Sunday, June 4, 2023

WWE TLC 2018: Match Results, Review, and Analysis

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WWE TLC 2018, out of the SAP Center in San Jose, California, just wrapped up. We’ve got the WWE TLC 2018 results, as well as our overall thoughts on the show, for you to check out below. Let us know what you thought about WWE TLC 2018 by tweeting us, @TheRumbleRamble.

Buddy Murphy (c) vs. Cedric Alexander

Pre-Show: Cruiserweight Championship Match

As it turns out, our wishful thinking while predicting this pay-per-view didn’t work, and the Cruiserweight Championship match opened the pre-show instead of the main card. 

Cedric Alexander was out to prove himself worthy of the championship and wasted no time in going after the current champion, Buddy Murphy. The two stuck to striking at first, but it wasn’t long before the high-risk moves we’ve come to know from the cruiserweights made an appearance.

Murphy and Alexander each scored a near fall, with Alexander getting a second one via lumbar check, which would have won him the match had Murphy not put his leg on the rope at the last second.

Finally, with a Murphy’s Law, Buddy Murphy retained the title.

Winner: Buddy Murphy

Elias vs. Bobby Lashley

Pre-Show: Ladder Match

With one of Elias’ prized guitars hanging high above the ring, Elias and Bobby Lashley went to work simply to prove who was best. Shortly after the match began, Elias attempted to climb the ladder but was derailed by Lio Rush. And as he tried to get his revenge on Rush, Lashley attacked him.

This was essentially 6 minutes of Elias and Lashley hitting each other with ladders until Elias climbed one, retrieving the guitar and winning the match.

His music had barely started when he was assaulted by Rush and Lashley, however, who smashed his precious guitar over his back.

Winner: Elias

Fabulous Truth (Carmella & R-Truth) vs. Mahalicia (Jinder Mahal & Alicia Fox)

Mixed Match Challenge Finale

As always, Carmella and R-Truth were out to have a good time (and bring the audience right along with them). They even threw in a dance break, which The Singh Brothers attempted to join in on, but were thrown out by R-Truth.

Jinder Mahal and Alicia Fox came close to winning it all, but Carmella secured the victory for her team by tapping Alicia Fox out with a Code of Silence.

Post-match, they were interviewed regarding the vacation they had won in addition to entry number 30 in their respective Royal Rumble matches. To Carmella’s dismay, R-Truth had picked the vacation spot without consulting her, choosing the WWE Headquarters in Stamford, Connecticut.

Winner: Fabulous Truth (Carmella & R-Truth)

The Bar (c) vs. The New Day vs. The Usos

Raw Tag Team Championship Match

Cesaro and Sheamus started off strong, wearing down Xavier Woods and Kofi Kingston after putting The Usos out of commission. 

Once The Usos caught their breath, it was bad news for the other two teams, as they came in hot, doing damage to all four opponents. All three teams were rabid for the tag titles, however, and it wasn’t long before they were taken out once again.

After a fast-paced match including near fall after near fall, The Bar snuck by with the victory, retaining their titles in the process.

Winner: The Bar

Baron Corbin vs. Braun Strowman

Tables, Ladders, and Chairs Match

Baron Corbin was a little over-excited coming into this segment, grabbing a mic and talking trash to Braun Strowman before The Monster had made his entrance. He seemed to have completely forgotten that the match was no disqualification, but Braun did not.

When Strowman did come to the ring, he was still nursing an arm injury but was accompanied by a mob of all the Raw Superstars that Corbin mistreated since becoming acting General Manager – and every one of them was armed with a steel chair. Even Heath Slater, in the ring as referee, removed his jersey and laid into Corbin along with them.

Corbin tried to escape the good guy gang but was blocked on the ramp by a returning Kurt Angle, who joined in on the beat down. Heath Slater then put his referee jersey back on just in time to declare Braun Strowman victorious over a crushed Baron Corbin.

Looks like Corbin won’t be permanent General Manager after all.

Winner: Braun Strowman

Natalya vs. Ruby Riott

Tables Match

Natalya was out for blood during this match (possibly for real, as there was a moment where she actually smacked the shit out of Ruby’s face). 

The Queen of Hearts wasn’t solely focused on Riott, either. In fact, she put Ruby’s teammates, Liv Morgan and Sarah Logan, through tables before turning her complete attention toward Riott.

After taking care of her friends, Natalya held Ruby in the Sharp Shooter simply to cause pain, as the only way to win was for one of them to put the other through a table. She came prepared for that detail and produced a table with Ruby Riott’s image plastered across it.

Ruby held out as long as she could, hitting back hard every time it appeared Natalya had the upper hand, but eventually Natalya was able to powerbomb Ruby from the top rope, through the Ruby table.

Winner: Natalya

Drew McIntyre vs. Finn Bálor

Neither Bálor nor McIntyre pulled any punches in this one – they made it clear from the very start that they were going to beat each other senseless. McIntyre used his size to his advantage, manhandling Bálor at every opportunity.

Bálor was not going down without a fight, however, using agility and speed to fire off as many shots to McIntyre as possible. McIntyre hit a brutal White Noise off the second rope that looked as though it was going to win him the match, but miraculously, Bálor kicked out.

In the midst of the action, Dolph Ziggler appeared out of nowhere, equipping himself with a steel chair and wearing down The Scottish Psychopath just enough for Finn Bálor to get the win via a Coup de Grâce.

