Date: December 12, 2014
Location: Columbus Civic Center, Columbus, Georgia
Commentators: Tom Phillips, Michael Cole, John Bradshaw Layfield
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
It's the go home show for TLC and I'm actually looking forward to the show. Granted it's nowhere near as much as I was looking forward to Takeover last night but that's not a fair comparison. I'm sure the main event will be yet another tag match with people from the Survivor Series main event involved because Heaven forbid we ask the writers to come up with ANYTHING else. Let's get to it.
We open with a recap of the end of Raw with the latest huge brawl. These things are really running together. Also do the recaps really need to go on for three minutes?
Here's Cena to open things up but Rollins interrupts him after just a few seconds. Rollins says Cena is in this spot because he's done exactly what he's promised to do over the last ten years. That all ends on Sunday though because Rollins will set the new standard of doing everything he says he'll do. The future may have to go through Cena, but there is no future without Seth Rollins. You might even say that Cena's time is up and Rollins' time is now.
Cena says this is the day that Rollins has become a man, because he doesn't see the Shield or Authority around him. Instead Cena sees a proud man standing on his own for the first time. That's exactly what Cena want too, because Monday morning, Seth is going to have to look in the mirror and say he isn't ready. The future isn't Sunday, next week or next year. The future is now because John Cena is here.
Seth says Cena keeps talking about the future like it's some far off concept, but it's been here since Rollins set foot in WWE and everything leads to this Sunday. At TLC, Seth isn't just taking away Cena's chance at being champion again. Sunday is the beginning of the end of John Cena. A Cena chant starts up but Seth shouts it down, saying Cena becomes a memory after TLC with the rise of the new standard bearer, Seth Rollins.
Cena calls Rollins a fool but if Rollins wants to talk like a man, he needs to listen up. This is Cena's life and if Seth thinks he's getting rid of Cena, he can line up with all the other people that have said those same things. Rollins can stand with Rene Dupree, HHH, Orlando Jordan and the Rock, because Cena has survived them all. REALLY good exchange here, but I don't buy Rollins having a chance on Sunday because we have to get to Lesnar vs. Cena III, even though the interest doesn't seem to be there.
The main event is Rowan/Ryback/Ziggler vs. Harper/Show/Kane. Of course it is.
The Ascension is coming. It's about time.
Usos vs. Cesaro/Tyson Kidd
Miz/Mizdow are on commentary and Mizdow has a mini-Slammy. Before the match, Kidd and Cesaro say they're ready to grab the brass ring like Vince told them to. That line is sounding more and more like a plot device every week. Jimmy and Kidd get things going as Naomi is watching in the back. Off to Jey for a top rope elbow to the arm but Tyson drives him into the corner for some shoulders from Cesaro.
Jey loses his shirt but drives Cesaro into the corner for a tag off to his brother. That's fine with Cesaro who slams Jimmy down for two and slaps on the chinlock. Back up and a dropkick puts Cesaro on the floor, setting up the big dive from Jimmy. Kidd gets in a kick from the apron as Miz gets a call from his agent. Apparently it's about Naomi so Miz leaves to talk to her. We take a break and come back with Jimmy fighting out of a chinlock, only to get caught in an overhead belly to belly for two.
Kidd comes in for a chinlock of his own but he misses a legdrop on the apron. It's still not enough for a hot tag though as Cesaro kicks Jey to the floor. There's the Swing but Kidd dropkicks Jimmy out of the air in a painful looking spot. Cesaro misses a charge into the post though and an enziguri finally allows the tag to Jey. House is cleaned with the Samoan drop and running Umaga attack but everything breaks down. Jey superkicks Cesaro's head off and the Superfly Splash is enough for the pin at 11:53.
Rating: C+. This was better than I was expecting with Kidd and Cesaro working well enough together. The division is in need of some fresh teams so why not have two guys that are ready to move up to the next level? If nothing else that swing into the dropkick is a great spot and could be a solid finisher.
Miz/Mizdow are in the back with Naomi and suggest that she split time between Hollywood and WWE. Naomi gives a badly scripted response about how she knows what Miz is up to, but Miz says his agent wants to keep this going. He talked the agent off the ledge but the agent doesn't want to work with someone with such a jealous husband. Naomi needs to sort Jimmy out and soon.
After a break, Naomi runs into the Usos and goes off on Jimmy for not having her back. She leaves and Jey says let her cool off. Jimmy knew this was going to happen and yells about how Miz is messing with them. Jey says Jimmy has two days to get his head right because this is exactly what Miz wants.
Video on Cena vs. Lesnar which transitions into Cena vs. Rollins.
Bray Wyatt says he offered Ambrose a path to salvation but Dean turned him down. This is no longer about what could have been but now it's about what will be. In two thousand years, people will still be talking about the things Wyatt will do to Dean this Sunday. Run.
