WWE’s Tribute to the Troops Recap
Dec 28, 2013 - by Steve Gerweck
JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD –Joint Base Lewis-McChord in Washington State played host to WWE Tribute to the Troops 2013 as members of the U.S. Military and their families enjoyed an action-packed evening of WWE competition. Joining WWE this year in honoring the troops were “Access Hollywood” co-host Michelle Beadle, four-time Grammy nominee Daughtry and renowned comedian Jeff Dunham.
Daniel Bryan def. Bray Wyatt via disqualification
A Six-Man Tag Team Match was not originally scheduled for Tribute to the Troops. However, the intense rivalry between Daniel Bryan and The Wyatt Family would not allow for a singles match between the former WWE Champion and Bray Wyatt to play out for the men and women of the U.S. Military.
There certainly is no love lost between Bryan and Wyatt, and their confrontation quickly degraded into an all-out brawl. The Eater of Worlds was relentless in his early offense, but his aggression towards Bryan may have blinded him – allowing Bryan to take control and a huge advantage in the contest. As Bryan was about to pin Wyatt and secure victory, Erick Rowan and Luke Harper interfered, resulting in a disqualification.
As Daniel Bryan was overwhelmed by The Wyatt Family, CM Punk ran to the ring in an effort to even the odds. SmackDown General Manager Vickie Guerrero did not take kindly to the chaos and stated that the service members in attendance deserved order. As a result, she restarted the bout as a Tag Team Match pitting Harper & Rowan against Daniel Bryan & CM Punk.
CM Punk & Daniel Bryan def. Luke Harper & Erick Rowan via disqualification
The tag team battle began in similar fashion to the singles bout that preceded it. The animosity between Punk, Bryan and the Wyatt Family led to a physical and competitive match that saw the two former WWE Champions gaining an advantage thanks to their experience and speed. As Punk prepared to execute the Go To Sleep on Erick Rowan, Bray Wyatt attacked, ending the match in another disqualification.
As The Wyatt Family attacked, John Cena made his way to the ring and unleashed on the creepy trio. The chaos that ensued again caught the attention of Vickie Guerrero, who announced a Six-Man Tag Team Match between Cena, Punk & Bryan and The Wyatt Family!
John Cena, CM Punk & Daniel Bryan def. The Wyatt Family
On the edge of their seats, the members of the U.S. Military at Joint Base Lewis-McChord were firmly in support of the trio of former WWE Champions as they battled the unorthodox and powerful Wyatts.
Momentum shifted back and forth, with the chaotic match starts and stops taking a toll on everyone involved – except the Cenation leader. Following The Second City Saint making the tag to Cena, the 11-time WWE Champion hit the ring in a rush of adrenaline. With Bray Wyatt and Rowan reeling on the outside of the ring, Punk hit the GTS on Harper, and Bryan nailed the massive competitor with a running knee before Cena secured the win with an Attitude Adjustment.
Michelle Beadle interviews Colonel Charles Hodges and Daughtry performs
As Santinio Marella made his way to the ring to the delight of the U.S. service members, Michelle Beadle interviewed base commander Colonel Charles Hodges about the impact of WWE Tribute to the Troops. Following the interview, Santino introduced four-time Grammy nominee Daughtry.
R-Truth def. Fandango
Following Daughtry’s performance, Fandango and Summer Rae danced their way to the ring with Fandango set to battle R-Truth.
Inspired by the U.S. troops stationed around the world, R-Truth – fresh off an inspiring handshake tour in the Middle East and Southeast Asia – entered Joint Base Lewis-McChord invigorated and immediately put his opponent on the defensive. Truth taunted Fandango with dance moves of his own that helped him maintain a psychological advantage while countering the dancing Superstar’s offense.
Although Fandango enjoyed a brief moment of keeping the former U.S. Champion on the ropes, R-Truth’s energy and the support of the U.S. Military proved to be too much, allowing The Rapping Superstar to overwhelm the tangoing two-stepper and secure victory.
Jeff Dunham brought the laughs to WWE Tribute to the Troops
The Bella Twins introduced ventriloquist and stand-up comedian Jeff Dunham who brought laughs to Joint Base Lewis-McChord along with some of his friends. Dunham brought smiles to the base, but also attracted the attention of former WWE and World Heavyweight Champion Big Show.
Big Show def. Damien Sandow
During Jeff Dunham’s performance, Big Show made his way out, ready to get his match against Damien Sandow started. After taking a joke from Dunham and his dummy, Peanut, The World’s Largest Athlete made his way to the ring ready for action.
Sandow made his way to the ring, insulting his fellow Superstars, specifically Big Show, and expressing his desire to be the Champion of Champions. The self-proclaimed Intellectual Savior of the Masses only enraged The World’s Largest Athlete with his tirade and Big Show wasted no time making his opponent regret his words. Like R-Truth, Big Show also visited service members around the world and as a gift to them and the WWE Universe, he silenced Sandow with a huge KO Punch.
Following the contest, John Cena, CM Punk and Daniel Bryan made their way to the ring, leading Joint Base Lewis-McChord in a resounding “YES!” chant. The entire WWE locker room – setting differences aside – followed suit and joined the military in chanting “YES! YES! YES!”