Taste My Centsss - TLC Predictions (with Chrisss & SkitZ)
By Super Chrisss & SkitZ
Dec 14, 2013 - 11:47:07 AM
Writer's Note: After nearly two years, SkitZ and I have decided to go our separate ways. This will be the final Pay-Per-View we predict together for, possibly, ever. We had a good run, and we hope you enjoyed reading our thoughts!
Writer's Note #2: I regret to inform you that fellow columnist Skulduggery will no longer be joining us here on the Main Page of Lords of Pain. Due to personal reasons, it will be impossible for him to continue posting here, but if you're a fan of Skul's work, he will pop back up in the Columns Forums before you know it!
Writer's Note #3: Last week, I counted down the top seven WWE matches of 2013. In the coming days, between now and December 31st, keep an eye out for more year-end countdowns, including my picks for the seven top WWE stars of the year, TNA stars of the year, "fall-from-grace" of the year, and a whole lot more!
Chrisss: 66.0 Skitz: 63.5
SkitZ: (stares incredulously at Chrisss) My turn to start? Since when has it been MY duty to intro YOUR column? Fuckin' Canadians. And you wonder why I'm begging for a divorce...
TLC is where I draw the line, dude. After we wrap this up, you can go koala grip onto some other Main Pager. The piggybacking stops here!
Chrisss: That's right, Ladies and Gentlemen. After a very (un)happy two years, Skitz and I will no longer be calling Pay-Per-Views together in the New Year. Tragic, isn't it? I know many of you rely on our expert wisdom to pre-determine the outcome of PPVs, but we decided to call it quits while we were ahead. Or while we still had readers. Whichever.
Before we start discussing TLC, I have to admit; I'm gonna miss you, buddy. You've been an awesome bro.
SkitZ: Oh enough already. Save the sucking up for when my pants are down.
At least we get to close the year on a positive note. On paper, TLC actually looks somewhat promising. Is it that much different than what we're accustomed to seeing on RAW every week? Not necessarily no. But it's a solid card for a December pay per view. Props to WWE for making a habit out of closing the last few years out with a bang.
And not to worry, Chrissstopher... this years isn't Zack Ryder blowing his brains out with a shotgun (dude is far too self-obsessed to nut up and pull the trigger).
Chrisss: True that. TLC has been a consistently good, borderline great PPV over the years. It's a shame WWE presents their Slammy awards and compiles their "Best PPV Matches of the Year" DVD before the show, which is silly since so many memorable matches take place at the December PPV. But hey, fuck logic!
Since you're in the spirit of dishing out introductions, why don't you talk about the man who robbed The Miz of the "Mr. Preshow" title, Dolph Ziggler, and his random opponent of the month?
Kickoff Match: Dolph Ziggler vs. Fandango
SkitZ: Hmmmm I was assuming Dolph's feud with Sandow would hold more weight but now it appears their program has been cleared off the table (Michael Hayes on another drunken tirade I presume). Damien is suddenly free to challenge for the Intercontinental Title while Ziggler continues tumbling down the card. Although at this point, I'm not really sure it's physically possible for Nemeth to fall any further. The Show-Off's about to become The Write-Off.
Chrisss: Sometimes I wonder what would have happened if Dolph had never suffered that untimely concussion weeks into his title reign. Was the plan all along to just give Ziggler a title reign just to shut up the fans who supported him? Because WWE could have easily stripped him of that badboy and made Del Rio vs. Swagger at Extreme Rules a title match instead. Odd.
Anywho, I still find it hard to believe Fandango is the same guy who beat Chris Jericho in his debut match at Wrestlemania 29. What the hell happened there?
SkitZ: Reality happened. I'm wondering which NXT tapes Talent Relations were watching when they felt compelled to push Johnny Curtis with a ballroom dancing gimmick and debut him at 'Mania opposite of Y2J. Another one of Vinnie Mac's calculated risks if I had to hazard a guess. Fandango flopping was never going to have a disastrous effect on the product. Considering the social media frenzy his character created initially, I wouldn't be surprised if management was mildly satisfied with the turnover. Don't be fooled though... Curtis has made some decent strides and he can crap out a good performance on occasion.
So in other words, the Toyota Center in Houston will serve as his bedpan.
