Santino Marella vs. Wade Barrett
Barrett squashed Marella before pinning him with the "Winds of Change."
The Bella Twins are backstage with the Miz arguing. Miz asked them if they saw R-Truth. They said no, but they saw "Little Jimmy." Miz walked off, and Truth was shown in the back, and told the audience to "Shhhh..."
Sheamus' music hits and he heads to the ring to face The Miz. Miz attacked Sheamus before the match started and tried to tie him in the ropes. Sheamus broke free and punished Miz before Miz ran through the crowd. R-Truth is on a mic in the crowd and said that he ran into "Little Jimmy" in the crowd and that he doesn't like Miz and that he needs to "get got." Miz jumped over the barrier to get back in the ring and was nailed with a Brogue kick from Sheamus. Truth got a bottle of water from the announce table and nailed Miz over the head with it. That's got to be a weird spot to sell. Truth's music hit and he left through the crowd and said that "This weekly Miz beat down was brought to you by Little Jimmy." Truth gave the mic to a fan who asked what he thought, and the kid yelled, "Happy New Year Miz!"
Punk vs. Ziggler for the title tonight is plugged yet again.
Josh Matthews interviewed Dolph Ziggler backstage, who was doing a headstand. Ziggler said that he pinned CM Punk last week as simply as he did that headstand. He said that the country is in decline because of states like Tennessee. He said that the only thing that he doesn't have is the WWE Championship, and that everyone should save their ticket stubs because he will win the title tonight.
A recap of the finish of last week's Gauntlet match is shown.
Zack Ryder is backstage talking to Eve and they are approached by Jack Swagger. Swagger said that an imposter was wearing the U.S. title. Ryder asked Swagger if he wanted to jo now. John Laurinaitis interrupted and said that there will be a six-man elimination match tonight with John Cena, Zack Ryder and The Big Show vs. Mark Henry, Kane and Jack Swagger.
CM Punk is shown heading to the ring, his match with Ziggler is next.
A SmackDown promo aired, hyping the Booker T/Cody Rhodes and Daniel Bryan/Big Show title matches.
CM Punk (c) vs. Dolph Ziggler
During the match Laurinaitis came to the ring and distracted the official. Punk locked in the Anaconda Vice, but the ref was distracted. Punk threw Ziggler into Laurinaitis. After a series of reversals, Ziggler threw Punk into the ropes and Laurinaitis pulled the top rope down, sending Punk to the floor. The ref proceeded to count Punk out, allowing Ziggler to win the match by count-out. Despite not winning the belt, Ziggler grabbed the title after the match and celebrated with it.
Another short "1/2/12" promo aired ending with the text, "He Is Here."
Highlights are shown of Shawn Michaels winning the Rumble in 1995.
Kelly Kelly and Eve vs. The Bella Twins
The Bellas pulled off a little bit of "twin magic" when Eve had one of the Bellas pinned after hitting a moonsault off the top rope. The Bellas switched places when the ref got distracted by Kelly, and the fresh Bella rolled up Eve to get the pin.
Laurinaitis is talking to David Otunga backstage and CM Punk stormed in. Punk called Laurinaitis "a piece of..." but Laurinaitis cut him off. Laurinaitis said that his problem is with Ziggler, and that Ziggler will get a shot at The Royal Rumble with Laurinaitis acting as special referee. Punk said that if Laurinaitis screws him, he'll get arrested for animal cruelty because he'll beat him "like a b-tch."
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