One thing is for sure. After all what WWE witnessed in attendance, viewership and income after the disastrous PPV Crown Jewel earlier in November in Saudi Arabia, it was made clear that if nothing was done soon, the entire company would be in danger.
So, it was all upon the year 2018’s last PPV, the Tables, Ladders, Chairs aka TLC to save things for the WWE. And, it wouldn’t be wrong to say that the same just happened. TLC delivered more than the need of the hour. And, WWE ended the PPV session of 2018 with perhaps a banger!
WWE TLC Highlights 16th December 2018 Full Match
With the WrestleMania week starting soon, much was expected from the year’s last PPV. And it did not disappoint us either. With a big list of much-anticipated match card, TLC showed us six title matches – with two champions being crowned – and a super fantabulous and epic main event. I agree there were six title defense matches, but the best was saved for the last. Three most dangerous women superstars of WWE fought it out in the first-ever women’s Tables, Ladders, Chairs match for the SmackDown Women’s Championship, and SmackDown once again proved why it has been the superior brand since the last few months.
There were a total of twelve matches, and I will not go on the details of the match – it will make a novel! – and will be informed about the history of the match, result expected and final result and the grade. And if you have not seen the matches yet, don’t worry, I’ll provide the links. And here they are –
1. Cruiserweight Championship – Buddy Murphy (c) vs Cedric Alexander
TLC 2018 kicked off with the championship match between two most athletic superstars of WWE – Cedric Alexander and Buddy Murphy. Their match timed only 10:35, which seemed a bit of a cruel tease. The history between the two is not so long. It started just before the Super Showdown, where Cedric was the champ. But WWE chose to hand over the title to Buddy in his hometown in Melbourne, Australia during the Super Showdown, thus giving him a push and starting a nice feud. TLC saw some great athleticism from both the 205 Live superstars, with Buddy Murphy being the winner.
Expected – Buddy Murphy
Winner- Buddy Murphy
Grade – B
Link – https://youtu.be/xfnA2HnAGDM
2. Elias vs Bobby Lashley (Kick-off Show Ladder Match)
A classic heel versus face match. No much talking about the history of these two men. Elias was among those men who suffered in the hands of the trio heels of Bobby, Corbin and McIntyre. But the feud was made between these two. Two or three RAW nights saw a bitter rivalry between two of these, where two guitars lost their life! And it was supposed to end here. But seeing the match, I don’t think this has ended. Elias was too good during the whole match, handling both Bobby and his talk-chap Leo Rush. And he did win, but at the expense of a uranage by Lashley, a frog splash by Rush and another guitar losing its life!
Expected – Elias
Winner – Elias
Grade – C+
Link – https://youtu.be/GWGUZUECOLY
3. R-Truth & Carmella vs Jinder Mahal & Alicia Fox (Mixed Match Challenge)
This year’s Mixed Match Challenge saw a big turn around, with the least expected pairs battling it out on the finals. The pairs of Jinder and Fox from RAW and Truth and Carmella from SmackDown were among the losing ones in the league stage, but WWE had other plans. However, we are happy with the winners. The dance pairs were in full coordination, opposite to the leakage between their opponents, as we saw from the start of the MMC. And, team work always wins!
Expected – N/A!
Winners – R-Truth and Carmella
Grade – C
4. SmackDown Tag Team Championship – The Bar (c) vs New Day vs The Usos
Not much of a story line here though. It was somewhat a good decision to keep this match a triple threat for the tag team championship. And we knew The Bar were going to retain their titles. Still, fir the sake of entertainment, the match was really good one, with each wrestler giving all he had. What we missed was the tribute the Usos used to give to their big Uce, the Big Dog Roman Reigns.
Expected – The Bar
Winners – The Bar
Grade – B
5. Braun Strowman vs Baron Corbin (TLC Match)
Man! A lot was at stake during this match. Braun was injured, leaving a little chance of making to the ring, and Corbin WS expecting to win via forfeit. But, if Braun won, he’d have his hands on the Universal Title, and if Corbin won, he’d be the permanent General Manager of RAW, and this would be very bad. I think WWE knew that, so Strowman was present, and guess what, Corbin had the worst day of his life, getting beating from all those who he’d punished – Gable and Roode, Apollo Crews, Bálor, even Heath Slater and the returning Kurt Angle. Strowman didn’t need to do anything and the match was his.
