2018 WWE TLC card, matches, date, start time, preview, location, rumors, predictions
Everything you need to know ahead of this year's WWE TLC pay-per-view event
WrestleMania season is right around the corner, but before we get to 2019 and begin down that road, WWE brings us TLC on Sunday night to close out the pay-per-view schedule for this year. To say that this card is stacked may actually be an understatement. WWE TLC on Sunday in San Jose, California, will feature a total of 12 matches being contested. Naturally, a select few of these bouts will have some sort of TLC stipulation attached to them as we close out the year.
With TLC set to come to us live Sunday night, let's take a look at how the card for this year's event has shaped out. TLC will begin with a kickoff show at 6 p.m. ET before the main card starts one hour later at 7 p.m. CBS Sports will be covering TLC on Sunday, so be sure to check out our live blog, previews and much more.
Also, don't forget to listen to our audio preview of TLC from the In This Corner with Brian Campbell podcast, and be sure to subscribe at the link in the player below. We will have an instant analysis immediately after WWE TLC on Sunday night.
2018 WWE TLC matches
WWE Championship -- Daniel Bryan (c) vs. AJ Styles: Styles is due a rematch for the WWE title against Bryan after the latter's shocking heel turn ended his over one-year championship reign, and he will get just that at TLC. The bout was announced on the post-Survivor Series edition of SmackDown Live, and as usual, these two in-ring generals going one-on-one should be a treat to help end the year.
SmackDown Women's Championship -- Becky Lynch (c) vs. Charlotte Flair vs. Asuka (TLC match): Thankfully, Lynch will be returning to action from her injuries at TLC to defend her championship. In quite the interesting twist, she'll be defending against two women in this TLC match, with Flair being gifted the shot from Paige and Asuka earning her way in via a battle royal win on SmackDown.
Raw Women's Championship -- Ronda Rousey (c) vs. Nia Jax: With her victory in the battle royal at Evolution, Jax earned the right to challenge Rousey for the Raw women's title. Rousey and Jax had a somewhat entertaining match with one another back at Money in the Bank prior to the cash-in of Alexa Bliss, and with Jax firmly playing the heel role as of late, that should add a new dynamic to a bout with the reigning Raw women's champ. After Jax, Rousey has vowed to revisit her issues with SmackDown Live's own Charlotte Flair following the brutal incident that took place at Survivor Series.
Intercontinental Championship -- Seth Rollins (c) vs. Dean Ambrose: Survivor Series hadn't even ended before we learned that these two would be going at each other for the first time since Ambrose turned on Shield brother Rollins after capturing the Raw tag team titles recently. Rollins was informed in a backstage segment following his victory over United States champion Shinsuke Nakamura that he would finally be able to get his hands on Ambrose, and he seemed rather thrilled about the upcoming title defense.
Braun Strowman vs. Baron Corbin (TLC match): Strowman's deal with Raw commissioner Stephanie McMahon came through; not only did he get this match, he got to choose the stipulation. But two other stipulations come with this match as well. (1) If Strowman wins, he gets to face Brock Lesnar for the universal title at the Royal Rumble (McMahon previously promised he could pick a stipulation for that, too), and Corbin gets stripped of his interim power. (2) If Corbin wins, he becomes full-time general manager of Raw.
SmackDown Tag Team Championship -- The Bar (c) vs. The Usos vs. New Day: The tag team scene on the blue brand has been pretty solid for the most part, but these three teams being in the mix in some form or fashion is becoming a bit tiresome. Hopefully, some new blood is injected as 2019 hits.
Finn Balor vs. Drew McIntyre: The bad blood has been boiling over between these two during recent weeks on Raw and it'll culminate in them squaring off at TLC. This will be a battle of two men who should be firmly entrenched in the universal title scene next year on Monday nights.
Elias vs. Bobby Lashley (Ladder Match): Elias and Lashley have been butting heads of late, with Lio Rush playing his part of instigator to perfection. This feud has been helping the cause, though, of getting Elias over as a new massive babyface, so a victory over the monster that is Lashley could prove another step in the right direction. During Monday's go-home Raw, it was announced that this grudge bout would now be a Ladder Match, with a guitar hanging above the ring that could be put to use by whichever man grabs a hold of it first.
Natalya vs. Ruby Riott (Tables Match): Riott has been more than a thorn in the side of Natalya in recent weeks on Raw, so it only makes sense that they meet in a brutal match on a card that welcomes such a bout.
Randy Orton vs. Rey Mysterio (Chairs Match): Just five days prior to TLC, it was announced on SmackDown that these two would be taking their bitter rivalry to the PPV in the form of a chairs match. Mysterio wasted no time in preparing for the bout, blindsiding Orton from behind with a chair as he was cutting a promo on the match.
WWE Cruiserweight Championship -- Buddy Murphy (c) vs. Cedric Alexander: Last week on 205 Live, it was revealed that former champion Alexander would be next in line for the shot at Murphy and the purple title. On Monday, general manager Drake Maverick made the match official for TLC. This will, of course, be another incredible bout between these two. The only question now becomes whether the cruiserweight title will get the main show honor for the second PPV in a row, or if it will be relegated back to the kickoff.
WWE Mixed Match Challenge Final -- R-Truth & Carmella vs. Jinder Mahal & Alicia Fox: The winners of this match, which concludes a months-long tournament, will not only win an all-expenses-paid vacation but also receive the No. 30 spot in the men's and women's Royal Rumble next month.
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