Chrisss: Remember when I churned out a column last spring saying that Fandango would be a jobber by year's end and countless people ripped me to pieces for it? Yeah, what say you now, Fandangoers?
It's funny you name-dropped Ryder, because I feel Fandango is the 2013 version of the Long Island Iced Z. The dude had momentum, and WWE fucked it up royally by pushing too hard, and too fast (#pause). Curtis wasn't as over as WWE thought he was (it was his music that was over, not the actual performer). If anything, Summer Rae is the one who has gained the most from WWE's Fandango epidemic.
I think these two could pull off a really fun match on Sunday, but the outcome isn't in doubt. Ziggler with the easy win.
SkitZ: Yeah, Footloose only wins a match about once every full moon so riding on The Blonde Perm should be a safe bet. I wouldn't go putting all my chips in however (this is Dolph we're talking about remember). Trends suggest that Fandango should look solid in defeat and Ziggler will roar with excitement after winning even though he has absolutely nothing to be happy about.
Chrisss: It could be worse. At least he's not jobbing to Fandango on the pre-show (optimism for the win!).
Chrisss' pick: Ziggler wins
SkitZ's pick: Ziggler wins
Intercontinental Championship: Big E Langston (c.) vs. Damien Sandow
I'll give credit where credit is due: WWE has actually made an effort to make this match seem important. I guess it was inevitable; with the WWE and World titles on the verge of becoming one, and Dean Ambrose's U.S. title more of a pants-holder than an active championship, the IC title will be the second-biggest title in WWE almost by default. I guess that's why WWE booked a number one contender's match weeks prior to TLC rather than randomly announcing it a few days before Sunday. The question is, will Sandow and Big E actually get enough time to show the world what they're capable of on a bigger stage than Raw or SmackDown?
SkitZ: Probably not. When it comes to televised shows and PPV events, there isn't much of a disparity in WWE's undercard. I suspect this will fall short of 10 minutes. And as much as we'd prefer to digest this match as Sandow's return to form, the objective here is offering up another notable name for Langston to bulldoze. The company clearly plans on pushing Big E along thru WM30 without a major push. Damien's a smart worker and management figures he can wrestle a respectable effort out of Ryblack.
Chrisss: I wouldn't slam the door in Sandow's face just yet. WWE knows they shafted him by making him the first Money in the Bank briefcase holder (excluding Cena) to unsuccessfully cash in for a world title. Maybe they'll try and compensate by giving him the Intercontinental title to hold onto for a while. If Cena leaves TLC as the Unified Champion, we could get a Champion vs. Champion rematch main-eventing Raw sometime in the New Year.
Which reminds me...I totally forgot about Sandow vs. Cena when compiling my list for WWE's best matches this year. Stupid, Chrisss, stupid!
SkitZ: I've been trying to tell you that for years God dammit. Why is it just now sinking in?
Damien deserves better - he knows it and so do we. I'm afraid however that Sandow finds himself on the outside looking in as WrestleMania approaches. WWE only chooses a select few young guys to feature this time of year moving forward and Langston has secured space on that short list. Whether you attribute it to girth, stamina or any other alternative form of penis measurement, I don't see Big E's
erection direction taking a drastic turn anytime soon.
Chrisss: Unfortunately, you hit the nail on the head. WWE chose a bad time of year to have Sandow cash in the chocolate briefcase. At least Ziggler managed to stay relevant the early months of 2013 just by holding onto his briefcase. Sandow doesn't have that luxury. Hopefully he has an impressive showing in the Royal Rumble match, but again, even that might be asking for too much. I'm tempted to pick Sandow for the "upset" win, but I'll play it safe.
Chrisss' pick: Big E retains the title
SkitZ's pick: Big E retains the title
WWE Divas Championship: Aj Lee (c.) vs. Natalya
SkitZ: Well AJ's pretty much feuded with the entire Total Divas cast so we should feel overwhelmingly optimistic heading into 2014. By rule, the Creative Team will be forced to find Lee another contender once she's finished with Nattie. While I'm over the Geek Goddess taking a backseat to a garbage reality show and wayward slutbags, pitting her against Neidhart intrigues me. As we saw during AJ's rivalry with Kaitlyn this past summer, the Divas Champ is at her best against bigger opponents.
