WWE TLC 2017 [Ringside Apostle Preview]: Tables, Ladders, Chairs & Mumps.
TLC 2017 comes your way from the Target Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota, today, exclusively on the WWE Network. Of course, the big talk of the night WAS the arrival of “The Empress of Tomorrow”, Asuka to the RAW brand as well as the reunion of The Shield!
But after an outbreak of the.. mumps has reportedly battered the locker room, there have been a few MAJOR changes to this card. “The Phenomenal” AJ Styles returns to RAW to face Finn Balor in a dream match and none other than Kurt Angle returns to the ring to replace Roman Reigns in the main event. It seems like this thing may have spread to the Apostle locker room as well, but let’s get on with the Ringside Apostle’s TLC 2017 Preview…
Sasha Banks and Alicia Fox. On the preshow. Well, don’t be surprised when the Legit Boss walks out the door and heads to that other company with honorable rings after getting sick and tired of how she’s booked by the WWE creative manatees. Does anyone even care about this match? And does Alicia actually stand a chance to win? I mean, she’s lost three in a row to Sasha already, right? … oh wait… WWE booking. Right. No. They can’t. PREDICTION: Despite what you would expect, Sasha is going to win this one and Alicia is going to have another breakdown in the ring, because being the longest active member of the women’s roster gets you the cray cray black woman angle around these parts. Seems legit. At least she’s finally got a shirt.
Even before the Bubonic Plague set in and jacked up this entire card, we have TWO 205 matches on the main show? Plus Drew Gulak on the Kick-Off Show by himself?! Desperation, or the Enzo effect? With Enzo hogging the title picture we’re given this gem of a match-up. Swann & Cedric have made a decent one-two punch of a Tag Team as of late. Swann’s personality and ring presence is almost eclipsed by Cedric’s smoothness in his execution. Across the ring we have the always dangerous “The” Brian Kendrick and the now insidious “Gentleman” Jack Gallagher. Jack’s slow transition to the heel side of the roster is an interesting one. PREDICTION: I don’t think that Kendrick and Jack have had the time to gel yet, so Swann and Cedric will squeak by with the W here. But that just might send Jack over the edge leaving nobody safe from the umbrella barrage! Any one of these four can contend for the coveted 205 Live title at the drop of a hat. But tonight? They are poised to steal the show while most folks will be watching foooseball.
How’d this happen?? I wasn’t even supposed to review this match. Oh wait… the mumps… So Finn Balor is fighting … AJ Styles … what?? Isn’t AJ on Smackdown Live?? … Oh well, don’t ask questions. “It’s a happening at TLC” as Gorilla Monsoon would say. I guess this is a match everyone has wanted to see for a long time so the fans will get something they actually want instead of seeing Bray in drag.
On another note, this one is COMPLETELY unpredictable. That being understood, I think you’re looking at the match of the night and the hands down, show stealer. These two can go. Period. If you’re in a position where you need to give the fans something, because your entire card is a mess due to a viral outbreak, you really can’t go wrong with these two. I’m actually looking forward to this one. PREDICTION: Does AJ do the job and give this one to Finn since it doesn’t even matter because AJ’s not on the RAW roster anyway? That’s my best guess. No need to bury Balor. However, I firmly expect to see a couple of “good brothers” get involved in this one seeing they have nothing else to do and a Club “reunion” would be … well, Too Sweeeeeet!!
The Woman’s Revolution has been a big hit the last few years; the star talented ladies of Wrestling have really stepped it up; Miss Bliss has risen to the top quickly and is worth the full price of admission. Her long feud with her so called BFF Mickie James has spanned over a year! This should be the last of this feud so both can move on to bigger and better things in the WWE squared circle. While the match has Bliss written all over it, add some weapons and this could turn out to be a pretty fun match to watch. I expect lots of OMG moments. Mickie, who is a great ex women’s Champion, can sell herself to the WWE Universe and make a great final run at the Women’s title to end her career, but I don’t see that happening just yet. PREDICTION: Little Miss Bliss is on 🔥and will walk out still the champ but not without a few bumps and bruises.
I want to say that I’ve not seen such a slapped-together-at-the-last-minute feud for a WWE title — but we all know that’s not true. Enzo was a major heat magnet. Taking the title off of him this soon was a boneheaded move. Yes, it can be argued that Neville’s departure caught them off guard. But throwing Kalisto into the title mix with zero build was even more boneheaded. PREDICTION: I see them trying to right the ship and putting the BELT (yes, I said it) back on Enzo. And hopefully they take the time to build someone to eventually take the belt off of Amore in a meaningful way.
So the “Empress of Tomorrow” is on RAW now and the woman who gets the honor of being sacrificed first is.. Emma. It makes sense. Emma is an incredibly talented and underrated worker who has history with Asuka going back to the latter’s debut. It’s gonna be excellent, just like their match at TakeOver London. Seriously, re-watch that match. And then turn it off before you hear Enzo’s voice afterward. Prediction: There ain’t no way Asuka doesn’t come out on top in this. You can argue that WWE doesn’t have the best track record regarding NXT call-ups, but even Vince isn’t crazy enough to spend all this time going on about the streak and have her lose to the jobber-in-chief of the RAW women’s division.
Welcome to the castration of… To the match that will undoubtedly make these men look strong! These men are.. Um.. Jesus Christ, I don’t know WHAT creative was thinking when they put this together… First they strike gold. They bring back together The Shield, which is instant money. You barely have to put any effort into it. Hell, then they go ahead and pit them against the best tag teams in the industry and arguably the best heel. But then WWE creative gotta go all WWE creative and shoehorn Braun and Kane into this.. Here’s the only way this can KIND OF work without some ridiculous Power Reigning going on that turns the match into a crap show: pre-match, The Shield go to town on Strowman and Kane backstage with chairs and triple powerbombs, taking care of them.. Then it’s three vs three (and it’s great), until it looks like The Miz and Da BARR are outside of the ring and incapacitated. Boom, Braun or Kane’s music hits, then it’s Monster and Machine vs The Hounds. That’s epic, Shield’s about to get the pin, Cesaro breaks it up. Rollins and Ambrose are gettin a Triple Powerbomb and a Double Chokeslam. PREDICTION: The Numbers Game claims yet another win, with The Shield winning at Survivor Series.
UPDATE: With Roman Reigns out for this one, the Olympic Gold Medalist Kurt Angle will return to the ring to replace “the Guy”. I don’t even know what to say about this and the Ringside Apostles 3rd Deacon is not available to give us his thoughts on the change due to him being absent for “personal reasons”, but this Pastor fully expects Jason Jordan to make an appearance in this one now. Maybe to come to his father’s aid. Seeing the bout with the mumps and the return of Angle and the overall lacklusterness of this card, ultimately The Shield pulls this one off against all odds… sort of like this ENTIRE event. – Shawn Puff