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Five WWE Tables, Ladders, and Chairs 2013 Takeaways

WWE Tables, Ladders, and Chairs 2013 is in the books and while the results aren’t that surprising, there were a few takeaways from Sunday that are worth noting. Here are five quick takeaways that were probably staring at you right in the face the second the show concluded.

Randy Orton will defend the WWE world championship at WrestleMania 30 – They aren’t going to great lengths to get Orton over to have him lose in a month or two. The rebuilding of Randy Orton may be the WWE story of the year. Orton had been in the dog house for a longtime and become just another guy in recent years. Fear of Orton getting cut with another Wellness Policy violation prohibited a large investment in their A-plus player. What happened?

Back in November the WWE instituted a big change to their Wellness Policy program. The biggest change was the implementation of the Violation Redemption Program. What that means is that instead of a third strike ending employment with the WWE, the talent now can enter the 18 month Redemption Program. In other words, Randy Orton’s job is safe with another strike if he follows the steps to successfully complete the new program.

I am not sure where they go with Orton at Mania. The betting line right now would have to be a Cena rematch. The way Cena was portrayed after the loss as the McMahon family celebrated tells me that this thing is far from over. The booking of the match also offered Cena several opportunities to win if it were a regular match. I am not saying I agree with it, but I’d be stunned if Orton wasn’t defending this unified title in NOLA.

It’s the end of The Shield as we know it – It was a fun run wasn’t it? For just about a year The Shield came into the WWE and was pushed harder than any new act in recent memory. When they finally did lose it was a huge deal, something you don’t see often these days on WWE programming. Unfortunately that train came to a stop a few weeks ago and The Shield are now just another three guys on the roster.

I know that the match at TLC was just a set up for the inevitable Roman Reigns turn but it was a tough pill to swallow. These guys were portrayed to be unbeatable for so long, even thwarting stars the likes of Cena, The Undertaker, and Randy Orton only to have them lose a match 3-on-1 against CM Punk. I can’t think of a team that brought as many consistent matches to the WWE as they did in years. It’s a shame that their time to shine has expired.

Someone needs to get hot – If there was one thing that was painfully obvious to me all night long it was that the company desperately needs a shake up. Aside from the headliner, every match felt like a RAW match, nothing was special, and the crowd seemed bored for most of the night. The talent have been booked evenly for so long that there is nothing special about a win or loss anymore. The storylines are weak or non-existent in most cases, and there is nothing to be excited about right now. The creative team needs to do their jobs and get creative. That means elevating guys, writing better stories, and developing more of a tier system between the great and the very good and the average.

Daniel Bryan’s run is officially over – Speaking of average, we get it! Daniel Bryan is just another guy. Beating him to the Wyatt family and allowing Punk to win his handicapped match sent a clear message. It is also clear that the WWE is trying to manipulate these “Yes” chants. Sticking Bryan in the middle of the card with Wyatt at a time where he should theoretically be in the program with the Authority is just mind boggling to me. I can appreciate that he didn’t bring in the buyrates or ratings they were looking for. But neither is anyone else. I wouldn’t build my company around the guy but I would give your customers what they want at this point and that is Bryan in a featured spot.

Vince McMahon is not happy – I don’t know where this is going but it was obvious to everyone watching TLC that Vince was not happy. Vince had an angry mug on his face and looked uncomfortable aligning himself with Hunter and Stephanie during Randy Orton’s celebration. Maybe it was something else not related to the story that made Vince unhappy but I doubt it. He has one of the best poker faces in the business. Does Vince not being happy reflect his disappointment with Orton winning? Does it reflect his disappointment in the titles being unified? Does it reflect his disappointment with something in the match? Who knows but I have a sneaky feeling that his sour puss will be explained real soon.

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Eric G.

Eric is the owner and editor-in-chief of the Camel Clutch Blog. Eric has worked in the pro wrestling industry since 1995 as a ring announcer in ECW and a commentator/host on television, PPV, and home video. Eric also hosted Pro Wrestling Radio on terrestrial radio from 1998-2009. Check out some of Eric’s work on his IMDB bio and Wikipedia. Eric has an MBA from Temple University’s Fox School of Business.

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