Monday, 15 December 2014

WWE TLC 2014

TLC 2014: Tables. Ladders, Chairs and Stairs

Tonight WWE presented its new addition to the former TLC Pay Per View, by adding Stairs. Live on PPV from the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio on Sunday 13th December 2014 would WWE feature it’s absent world title? Could it move forward to the New Year with interest, intrigue and gear new pathways for after Royal Rumble? Or will it stick to a considerable, regular format?

Let’s find out…

Intercontinental Championship
Dolph Ziggler Vs Luke Harper (c)

Spot monkey Dolph Ziggler was battered by grotty geezer Luke Harper. Dolph was busted open while outside with an official as Dolph burst in to the match to stop Harper climbing up. Ziggler tried to stop Harper by pushing the ladder into his feet off the apron, though Harper smashed him back. Dolph then countered by smacking Harper onto the ladder to knock him out for a bit. Ziggs set and climbed a ladder with touching distance on the title. Harper stopped only to receive a smash down again.

Ziggler walked in Harper’s ladder holding but took him down with a kick. He then smashed the ladder into Harper on the apron landing back first on the laid out ladder between the ring and the announce table. Harper made it back in to stop Dolph and tipped over the ladder to save the title being grabbed.

Dolph usedthe ladder from the turnbuckle to tip the ladder over Harper whilst on it trapping between the main ladder to climb up. Harper got back and stopped him. Setting another ladder, Harper was smacked by Harper. Dolph Ziggler then easily walked up the ladder to grab the Intercontinental title as a fluke four time champion over Luke Harper.

WWE Tag Team Championship
Damien Sandow and The Miz (c) Vs The Uso’s

Damien Mizdow received the Slammy of the year for LOL moment. The Miz stole it from him and still hasn’t given him one of the tag titles he won for them. Instead he keeps his mock up titles. The Miz tried to recruit Naomi, who wanted to be Divas champ adding Miz could not help her. Jimmy Uso was mentioned, as the pair have a relationship addressed on tele show Total Divas.

Miz starts the match as Mizdow mimicks outside to huge cheers. Jimmy is tagged in as he chases Miz. “We want Mizdow” was early enforced in Miz’es hometown, the announcers noted that no one even liked Miz.

Miz was double suplexed as Mizdow did an impressive handstand. Naomi was watching backstage as her Uso flew over the top rope at both Mizzers. DDT from Miz for two fall cheap follow up. Miz teased a tag never coming as he almost got rolled up for the titles. Miz placed a rest hold after his tiresome routine. Enziguri from Jey allowed a tag to Jimmy. The Uso teased who to slam into at both opposite corners and smashed Miz as Sandow avoided. Miz then chased a quick move. Miz tried the Skull Crush rope flip but was flipped over himself. Mizdow was flung out to boos when a chance came. Miz was grabbed and contorted into a single leg Boston Crab well done by Jimmy. Superkick to Miz as Uso climbed to fly three quarters over the ring. Weedy Miz rolls out and leaves. Mizdow gets hit by the flying Uso as The Miz clocked him with the Slammy to force a disqualification. The Uso’s won the match but not the tag team championships. Of the sad gimmick on offer, Mizdow is still the star. Miz remains the lackey who gets lucky.

Seth Rollins with Jamie Noble and Joey Mercury had an interview with Byron Saxton. He wanted to thank Steph and Triple H, watching from home.  

Erick Rowan Vs Big Show

In this match you can now use the Stairs, which are general used in TLC matches anyway as part of the furniture. To rebrand a PPV to include it was plain ridiculous. Rowan made an outside wall stack of Chairs JBL thought was resembling Stonehenge. Bog Show slammed Rowan into them and moved him back inside. Show places a stair onto the announce desk. Rowan comes back and is flung into the side steps instead. “Big Show sucks!” the crowd say. Show swings the stairs into Rowan’s gut sideways. Someone hilariously boo’es like a sheep.

Inside now Show hammers the steps on Rowan. Rowan comes back by knocking Show onto the laid stairs in the ring. Rowan takes it up top. Rowan misses Show on a drop down with the stairs but Show caught the side as Rowan hit himself. Show batter rams Rowan through the earlier built blockade of stairs outside now. Stair bowling the announcers suggest. It’s bowling for Big Show’s!  Rowan kicks the stair as Show picks it up. Show counters grabbing Rowan with a chokeslam into the stairs. Show picks Rowan up and over for a pin but instead uses the stairs over Rowan to trap him kicking out. A new way to cover Erick Rowan allowed the Big Show to grab the three fall victory.

John Cena Vs Seth Rollins
  • If John Cena loses he will forfeit his number one contendership to the WWE World Heavyweight Championship

Representing his client Brock Lesnar, Paul Heyman had a special seat in the house ringside once more to watch the progress of the title opportunity scrap. The stipulation was made by the returning anonymous Raw General Manager, via computer on the previous episode of Raw.  

