Tables, ladders, and chairs match
The TLC match is a variation of a ladder match, which is modified to co-emphasize two other weapons: tables and chairs. The goal is to acquire the item (usually championship belts) which starts the match suspended above the ring. A TLC match can be seen as a more complicated ladder match, where tables and chairs, along with ladders, can also be used as legal foreign objects.
Another TLC match that could also exist as a variation of a hardcore match, where tables, ladders, and chairs can also be used as legal foreign objects, but the only way to win this variation of the TLC match is by pinfall or submission.
The match originates around the tag teams of The Dudley Boyz, The Hardy Boyz, and Edge and Christian. The particular weapons of tables, ladders and chairs were seen as unique to each team's style. The Hardys were seen as high-flying daredevils with a penchant for using ladders, and a key element to the Dudley Boyz gimmick was their flagrant use of tables as weapons. Edge and Christian became notable for using steel chairs in tandem against opponents.
World Wrestling Federation created and adapted the matches to make it known today as a TLC match. The idea of the TLC match in WWF had its origins in a tag team ladder match for the managerial services of Terri Runnels between Edge and Christian and The Hardy Boyz (Matt Hardy and Jeff Hardy), at No Mercy 1999, with audiences giving all four wrestlers a standing ovation at the end of the match. The move catapulted both tag teams to the top of the tag team world. The following months had The Hardy Boyz face The Dudley Boyz, (Bubba Ray Dudley and D-Von Dudley), in a tag-team Tables match, which had similar success.
The three teams would be known for their three respective foreign objects, as well as the hardcore wrestling styles associated therein: the Dudley Boyz often had a spot in their tag team matches where Bubba Ray Dudley would say "D-Von, get the tables!" when a table spot was imminent; the Hardy Boyz, in singles matches, would challenge main-event singles wrestlers (such as The Undertaker) in ladder matches, considered at that time to be the "signature match" of the team (as they were both high-flyers, they specialized with high spots, and doing them off the top of ladders amplified their effectiveness); while Edge and Christian developed the "con-chair-to" finishing move, which involved the two hitting an opponent's head simultaneously, on opposite sides, with chairs. Eventually, the three teams were brought together in a triangle ladder match (triple threat ladder match) at WrestleMania 2000, in what was the forerunner of the TLC in terms of the spots involved (tables were involved in some of the major spots, even though it was technically a ladder match).
The first TLC match (that was officially called a "TLC" by the World Wrestling Federation) was contested between these three teams using the weapons that they had made famous at SummerSlam 2000. These TLC matches frequently involved members of these three teams, and are largely remembered for the dangerous stunts, injuries, and length. The second TLC match occurred at WrestleMania X-Seven the following year, which also sprung the infamous Swanton bomb off of a 16 ft ladder by Jeff Hardy on Rhyno and Spike Dudley and Edge spearing Jeff Hardy from a 20 ft ladder. These matches involved the three aforementioned teams, with each having Edge and Christian winning. TLC III occurred on the May 24, 2001 edition of WWF SmackDown! when the tag team of Chris Jericho and Chris Benoit had to face the usual other three tag teams in order to retain their tag team championship, which they did.
The fourth TLC match occurred on the October 7, 2002 edition of Raw, where four tag teams had drawn, as a result of "Raw roulette" (where the match type of every match of the card was determined by spinning a wheel), a TLC match. The match saw defending champions Kane and The Hurricane putting their World Tag Team titles up against the teams of Christian and Chris Jericho, Bubba Ray Dudley and Spike Dudley, and Jeff Hardy and Rob Van Dam. Being the veterans that they were to the match itself, general manager Eric Bischoff allowed Hardy, Christian and Dudley to choose their own partners, as their former partners Matt Hardy, Edge, and D-Von Dudley who were at the Smackdown brand at that time due to being drafted early that year.
