showoff didn’t get away quite as simply as that, though. After Pop-up Powerbombing Ambrose a couple of times, Owens administered a regular powerbomb to The Showoff on top of the downed Ambrose for emphasis, only choosing then to make his exit.

And it was, apart from a kick to the crotch, not that bad ... provided Roman Reigns wins what could turn out to be his final match as a WWE Superstar. Mr. McMahon was set to terminate Reigns once and for all, but Sheamus wanted to put Reigns away himself. So at the behest of The Celtic Warrior (and after some less-than-subtle prodding from Reigns), McMahon handed a make-or-break ultimatum to The Big Dog: beat Sheamus for the WWE World Heavyweight Title later in the night, or be fired. Frankly, the only Superstars who really got it stuck to them were R-Truth and Bo Dallas, whose match was interrupted by The Chairman’s arrival. Better luck next time, fellas.

Sheamus’ cross-continental cadre came off pretty good at WWE TLC; every League of Nations member with a scheduled match ended up winning. With The Celtic Warrior set to defend his stable’s crown jewel in the main event, that meant Alberto Del Rio & Rusev had to repeat themselves. And that they did, toppling a union of their TLC opponents — Jack Swagger & Ryback, respectively — thanks to an illicit interference by Del Rio that stopped a blazing Swagger cold. Another kick from Rusev did the rest.

Oh, you thought Miz’s recruitment of Neville last week was just on a whim? Think again. The Most Must-See Superstar in WWE History continued to pursue his latest protégé by “directing” Neville’s contest against Tyler Breeze, though whether that contributed to Neville’s eventual win with the Red Arrow is a topic that will surely be contested between the two later. Neville declined any further representation, but given Miz’s eye for molding talent, he might actually want to consider The Awesome One’s offer. Then again, he might want to take it just to get Miz off his back, too. Whichever works.

Philadelphia is hallowed ground for the ECW Originals, so leave it to The Wyatt Family to leave scorched earth in their wake in an Extreme Rules rematch with Paul Heyman’s hardcore veterans. Despite their proficiency with Kendo sticks, trash cans and various other implements of pain, the so-called Team Extreme was outdone by the Wyatts’ raw power. Erick Rowan’s Tower of Doom to Bubba Ray Dudley set the metaphorical table, Bray Wyatt’s axe handle to Rhyno through an actual table ramped things up and Rowan, in a bit of vindication, finished the war with a top-rope splash to a Sister Abigailed Man-Beast … through a table. O. M. G.

Charlotte has clearly taken the lessons of Ric Flair’s career to heart. The Divas Champion was practically a mirror image of The Dirtiest Player in the Game in her title defense at WWE TLC, and this time it was Becky Lynch who reaped the benefits of “Naitch’s” fast and loose interpretation of the rulebook. Specifically, it was a trip-up of a ping-ponging Alicia Fox that enabled Becky — who didn’t see Flair interfere — to lock in the Dis-arm-her for the win. Smiles all around for Maiden Ireland. Let’s hope she doesn’t find out how it happened.

Sometimes, a little extra incentive is all you need. With his career hanging in the balance, Roman Reigns capped off a frustrating year of almosts to finally become WWE World Heavyweight Champion. That means Sheamus is out, his reign cut short by a perfect storm of a performance from The Big Dog that called for him to overcome an early deficit — and the presence of Mr. McMahon at ringside — to maintain his footing in the contest. Reigns hung so tight with the champion that Mr. McMahon himself had to pull the ref off to stop a three count, then distracted said official long enough for The League of Nations to strike. Reigns shook all that off, Superman Punched The Chairman (!), kicked out of a Brogue Kick and, finally, Speared Sheamus to win. Almost a year after his ignominious Royal Rumble win in this same building, Roman Reigns is finally champion. And boy, did he earn it.


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