Later in the show, Finn Bálor was in the middle of an interview backstage when he was attacked by Dolph Ziggler, who apparently never intended to do him any favors by costing McIntyre the match.

Winner: Finn Bálor

Rey Mysterio vs. Randy Orton

Chairs Match

It took these two exactly three seconds to introduce steel chairs into the match. Mysterio was taking no chances against The Viper, mercilessly attacking Orton, giving him no opportunity to fight back. 

Orton finally got out of the way of one of Mysterio’s attacks, and it got a bit rougher for the luchador from there. Not that Orton squashed him, but he definitely got in much more offense than he had previously.

In a stroke of luck, Rey Mysterio was able to pin Orton for a three count after a roll-up off a chair.

Winner: Rey Mysterio

Ronda Rousey (c) vs. Nia Jax

Raw Women’s Championship Match

Ronda attempted to score a swift victory over Nia Jax, but Jax made it clear she was not going to allow it, hitting a nasty powerbomb on Rousey before trying to dislocate her shoulder on a ring post. 

From there, Jax continued to dismantle the champ, despite Rousey’s best efforts to stop her. Rousey was seconds from becoming “the flattest woman on the planet” (in the words of Corey Graves), when she countered the attack, throwing Jax to the mat from the top rope.

Rousey was about to lock in her arm bar but was interrupted by Tamina, giving Nia a few more moments. Jax didn’t get quite so lucky the second time around, however, and instantly tapped out to Rousey’s vicious submission.

After the match, Jax was attacked by Becky Lynch backstage in return for Jax breaking Lynch’s face a few weeks ago, which cost The Man her Survivor Series showdown. 

Winner: Ronda Rousey

Daniel Bryan (c) vs. AJ Styles

WWE Championship Match

The New Daniel Bryan appeared ready to get his match over with in a hurry, as he absolutely lit into AJ Styles – right up until Styles halted the flurry with a clothesline, turning the tables on Bryan. 

Early in the match, Styles kicked Bryan in the left knee, and focused on very little else for the remainder of the action – subtle things like this are what take Bryan and Styles to a level above most.

Styles went for a DDT but was countered by Bryan, which quickly became the theme of the bout: both Bryan and Styles had an answer for everything the other could possibly throw at them.

Styles threw a sick Phenomenal Forearm from the barricade, then went for another from the top rope, but was caught by Bryan, who rolled him up and slid by with the win.

Winner: Daniel Bryan

Seth Rollins (c) vs. Dean Ambrose

Intercontinental Championship Match

Dean Ambrose started off by mocking the champ instead of getting straight to the action, but Rollins put a stop to it with a jab to the face. Ambrose was undoubtedly in the match to win, but that didn’t prevent him from taunting Rollins repeatedly – while beating him down, of course.

This wasn’t a bad match by any means, but it wasn’t exactly good either. Rollins and Ambrose quickly lost the crowd, and while it’s not fair to expect them to kill one another in the very first match of the feud, they could have done more to keep the audience on their side.

Ambrose and Rollins worked at a rather slow pace, and although they hit a few big spots here and there and even got a few near falls, they were ultimately unable to regain the admiration of the crowd.

Ambrose attempted a Shield fist bump, but Rollins was neither fooled nor amused and began striking Ambrose even harder than before. Just as Rollins predicted, he became too emotional and it cost him the match.

Ambrose caught him in a Dirty Deeds, taking the victory and the Intercontinental Championship.

Winner: Dean Ambrose

Becky Lynch (c) vs. Asuka vs. Charlotte Flair

SmackDown Live Women’s Championship TLC Match

As you may have guessed, Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair immediately took their attention off of Asuka. Just long enough for The Empress to get the first shots against both Lynch and Flair.

After Charlotte and Becky both got their revenge, Becky allowed her opponents to fight amongst themselves momentarily, trying to choose her spot, but was instead thrown into a ladder by Asuka.

The Empress attempted to climb the ladder while the other two women recovered outside of the ring, but was stopped by Charlotte, who was soon put through a table.

Becky Lynch took a liking to the steel chairs lying around ringside and used them to beat down both Charlotte and Asuka. The Man then laid both women on an announce table and threw herself from the tallest ladder she could find. Asuka managed to roll out of way, leaving Charlotte to take the full force of the blow.

With Charlotte and Becky out of commission, Asuka again tried to climb the ladder, this time interrupted by Becky Lynch. Neither Asuka nor Becky were able to reach the championship, as Charlotte appeared, kendo stick in hand, and annihilated her competition before spearing Asuka into next week through the barricade.

Lynch nearly retained her title, but Charlotte intervened, leading to the two beating the hell out of each other until Charlotte hit a senton from the top rope, putting Becky through a table set up on the floor.

It was then Charlotte’s turn to climb the ladder but just as her fingers touched the title, Asuka got in her way. Lynch joined them, and Asuka was soon thrown to the floor. Charlotte and Becky still high in the air, Ronda Rousey marched down to ring, casually pushed over the ladder holding both women, and walked back up the ramp.

The Empress saw her moment and seized it, climbing the ladder and becoming the new SmackDown Women’s Champion while her competition looked on in shock and disappointment from the floor.

Winner: Asuka

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Caitlin Cole
Co-Editor-in-Chief. Writer. Web Designer. Brains of the operation. Let me know if you're feeling my dad vibes right now.

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