17th Dec2019

‘WWE TLC 2019’ Pay Per View Review

by Nathan Favel

Welcome to this review of WWE TLC 2019, right here on Nerdly. I’m Nathan Favel and we have a bunch of Ladder Matches to get to, so let’s not waste any time.


Match #1: Humberto Carrillo def. Andrade

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

For years, the idea of Andrade separating from Zelina Vega has been all but inconceivable. After all, it was the ruthless business manager who jumpstarted the stalling Superstar during his time in NXT, turned him into a champion and helped guide him to one of the hottest starts in recent memory on Raw and SmackDown. Thanks to two straight losses to Humberto Carrillo, however, what was once inconceivable is starting to look a little bit like reality. If there was any doubt that Andrade’s camp was looking at this as a must-win, the tense exchanges with Zelina during their entrance likely put that to rest. Likewise, Andrade’s relatively conservative game plan of hitting hard and waiting to capitalize on a mistake signified that he was simply trying not to lose. Carrillo, meanwhile, was looking to make a statement. The young Superstar jarred Andrade into second gear with a kick that left a sizeable battle wound on the former NXT Champion’s cheek, and he almost pinned Andrade after Andrade nearly collided with Vega on the apron in an echo of the final moments of their Raw match. Andrade stopped short of crashing into Vega for a second time and went high-risk to put the match away, but Carrillo was once again ready. Humberto sent Andrade soaring with a reverse hurricanrana off the top turnbuckle, followed up with a moonsault almost as gorgeous as the man himself and covered his foe for three. Much like on Raw, Andrade didn’t make any bones about who he believed was responsible for the loss, shooing away Zelina and stumbling back up the ramp by himself. For all the success Andrade and Vega can claim, Carrillo seems to have his number in one key way: an understanding that if you want to get it done, sometimes you might need to do it yourself.

My Opinion: 2.9 out of 5 – This wasn’t the best match you could have between these two, but at least it had some nice lucha action.

Match #2: The New Day def. The Revival – Ladder Match For The SmackDown Tag Team Championships

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

The New Day retained the SmackDown Tag Team Championships at WWE TLC by the narrowest of margins, in one of the most brutal of matches, against the most tenacious of opponents. It was as much a referendum on ya boys’ continued dominance as it was on their challengers, The Revival, whose in-ring philosophy suggests they’ve never looked at a ladder, let alone climbed one. The Revival were more than creative enough to hold their own even if they’re not exactly high-flyers, but New Day – to use an old but appropriate saying — simply wanted it more. Either that, or they simply found themselves ahead following a war of attrition that saw everyone tossed through, slammed on (or through) and hit with a ladder of some kind. The Revival’s no-flips-just-fists strategy paid early dividends. They let New Day flip right into their hands, then let the fists fly, but as the match progressed, they began to use the ladders as key components in their maneuvers. Big E, whose knee somehow wasn’t in five pieces by the end of the match, was suplexed onto and then splashed through a ladder he had set up. Kofi Kingston, just seconds off a showstopping springboard DDT off a falling ladder, was yanked off a second ladder straight into a Shatter Machine. And, in the closing moments, Kingston found himself threaded through the rungs of the ladder as Dash Wilder & Scott Dawson climbed to a fingertips’ length of the SmackDown Tag Team Titles. But then — but then! — Big E rose from whatever laddery grave he had been consigned to, seized Dash Wilder halfway up a ladder and executed a Big Ending off the side, taking them both out and leaving Dawson simply aghast. Kofi, still trapped within the rungs, rose with his last breath to smash Dawson in the face with the dangling SmackDown Tag Team Titles, sending the tag team specialist tumbling into a nest of twisted metal. With no one left to fight, Kofi climbed the last step and grabbed the titles. Kingston retained the prize and capped off a match — and a year — in which he fought through adversity, climbed to the peak and took what he had earned. With all due respect to a very game Revival, it doesn’t get much more old-school than that.

My Opinion: 3.6 out of 5 – This was a fine match that was more of the balanced kind than the great spectacle that PPV’s are known for. I’m glad that The New Day won, because that’s pretty much why this match was booked.