Maybe it's the whole dyke dynamic of Lee being whipped around by a beefier chick that does it for me.
Chrisss: Now is probably a good time as any I let people know my feelings on Natalya - I think she's extremely overrated. Don't get me wrong; she's a good wrestler (she is a Neidhart, after all). But I just don't get the hype. She is awful at cutting promos, has about as much charisma as her husband Tyson Kidd does, and I don't remember the last time she had an above-decent match. In her defense, Natalya can't work miracles considering who most of her competition is on a weekly basis, but I feel people give her way too much praise. She has yet to give me a reason why she should be the face of the divas division. I also don't understand why people give Nattie a pass, despite being a Total Diva herself. Just because Nattie's a fellow Canadian that doesn't mean I should ignore her flaws and force myself to like her. [/End Rant].
SkitZ: I can relate. Natalya isn't taped to the ceiling above my bed (nor is she the motive behind the mysterious holes in SkitZ' mattress). It's no secret that WWE over-privileges Neidhart because she comes from wrestling royalty. Having family ties to rely on in your workplace is huge. The company treats Nattie like a battle-hardened veteran because, in comparison to the rest of the Women's roster, she can easily be mistaken for a passable Beth Phoenix substitute. It isn't Natalya's fault that she's working alongside a bunch of barely legal teens who handle a routine hip toss about as clumsily as they do a dick.
Neidhart is a valuable asset (as long as she's competing against someone at her lever or higher).
Chrisss: She is a valuable asset, especially in today's WWE, where the ladies in development can out-wrestle most female 'veterans' on the main roster. But that doesn't make her a viable option to end Aj's title reign, who has been booked to lose every non-title match she's competed in since the summer.
Enough burying Mrs. Kidd, though. We're not cut out to be Triple H clones. Do you think Nattie has a chance to avenge her fellow Total Divas by winning the title on Sunday?
SkitZ: A chance? There's a chance I'll contact an STD from my girlfriend when she comes home tonight. Is it likely? Well fuck... I hope not.
Natalya netting the butterfly belt shouldn't be a concern (at the moment). I heard something the other night about the season finale of Total Divas so we should be absolved of any sinful plans to use it as a climax for the last episode. The list of capable threats to AJ's throne might be drying up but I don't believe her days as titleholder are.
Lee has earned the right to drop her belt to a big opponent in a big venue. Anything less will have me up in arms.
Chrisss: Let's hope your knowledge of Total Divas carries over to TLC. I'll take your word for it, Candyman!
Chrisss' pick: Aj retains the title
SkitZ's pick: Aj retains the title
Handicap Match: Daniel Bryan vs. The Wyatt Family
The first of our two handicap matches for the evening sees the Yes-Man going up against three guys who want to turn him heel really badly. Maybe they're jealous of Bryan's beard? In either case, I'm still sceptic about WWE running two handicap matches on the same card. It's rare that a handicap match feels "PPV worthy" and now we have double the trouble.
SkitZ: Hey who knows? Perhaps Vince & Co. are gearing up to unveil a new themed pay per view - WWE Handicap! Where buy rates plummet and innovation goes to die.
Bray Wyatt desperately wants to strengthen his stable's ranks because The Wyatt Family can't sustain any lasting momentum. Even though they keep winning, the trio constantly feel like an afterthought. The cult act is hardly five months old which makes that a problem. Harper & Rowen's leader has yet to grown on me and, truth be told, I'd have Bryan defeat all three at TLC if the outcome were in my hands. The match is elimination style, correct?
Chrisss: Is it? I didn't hear the announcers mention that stipulation on Raw or SmackDown. Then again, today's announcers are too busy plugging The App or talking up The Authority to pay attention to anything else going on in the company. I'm under the assumption that it's not Elimination, since they haven't really stressed a "one vs. two" or "one-on-one situation".
I think either Bryan or Punk will prevail in their handicap matches. Not both, but one will. I think The Wyatts need the win a lot more than The Shield does, especially after their loss at Survivor Series. Calm down, Bryan fans - losing a three-on-one match on PPV does not mean you've been buried. Trust me.
