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Reader Report: WWE Smackdown Live Event at Madison Square Garden for 12/26/2016 – John Cena Returns, Ziggler vs. Miz in a Cage, Tag Team Turmoil, More

We always enjoy getting live reports from our readers, no matter what live events you’re attending.  You are always encouraged to send in results for WWE, TNA, NXT, ROH, Evolve, and other professional wrestling events.  Email me at, anything from simple results to detailed play by play are welcomed.  Thank you to site reader “Michael” who sent in the following from the WWE “post-Christmas” show at Madison Square Garden in New York, NY.

Definitely a full house for this one.  Pretty heavy on the kids and families given it was the holiday show and kids are off all this week in NY from school.  I got to take my kids for the first time to a show I’ve attended a lot of times, and they had a great time tonight.

Match #1 – Bray Wyatt and Randy Orton (c) def. Heath Slater and Rhyno, The Ascension, The Usos, Breezango, and American Alpha in a tag team turmoil match to retain the Smackdown Tag Team Championship.  The two favorites here were Orton and Wyatt and American Alpha, with Orton and Wyatt getting a slightly larger pop.  The fans were also into Rhyno and chanted “We want Rhyno” when he and Slater were in the match.

Match #2 – Alexa Bliss (c) def. Becky Lynch to retain the Smackdown Women’s Championship.  This was fine for a house show match.  Becky was well liked and got a good reaction for her entrance.  Alexa tried to keep going at Becky after the match, but Becky got the better of her and posed with the belt before handing it back over to Alexa.

Match #3 – Apollo Crews, Jack Swagger, and Mojo Rawley def. Curt Hawkins and The Vaudevillains.  Nothing much to speak of here, but after the match Hawkins got on the mic to berate the crowd then he issued an open challenge, which was answered by…

Match #4 – James Ellsworth def. Curt Hawkins.  A really short match (under a minute), with Ellsworth hitting No Chin Music for the win.

Match #5 – Dolph Ziggler def. The Miz (w/Maryse) in a non-title steel cage match.  Miz trashed on New York and the Knicks for not winning championships, and put over Cleveland (especially the Cavaliers) and Lebron James.  He said NYC didn’t deserve a championship match, so the match was changed on the fly to non-title.  A bit ridiculous, but it’s a house show so no big deal.  Anyhow, Ziggler won a pretty good cage match.

Match #6 – Nikki Bella def. Natalya.  Local ads had Nikki facing Carmella, but “card is subject to change.”  Carmella tried to do a run-in, but Nikki cut that off by tossing Natalya into her, then hitting her Rack Attack 2.0 finisher.

Match #7 – Baron Corbin def. Kalisto.  A pretty good match that everyone seemed to stay interested in.  Well executed.

Match #8 – AJ Styles (c) def. John Cena and Dean Ambrose to retain the WWE World Championship.  I’d say this was the best match of the night.  Styles won by using a chair on both opponents and pinning Ambrose.  Cena sold outside a good bit, presumably because it was his first night back.  After, Cena and Ambrose hit Styles with their finishers to send the fans home happy.

An enjoyable show.  WWE is coming back on March 12 with the “Road to Wrestlemania” tour and advertised Brock Lesnar being at that event.  Tickets go on advance sale on Friday at 11, pre-sale code “WWERTW.”

About Bill Wentz (1543 Articles)'s Senior Columnist, writing with the site since 2009 and a lifelong wrestling fan dating all the way back to the early Wrestlemania years. As a strongly opinionated fan, you can get my thoughts regularly on Ring Rap Audio and Around the Ring on Thursdays, as well as in "Wentz's Blog" in print. Look for my live show reports as well for MMA, WWE, ROH, and more. Outside of wrestling, I have a strong obsession with trucks, winning awards statewide with a truck dubbed the "Brahma Bull Edition." Interact with me on Twitter @Bill_SoonerFan or by email at

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