Raw Women's Champion Ronda Rousey & Natalya def. The Riott Squad and Nia Jax & Tamina in a Triple Threat Match
I loved that this managed to further two different feuds (Rousey vs. Jax and Natalya vs. The Riott Squad) simultaneously, and it was a fun match to boot. The three-way format was largely responsible for this being as enjoyable as it was and everyone held their own. Following her victory, Rousey addressed the audience and thanked the troops for everything they do.
Elias and Finn Balor def. Bobby Lashley and Drew McIntyre
Similar to the opener, this bout featured two teams that have been at odds for weeks. The in-ring action was above-average and it had a great sense of urgency. All four guys worked well together, the crowd was into everything they did, and the final few minutes were well done. The finish was a little lame, but it was an entertaining affair, otherwise. Michael Cole noted on commentary that Elias and Lashley will face off in a Miracle on 34th Street Fight on the upcoming Christmas Eve Raw, so brace yourselves for some cringe-worthy holiday silliness.
The Miz Hosted Miz TV with Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair; Lynch and Flair def. Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville
I was worried Miz would bring up TLC during Miz TV, but he ended up stirring shit between Lynch and Flair instead. Lynch, per usual, was the highlight of the segment by verbally burying them both (her line about Miz not being a real Marine in front of the troops was especially excellent). The tag team match that followed was perfectly fine, showing that despite all the bad blood between Lynch and Flair, they can still work together when it matters most and get the job done.
AJ Styles and Seth Rollins def. WWE champion Daniel Bryan and Intercontinental Champion Dean Ambrose
Correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't believe we've seen Styles and Rollins team up since Styles came to WWE almost three years ago. If not, then this was a super special occasion and they had wonderful chemistry as partners. This had the potential to be a barn-burner on paper, and maybe it would have been with more time. Then again, this was Tribute to the Troops after all, so it didn't need to be anything outstanding and it ended up being a blast for what it was. The babyfaces reigning supreme was only fitting.
I assume nobody came out with their championships because this was filmed prior to TLC and WWE didn't want to spoil any potential title changes (or come across as outdated). Speaking of which, I appreciated that the commentary was added in after the fact, since there plenty of talk of what happened this past week in WWE and what will be going down on next week's holiday shows. As I say every year, this show is meant to be a feel-good event dedicated to the troops, so it's always a success in that respect. It was also enjoyable from an in-ring standpoint and I liked that there were a handful of matches but not too many. Throw in the mini concerts and the "happy holiday" messages from the Superstars and various celebrities and you have yourself a nice two-hour special.
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