SkitZ: Either you're terribly misinformed or Michael Cole fucked up (I'm leaning towards the latter). During the Punk/Ambrose bout on RAW, I recall WWE's dull announcer explaining the handicap format to the home audience; he said should any member of The Shield be pinned or submitted, they must return to the locker room. Which should favor the heels but in this case, I suspect D-Bry will endure the loss.
Chrisss: Or, I fell asleep during several parts of Raw (which is a plausible Option C). Alright, we'll go with your theory. This is the first time tonight we disagree on a match outcome, so I suppose a kudos is in order for WWE keeping us guessing. I just don't see The Wyatts recovering from a loss at TLC, especially at the hands of one man. So I have to pick the creepy ones. Care to justify your scenario?
SkitZ: Wait you're taking The Wyatts? Shit. I'm two and a half points behind you in the overall standings... Gotta make a rash decision somewhere. Gahhhhhhhh this one will probably come back to bite me on the sack but I shall side with D-Bry instead. Management appears to covet The Shield more than they do The Family so there's hope for me yet.
Chrisss: I wouldn't get too excited if I were you, son. The Wyatts are due a big victory eventually, and if WWE are going through with a huge six-man tag match with The Shield at Wrestlemania, losing to D-Bryan won't do them any favours in terms of credibility. Also, HHH will be out for blood after being nearly silenced by Bryan's hometown last Monday. How dare someone steal the thunder from The King of Kings!
Chrisss' pick: The Wyatt Family wins
SkitZ's pick: Bryan wins
Fatal Four Way Match for the Tag Team Championship: Cody Rhodes & Goldust (c.) vs. Real Americans vs. Big Show & Rey Mysterio vs. Ryback & Curtis Axel
SkitZ: Ha! Big Show back where he belongs; slugging about the tag team division. That warms my cockles. The entirety of the IWC is waiting for the other shoe to drop in the Rhodes Family saga. Cody & Dustin have had such an enjoyable run thus far that I'd rather it not end just yet. A pesky two months with the gold around their waists doesn't quite do the brother tandem proper justice. This one boils down to when Creative intend on flipping the switch and causing a rift between Dusty's pair of deuces. Could that divide start to show at TLC?
Chrisss: I wouldn't rule-out that scenario, not at all. If The Rhodes Bros. are in fact on a collision course for Wrestlemania XXX, then dissension has to begin to show sooner or later. But keep in mind this is a Fatal-4-Way, and the champions usually find a way to "beat the odds" and retain. I'm no fan of Rybaxel nor Mysteri-Show, but I would not be against The Real Americans finally snagging those tag titles.
SkitZ: Lol @ Rybaxel. Creative really scored big on that one. I believe the Rhodes sibling split will occur at the Rumble (with Cesaro & Swagger taking the titles then rather than at TLC). The two makeshift squads have only been included for their lack of importance elsewhere on the card. This is the best avenue to fit those four on the card without giving any of them unnecessary spotlight. Any scenario in which we can cram Big Slow, Ryberg, Hennig Jr. and Mysteri-oh-no into a quarter of an hour slot, its a fuckin' godsend.
Chrisss: Ditto. It sucks to see The Usos shafted from this match in order to make room for two guys who could very well retire in 2014, and another team who might not even be on the main roster a year from now (I'm looking at you, former Heyman guys), but it is what it is. I could see Cesaro & Swagger stealing the belts after a distraction from Zeb, but I'd rather see them win the gold in a standard tag team match, possibly at the Rumble, like you mentioned.
SkitZ: No doubt. It should be a relatively entertaining affair (as long as the manatee doesn't play the face in peril for half the match). Odds are the Mexican Jumping Bean will be rewarded with the hot tag. Break a leg, Rey!
Chrisss' pick: The Rhodes retain the titles
SkitZ's pick: The Rhodes retain the titles
Handicap Match: CM Punk vs. The Shield
SkitZ: Punk has the luxury of wrestling three reliable workhorses who notoriously challenge for MOTN on a weekly basis whereas Bryan has a fuckin' mountain to scale over. So in terms of match quality, I'd count on The Shield's handicap bout receiving higher marks from critics. You almost forget that Punk's been kept away from Rollins, Reigns & Ambrose all year long. D-Bry's managed to occupy much of the stable's activity throughout 2013. Mr. Sobriety is pretty much cut from the same cloth as Danielson so it naturally feels like we've seen this match a hundred times already when in fact, it's relatively fresh.
