With coming home from college for Christmas break, I haven’t been able to put as much thought into the stories as I usually do. This is going to be a cut and dry prediction post to close out the calender year of 2014 PPVs. Without any further delay, let’s get right into the thick of things:
- The New Day vs. Goldust and Stardust
- Chairs Match: Ryback vs. Kane
- Stairs Match: Big Show vs. Erick Rowan
- WWE Tag Team Championships: The Miz and Damien Mizdow vs. The Usos
- WWE United States Championship: Rusev vs. Jack Swagger
- WWE Divas Championship: Nikki Bella vs. AJ Lee
- WWE Intercontinental Championship Ladder Match: Luke Harper vs. Dolph Ziggler
- Tables, Ladders, and Chairs: Dean Ambrose vs. Bray Wyatt
- Tables: John Cena vs. Seth Rollins (If Cena loses, he’ll no longer be #1 Contender to WWEWHC)
KICKOFF: The New Day vs. Goldust and Stardust
This is the first real feud for the New Day and I couldn’t be more excited to see this matchup. People online like to scoff at the pre-show match, but having the pre-show match can really set pace for the rest of the night, The tag team division has really gotten a good chance to shine lately as well, so I see great things coming from this match. New Day should take this one with a few very exciting sequences along the way.
WINNERS: THE NEW DAY
Chairs Match: Kane vs. Ryback
I’ve never really been the biggest fan of chairs matches just because those are not the only weapons they use. In Tables or Ladder matches, the rules state that those weapons are involved in the finish of the match. I’m not exactly sure what in the world a chairs match should be, so what it is completely confuses me. With that said, this match seems to be the means to an end when it comes to the rivalry between Kane and Ryback. Would not be surprised one bit if this feud continued to carry over into the Royal Rumble if not all the way to Wrestlemania. I’m really liking Ryback and Kane is in that veteran position of making the young guys look really good. I don’t expect us to remember anything from this match, but I’m sure these two will put on a great show.
Stairs Match: Big Show vs. Erick Rowan
Along the same vein of the Chairs match, this Stairs match concept is completely new and came from nowhere. I’m not going to knock the stairs match because I don’t know that they’ve ever done one and the way it came about feels organic. One night on Raw, Erick Rowan crossed paths with Big Show. Big Show proceeded to beat Rowan with the steel steps to which Rowan responded with a set of his own that he used on Big Show. Now, this match is set. I imagine the steps will be used in the finish of the match in some fashion. This match has the same feel of veteran vs. fresh face that Kane vs. Ryback has, so I don’t expect any different results.
WINNER: ERICK ROWAN
WWE Tag Team Championships: The Miz and Damien Mizdow vs. The Usos
When The Usos won the tag team turmoil match on Raw to become #1 contenders, I admit I was actually rooting for the bunny.I thought we had all had our fair share of The Usos in the tag title picture at least for a few months. I’d much rather see Tyson and Cesaro compete for the titles and they could in fact get a shot sooner rather than later, but for now it seems The Usos get another go at it. Just as I was ready to write the feud off as another Uso scrub – it didn’t bother me that they might win, just that they were in another tag title match at all – they gave us just a little bit of something new.
It seems like The Miz is macking up to Naomi, the wife of one of the Usos (can’t really tell them apart just by name and don’t really care to research it now so bear with me. If you know feel free to correct me in the comments). A married man himself (who’s wife doesn’t seem bothered by his actions in the slightest according to her Twitter account), The Miz slipped Naomi a business card of his agent as well as sent her flowers on at least one occasion. The Miz has had the taste slapped out of his mouth and had singles matches with each Uso brother along the way, but the important part will come this Sunday….when Damien Mizdow stunts his way into another pinfall victory earning Miz a win by association to retain the WWE Tag Team Championships.