Seth Rollins arrived with his flanked suitors Jamie Noble and Joey Mercury. They still don’t wear pants. L Okay, entry fine, but later involvement? If so will they, won’t they? Hmmm… WWE say they “don’t carry underwear with them.” :o

Cena instantly lobbed clubbing hands at Rollins. J and J security distracted Cena as Rollins took the lead. “This is my time!” Rollins yells. Cena came back again with a quick one move.  Mercury and Noble pull the table away from Cena as Rollins gets back into it. Rollins tries to bring in a new table as Cena sops him. One fan yells “Cena you suck!” The JJ’s stops another table Cena tries to pull in a once more as he shoves it in them. Rollins is back again. JJ returns to stop Cena full on now inside the ring. Rollins DDT’s Cena down. A new table is entered by Seth.

The Cena chants of indifference began. After a long wait down, Cena charges a a new flurry of moves to get in charge. J and J stop this with a beat down on Cena again. It’s allowed as there are no DQ’s in this match. Cena fought out of a 3 on 1 situation. Cena cleared house and took the ladders at the back of the ramp. Then he picked up the iron grilling instead to smash through the J and J secuiry team. Poor Noble was hurt and in pain as JBL mentioned he’d be calling Nidia hurt. Forget her, call me. I can soothe. Bubble bath or sensual oil massage. You choose.

Mercury was soon flung over the barricade at ringside by Cena upon making their way back. Rollins had enough and flung Cena into the other side.  Rollins makes up a table on the outside placing two together. As Lawler points out the table doesn’t need to be inside the ring. Traditional rules have now been changed.

Cena blocks and flips Rollins over inside the ring by suplex. Cena powerlifts Rollins up bt failsas Rollins counters him down smoothly. Cena throws Rollins over the other side outside by Paul Heyman at ringside near the announcers for extra time. Rollins uses the briefcase whacking Cena. Rollins makes up a new table inside. Cena gets up from the ground as possum and holds the Attitude Adjustemtn and walks Rollins into an official. Cena lands on the table on a counter. Cena flimily hits a punch which clearly misses Rollins completely like a wave swoosh. Cena then horribly slams Rollins into the table. Whenever it could go so well Cena always gets carried away and ruins it all by his own lack of understanding. It’s basic and still misused. It’s shameful.

The Authority security interfered. Cena avoided a powerbomb and AA’ed both Noble and Mercury through the table, still in their suits. :(

Rollins and Cena go at it on the apron by the set tables earlier by Rollins, Michael Cole informs. Oh no! Rollins and Cena both dropped thought the table TOGETHER! Game over. The fans are livid! It’s a double finish!

However, Rollins and Cena went through the table together at the same time perfectly. Camera was clear and the action was meticulously planned. Finally the pair got something right. Even Cena did something right for once. Hallelujah.

The ref’s both lift one another’s arms in the match just like the Cena/Batista Royal Rumble charade years ago.

Announcer Lil’ Garcia said the ref restarted the match as there was no clear winner. Rollins went nuts and pulled the announce desk apart as Cena quickly lifts Rollins and cheaply taps him over the table with an AA. The table failed to snap so Cena messed up the win?

Quick thinking Cena gets a table into the ring after a wait on the mat. Here comes the Big Show! Show is approaching the ring. He jabs Cena down. Chokeslam for Cena? What is that?! The Shield music hits as Roman Reigns is walking through the crowd. He goes at it with Show and knocks the Superman punch before Spearing Show through the Table. Reigns jabs Rollins as John Cena quickly picks up Seth Rollins with the AA and slams him into the table for the dirty win. “John Cena wins! John Cena wins!” Michael Cole screams. Cole informs us that Cena is going to the Royal Rumble to fight Brock Lesnar for the WWE Heavyweight title, absent for three consecutive PPV’s.

Lesnar has had four months to prepare Cole mentions.

The kick-off show with Booker T, Alex Riley and host Renee Young chatted a bit. They spoke on about the “First ever” Stairs match.

WWE made up a new and amazing concept, add in some stairs. Yeah, okay.

WWE Divas title
Nikki Bella (c) w/ Brie Bella Vs AJ

Before the match the pair chatted in an interview about the sisterhood being stronger than ever. Nikki also discussed her assets other than the title that AJ never had.

AJ arrived with her recent Slammy award named on the pre-Monday Raw as Diva of the year.