Gauging by recent events, I imagine some dissension between The Shield could lead to Punk stealing a 'W' at TLC.
Chrisss: Excellent point. Punk vs. Ambrose was great on both Raw and SmackDown, but I felt like I'd already seen it before, several times already (even though I hadn't). I'm not complaining; we could get any combination of Punk or Bryan vs. The Shield every week between now and 'Mania and we'd get one awesome match after another.
As for this match right here, I see Punk getting the win for two reasons. One, a loss for The Shield will further nurture the seeds of dissension which have already begun to sprout. Secondly, I think Punk will have a big night at the Royal Rumble - either winning the 30-man melee OR challenging the Unified Champion at the PPV.
SkitZ: Ah but if I were to counter your argument, the BITW triumphed at both HIAC & S/Series. So if Punk is indeed slated to win the Rumble and main event WrestleMania (as you proposed), couldn't he stand to lose a match at a throwaway pay per view in which he's facing a tremendous disadvantage? And what about Reigns' future? He needs to stockpile decisive win after decisive win if he's gonna be a key player in the near future! CAN'T YOU SEE THAT, CHRISSSTOPHER!?!?!
Chrisss: Ugh, don't get me started on Reigns. I like the guy, but much like Natalya, I feel he's overrated by the IWC. Sure, he has the 'look', but how many singles matches has he had this past year, especially compared to his Shield brethren? I think one, with Daniel Bryan, and let's be honest - how can you have a bad match with D-Bryan? I think WWE needs to cool it on the Reign Train and devote just as much attention to Ambrose and Rollins.
I hear you about Punk not being hurt by a loss on Sunday. But you said it yourself - miscommunication amongst The Shield leading to defeat would definitely create a rift amongst them. I suppose it all depends whether WWE wants the trio intact come April 6th or at war with one another. I'm siding with the former.
SkitZ: Again, my smark compass is screaming at me to choose Punk here but toppling you in our W/L record war matters more than anything. Like a chick with good looks who cooks and cleans, IT'S ALL I HAVE TO LIFE FOR IN THIS MISERABLE EXISTENCE OF MINE! Therefore, I'm saying Brooks has victory in his sights but the numbers game ultimately dooms Punk in.
A blindside spear to be exact. You need to recognize, foreigner. Reigns is hotter shit than food poisoning. He's my candidate for Breakout Star of the Year in Mazza's current series.
Chrisss: It's good to know where your priorities lie. Then again, it's your fault for picking Alberto del Rio to retain against Cena at Hell in a Cell. Remember that? LOL
Speaking of Cena, it's time to cover the main-event (for the very last time, might I add).
Chrisss' pick: Punk wins
SkitZ's pick: The Shield wins
TLC Match to crown a Unified WWE Champion: John Cena vs. Randy Orton
If that closing segment on Raw didn't convince you to buy Sunday's show, then I don't know what will. After everyone took turns taking each other out (Punk going after HHH, YES!), Cena was in a very interesting place, side-by-side with The Authority. Foreshadowing, or is WWE trolling us again?
SkitZ: Fuck that closing segment on RAW. I just condemned Cena/Orton in my last column... Can I be on point just this once? Jesus H. Christ. This TLC Unification Match is quickly shaping up to rival Punk/Lesnar and Cena/Bryan for MOTY. I'm hopeful however that an overbooked finish will see to it placing a distant third. When WWE lights a fire under Cena's ass, he tends to respond fairly well. Orton can be carried to a spirited effort; especially in a high stakes environment with the right individual. The conclusion to this has clusterfuckness written all over it.
Chrisss: Actually, Cena vs. Punk from Raw was the MOTY. But I digress. Ryback, Team Hell No, and The Shield pulled out a late MOTY contender at last year's TLC, and Cena vs. Ziggler wasn't too far behind. As I stated at the start of the column, WWE should really wait until January to compile their "Best PPV Matches of the Year" DVD, since TLC almost always delivers a four-star match or two, and Cena vs. Orton will most likely do the same.
