After a few lackluster pay-per-views in a row, there is a great deal of excitement surrounding Tables, Ladders & Chairs. Not only is it the last event prior to the road to WrestleMania, but it will also provide a huge match in the form of Randy Orton vs. John Cena for the Unified Championship.
That match and several others are creating some buzz and will likely lead to plenty of betting action on the proceedings. Betting on WWE has gained a lot of traction in recent months, and it has been used as a barometer when predicting who might come out on top in certain matches. The lines have been fairly accurate, so it's definitely worth monitoring.
With that said, here is a closer look at three TLC matches with particularly interesting odds attached to them.
*Betting Odds courtesy of SkyBet
|WWE TLC Match Card|
|John Cena (c) vs. Randy Orton (c)||Unified Championship||Tables, Ladders & Chairs match|
|Daniel Bryan vs. The Wyatt Family||N/A||Handicap match|
|CM Punk vs. The Shield||N/A||Handicap match|
|AJ Lee (c) vs. Natalya||Divas Championship||N/A|
|Big E Langston (c) vs. Damien Sandow||Intercontinental Championship||N/A|
|Cody Rhodes & Goldust vs. Big Show & Rey Mysterio vs. The Real Americans vs. Rybaxel||Tag Team Championships||Fatal Four Way|
|Dolph Ziggler vs. Fandango||N/A||Kickoff match|
Randy Orton (8-13) vs. John Cena (6-5)
There hasn't been a lone world champion in WWE since the World Heavyweight Championship was reinstated in 2002, but that will change at TLC when WWE Champion Randy Orton and World Heavyweight Champion John Cena meet in a Tables, Ladders & Chairs match to unify the titles.
Orton and Cena are two of the biggest stars the business has ever seen, so it has the potential to be a special match. As seen in this photo, courtesy of WWE's Instagram account, the titles will be suspended above the ring for either man to grab:
Somewhat surprisingly, The Viper has been installed as a slight favorite.
Orton has seemingly lost the confidence of Triple H, especially after what happened on Raw. Orton accidentally knocked down Stephanie McMahon, which resulted in Triple H hitting him with a Pedigree. Triple H accepted Orton's apology on Raw, but it didn't seem sincere. At the same time, a heel authority figure such as Triple H wouldn't support the preeminent face in the form of Cena, either.
Truth be told, it's very possible that neither Orton nor Cena will win.
I first theorized a couple weeks ago that Triple H would walk out of TLC as Unified Champion, and that is becoming more and more likely. If he simply scales the ladders and takes the belts, then no money will change hands in relation to this match.
If Triple H challenges someone for the title after the match, though, it is more likely to be Cena than Orton because of Orton's heel status. With that said, take a chance on Cena since the worst-case scenario for him may be a no-contest.
CM Punk (1-6) vs. The Shield (7-2)
Although professional wrestling is obviously a scripted event, most realities still apply. In real life, it isn't often that someone will win a fight when they're at a three-on-one disadvantage. The same can be said in WWE, but CM Punk is favored in his handicap match against The Shield despite that fact.
Punk was put in this bout against Dean Ambrose, Roman Reigns and Seth Rollins as a form of punishment, but there is definitely reason to believe that it will backfire.
There has been some noticeable animosity within The Shield as of late, especially between Ambrose and Reigns. Ambrose seems to believe that he is the de facto leader of the group, due to the fact that he is United States Champion, but Reigns has been the dominant force. He stole the show at Survivor Series and seems ready to break away from the group. Rollins has been somewhat forgotten in all of this, but he is still committed to the group, as evidenced by this tweet:
After the match was announced, Punk essentially said that he knew he was going to lose. That, in and of itself, is a clue that he won't. If the plan is to dissolve The Shield during the road to WrestleMania, then something big needs to happen.
Look for Reigns to accidentally spear Ambrose, which will allow Punk to steal the victory. This will accelerate the breakup process and hopefully lead to a triple-threat classic at WrestleMania XXX.
Fandango (1-5) vs. Dolph Ziggler (100-30)
There isn't much publicity surrounding the TLC Kickoff match between Fandango and Dolph Ziggler, but it should be a fast-paced encounter that gets the fans hyped for the pay-per-view.
Fandango and Ziggler haven't been feuding, so the bad blood isn't present; however, they are both flamboyant competitors who should feed off of each other well. In addition to that, both Superstars could use the win, so it's tough to predict who will come out on top.
On the surface it seems like Ziggler should be the favorite since he is closer to relevancy than Fandango, but the oddsmakers disagree. It certainly wouldn't be a shock if Fandango was to win, but putting up $5 to win $1 seems odd when you can win more than $3 by putting up just $1 when it comes to Ziggler.
As poorly as Ziggler has been utilized as of late, one can only assume that he is due for a push at some point in the near future.
Fandango was on fire following WrestleMania XXIX, as the fans reacted in a big way, but that simply hasn't been the case in recent months. An injury stalled his momentum leading up to Payback, and he has been unable to regain it.
He still has a ton of potential along with an entertaining gimmick, so perhaps the creative team views this as an opportunity to get him back on track. Whatever decision WWE decides to make with regard to this match will say a lot about how it views each wrestler involved.
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