WWE TLC 2018: Preview & Predictions

December 15, 2018

 

WWE TLC: Tables, Ladders, & Chairs 2018 airs live on the WWE Network, Monday December 17th, from 10am here in Australia. The show features a whopping twelve matches, including the First-Ever™ triple threat women’s TLC match for the Smackdown Women’s Championship, as well as "The New" Daniel Bryan defending the WWE Championship against AJ Styles, and plenty more. So prepare yourselves for a 4 hour plus show, and the final WWE PPV for 2018. Make sure you’re here on Monday for our complete coverage, including our live results, and ongoing updates. 

 

Below is the card:

 

1. WWE Championship Match: Daniel Bryan (c) vs. AJ Styles
2. Triple Threat TLC Match for the Smackdown Women’s Championship: Becky Lynch (c) vs. Charlotte Flair vs. Asuka
3. Raw Women’s Championship Match: Ronda Rousey (c) vs. Nia Jax
4. Intercontinental Championship Match: Seth Rollins (c) vs. Dean Ambrose
5. Mixed Match Challenge Finals: Jinder Mahal and Alicia Fox vs. R-Truth and Carmella
6. Finn Bálor vs. Drew McIntyre
7. Guitar Ladder Match: Elias vs. Bobby Lashley
8. Cruiserweight Championship Match: Buddy Murphy (c) vs. Cedric Alexander
9. Tables Match: Natalya vs. Ruby Riott
10. Triple Threat Match for the Smackdown Tag Team Championship: The Bar (c) vs. The New Day vs. The Usos
11. Chairs Match: Randy Orton vs. Rey Mysterio
12. TLC Match: Braun Strowman vs. Baron Corbin (if Strowman wins, he gets a Universal Championship match at Royal Rumble and Corbin is stripped of all authoritative power; if Corbin wins, he becomes permanent General Manager of Raw)

 

As always, we’ve got your complete rundown of the card and analysis below, featuring predictions for all twelve matches. Make sure to drop a comment and let us know who you think’s winning, and be here on Sunday to see if you’re correct.

 

Here’s what we think will go down at TLC.

 

Mixed Match Challenge Finals: Jinder Mahal and Alicia Fox vs. R-Truth and Carmella

 

R-Truth and Carmella win, because the idea of Jinder Mahal and Alicia Fox winning anything meaningful right now is hilarious, and they do a bit where Truth runs out as #30 in the women’s Royal Rumble. Even better if Carmella gets the #30 spot, Truth shows up afterward, and tosses her out thinking it will give him a United States Championship match. Or perhaps a mystery person will beat up R-Truth backstage at the Rumble and make his debut? I guess we shall see.

 

Pick: R-Truth & Carmella

 

Cruiserweight Championship Match: Buddy Murphy (c) vs. Cedric Alexander

 

Buddy Murphy and the Cruiserweight Championship stole the show at both WWE Super Show-Down in Australia and Survivor Series, so they get another main-card appearance and do it again at TLC. The world continues to take extremely slow notice of the fact that while WWE can’t book cruiserweights, they can for an hour every week when nobody’s watching. Murphy retains, and they use some of Mustafa Ali’s momentum from his Smackdown match with Daniel Bryan to set up an even bigger, better match for Royal Rumble. It's time for this feud to be over.

 

Pick: Buddy Murphy.

 

Tables Match: Natalya vs. Ruby Riott
 
Look, I know she’s been disrespecting a recently departed legend and all, but what’s the point of this match if the veteran Natalya doesn’t put over the rookie Ruby Riott. These two can put on a good match, even with the table stipulation in play, but I’m pretty invested in Ruby winning. Good, evil, whatever, she’s the future.
 
Pick: Ruby Riott
 

Chairs Match: Randy Orton vs. Rey Mysterio

 

I really had to think about this one, but I think Orton wins. Orton continues to be built up as a sadistic heel and Mysterio gets put in that underdog position, despite his legend status, from which he has historically shined. But to be perfectly honest, I don't really care who wins this match, I could go either way.