Expected – Braun Strowman
Winner – Braun Strowman
Grade – C
6. Natalya vs Ruby Riott (Tables Match)
Sunglasses – this was thing where this rivalry started. Somewhere during a match up, Riott broke Natalya’s late father Jim “The Anvil” Neidhart’s glasses, which were very close to Natie. Hence, revenge was vowed. And thus led up to a tables match between the two – probably because Riott had a table ready with Natalya’s father’s image on it! With a pathetic start, no one had thought that the match would end so well.
Expected – Natalya
Winner – Natalya
Grade – B
7. Finn Balor vs Drew McIntyre
In the list of the casualties caused by the heel trio of Lashley, Corbin and McIntyre was the name of Finn Bálor. While Lashley was battling Elias and Corbin was up against Strowman, McIntyre fought Bálor out. Drew during RAW nights mainly targeted Finn and injured him. And Finn paid back soon, costing Drew a match. This led to the match at TLC, which Finn won with just a little interference by Dolph Ziggler.
Expected – Finn Bálor
Winner – Finn Bálor
Grade – C
8. Rey Mysterio vs Randy Orton (Chairs Match)
Well, when two legends battle out in a chairs match, it is no less than a physically intense battle. So was the match between the legends Rey Mysterio and Randy Orton. Both of them showed a very physical history, which saw Rey getting injured and even Randy trying to unmask him. Thus match was too be scheduled fir sure. And became one of the much-anticipated matches. Winner? Of course the face – Rey Mysterio.
Expected – Rey Mysterio
Winner – Rey Mysterio
Grade – B
9. Raw Women’s Championship – Ronda Rousey (c) vs Nia Jax
We all know how physically beautiful Ronda Rousey’s PPVs are. And when the opponent is the irresistible force Nia Jax, you shouldn’t expect less. The grid was made somewhat flat and boring in the last few weeks, especially due to Tamina’s useless facing and the cringy microphone moments between the two. But, kudos to both the women for making the pay off rather exciting. It was a real physical battle, but I don’t think there’s anyone who can escape the ARMBAR!
Expected – Ronda Rousey
Winner – Ronda Rousey
Grade – A
10. WWE Championship – Daniel Bryan (c) vs AJ Styles
Heel Bryan vs Face Styles! Short of a more creative finish, Bryan and Styles nearly combined to pitch a perfect game, and they did so the old-fashioned way. Both of them had a bitter history. It was against Styles when Bryan took his heel turn to end Styles’ 371 days of championship reign. It didn’t stop there. Both of them used to poke nose in each other’s fight very often, with Bryan being the common one. Styles got his contractual rematch, but luck didn’t favour him may be.
Expected – AJ Styles
Winner – Daniel Bryan
Grade – B
11. Intercontinental Championship – Dean Ambrose vs Seth Rollins (c)
What happened in this match was supposed to happen. Two former brothers and mates fought for self respect, not title. After Roman Reigns left WWE due to leukaemia, Ambrose had the chance to take out all his anger on his SHIELD mate Rollins, and he did so. We’ve seen a lot of them, and thus6 added to the list.
Some weeks of continuous fights, blabbering and hide and seek finally have way too this match. And we knew Ambrose would win eventually. And that’s what happened.
Expected – Dean Ambrose
Winner – Dean Ambrose
Grade – B
12. SmackDown Women’s Championship – Asuka vs Becky Lynch (c) vs Charlotte Flair
The best match of the night. Probably the first women’s main event match. And it didn’t depress. Flair had no chance to win. But no one had expected Asuka to win either. When we come to rivalry, Asuka wasn’t even in the list. The rivalry was between the former best friends Flair and Lynch. Asuka was introduced just a couple of weeks earlier. And, Ronda cost both of the best friends the match. From the starting itself, it was an intense physical battle. Tables, Ladders, Chairs and even Kendo sticks were used. But, luck – and Ronda of course – favoured Asuka.
Expected – Becky Lynch
Winner – Asuka
Grade – A+
Overall, WWE has given us a banger, at least through the point of view of PPVs. And the loss caused by Crown Jewel has been recovered.