CM Punk's music plays to open the show, but it's John Laurinaitis that comes out in a CM Punk t-shirt. Laurinaitis said he was paying respect to being in Punk's hometown by dressing like him. Punk's music hits and he heads to the ring. Giant pop for the hometown hero.
Punk takes the mic, and there is a loud "CM Punk" chant. Punk says that he thinks Laurinaitis is antagonizing him and wonders why he doesn't kick him in the face. Laurinaitis said that he would be fired, but is in a giving mood and tells Punk that he has the night off... but he's kidding and notes how unpredictable he is. Punk tells him that he isn't. Laurinaitis said that Punk will be in a gauntlet match tonight, and he will determine his three opponents. If any of the opponents beat him, they will face Punk next Monday night on RAW. Punk asks what happens if he beats his three guys, and Laurinaitis said that he hasn't given it much thought. Punk has other ideas, and says that he wants a fourth match with Laurinaitis if he beats his three guys. Laurinaitis says it's unfair to Punk and he doesn't want to beat the WWE champion as the crowd chants "You can't wrestle." Punk noted that Laurinaitis said that he listens to the WWE Universe and asks them if they want to see them wrestle, and the crowd goes crazy. Laurinaitis finally accepts.
The final 1/2/12 promo airs, with the text "He Is Coming" on a chalkboard and finishes with "The End Begins... Next Monday."
Booker T and Cody Rhodes are shown walking to the ring, they square off next.
A recap of Booker T singing "Cody The Red-Nosed Reindeer" on SmackDown is shown.
Cody Rhodes vs. Booker T
Good opening match. Booker pinned Rhodes clean after hitting a scissors kick.
Backstage Zack Ryder is thanking John Cena for his success. Cena said that Ryder doesn't owe him anything, and everything is happening because he earned it. Ryder asks what the deal with Kane is. Cena said he's going to the ring, and if Kane is anywhere in the building, then the show will be going off in a bang.
Kelly Kelly is backstage talking to The Big Show. A referee comes out and tells Show that Laurinaitis needs to speak with him and Show takes off.
Laurinaitis us in the phone backstage and tells Brodus Clay that he's debuting next week. David Otunga is with Laurinaitis. Big Show comes in and Laurinaitis shows the clip of Show punching Otunga on SmackDown. Otunga said that the punch is worthy of a lawsuit and to not blame him for having the shortest title reign in WWE history. Show said he can beat Otunga any day of the week with one arm tied behind his back. Laurinaitis asks Otunga if he'll face Show if Show had one arm tied behind his back and Otunga accepted. Show said that a giant with one arm is better than a stooge with no Testicles.
Ziggler and Swagger are backstage arguing about who will beat CM Punk tonight. Vickie comes out and says that the important thing is one of them will beat Punk and bring the title to her stable. Mark Henry butts in and says "Excuse me" before walking off.
A mixed tag match is up next.
Ryder and Eve won clean after Ryder hit the Ruff Ryder on Kidd and got the pin.
John Cena's music hits and he heads to the ring. Loud boos for Cena's entrance. A recap of Kane's attack on Cena from last week is shown. Cena admitted that he wasn't Chicago's favorite son, and despite his first match being there, the city can be more than salty to him. The loud boos continue. Cena brought up Chicago hosting 3 WrestleMania's and being the site where Eddie Guerrero was inducted in the Hall of Fame. Crowd chants "Eddie." Cena then brought up losing the WWE title to Punk in Chi-town. Cena said that Chicago will now see hell, fire and brimstone, and they will see John Cena vs. Kane. The Miz's music hits.
Miz is at the top of the ramp with a mic and says that he wants to face Cena since they have unfinished business. Miz brought up beating Cena at WrestleMania and admitted that the win was a little tainted because of The Rock's involvement. Loud "Rocky" chants, and Miz tells the crowd to not start those "stupid chants." Miz wants to prove that he doesn't need the Rock to beat Cena. Cena tells Miz to shut up, and calls for a referee so they can have that match right now.
The Miz vs. John Cena
After Cena got a fast start, Miz took the mic and said the match doesn't matter because he already beat Cena at WrestleMania, and it doesn't matter if it was tainted or not. He then said he was leaving "this crappy city" with his head held high. R-Truth's music hit and he attacked Miz outside of the ring. Truth went on to beat the hell out of Miz outside the ring. Truth then took a mic and said that he can finish this right now, but what's the fun in that? Truth then said that he'll take his time getting his revenge on Miz.
The Big Show (with one hand tied behind his back) vs. David Otunga
Show was putting a beatdown on Otunga when Mark Henry's music hit. Henry entered the ring and the bell rang. Loud "Sexual Chocolate" chant. Henry knocked Big Show down and Daniel Bryan came to ringside and distracted Henry. Show managed to get loose and went for the chokeslam on Henry. Otunga stopped it from happening and Henry bailed, leaving Otunga to receive the chokeslam from Show. Show was declared the winner via DQ.
Alberto Del Rio's music hits and he's wheeled out in a wheelchair by Ricardo Rodriguez. Del Rio talks about his groin injury. The crowd cheers and the Bella twins come out and asks the crowd to treat him with respect. The Bellas argue about who will throw Del Rio a party when he returns. Del Rio tells them to leave and promises the crowd that he will be back and he will be more vicious then ever before. He vows to become WWE Champion again and leaves.
The Gauntlet match is up next.
CM Punk vs. Jack Swagger
Punk pinned Swagger in a short match, and Dolph Ziggler headed to the ring immediately after. Before the match started, Swagger attacked Punk's left knee.
CM Punk vs. Dolph Ziggler
After wrestling for several minutes, Punk had Ziggler in trouble. John Laurinaitis came to ringside and sent Vickie Guerrero and Jack Swagger to the back. He then started to tell Punk that the match between the two of them was not going to happen when Dolph Ziggler hit Punk with the Zig Zag and got the pin. Ziggler celebrated with the WWE Championship after the match, and will get a title shot against Punk next week.
Kane's pyro hits and he entered the ring. Kane says that what people are seeing is the real him. Before he gets to say much, John Cena's music hit and he stood at the top of the stage. Cena starts to head down, but Kane's pyro hit on top of the sage, causing Cena to retreat. Kane said that he made Cena his victim because he has led the people astray by asking them to rise above hate, and that the world is a dark, dark place and it's OK to hate. Kane said humans are hateful by nature and that deep down everybody hates. He said that people hate their miserable lives, and that hate motivates us. He said that once you embrace the hate, you become honest with yourself. Dueling "Let's Go Cena / Cena Sucks" chants. Kane then said that he's going to help Cena because the last image that he'll see and hear this year is all the people chanting those words that tear Cena's soul apart: "Cena Sucks." Kane starts chanting "Cena Sucks" and the crowd starts the dueling chants again with the "Cena Sucks" chants being louder. Cena is looking distraught as the chants continue to end the show.