WWE TLC: Roman Reigns explodes as Sheamus retains the title

Following a disappointingly lacklustre Survivor Series and alarmingly low ratings on recent episodes of RAW, you’d be forgiven for going into WWE TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs with low expectations. But as the smoke cleared in the TD Garden in Boston, there were a lot of great talking points as Sheamus defeated Roman Reigns in a TLC match to retain the WWE World Heavyweight Championship.

It was a main event which, admittedly, not a lot of people cared for. Especially following Seth Rollins’ knee injury a couple of months ago which forced him to relinquish the WWE World Heavyweight Championship he’d held over the past 8 months.

The crowd were absolutely disinterested in the match in the early going. Entertaining themselves with chants of “We want Cena” and “We miss Rollins”. It was clear for all to hear that the WWE Universe are not happy with the creative direction the company is taking. It was made much worse as the League of Nations got involved in the match, and it looked like we were set for a screwy pay-per-view finish that everyone hates so much.

And although we did get that finish, it was an incredibly brutal match with both men putting their bodies on the line and working their butts off to at least give fans something to cheer for. But after Sheamus retained his WWE World Heavyweight Title, what followed was nothing short of extraordinary. Roman Reigns exploded in a fit of rage in a moment which seemingly, was a culmination of months of frustration reaching an ultimate boiling point, as the Samoan Superman took a steel chair to pound Sheamus and his League of Nations cohorts (minus Bad News Barrett – conspicuous by his absence).

Reigns tries to prevent Sheamus from reclaiming his gold.
Reigns tries to prevent Sheamus from reclaiming his gold.

It was a side of Reigns not seen since his days in The Shield. A side of Roman that the fans were originally behind in 2013 before WWE hastily tried to turn him into John Cena 2.0. WWE COO Triple H entered the fray to try and talk Reigns down, but as tensions reached boiling point, Reigns completely lost it and proceeded to decimate Triple H in actions we’ve not seen from Reigns before. The crowd erupted to a chorus of “Thank you, Roman” which was more likely a nod to him being the man the fans wanted him to be rather than his actions towards The Authority.

Reigns proceeded to hammer Triple H with a steel chair and powerbomb him onto the announce table. An elbow drop through the announce table followed and it looked like Reigns was finished. On his way back up the ramp however, he turned around and proceeded to launch himself at Triple H with a mammoth spear. Again, the crowd (and indeed social media) erupted in approval. The final shot was Reigns acknowledging that he’ll probably be fired for his actions.

It seems we’ve finally got the Roman Reigns we all wanted. The Roman Reigns we can all get behind and the Roman Reigns that we know he can be if he’s allowed to be himself. One things for certain, it’s made RAW a must see. We’re watching closely, WWE.

Elsewhere on the card, the show opened with an absolutely amazing triple threat tag team ladder match for the Tag Team Championships. The New Day entertained as only they could, with Xavier Woods providing wonderful commentary. It was highspots galore, and was probably the best tag team ladder match since the days of The Hardy Boyz/Dudley Boyz/Edge & Christian. Even those 3 teams would have been proud of Kalisto, as he hit a Salido Del Sol off the top of the ladder in a spot which will no doubt be replayed for years and years to come. A move even Mick Foley and Jeff Hardy would have been proud of. A move which got a reaction that hasn’t been heard in WWE for a very long time. In the end, the New Day retained their titles and we all raised our unicorn horns!

Kalisto hits the Solida Del Sol off the top of a ladder.
Kalisto hits the Solida Del Sol off the top of a ladder.

Rusev defeated Ryback in a match which never really got going, and again, one which the crowd didn’t really care much for. That probably had more to do with them having to follow the ladder match than anything else.

Alberto Del Rio defeated Jack Swagger in a chairs match which was far better than anybody expected it to be. A really good back and forth contest.

The Wyatt Family were finally victorious on Pay-Per-View, defeating the ECW Originals team of the Dudley Boyz, Rhyno and Tommy Dreamer in an Elimination Tables Match. The Wyatt’s won the match convincingly, with only Erick Rowan eliminated on their team.

Dean Ambrose defeated Kevin Owens to become the new Intercontinental Champion in a great match. The passion Ambrose showed as Owen’s shoulders were pinned down for the three count made the intercontinental title look important and it was a contest that told a fantastic story, with Owens at one point literally being saved by the tips of his fingers.

Dean Ambrose is your new WWE Intercontinental Champion
Dean Ambrose is your new WWE Intercontinental Champion

Charlotte defeated Paige for the Divas Championship due to outside interference from Ric Flair. It looked like Paige was going to win with the Rampiage, but Naitch placed his daughter’s foot on the rope, which was enough for Charlotte to take advantage and score the victory. Again, another solid match.

All in all, WWE TLC was a very good pay-per-view which was absolutely night and day compared to last months’ Survivor Series. Right now, they need to think very carefully as to whether they’re going to continue with this aggressive Roman Reigns, or if he’ll revert to talking about Tater Tots. We certainly hope it’s the former, because right now WWE have created a golden opportunity, and surprisingly, Roman Reigns might just be the answer after all.

Match of the Night: New Day vs. Lucha Dragons vs. The Uso’s

Photos: WWE

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