Match #3: Aleister Black def. Buddy Murphy

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

The old saying goes that you never know how tough someone is until they get punched in the mouth. Turns out, Aleister Black is pretty tough. Buddy Murphy is, too. After knocking on The Dutch Destroyer’s door a few weeks back and picking a fight, the swaggering Australian got the fight he wanted and then some, as Black did exactly what he promised and dropped his foe with a Black Mass to the jaw … though he was certainly worse for wear for it. Pundits had this match pegged as a show-stealer, and it did not disappoint. The biggest surprise was perhaps that Murphy could, indeed, hold his own in a fight against Black. The Best Kept Secret landed a knee square on Black’s jaw in the opening moments and smashed The Ominous Man From Amsterdam face-first into the steel steps a couple minutes later, possibly breaking Aleister’s nose and forcing him to suck wind for the remainder of the match. Murphy’s mistake was trying to provoke his opponent, from mocking Black’s cross-legged pose before the match to laying hands on the former NXT Champion’s horned tunic. The disrespect energized Black to hit Murphy with whatever part of his body he wasn’t already hitting him with, and even though Murphy answered in kind, the former Cruiserweight Champion’s biggest mistake was to go for style points rather than stick with the brawling strategy that brought him to the dance. Worn down by kickout after kickout, Murphy found himself charging at The Dutch Destroyer from across the ring, trading strikes and seemingly catching Black off guard with a series of knees. That was until Aleister slipped an attack, spun around and dropped Murphy like a rock with Black Mass straight to the chin. If his jaw allowed him to smile — or if he was the smiling type — he would have been grinning ear to ear. If he was the cocky type, he would have rubbed it in his face. But through the puffy nose, the flakes of red in his beard and the watery eyes, there was no mistaking the look in Aleister Black’s pupils as the match ended: Here at last is a man who got exactly what he wanted.

My Opinion: 4 out of 5 – This was some good s—. They knocked the piss out of each other like The Three Stooges at the Playboy Mansion (she’s mine, damn it). This got some time and made the most of it.

Match #4: The Viking Raiders vs. The O.C. – Raw Tag Team Championship Match (Double Count-Out)

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

Having destroyed every poor local team that this wide world has to offer, The Viking Raiders have lately taken to sourcing their competition to open challenges. The strategy served them well in a successful championship defense against The Street Profits on Raw, but WWE TLC got a little thornier for Erik & Ivar, as their call was answered by the only team to defeat them since arriving in WWE: The O.C. As Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson proclaimed during their entrance, their acceptance of the Raiders’ challenge wasn’t just about giving the Raw Tag Team Champions a chance to get retribution for their sole L, but also The O.C. protecting their status as the best tag team in the world. Given the chaotic way the match ended, however, we can probably call it a wash. Following a brawl that was instigated after Gallows broke up what would have been a match-ending Viking Experience to Anderson, the slugfest concluded with a double count-out. Yet The O.C. didn’t let the good brothers get the last word. After Gallows & Anderson stole a table covered in KFC from some lucky ringside fans, Erik & Ivar thwarted a planned double-team maneuver to drive Anderson through the pine instead, fixins and all. And despite the uncertain result and lack of proper retribution, The Viking Raiders should know exactly where to look the next time they want someone to challenge them.

My Opinion: 2.4 out of 5 – What a waste of two great teams. This never got going and went too short for PPV.

Match #5: King Corbin def. Roman Reigns – Tables, Ladders & Chairs Match

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

There was nothing at stake in the Ladder Match between Roman Reigns and King Corbin except pride. No titles hanging above the ring, no contract, no can of dog food dangling from the rafters. The only thing suspended during the match was the question of whether Reigns could answer the abject disrespect he’d suffered at the hands of the King of the Ring over the past few weeks. And at the end of the day, the answer was … no. The King proved victorious in the highly-touted TLC Match, once again employing his usual cast of thugs, bagmen and acolytes to thwart The Big Dog and seize the victory. The first one out of the gate was Dolph Ziggler, who had apparently been hiding under the ring. The Showoff jumped up to drop Reigns with a superkick as The Big Dog to Spear Corbin into the timekeeper’s area. Reigns fought back, even dropping Corbin’s retinue with a Kendo stick. The Revival — somehow still ambulatory after their Ladder Match just hours earlier — quickly rushed the ring and stacked the odds one row too high for Reigns to overcome. While The Big Dog briefly struck back by dropping Corbin’s entire court with a dive over the ropes, The Showoff fastballed a chair into his face before he could unleash a Spear, leading to a Zig Zag and Shatter Machine one-two that left Reigns helpless against Corbin’s final stroke: An End of Days straight to a steel chair that earned him the victory.

