Night of Champions (Pre-Show), September 16, 2012
No. 1 Contender status for the United States Championship
Primo and Epico, Titus O'Neil and Darren Young, Tyson Kidd, Justin Gabriel, Brodus Clay, Santino Marella, Tensai, Jinder Mahal, Drew McIntyre, Ted DiBiase, Heath Slater, Michael McGillicutty, JTG.
Darren Young (Shared with Tensai)
Ryder went on to face Antonio Cesaro for his United States Championship but lost.
Ryder finally got his U.S. title rematch, and his gold-less position is now finally legitimate. Combined with his recent RAW win streak, hopefully this close loss on a PPV will be a sign of better things to come.
The competition here is solid but not stellar, featuring fifteen of the company's mid-carders and side acts. Notably, Santino and Epico and Primo had recent runs with titles, the Prime Time Players had their chance at the Tag Team Titles and Tensai, Brodus Clay, and, to a lesser extent, Jinder Mahal have had their moments in the past few months. Notably absent in what was an odd 16-man battle royal were the Usos, considering the appearance of all the other tag teams.
Ryder had already held the United States Championship, having taken it from a bigger star than Cesaro in Dolph Ziggler, and he failed to reclaim it, which hurts this match's standing.
However, that's more than made up for in Ryder's three and a half eliminations and the bigger stage it set in offering a spot on a major PPV as opposed to an episode of ECW or SmackDown.