WINNERS AND STILL WWE TAG TEAM CHAMPIONS: The Miz and Damien Mizdow
United States Championship: Rusev vs. Jack Swagger
Not to take anything away from the token “USA vs. Russia” feud found here, but just like in the case of The Usos, it appears that the last pay-per-view of the year is just too close to the end of the year to do much differently from the rest of it. As we look to 2015 for more variety, this match-up has actually been one of my favorites to watch. Both of these heavyweights establish massive frames and utilize submission-based offenses. I always enjoy a good Swagger/Rusev clash regardless of Swagger’s previous shortcomings. I’m a big Rusev fan and any time he’s onscreen I always know I’ll be entertained. I don’t expect much of note from this match either, but only because the results will not change much. If TLC isn’t big enough to give Rusev an opponent he hasn’t had before, then the winner of this match will probably follow the same as the last time.
WINNER AND STILL UNITED STATES CHAMPION: RUSEV
Divas Championship: Nikki Bella vs. AJ Lee
There isn’t much that I can say about this match. Nikki got the title at Survivor Series with help from personal assistant Brie Bella. It appears the Bella Twins have made up for the most part as Nikki still shoves Brie around, but Brie hasn’t left Nikki’s side. I stand by my claim that this whole thing will culminate in Bella vs. Bella for the Divas Championship at Wrestlemania. Sometimes I wonder why we need a Diva’s title match every month. I mean Brock isn’t always here. Why not just skip a title defense every once in a while? Anyway, this should be a rather forgettable match as AJ gets her rematch. This is just going to be the match they should’ve had before Brie kissed AJ. Not saying I didn’t enjoy that, but I have been enjoying what both of these ladies bring to the table lately and I would’ve like to have seen Nikki earn her title. I like how things went down at Survivor Series, but I do hope we get at least a 5 minute match out of these two (plus Brie) tonight at TLC.
WINNER AND STILL WWE DIVAS CHAMPION: NIKKI BELLA
Intercontinental Championship Ladder Match: Luke Harper vs. Dolph Ziggler
It was quite the shock when The Authority decided to virtually strip The Showoff of his Intercontinental Championship in the opening contest of Raw a week or two before Survivor Series as Harper had only just resurfaced after a hiatus away from the ring following being released by Bray Wyatt. Harper is a beast who is ever so impressive. He does some things I used to think were reserved for the cruiserweight division and he’s almost if not well over 300 lbs! Such a sizable Goliath is the perfect foe for the try-hard David known as Dolph Ziggler. I know in the past I have been rather critical of The Showoff, but if Survivor Series served any purpose at all, it “showed the world” that Dolph Ziggler is here. I have become so impressed with Dolph Ziggler after seeing his recent work and reading WWE.com’s detailed article about his comeback story (found here, fantastic read: http://www.wwe.com/inside/dolph-ziggler-interview-26880827), that I not only sing The Showoff’s praises but I chose his shirt to be the VERY FIRST shirt I EVER bought at my FIRST Live attendance of Monday Night Raw. As one of my new favorite superstars seeks to regain my all-time favorite championship, I expect to see crazy spots and big moves. This match is going to be one of the most dangerous matches of the night! No matter how much I admire Dolph Ziggler these days, I don’t think Harper is going to topple over any time soon.The towering frame will stand even taller as he climbs the ladder and retrieves his title.
WINNER AND STILL INTERCONTINENTAL CHAMPION: LUKE HARPER
Tables, Ladders, and Chairs: Dean Ambrose vs. Bray Wyatt
There is much debate as to whether this match or John Cena vs. Seth Rollins will be the last match. While some believe this match should do it based on the fact that this is a Tables, Ladders, and Chairs match, I believe that this match would serve better in the middle of the night because Cena’s match – while it is a simple Tables match – has so much more riding on it, but I’ll get to that in the next section. For now, Bray Wyatt and Dean Ambrose have their own issues.
