The final pay-per-view of 2014 is upon us, and it couldn't have come at a worst time for the WWE.
Three days after NXT tore the house down with its most recent live special, Tables, Ladders and Chairs … and Stairs (how grammatically dumb is that?) has a big act to follow.
Unfortunately for the WWE, the event has little to no momentum heading into it.
I expect the show to be fun for what it is, and that's a card full of gimmick matches where you'll see a plethora of insane spots that you probably won't see until the event rolls around again next year.
But I doubt it will be nearly as satisfying as the live NXT special was Thursday night, even with the bigger presentation and added star power.
With all of that said, we've still got some predictions to make, so here's what I think is going to happen at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio:
Tables Match – John Cena vs. Seth Rollins
As I type this, I'm still not totally sure why this match is even happening.
What's the real angle here other than to get John Cena in another main event?
As a matter of fact, I'm not even sure if this is the main event. It's only a tables match after all and the event is called TLC(S), which would make you think the actual TLC match would close the show.
Crazier things have happened, I guess.
Regardless of any of that, the WWE seemingly tipped its hand by adding the stipulation that if Cena loses to Rollins, he would lose his chance to take on Brock Lesnar for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship.
I don't see a reason why Cena loses that opportunity other than to swerve the fans. I think the match itself will be very good. I believe that both Cena and Rollins are both quality performers, but I just don't see any real heat in this match, which slightly decreases my interest in it.
Prediction: John Cena def. Seth Rollins
Tables, Ladders and Chairs Match – Dean Ambrose vs. Bray Wyatt
Although this is a traditional TLC match (with nothing hanging in the balance), something tells me that this will not close the show.
Like I said earlier, crazier things have happened.
I think the build-up to this match has been okay. It hasn't blown my socks off in any way, nor has it thoroughly disappointed me.
Like the Cena and Rollins match, I still think the match is good despite its lackluster build. When you have two wildcards like Dean Ambrose and Bray Wyatt in a TLC match, the opportunities for awesome moments are endless.
Both guys are also willing to put their bodies at risk, so I would expect at least insane spot to occur.
As far as a winner I'm going with Wyatt. Although I don't think Ambrose should take another pay-per-view loss, I think he has gotten the upper hand on Wyatt enough leading up to the match that it looks like Wyatt will come out on top.
Prediction: Bray Wyatt def. Dean Ambrose
WWE Intercontinental Championship (Ladder Match) – Luke Harper (c) vs. Dolph Ziggler
Now here's the match that I believe should absolutely steal the show.
You have two capable performers in Luke Harper and Dolph Ziggler, and then you add in a ladder. Those are the ingredients of a match that will have the building buzzing for minutes after it's done.
The question is who stands tall with the title when the smoke clears. I believe that man will be Luke Harper.
I love Ziggler as much as the next guy, but I believe he's ascended above the Intercontinental Championship at this point, which is why it doesn't make sense for him to even be in this match.
I also believe that Harper should carry the title for a while to give it some real meaning. The longer he holds it, the more it means when someone eventually vanquishes him for it.
Prediction: Luke Harper RETAINS the Intercontinental Championship
Chairs Match – Ryback vs. Kane
I don't think it's possible to be less excited for this match than I already am.
For one, what the hell do you do in a chairs match? The WWE has had these before, but I'm still not sure what the rules are?
What I do know for certain is that Ryback will win.
Prediction: Ryback def. Kane
Steel Stairs Match – Big Show vs. Erick Rowan
Here's another match with another weird stipulation that I couldn't care less about.
What makes me upset about this match is not who is involved. I respect Big Show and Erick Rowan as performers. What I hate is that the stipulation, which is already dumb, prompted the WWE to alter the name of the pay-per-view because it rhymes with chairs.
That's some clever creativity and marketing right there. Not to mention horrible grammar, but I digress.
I think Rowan wins this match just so that he's put over by a veteran big man like Big Show.
Prediction: Erick Rowan def. Big Show
WWE Tag Team Championship – The Miz & Damien Mizdow (c) vs. The Usos
Let me start this by saying that I believe The Miz and Damien Mizdow will retain the tag titles.
The intriguing part of this match is how does the WWE go about getting to that point?
The Miz and Damien Mizdow are definitely heading down a road that will see the dissention grow among them. At the same token, there may be some friction between Jimmy Uso and Naomi that could play out in this match as well.
I expect the match to be secondary whatever angle that's going to play out.
Prediction: The Miz & Damien Mizdow RETAIN the Tag Team Championship
WWE Divas Championship – Nikki Bella (c) vs. AJ Lee
The reason why this match is happening again is because the WWE literally has nothing else better to go to in the Divas division. It's a sad state of affairs.
With that said, I think Nikki Bella wins. Why? I don't even know.
Prediction: Nikki Bella RETAINS the Divas Championship
WWE United States Championship – Rusev (c) vs. Jack Swagger
And this is where we are treated to another epic chapter in the colossal rivalry between Rusev and Jack Swagger … said no one ever.
Rusev will win just like he did the first 200 times these guys squared off. Putting the United States title on the line adds nothing to this feud.
Prediction: Rusev RETAINS the United States Championship
Kickoff Match - The New Day vs. Goldust & Stardust
Since The New Day lost their Raw debut, I fully expect them to go over against Goldust and Stardust.