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Watry’s WWE TLC 2018 Review

December 19, 2018 | Posted by Justin Watry
Dean Ambrose WWE TLC


This is my WWE TLC 2018 review.

WWE TLC 2018

– Okay, I don’t watch 205 Live. Not exactly a secret or anything. Buddy Murphy was my prediction to win but only because he is the current Cruiserweight Champion. Titles retain far more often than they change, so it was a gimme pick. I was just coming in from work at the time, so I didn’t really watch too closely.

– Elias won the Guitar Ladder Match. A upset to many but not to me. He had to get this victory. Raw is in dire need of fresh FACES at the top of the card. I have been saying this for months now, ever since Roman Reigns left. All you have to do is look at the rest of the evening to know that. Lashley and Lio Rush will be fine, but it was important for Elias to win here. Means more than many realize.

– Carmella and R-Truth defeated Jinder Mahal and Alicia Fox, thus becoming the season two Mixed Match Challenge winners. Again, a mild upset to many…but not me. I figured the vacation thing would go well with these two to make it fun. Plus, Truth is just going to get confused anyways and come out at number 29 during the men’s Royal Rumble. Comedy spot. Nothing more, nothing less. We need the dramatic final countdown to the number thirty entry!

– The Bar retain over The New Day and The Usos. Easy to predict but who cares? I want an interesting tag team division. These three have fought 800 million times in the past few years. Their battles are not even spread out. It is just one after another after another after another after another after another after another after another. Isn’t Sanity on Smackdown LIVE? Get them heated up with Nikki Cross. Heck, do something with Shane McMahon and The Miz. I assume that is the direction at some point regardless. Anything is better than Bar, Usos, New Day, repeat.

– Braun Strowman over Baron Corbin. Exactly what it needed to be and a perfect example of great story telling. Baron Corbin has abused his power running Raw and constantly scoffed at rumors of Braun Strowman returning to crush him at TLC. Perfect cocky bad guy character and easy to boo. Then there is the roster that has been hurt during his abuse of power. Chad Gable, Bobby Roode, Apollo Crews, and even Heath Slater were out there for revenge, all led by…the returning Kurt Angle! The man who had his job stolen from Baron Corbin many weeks ago. Good. This had the crowd going wild, and Strowman (still with an injured arm) picked up the victory – earning a Universal Championship bout against Brock Lesnar at Royal Rumble. That very title that he was screwed out of by Baron Corbin. Fitting payoff. So simple to do. Bad guy acts like a jerk, good guy beats him on pay-per-view, and the fans cheer. Easy.

– Same thing here. Natalya beats Ruby Riott in a Tables Match. Fun, little bout. Heel acts like a jerk, face gets their revenge. Story telling 101 in the professional wrestling business. I enjoyed this.

– First wrong prediction of the night and of course, it is shocker. Finn Balor beating Drew McIntyre fits my “RAW needs top stars” but goes against the ever growing “Drew is a stud” proclamation. I think WWE was in a tough spot. Do more with Finn FINALLY! Or have him fall to the future main eventer McIntyre. I am fine wit the result, even if I could have done with Dolph Ziggler getting involved. Nobody cares; move on. As noted, Monday nights need the good guys (and gals) on the roster to step up. Nattie, Strowman and gang, Elias, Balor and later Ronda Rousey. That is no coincidence.

– Another upset in Rey Mysterio stealing a victory from Randy Orton. I won’ argue it because Mr. 619 just came back to the company. However, I will need to see the follow up. Right now, in the moment, I don’t agree. Felt like an unofficial number one contender’s match?

– Ronda Rousey delivers yet again. Very entertaining RAW Womens Championship match. I loved this because not only did The Rowdy One retain but Jax was knocked down a thousand pegs. First during the match and then afterwards. She bumped into Becky Lynch backstage and got completely punked out. GOOD! The Facebreaker can now go do something else for awhile. Hopefully in segments that get cut from the Raw Hulu version. Absolutely incredible how strong of a debut year Rousey has had. Many year end awards will go to her folks…

– Daniel Bryan remains WWE Champion! Spectacular showing from AJ Styles; it just wasn’t meant to be. His long title run had to come to an end eventually and once it did, there was no point starting it right back up. I think this match was excellent and may have crept into the Top 5 Of 2018. Bryan is too good right now to lose. I said it before and will again. The blue brand will have a very intriguing Road To WrestleMania in 2019. No clue where it goes.

– Quick hits: I love the Lars Sullivan hype. I was asked on Twitter which show he ends up on. I have no idea honestly. Both brands want him, and that is all that is needed to tell us he is a BIG deal. I wonder if WWE can delay his debut to the Rumble. Probably not. Speaking of the January PPV, I think the Chase Field location is going to be freakin’ outstanding. Seriously may top the AlamoDome spot from 2017. Nice Nattie/Rousey backstage bit just to remind us they are friends and that line about payback…uh oh. Scary. As for Vince McMahon returning on RAW, I am going to guess a little bit of a shake up. Nothing THAT big like a WWE Draft. That can wait. Believe it or not, I do think the company already has their Mania plans in place.

– Dean Ambrose over Seth Rollins for the IC Title. Another easy call. It had to happen for the sake of both men heading into 2019. As for the live crowd, I will say this. How does it feel when the hijacking happens to guys NOT named Roman Reigns and Jinder Mahal? How does it differ your opinion on clown fans? That answer is your hypocrisy between internet darlings and supposed Vince McMahon creations.

– Loved the fact that Becky Lynch vs. Charlotte Flair vs. Asuka was the main event. It was treated as such and 100% should have closed the PPV. Well deserved. This was just great stuff all around and is easily in my Top 5 Matches Of 2018. Does it top Rousey’s WM34 match? Probably not but still, that is not to take away from the TLC main event. A MOTY candidate by any measure. Asuka finally gets her championship and does so one year after debuting at October’s TLC event in 2017. Kinda cool piece of history there. Charlotte looks like a beast yet again in showing her rage and passion (ala Survivor Series snapping on Rousey). Then there is Becky who was absolutely THE MAN in the entire buildup. She lost the title without being pinned or submitting, which was a genius move in hindsight. Then there is The Rowdy One who cost both her rivals the chance to grab the belt at the top of ladder. You’re welcome Asuka. A set up for all three future battles: Ronda/Asuka, Ronda/Charlotte, and the rightful WrestleMania 35 main event…Ronda/Becky.

SUMMARY: I thought this card was sneaky good. The television product may have been questionable. However, the matchups on paper made this must see. WWE delivered for their final PPV of 2018. What did you think?

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WWE TLC, Justin Watry