 

Pick: Randy Orton

 

Triple Threat Match for the Smackdown Tag Team Championship: The Bar (c) vs. The New Day vs. The Usos
 
No matter who wins, this should be one of the better matches of the night. I think The Bar could stand to hold onto the championship a little while longer, especially if their two biggest opponents have had enough title reigns in the past few years to last a lifetime. In a perfect world The Bar would lose and Cesaro would go off on another attempted singles run, but also monkeys might fly out of my butt. I also wish they gave these guys the Tables, Ladders & Chairs stipulation, as I think it would have potential to steal the show, but it still does without it, so I'm really looking forward to this.
 
Pick: The Bar
 

Guitar Ladder Match: Elias vs. Bobby Lashley

 

If Elias can’t win a ridiculous guitar-based gimmick match, when can he win? I’m a little worried that he’ll fall before the perceived need for Bobby Lashley to seem indomitable, but it really feels like this match is made to get Elias the win and help cement him as a fun babyface. I'm also hoping to see Lio Rush get annihilated by a guitar shot from Elias here.

 

Pick: Elias

 

Finn Bálor vs. Drew McIntyre

 

The only question here is whether or not we see the Demon Bálor. I think we do, and that McIntyre manages to defeat him anyway. McIntyre needs a real kind of rub if he’s ever going to do anything at the top of the card, and Bálor is in that weird stasis where he’s just the same amount of boringly “over” all the time and nothing he does ever seems to matter. I’d like to be completely wrong and for this to end up stealing the show, but … yeah, I think Drew’s just going to end up with a bunch of colorful paint on the bottom of his boot. If the Demon shows up, I think Finn wins. If not, I think McIntyre’s journey to the top continues unheeded.

 

Pick: Tough choice, but I can't see Drew losing this one.

 

Triple Threat TLC Match for the Smackdown Women’s Championship: Becky Lynch (c) vs. Charlotte Flair vs. Asuka

 

This could go a lot of ways, but I’m predicting that The Man retains. I don’t think Asuka wins because of how dominant they made her look at the end of Smackdown, and I think/hope WWE has learned their lesson when it comes to letting Charlotte Flair steal a belt that fans think Becky Lynch should have. No, I don’t know how we get from here to WrestleMania, but I don’t think Becky’s reign is over just yet. But on the other hand, you could have Charlotte win here. Becky Lynch’s eventual match with Rousey is more important than her holding the Smackdown Women’s Championship, and if you work around her face here and get her through the match undamaged any further, you can give her a few more understandable weeks off to rest and rehabilitate and make sure she’s 115% for a Rumble/WrestleMania run at the tip-top of the card. Where she belongs. But no, I am sticking with my original pick, for now.

 

Pick: Becky Lynch

 

Raw Women’s Championship Match: Ronda Rousey (c) vs. Nia Jax

 

Obviously Ronda wins. Because if she hasn’t lost yet, she’s not losing at TLC. The only real question here is what becomes of Nia Jax once she loses to Rousey, but we won’t learn the answer to that until Sunday’s come and gone.

 

Pick: Ronda Rousey

 

TLC Match: Braun Strowman vs. Baron Corbin

 

If Raw’s opening segment was about how Baron Corbin’s the reasons for everybody’s problems and Alexa Bliss already has a bunch of dress clothes for a GM run, it’s time to have Strowman eat Corbin and remove him from our WWE Universe. I suppose Lashley or McIntyre might get involved, but as they grow more individually dominant it feels like they have less reason to stick their necks out for Baron Corbin.

 

Pick: Braun Strowman

 

Intercontinental Championship Match: Seth Rollins (c) vs. Dean Ambrose

 

While I wouldn’t be surprised if Rollins retains here (in order to keep the only singles champion on Raw a fighting champion), it doesn’t make sense to have Dean lose his first big match since his turn. Of course, both men feel bigger than the Intercontinental Championship at this point, but my official prediction is a non-finish, setting up a stipulation match at Royal Rumble. Or, Rollins loses the IC title and wins the Royal Rumble, getting his deserved main event push to the Universal Title picture and getting a shot at WrestleMania against Brock Lesnar. I'd like to see that.

 

Pick: Dean Ambrose

 

WWE Championship Match: Daniel Bryan (c) vs. AJ Styles

 

Everything that’s going on with the New Daniel Bryan is just too interesting for him to lose the belt right back to Styles. I’m not sure what’s next for AJ, but I’m pretty confident that what’s next for Bryan is more time as WWE Champion. 

 

Pick: Daniel Bryan

 

 

 

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