TLC 2016 was a stacked card with matches with all sorts of extreme stipulation. A women’s table match, a ladder match and a TLC match mainevent for the World Title.
Match No.1: The Hype Bros, American Alpha & Apollo Crews vs The Vaudevillains, The Ascension & Curt Hawkins
Build-up: Just like every before every PPV, WWE announced this match as the kick off match for the show.
Review: A very bland and uninspired match that you expect in every pre-show. American Alpha ended the match within 12 minutes after hitting Simon Gotch with a Grand Amplitude. American Alpha should be now focusing on the SD Live Tag Titles, and meanwhile, Apollo Crews should definitely deserves better booking, a shot at the IC Title is a great place to start.
Match No. 2: The Wyatt Family (Bray Wyatt & Randy Orton) (with Luke Harper) vs Heath Slater & Rhyno (Smackdown Live Tag Team Titles)
Build-up: Bray and Randy beat the American Alpha on Smackdown Live few weeks back to win a shot at the SD Live Tag Titles.
Review: This match was a disappointment overall, considering this was a championship match which was over within 5 minutes. The beginning of the end for Rhyno and Slater was when Rhyno was distracted outside the ring by Luke Harper who took a ‘Gore’ for Randy Orton and back in the ring Bray distracted Rhyno allowing Orton to hit a RKO for the win. The outcome of the match was very special, as this was Bray’s first title win WWE history and Randy winning the Tag Titles after 8 years.
Match No.3: Nikki Bella vs Carmella (No DQ Match)
Build-up: Nikki Bella and Carmella had a pretty solid feud and were looking to settle the scores once and for all in a No DQ match.
Review: Some decent story telling in the match but a disappointment overall for a No DQ match. Nikki and Carmella did some basic stuff, exchanging few kendo stick shots and a peculiar fire extinguisher spot. Nikki eventually put away Carmella with the Rack Attack 2.0; after the match Carmella cut a promo saying it was Natalya that attacked Nikki backstage at Survivor Series.
Match No. 4: The Miz (with Maryse) vs Dolph Ziggler (Intercontinental Championship Ladder match)
Build-up: After beating Dolph at Smackdown’s 900 episode to win back the IC Title, Miz and Ziggler were ready to battle it out in a ladder match for the belt.
Review: A very decent ladder match but still very entertaining nevertheless. The crowd was pretty dead throughout the match but The Miz once again managed to give a great performance, nailing Ziggler with a low blow in the closing stages and unhooking the title and then cutting a brilliant promo stating that he ‘dedicated his win to Daniel Bryan’.
Match No.5: Baron Corbin vs Kalisto (Chairs Match)
Build-up: These two have been feuding for months now, Corbin sidelined Kalisto for a few months and in return Kalisto kayfabe injured Corbin’s ankle just before Survivor Series. These two were ready to settle their differences in a chairs match.
Review: Shocking to quite a few people Corbin and Kalisto managed to put up what was probably the best chairs match in WWE history. This stipulation has been a laughing stock for ever since it was introduced, but Corbin and Kalisto put up a solid performance. There were a few wicked spots such as Corbin’s deep six reversal, Kalisto’s seated senton on the pile of chairs, and a brilliant End of Days on a pile of chairs by Corbin who picked up the win.
Match No.6: Alexa Bliss vs Becky Lynch (Smackdown Live Women’s Championship)
Build-up: Since winning the SD Live Women’s Title, Becky’s first challenger has been Alexa Bliss and the two have were ready to face in Tables match at TLC.
Review: Numerous near misses and false finishes but once again the crowd was dead. Alexa and Becky did a pretty decent job putting up a good match, but the match didn’t really live up to its hype and stipulation. Alexa powerbombed Becky off the apron to win the title, and her win was a big surprise.
Match No.7: AJ Styles vs Dean Ambrose (WWE World Heavyweight Championship)
Build-up: Styles and Ambrose had one of the most memorable rivalries’ ever since the brand split. AJ won the belt of Ambrose at Backlash and since then the two have been through a lot, even giving us some memorable moments such as Ellsworth beating AJ thrice and getting his WWE contract as well.
Review: Simply the best match of the evening and AJ Styles proved once again why he is one of the best wrestler’s in the world right now. A very rock solid 30 minute match with some crazy spots such as Ambrose jumping off a ladder onto the table, AJ hitting 450 splash through a table, and also a phenomenal forearm while Dean was hanging onto a ladder. James Ellsworth came out at the closing moments, it seemed like Dean was about to win back the belt, when Ellsworth pushed his long time friend off the ladder and through a table and allowing AJ to win the match.