Nikki pushes passed AJ and limbers up with a push up outside. The action begins inside as AJ whirls her out. Brie gets gut kicked for trying to interfere as AJ pulls Nikki back in. Jump up knee push back from AJ. Nikki smashes AJ for a quick two fall. A placid knee drop by Nikki lacked punch. Lots of corner flinging. Nik twists AJ’s legs and arms behind the post from outside. Two fall. AJ is stretched open by Nikki. AJ twists around to break out but Nikki jabs her in the back instead.  A hard drop slam of AJ looking careless. Another rest hold now. AJ countered with a body grab hold to try and place the Black Widow but was stopped. Roll up reversal from corner for two by AJ. Both take a double clothesline drop down. 

AJ pounces the Lou Thesz press on Nik. Neckbreaker on Nikki for two. Jump Swing DDT for AJ as Cole calls it the Tornado DDT. Jumping Enziguri off the turnbuckle by Nikki for extra leverage scores two. Reverse flip Facebuster by AJ for another close two. AJ charges a running Shining Wizard. Brie grabs Nikki’s leg onto the rope as sexy ref Rod Zapata throws Brie out to the lockeroom. Whilst distracted Nikki smashes something into AJ’s face knocking her down cold. Nikki Bella drops the Crack Rack (or Rib Rack if you prefer) on AJ to cover her for a three fall victory. Nikki retains as AJ is checked over instantly.

The superstar of the year Slammy winner (LOLZ) arrives to have an interview with Tom Phillips. Those acting classes have worked, have they? Reigns stumbled his words, took slow time to speak and said an easy text that didn’t scream amazing. We like him, but it needs more than two months.

Kane Vs Ryback

This match was built on the part of Kane being jealous Ryback was asked by Stephanie McMahon to join the now defunct Authority group. Ryback began with a shoulder barge. Kane unloaded a chair early on Ryback making silly “Ahhh!” noises. Ryback enters a poor performance bouncing around on Kane. Ryback easily tips a comical splash on Kane from the turnbuckle. Seriously, what is this? Ryback uses the chair. He goes back up top again. Kane gets the knee and chair to stop him. “Goldberg!” chants rang again for the Ryback rip off. Ryback did some stupid face-hulking-surge with the sound of an asthma sufferer. It was weird. Kane threw a chair into his face to huge cheers. SuperRyback, Vince and Triple H’s favourite new guy backstage, apparently, kicked out. Liability Ryback almost messed up the battle again with a clumsy shove of Kane leading to a body drop to win the pathetic match up of no interest. Forgettable.

United States Championship
Rusev (c) w/ Lana Vs Jack Swagger

Eden is still announcing and still bloody awful. Why was she called up? Swagger stopped Lana from talking. She was not happy. Rusev is yet to be pinned or submitted in WWE, Cole mentions. Jack gets a few moments but messes up as supposed to take Ruev down with a kick but flings to corner instead then kicks. Swagger tries the ankle Lock as Rusev reverses with power to hold in The Accolyde. The crushing Camel Clutch was almost broken by lifting Swagger who failed by swirled around the ground to get the Ankle Lock again. Rusev uses his foot to kick Swagger’s and break free. Swagz got smashed outside with a jump smash kick to the face creating some space. Rusev clambered Swagger upon entry to the ring at a nine count from outside. The Accolyde crush (with a y for extra crush) was locked back in as Rusev submitted Jack Swagger to retain the US title.

Tables, Ladders and Chairs
Dean Ambrose Vs Bray Wyatt

“Most movements eventually need to be flushed. That’s what Dean Ambrose intends to do.” –Jerry Lawler. Ambrose begins with his Lunatic Fringe brawling style. This is fine but wants to avoid becoming typecast of it every match. The pair take it through the crowd. Both make it back to the ring after Ambrose’s impressive running jump off the kick off show table. Lawler questioned how the pain was a level of pleasure for Wyatt when being beat up by Ambrose with a grin on a grimace. Wyatt urges Ambrose to use the Kendo Sticks now on him in the ring on knees. Ambrose jabs Wyatt as he tries to grab a chair. Ambrose scales the turnbuckle top with chair in hand to slam down an elbow with the chair. Ambroses’s unpredictability was questioned. Never underestimate the other. Wyatt smacks Ambrose onto the table outside upon a counter from the turnbuckle as Ambrose crashes through it hard. Both sold it tremendously.

Wyatt now smacks the Stick over Ambrose with severe pain. Wyatt innovatively places the stick in the padding by the tip turnbuckle pad as Ambrose is flung into the stick. The ladder is brought in and slammed into Ambrose now. Dean has fallen onto the ladder as Wyatt runs his slash with a back elbow jab too. Wyatt misses a run into his stacked corner ladder for Ambrose to take over. Ambrose drops a running bulldog. Ambrose hammers down from the extra leverage of the stacked ladder no on top of the turnbuckle. Wyatt is held in the ropes as Ambrose jabs a chair and dropkick followed by smooth leg drop on chair. Final moves countered by one another into a Wyatt clothesline. Ambrose returns the favour soon after outside. Ambrose drops an elbow from the ladder outside onto Wyatt on a table outside for an OMG moment. It was a pleasing risk performed well. Ambrose choose another one outside. Second time lucky! Ambrose crashes down again. “One more time!” the crowd bellow. Third time lucky? Don’t push your luck.