The burning question is...does Cena finally turn heel?
SkitZ: I'm miffed (as is much of the IWC apparently). Whenever WWE can whip up a hearty batch of unpredictability, you've gotta enjoy it as a fan for as long as fucking possible because odds are it won't last past tomorrow. Honestly, I could picture it ending any which way; whether Cena pulls down both belts, Orton pulls off the upset or Trips interjects and does the unthinkable. Management would be best suited to go through with the latter if they really wanna stir excitement for WrestleMania 30. Enough people are already bitching about Hunter's ego and spot hoarding (myself included). The company might as well piss on said fire while the flames are a-blazin' and chuck a propane tank in there for good measure.
And Cena turning heel is a myth.
Chrisss: In HHH's defense, he's trailing behind Cena in number of world title reigns, and I'm sure being a former, thirteen-time world champion must be keeping him up at night. Therefore, the possibility of HHH running down and crowning himself the new, Unified Champion is extremely probable. It would also set up the long-awaited showdown with Daniel Bryan at Wrestlemania perfectly.
It all comes down to who you can see defending the title at the Royal Rumble next month. If Cena wins, they might very well go through with Cena/Bryan II. If Orton wins, I can see Punk getting a shot at the gold. If Hunter interferes and grabs the belts, we could get a rematch from Wrestlemania XXIV. My word, the WWE has evolved so much the past six years - it's the same three guys competing for the top prize! *sarcasm*
SkitZ: I might perform emergency brain surgery on myself if we're saddled with another Cena/Orton doozy. Besides, how could you top their TLC showdown with all that's involved? Why bother? You'd be fighting a losing battle.
Considering Bryan was just in the title picture as recently as late October, I'm predicting it's Punk who locks down a championship match against either Orton or H at the Royal Rumble. The BITW hasn't been in contention for gold since February and Goatface winning the 30-man melee would kick 'Mania season off on the right foot. The only feat more amazing than that would be Miz breaking Santino's record by getting eliminated in less than a second. Did you catch how determined Mr. Must-See was on RAW to not let it come across on TV that the booming Daniel Bryan chants were getting under his skin? I fucking loved it! In that moment, Mikey was wishing WWE still allowed blading. His wrists were no doubt burning with anticipation.
Chrisss: I thought HHH was the most visibly upset. Other than marking for the Christian sighting, I didn't really pay attention to the wrestlers in the background. Did Jack Swagger and Great Khali look horribly out of place, or what?
As has been discussed, the unpredictability factor is at an all-time high. I don't feel safe picking any outcome, but I'm going with Orton, mainly because the dude has been booked pretty poorly as "The Face of the WWE". He won't win cleanly, but at least it won't be another loss and (shudder) another title reign for Cena.
SkitZ: You're a brave soul. Foolish but brave. If you're intent on taking that route, I'm putting my stock in the popular opinion: H cockblocking the deuling champions and inserting himself in the middle for personal gain. I'm praying to the good Lord above that Trips blows the doors off this thing and goes full blown heel; Steph ass slaps and all. It's the perfect set-up for Hunter/D-Bry to culminate at 'Mania. Which... leaves Señor Straightedge waiting in the wings (ouch). Any likelihood we witness a triple threat? And no not your lame suggestion either. I mean Trips/Punk/Bryan.
Chrisss: For once, I hope you're right, and I'm wrong. That would be a match I'd gladly pay money to see. Imagine the IWC's reaction if Hunter put himself over Punk and Bryan on the same night??? Jesus.
Chrisss' pick: Orton becomes champion
SkitZ's pick: HHH becomes champion
Well, it looks like we're all done. It's been fun, Skitz. But I'm afraid I'm going to have to go Big Johnny on you and wish you the best in your future endeavours...
SkitZ: I came. I saw. I made a mess. But unfortunately, you just don't do it for me any more. You're no longer my cup of tea; fuck Canadian blend. But seriously should you ever need help or advice, you know who to turn to... someone else.
Your Two Centsss: If WWE pulls another 'screwy' finish in the main-event of TLC (i.e. neither man becomes Unified Champion, or both men simultaneously grab the other's championship), do you think the controversial PPV ending will alienate a portion of the fanbase?
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