My Opinion: 2.4 out of 5 – A surprising victory for Corbin wasn’t enough to save a long, pointless match that didn’t actually use the stipulation enough to qualify as a TLC Match.

Match #6: Bray Wyatt def. The Miz

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

Yes, Miz got even with Wyatt in a fashion, handily obliterating an opponent who barely seemed to even want to fight. Yes, Wyatt wrestled in his cardigan and entered to his jolly Firefly Fun House theme song instead of his alter ego, although he did show up, silently appearing on the TitanTron after Wyatt defeated Miz with a pair of Sister Abigails.

My Opinion: 2 out of 5 – This was a short, weak match with no real action to speak of.

Match #7: Bobby Lashley def. Rusev – Tables Match

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

Sometimes, the good guys don’t win. Injustices aren’t answered, humiliations go unanswered and payback will have to take a back seat to a battle well fought. It’s just the way things go, and for all the momentum — emotional and otherwise — Rusev had walking into his Tables Match against noted wife-stealer Bobby Lashley at WWE TLC, The All Mighty left the pay-per-view victorious, thanks in no small part to an assist from Lana that handed her new man the win over her old man. What Rusev earned was the satisfaction of beating Lashley so badly that he needed Lana to help him win. The Bulgarian Brute made good on his opportunity to dismantle his opponent, brutalizing Lashley with his fists, his feet and a guardrail before The All Mighty finally turned the tide with a Kendo stick to Rusev’s back. The Super Athlete begged a laughing Lana to help him on the outside, but his estranged wife only stood back while Lashley continued his assault. At the last second, Rusev fought back, seizing the stick from Lashley’s hands and turning it against his tormentor in ruthless fashion. Sensing disaster approaching, Lana climbed Rusev’s back and raked his eyes, setting him up for a Spear from Lashley into a table in the corner. Miraculously, the table didn’t break, and Rusev had life in him yet, but The All Mighty followed up quickly with a suplex into a table mounted in the opposite corner, ending the match and earning the win.

My Opinion: 2.5 out of 5 – Rusev and Lashley had a decent match that went for a while, but was not up to snuff for their talent level.

Match #8: (Main Event) The Kabuki Warriors def. Becky Lynch & Charlotte Flair – Tables, Ladders & Chairs Match For The WWE Women’s Tag Team Championship

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

If the enemy of my enemy is my friend, then Becky Lynch & Charlotte Flair were wise to join forces for a battle against the deadly combination of Asuka &Kairi Sane. But for all the shared animosity The Man and The Queen harbored for The Kabuki Warriors, two individuals can’t defeat a team, and Asuka & Kairi Sane prevailed over their rivals to retain the WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships in the main event of WWE TLC. Charlotte Flair wanted retribution for her recent embarrassments at the hands of the champs, and Becky just wanted a piece of Asuka — the one Superstar who has thus far eluded The Man’s justice throughout this yearlong told-you-so tour that has included a Royal Rumble Match victory and a WrestleMania main event. Both Superstars got what they wanted. The Queen unleashed the full scope of her gifts against the champions, and Kairi Sane got the worst of it by far. Becky zeroed in on Asuka for a few fateful moments with such fervor that the WWE Universe had to be left wondering what would happen if they ever got their one-on-one rematch. Becky & Charlotte stayed in the fight, fueled by pure frustration and adrenaline, only coming up short at the last second when their big swings went wrong. Charlotte, who had set up Asuka for a moonsault through a table, instead found herself powerbombed through the pine by The Empress of Tomorrow. Becky made it halfway up the rungs to the titles, only for Asuka to yank down the ladder by grabbing a rope that was attached and pulling with all her might. That same rope had been used earlier to tie The Man to the steel at ringside. Becky tumbled off the ladder and into the ropes, and with no one left to thwart her, Asuka made good on the opportunity. For the second year in a row at WWE TLC, The Empress of Tomorrow climbed the ladder to seize the titles and claim the victory as The Man and The Queen watched helplessly. Becky and Charlotte undeniably fought like champions, but some people are just better enemies than friends.

My Opinion: 3.3 out of 5 – This was a very long match that never reached the heights it could have (an injury could play a part in this). These guys tried to make this into an epic, but it just had trouble getting exciting, let alone thrilling.

News Of The Night:

  1. Daniel Bryan returned to attack Bray Wyatt…and his hair is short again! Thank f—— God!

Final Verdict: 2.3/5

This was a lousy show with a couple of excellent matches, but that’s it.


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