Powell's WWE TLC Hitlist: The Shield vs. Ryback, Daniel Bryan, and Kane in a TLC match, A.J. turns on John Cena, Big Show uses a giant chair to beat Sheamus, Ricardo Rodriguez loves the Spanish announce team

Posted in: Powell Editorials, MUST-READ LISTING
Dec 17, 2012 - 01:45 PM

By Jason Powell

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The Shield vs. Ryback, Daniel Bryan, and Kane in a TLC match: The rightful main event of the show. This could not have gone better for WWE. This was truly nonstop action, yet they also managed to establish The Shield's strategy of isolating one opponent. All three Shield members shined. Dean Ambrose thrives in wild brawls. The intensity and unpredictability that he conveys during his promos is matched once he hits the right. The big spot with Seth Rollins crashing through the tables was insane and hopefully he didn't do any damage when his head caught the back of one of the tables. Ryback was also protected despite his team losing. He was given key offensive runs and was working his way back to the ring following the big ladder spot with Rollins when the pinfall occurred. It didn't bother me that Daniel Bryan lost the match. He also had his moments of crowd pleasing offense and he won't lose anything by taking the pin.

Dolph Ziggler vs. John Cena for the MITB contract: Did WWE go with this match as the main event because John Cena was involved? Was it because they thought the A.J. turn needed to close the show? Was it because they had more faith in the veterans than they did the three kids from developmental? I do believe the show would have felt even hotter had the TLC match closed out the show, but it's not like this was a letdown by any means. Cena and Ziggler worked a really good ladder match and this would have been the highlight on most WWE pay-per-views this year. The A.J. turn seemed obvious once she was left in the ring with Cena, but I am happy to see she's back on the heel side of her psychosis. I'm also curious to find out whether she will end up with Dolph Ziggler (my guess/hope for months) or whether it's something we're not expecting like an alliance with The Shield.

Big Show vs. Sheamus in a chairs match: I enjoyed this match more than most. The sequence with Sheamus missing the Brogue Kick and Show drilling him with the WMD knockout punch was especially good and would have been a much better finish. A giant chair?!? It was nice of Rosie O'Donnell to contribute that chair from her personal collection, but it made for a flat finish. I wonder if WWE officials knew this going in and it was one of the reasons they didn't use this opportunity to close the show with a World Hvt. Championship match for a change.

Cody Rhodes and Damien Sandow vs. Rey Mysterio and Sin Cara: The first insane bump of the night came from Sin Cara for this finish when he took a blind backwards leap off the ropes and crashed through a table below. I'm not sure why this became a tables match, but the wrestlers made the most of the added gimmick and that insane bump from Sin Cara set the pace for the rest of the show. I'm still surprised we saw so many crazy spots on a WWE pay-per-view in 2012.

Overall Show: This was one of WWE's strongest pay-per-view outings of 2012. There were a couple of truly standout matches that made up for the lack of newsworthy moments that fans conjured up due to the MITB contract being in play. Some of those ideas would have made for exciting moments, but WWE clearly has a plan of attack for the top WrestleMania matches and isn't straying from that. Even the Divas Championship match served its purpose of giving the crowd a chance to catch their breath following the TLC six-man brawl. A memorable night of in-ring action.

WWE TLC Misses

Miz TV: Why was this on pay-per-view? WWE is trying hard to establish this show, but it feels just as generic as most of the talk shows that have been attempted since Piper's Pit. I don't need to see Miz TV on pay-per-view, let alone with 3MB as the special guests. The announcers talk openly about how awful 3MB is. I don't know if creative thinks it's so bad it's good. I'm sorry but some things are simply so bad they fall into the awful category.

Alberto Del Rio, Brooklyn Brawler, and The Miz vs. 3MB: Did they really turn Alberto Del Rio babyface in an angle involving 3MB? Why did Ricardo Rodriguez run out to defend the Spanish announce team anyway? Is there something happening on the Spanish feed that the rest of the world doesn't know about? Okay, so that was all part of the Miz TV angle. I just can't give this match a hit. The Brawler's return did nothing for me and the live crowd was right to chant for Zack Ryder. I was impressed that the crowd went from being flat for Brawler to popping for him when he tagged in for the last time, but not enough to like this match or the bizarre Del Rio babyface turn.

Free Preview: The Divas battle royal wasn't even the worst part of the show. At a time when WWE should be pushing the pay-per-view to encourage last minute buys, they had Michael Cole reading off a bunch of throwaway Slammy Award winners. He ran through them so quickly that they felt completely meaningless and somehow left me even less excited about The Slammy Awards on Raw than I was before this show.

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