The Lunatic Fringe and The New Face of Fear initially crossed path in this current iteration of their program at Hell in a Cell in October. Bray Wyatt emerged through the blinding haze of his smoking lantern to knock Ambrose down and out long enough for Seth Rollins to end his Hell in a Cell match against Ambrose with a pinfall victory. After Rollins high-tailed it, Wyatt continued to taunt Ambrose dropping him with his Sister Abigail finishing move. At Survivor Series, Wyatt and Ambrose would meet one-on-one. Just like Wyatt did in his encounter with John Cena, darkness and light came into question. Wyatt challenged Dean Ambrose’s way of doing things. Wyatt believed that his way was the right way. It really became a matter of whose brand of insanity was the most (in)sane. As he did with Cena at Wrestlemania, Bray Wyatt offered Dean Ambrose a choice right in the middle of the match. Wyatt slid two chairs into the ring. One was used to distract the ref so that the second could be slid right up to Dean’s hand. Bray proceeded to almost beg for Dean to make a move, to swing that chair with all the relentless force of a true sadistic mastermind. Unlike John Cena, Dean Ambrose accepted the offer thus resulting in a DQ finish. He did not stop there though. Dean grabbed lots of chairs, a table and even a ladder. Bray Wyatt was elbow dropped through the table and Dean celebrated his carnage from a bird’s eye view atop the ladder which set up tonight’s encounter.
Over the last few week’s of Monday Night Raw and Friday Night Smackdown, this personal feud has seen Bray Wyatt’s precious rocking chair get destroyed by the hands of Dean Ambrose and Dean Ambrose’s throat has been destroyed by the hands of Bray Wyatt. These two are out for blood and the best way to settle their differences at least for now is by crashing right through WWE’s own demolition derby: Tables, Ladders, and Chairs. It’s so difficult to say for sure just who might come out on top of this one. Both of these guys would make excellent candidates for WWE World Heavyweight Championship contender’s should Cena lose in his match against Rollins, but if I had to pick one…I’d say Bray Wyatt. This feud has the merit to go full circle. Most feuds get 3 matches. Dean got the first one. Bray gets this one, and I really could see the tie-breaker being an Ambulance match (especially if you saw what happened on last week’s Monday Night Raw http://www.wwe.com/videos/dean-ambrose-surprises-bray-wyatt-from-the-back-of-an-ambulance-raw-december-8-2-26896012). I don’t know if they would do it at the Royal Rumble, as I would love to see both of these guys go into that match, but I could definitely see it as a main event of WWE Fast Lane. Bottom line is that this feud is probably far from over or at least I hope so.
WINNER: BRAY WYATT
Tables Match: John Cena vs. Mr Money in the Bank Seth Rollins (If Cena loses, he is no longer #1 Contender to the WWE World Heavyweight Championship)
This match is a fairly simple concept. Loser is the first person to go through a table at the hands of his or her opponent. Cena and Rollins have been crossing paths ever since Night of Champions when Seth Rollins interfered in Cena’s championship rematch against Brock Lesnar. Cena re-earned his #1 contender status at Hell in a Cell against Randy Orton before Orton crossed paths with Rollins himself. Rollins Curb Stomped Orton’s face into the steel steps and no one has seen Orton since.
After Team Cena defeated Team Authority at Survivor Series, each member of both teams branched off into individual issues against each other, with the exception of Mark Henry who was taken out by Ryback following Big Show’s knockout punch the night before at Survivor Series saw him be the first eliminated from the 5-on-5 tag team match.
This tables match is a culmination of a story that has been told since July. Each and every other feud going on right now (in the male divisions) have either spawned from this path or come in contact with it for the last 5 months. With 2014 coming to a close, the WWE Universe could be faced with an uncertain future in regards to Brock Lesnar’s next challenger.
