WWE's Over The Limit pay-per-view took place on Sunday night the PNC Arena in Raleigh, North Carolina, with John Cena vs. John Laurinaitis headlining the show.
Here's how Over The Limit 2012 played out...
Pre-Show (streaming live on YouTube) - Zack Ryder vs. Kane
Numbers for the live stream were down on Extreme Rules. Around 30,000 were watching when the pre-show got started. By the time this match ended, the number was around 45,000 vs. around 65,000 for the last PPV pre-show. So-so match which got around 5 minutes. Kane picked up the win with the chokeslam.
Backstage they did a promo with Cody and Santino which led it being announced that there would be a 'People Power Battle Royal', with the winner getting a shot at either the IC title or US title on tonight's pay-per-view.
People Power Battle Royal
Great Khali, The Miz, JTG, Ezekiel Jackson, Curt Hawkins, Tyler Reks, Michael McGillicuty, Yoshi Tatsu, Tyson Kidd, Jimmy and Jey Uso, Jinder Mahal, Drew McIntyre, Heath Slater, Titus O'Neil, Darren Young, Alex Riley, David Otunga, William Regal, and Christian were the participants. They all got their own entrances with decent pops for Regal and Christian.
By the time they all entered the ring, the pre-show was about up, so this match opens up the pay-per-view.
No video packages to open the PPV, just straight into the action. Confusing if you didn't watch the pre-show but something different if nothing else. Highlights included Darren Young throwing himself over the top rope after botching his elimination from a drop kick, and Khali looking like he killed himself just getting thrown over the top rope by three guys.
Final three were Miz, Christian, and Otunga. Aren't all three heels? Anyway, Miz and Otunga did a deal to double team Christian. Christian eliminated Otunga though and eventually tossed out Miz to earn the title shot. Winner: Christian.
Christian signalled that he wanted a shot at Santino's US title.
WWE Tag Team Championship - R-Truth & Kofi Kingston (c) vs. Jack Swagger & Dolph Ziggler
Swagger and Ziggler worked over Truth for a lot of the match. Truth hit a tornado DDT on Swagger and made the hot tag. Kofi hit the Trouble on Paradise on Ziggler for the win. Solid match. Winners: R-Truth & Kofi Kingston.
WWE Divas Championship - Layla (c) vs. Beth Phoenix
Small chants for Kharma as the match got underway. Match perhaps went a couple of minutes too long but it wasn't bad in places. Beth looked impressive but Layla got the win out of nowhere after a neckbreaker. Winner: Layla.
Fatal Four-Way for the World Heavyweight Championship - Sheamus (c) vs. Randy Orton vs. Chris Jericho vs. Alberto Del Rio
Good match. How you'd expect a four-way in WWE to play out for the most part with guys taking breaks here and there on the outside while two or three fought in the ring. Crowd were really into Orton, Sheamus too. Things picked up as Orton went for an RKO on Sheamus, but Del Rio intercepted and locked in his armbar. Jericho broke it up. He went for a lionsault but Orton hit him with a backbreaker. Orton and Sheamus then blocked each others finishers in a busy couple of minutes.
Jericho hit the codebreaker on Orton. Del Rio then locked in the armbreaker on Jericho, but he escaped and hit the Walls of Jericho. Jericho ducked a brogue kick attempt from Sheamus and hit another codebreaker. Orton ran in and hit an RKO on Jericho, then on Del Rio. Sheamus then hit the kick on Orton, then hit White Noise on Jericho and got the pin. Winner: Sheamus.
Backstage, Cody was talking to Eve, telling her how he would have beaten Christian if they were fighting tonight. Of course, Christian appeared, and said he'd changed his mind and wanted an IC title shot instead of facing Santino.
Bonus Match - The Miz vs. Brodus Clay
Miz twice in one night? Really? He cut a promo and called out Brodus Clay for an unadvertised match. Before Brodus came out though, Miz said he was the greatest dancer ever. He started to dance, which sucked. Pretty short match, but not particularly pretty and the crowd didn't care about it either. Finish came when Brodus hit a fall away slam from the second rope, then hit the splash to get the winner. Winner: Brodus Clay.
IC Title Match - Cody Rhodes (c) vs. Christian
Solid match if unspectacular and the crowd were pretty dead for it until the closing stages. Finish came when Rhodes hit a moonsault and only got a two count. Christian quickly hit the killswitch and got the pin. The match suffered for the crowd seeing both guys as heels rather than Christian as a babyface. Winner and new IC champion: Christian.
WWE Championship Match - CM Punk (c) vs. Daniel Bryan
AJ wished Punk good luck before the match. Bryan came out to huge Yes chants. Huge duelling chants from the crowd throughout the match. As expected, these two got a ton of time for what was a technical match but still a WWE style match. Punk got a big pop for locking on a figure four which brought out the Ric Flair chants.
Finish came when Bryan locked in the Yes Lock on Punk, who eventually rolled over so Bryan was on his back. His shoulders were on the mat so the referee counted three, even though Bryan protested that Punk was tapping. Punk didn't tap until after the three count though. Winner and still WWE champion: CM Punk. Really good match.
Time for another bonus match...
Camacho (w/Hunico) vs. Ryback
Short and not very sweet, with Ryback getting the win. Crowd were dead other than for the occasional Goldberg chant. Winner: Ryback.
Main Event - No DQ, No Countout, If John Laurinaitis loses he's fired - John Cena vs. John Laurinaitis
Cena came out to the most positive reaction he's had in a long, long time. He went for the AA within about a minute but instead gave Laurinaitis an airplane spin, then grabbed the ring bell and rang it near his ear. Total joke of a main event. Cena propped up Laurinaitis on one of the Spanish announcers chairs and started doing commentary, mocking him as Michael Cole treated us to his OTT fake laughter.
They went back into the ring and Cena grabbed a mic. He told Laurinaitis he was locking in the STF, which he did, but broke it on 10 as the crowd counted along. He then grabbed a bottle of water and poured it over Laurinaitis. Quite the main event this. Next, Cena got a fire extinguisher and sprayed Laurinaitis with it (bear in mind this is all with Cole laughing on commentary), then he threw a trash can of garbage over him.
Laurinaitis got back into the match and tossed Cena into the ring steps, then hit him a few times with a chair before getting a two count. He then hit Cena with a low blow and escaped through the crowd. Cena stayed in the ring with him and the referee looking confused, but eventually Big Show appeared from through the crowd and tossed Laurinaitis back into the ring. Show and Cena teased double-teaming him, but as Cena got Laurinaitis up for the AA, Show laid him out. Laurinaitis covered Cena and got the three count. Winner: John Laurinaitis.
Afterwards, Show raised Laurinaitis' hand and left the ring to end one of the worst WWE main events for some time.