Alicia Fox vs. Nikki Bella
Non-title and AJ is on commentary with her Slammy in her arms like a baby. Fox nails a quick dropkick to start and works on an armbar. JBL and Cole debate the differences between the Women's Title and Divas Title as Fox charges into a knee in the corner. Back in and AJ says Nikki is like the head cheerleader from an 80s movie. A hammerlock slam gets two for Nikki and she cranks on both arms with a knee in the back. Fox fights up again but misses a boot in the corner, earning her a forearm to the jaw. The Rack Attack is good for the pin at 4:16.
Rating: C-. I can't believe I'm saying this but the current Divas story is growing on me. It's amazing how much easier these things are to sit through when I don't have to listen to the Bellas talking about how hard they've worked and had to fight to get here. Nikki is actually getting better in the ring and can have a passable match and the idea of AJ fighting the Bellas is a good enough story. Well assuming you ignore Brie just siding with her sister again after all those months of fighting.
Nikki Racks Fox again while talking trash to AJ.
We recap the Slammy winners from Monday.
Big E. vs. Goldust
Goldust takes over to start with a powerslam and DDT for two each. Big E. comes back with a clothesline and belly to belly, only to charge into a spinebuster for another near fall. The Big Ending is escaped and Big E. charges into a knee. Not that it matters as Big E. pops up and hits the Big Ending for the pin at 2:15.
We look at Reigns winning Superstar of the Year.
Jack Swagger vs. Titus O'Neil
Swagger drives him into the corner to start and knocks Titus outside, only to be sent shoulder first into the post for two. Titus hammers away and kicks Jack's head off before choking on the ropes. A slam doesn't work though as Jack rolls over into the Patriot Lock for the submission at 2:24.
Rusev and Lana interrupt We The People and pose with the title.
Video on Ambrose vs. Wyatt's TLC match. I really hope they go insane with it to give this the blowoff it deserves.
Dean is sitting under a ladder in the back. He's heard Bray Wyatt talk about them like they're viking warriors but Dean is just a gutter rat or a dog that loves to fight. The two of them weren't meant to rule together but to beat each other to pieces forever. This Sunday, when Dean has Bray's whole world in his hands, he's going to crush it.
Big Show/Kane/Luke Harper vs. Dolph Ziggler/Erick Rowan/Ryback
All the weapons are set up around the ring of course. Kane and Ziggler get things going with a dropkick and cross body putting the big man down. Off to Rowan for a big slam as we take an early break. Back with Rowan hammering Show down against the ropes and out to the floor. Erick misses a charge into the post though and Show stands on his back. Kane comes in and hammers away again before it's off to Harper for a chinlock.
That goes nowhere so Kane comes in for a double clothesline to put both guys down. The hot tag brings in Ziggler to clean house, including countering Kane's powerbomb into a faceplant for two. Kane never liked Kidman though so he kicks Dolph's head off for two as we take another break. Back again with Ziggler fighting back on Harper but getting catapulted into the middle rope for two.
The canned chants want Ryback as Kane charges into a boot in the corner but Big Show breaks up the tag. Ziggler dropkicks the big man's knee out and counters the chokeslam into a sleeper instead of, you know, tagging. Show easily escapes and hits the chokeslam for two. The KO Punch misses and Ziggler hits a Zig Zag out of nowhere. Dolph finally tags Ryback to clean house as everything breaks down. Show runs over Rowan on the floor and Ryback Meathooks Luke. There's the Shell Shock for the pin at 17:08.
Rating: C. OF COURSE THEY HAD HARPER TAKE THE PIN! Of course they did. I mean, we can't have Big Show and Kane, who are almost NINETY YEARS OLD combined job to Ryback so let's just have the Intercontinental Champion do it instead. I know I harp on this every week but I really want an answer. Why in the world are Big Show and Kane immune from taking a fall?
Harper may be the current Intercontinental Champion and he has a bright future in front of him. On the other hand we have two former World Champions who have been around for about thirty five years combined ans neither of them can job to Ryback? This happens week to week with all the young guys taking falls because we have to protect these two? I really do want an answer to this because it's one of the most maddening things going on in WWE right now.
Post match the weapons are brought in and Dolph dives off the ladder to knock down all three giants on the floor to end the show.
Overall Rating: C-. Standard issue Smackdown here although with a good exchange from Rollins and Cena. That being said, I have no reason to believe Seth has a chance on Sunday which kind of defeats the purpose. That's the problem with some of their long term stuff: they've locked in Lesnar vs. Cena and nothing that happens between now and then matters.
The rest of the show was your usual stuff, but man alive I'm sick of these same people fighting. We've seen it for over a month now and hopefully it ends after Sunday. These writers come up with one idea every few months and then ride it out until there's nothing left to get out of it. This whole company needs a shakeup and something fresh, which doesn't seem to be happening anytime soon.
Usos b. Cesaro/Tyson Kidd – Superfly Splash to Cesaro
Nikki Bella b. Alicia Fox – Rack Attack
Big E. b. Goldust – Big Ending
Jack Swagger b. Titus O'Neil – Patriot Lock
Ryback/Dolph Ziggler/Erick Rowan b. Big Show/Kane/Luke Harper – Shell Shock to Harper
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