Ambrose sends Wyatt back to the ring, the only place you can win the match in. Wyatt grabs Ambrose for Sister Abigail to a swift and close fall of two. Wyatt lunges backward from ropes and goes for another Sis. Missed and countered by Ambrose into the stacked ladder. Dirty Deeds from Ambrose to a shockingly good kick out from Wyatt. “This isn’t about how wins, this is about who survives.” Michael Cole adds.

Ambrose discovers a working monitor television screen, a favourite of a certain McMahon’s under the ring. The unpredictable Ambrose chooses to grab the longest ladder from the titantron with unclear, smirkish intentions. Ambrose stacks the ladder by the announce team between the ring. The Spanish announce table plead not to remove it. Ambrose eventually strips the table down. Wyatt resurges and hams Ambrose with a chair. Wyatt is placed onto the table as Ambrose climbs. Oooh. Ambrose smashes down on Wyatt with an elbow to break his fall. The crowd chant profanities from the dish of the gods. Back in the ring Ambrose points and kisses to Wyatt before grabbing the monitor. Idiotic Ambrose forgets its plugged in on a wire and stumbles. The screen then explodes in Ambrose’s hands knocking him back. Karma’s a b*tch! Sister Abigail plants down on Dean Ambrose as Bray Wyatt covers for a three fall to end the match.

PPV Rating – 7/10

Men/Women of their matches – Luke Harper, Jey Uso, Erick Rowan,  Seth Rollins, AJ, Kane, Bray Wyatt

Man/Woman of the PPV – Bray Wyatt

When Cena is not in the main event, as TLC often condones, the PPV’s become high ranking. WWE need to start pushing the future and while they got their wins tonight in the main event, Ambrose and Wyatt, along with Rollins and others need more growth. Though it is an encouraging start, WWE often get bored after numbers of months. Let’s hope they finally push a new future now than rely on old habits. The world won’t cave in without John Cena.

John Cena was on course to have a good match and once again blew it. Despite Seth Rollins making the very best outline for him, Cena always ruins his own potential. It’s not good, is it?

It was a weak match between the pair, as expected, though Kane did everything to try and help Ryback become meaningful. It wasn’t achieved and never can be. Release Ryback and save the WWE purse strings a wee bit.

The tag titles are still a mess. While Sandow is the mimic gimmick, The Miz is the monkey. Before they break WWE should be giving Sandow his chance to hold a real title. The only time they will do this will be when it is officially time to break up in February. The Miz is reading water. The Uso’s also put in a great level of action, as always and can be commended for their contributions, along with Sandow.

Once again the IC title is a transitional championship which has had too many weak champions adding nothing to WWE’s structure nor the star bearing it. The curse of the IC title struck again. It was okay, but it was not under any circumstance impressive. Man of the minute Ziggler offers nothing new and neither will the equally boring Wade Barrett, on the horizon. Luke Harper lost the title based on the PPV requiring a title change. When used as a spare, Ziggler was the one to front it. Harper kept fair standing and was very impressive in his first ladder battle.

Big Show gave a decent offering with Rowan but must be careful not to slip into old habits of taking it too easy. For the pair, however, it was a considerate battle that worked for both of them.

Rusev had a tame but level encounter. It was okay and filled the time. Swagger was just, kind of, there. He is not believable, even if he is the only patriot available for the midcard. 

Nikki Bella had previously shown good match qualities considering her former capabilities. Tonight Nik was a letdown and gave a poor performance. AJ kept the show together. Nikki was alright but still off. She needs to add a little more care to her interactions, how to carry through her moves and work the match, not try to look good on camera for the crowd. That is when the crowd then respects your input.

Bray Wyatt took the battle like a pro. Dean Ambrose was amazing and the pair really supported one another handsomely. The problem is that Wyatt was still booked too weakly upon a win and Ambrose held most of the match. WWE need to work both rather than one. The one they tend to favour eventually loses resect as a gimmick while the other outdoes them. Both are WWE’s longterm future. They can have matches and be great, even when either loses a scoreboard match up. Focus on the match not the tallying. Both played exceptionally tonight and should be proud of achieving the best match of the night.

Cant’t wait for next year though. Tables, Ladders, Chairs, Stairs and a Cage! Throw in the kitchen sink why don’t you?

© Max Waltham 15th December 2014

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