It has been no secret that the champion has been absent as of late. His advocate has represented him (and represented him well) on occasion, but there is much to be said of the presence of a certain gold title belt or the lack thereof at least. It is also rather noteworthy when a man of Brock’s size and prowess is missing. Not to say his absence is a positive thing or a negative thing. I see it as a change of pace and a change of pace is always good. Without the champion being showcased each and every week, it makes the champions appearances matter that much more. If the champion only appears to promote his title matches, which don’t happen every month, that just makes it even better in my book. While the champion is away, assuming Cena loses his spot, we could have a tounament on Raw to crown a contender which I think would be really cool and really different to see. Lesnar could show up on like the last show to sign a contract with the winner of that tournament. Along the way, people who are eliminated start feuds with each other and announce their entry into the Rumble match. I think that would be really cool…assuming Cena loses. Granted if they did that, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Cena win because that would be the perfect hero story. In a shocking turn of events I could see Roman Reigns return in the tournament setting. Roman Reigns could win the tournament sending Cena into the Rumble match. Reigns could then beat Brock for the championship at the Royal Rumble only for Rollins to come in and cash in. If WWE wanted to rush into a former Shield members triple threat match, throwing Ambrose into the mix by Mania, I could see something like this happening. As it happens though, I don’t really see that happening.
One of the only ways I could see Cena losing is if Brock Lesnar himself F5’d Cena through a table. Depending on how they label the rules, they might have to find a way to make the ref think Rollins was the one who did it, but it could be done. This idea is however highly unlikely as Brock has never given any indication that he might be scared of facing Cena. I think we can scratch a Brock sighting tonight.
One name I think we might see is Randy Orton. With the history mentioned above between Randy Orton and Seth Rollins. It doesn’t seem like Orton would help Cena as much as hurt Rollins. I could see Orton and Rollins colliding on PPV in the near future, especially in the Rumble.
One consideration is that Cena could retain his contender status and cash it in at the Rumble. If Cena wins the championship at the Rumble and 2014 Superstar of the Year Roman Reigns wins the Rumble match itself. There is a chance we could see Roman Reigns take the torch from Cena and run with it. If Roman Reigns wins the Rumble, I think Seth Rollins will cash in his contract at Wrestlemania. It hasn’t happened yet and you can never say never in WWE, but that is another prediction for another year…
For now, I just can’t see Cena losing this one at all, but I said that when he lost to Dolph in the ladder match in the main event of this very show about 2 years ago.
WINNER AND STLL WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP #! CONTENDER: JOHN CENA
Whether Cena wins, or whether he loses, with names like Dolph Ziggler, Bray Wyatt, and Dean Ambrose chomping at the bit just waiting for their time to reach for those brass rings, it’s anybody’s game. We’re just merging onto the Road to Wrestlemania, but if the story that started in July is still being felt in December. Anything that happens tonight could mean the world toward Wrestlemania.
MY PREDICTIONS (Winners italicized):
The New Day vs. Goldust and Stardust
Chairs: Kane vs. Ryback
Stairs: Rowan vs. Big Show
Tag Team Championships: The Usos vs. Miz and Mizdow(c)
United States Championship: Rusev(c) vs. Swagger
Divas Championship: Nikki Bella(c) vs. AJ Lee
Intercontinental Championship Ladder: Dolph Ziggler vs. Luke Harper(c)
TLC: Dean Ambrose vs. Bray Wyatt
Tables: Seth Rollins vs. John Cena
Who do you think will win? Please let me know who you’ve got in this matches in the comment section here or on Facebok or reply to the link that brought you here from Twitter. I’ll be tweeting live (@NathanC493) during the show so make sure you follow me on Twitter. If you don’t have Twitter, my tweets post instantly to my Facebook profile (facebook.com/officialacespade).
If you’d like to check out this show yourself, I CANNOT say enough good things about WWE Network. If you aren’t familiar with the NXT brand, you should be. Between the Live Pay-Per-View shows like TLC, Royal Rumble, and Wrestlemania along with the weekly episodic episodes of NXT and their own specials, I firmly believe that the $9.99 (plus applicable tax) price tag pays for itself. If you’re a fan of WWE or pro wrestling in general, I cannot endorse this enough. The network is absolutely fantastic because you don’t want to miss WWE TLC Live from Cleveland, OH TONIGHT, Sunday December 14, 2014 at 8:00pm e.
Thank you for reading my predictions. I hope we can enjoy the show together.
Happy 2014. I’ll see ya next time!