On the January 16, 2006 edition of Raw, WWE had its fifth TLC match, the first in over three years. Edge successfully defended his WWE championship against Ric Flair. It was the first TLC match to be held in singles competition and the first to have the WWE championship on the line. TLC VI was held at Unforgiven on September 17, 2006, where John Cena won the WWE championship from Edge in his first TLC match. TLC VII was held at One Night Stand on June 1, 2008, where Edge won the vacated World Heavyweight Championship, defeating The Undertaker and (kayfabe) banishing him from WWE. TLC VIII was held at SummerSlam on August 23, 2009, where CM Punk won the World Heavyweight Championship from TLC veteran Jeff Hardy. This marked the first time Jeff Hardy had participated in a singles TLC match.
The WWE's new pay-per-view event for December 2009 was titled TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs where main events were a table match, a ladder match, a match where chairs are legal as weapons and the last match on the card was a TLC match. TLC IX in the 2009 event featured Chris Jericho and The Big Show against D-Generation X (Triple H and Shawn Michaels) for the Unified WWE Tag Team Championship. This event replaced WWE Armageddon on the PPV calendar. This was the first TLC match to not feature a member from either Edge and Christian, The Hardyz or The Dudleyz.
A year later at TLC 2010, the TLC match returned and, for the first time, was a fatal four-way. The match was between Edge, Kane, Rey Mysterio and Alberto Del Rio for the World Heavyweight Championship. In the end, Edge won the match and became world heavyweight champion. This was also Edge's last TLC match because of his retirement in early April the following year.
The next year at TLC 2011, CM Punk defended his WWE championship in a first-ever triple threat TLC match against Alberto Del Rio and The Miz. Punk retained his championship, and it marked the second time that all three competitors had competed in a TLC match.
CM Punk was scheduled to defend his WWE championship against Ryback at TLC 2012 in a TLC match but suffered a knee injury on December 3. Subsequently, Vince McMahon and WWE released a press release cancelling the match and instead scheduling one featuring The Shield (Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins, and Roman Reigns) versus Ryback and Team Hell No (Kane and Daniel Bryan). This was the first TLC match decided by pinfall or submission. It was the first TLC match to contain teams of three and was the first TLC match for everyone involved except Kane. CM Punk's TLC match with Ryback would eventually happen on the January 7, 2013 edition of Raw. CM Punk would retain the title after The Shield got involved. This was the first TLC match where all the weapons would have to be retrieved from under the ring.
At TLC 2013, WWE Champion Randy Orton defeated World Heavyweight Champion John Cena in a TLC match for both the WWE and World Heavyweight titles. Orton became the first WWE World Heavyweight Champion after winning this match.
At Extreme Rules (2014), a "WeeLC match" was contested between El Torito and Hornswoggle, the first TLC match to involve midget wrestlers and only the second to be won by pinfall rather than retrieving an object from above the ring.
The seventeenth TLC Match took place on December 14, 2014 at the TLC 2014 PPV between Dean Ambrose and Bray Wyatt where Wyatt was victorious. This was also the third TLC match where victory would only occur via pinfall or submission instead of the standard type of having to climb a ladder and retrieve an object above the ring.
At TLC 2017, the twentieth TLC Match took place. It was originally the reunited Shield (Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns) taking on the team of The Miz, Braun Strowman, Kane and Cesaro and Sheamus. However, Reigns was removed from the match due to a legitimate illness. Kurt Angle replaced Reigns, thus making the match Angle's first in WWE since 2006. This was the first handicap TLC Match and the fourth not to be contested for a championship title.
On the December 10, 2018 episode of Raw (The go-home show for TLC 2018) Seth Rollins defended the Intercontinental Championship for the first time in a TLC match against Baron Corbin after the two had a heated exchange earlier on in the show.
TLC 2018 featured the first ever all women's TLC Match, as Becky Lynch defended the WWE SmackDown Women's Championship against Charlotte Flair and Asuka. Also, Braun Strowman faced Baron Corbin in a TLC Match which Strowman won, therefore he earned a WWE Universal Championship match at the Royal Rumble and Corbin was stripped of all authoritative power.
Tables, Ladders and Chairs matchesEdit
|No.||Match||Stipulations||Event||Date and Location||Length|
|1||Edge and Christian (c) defeated The Hardy Boyz (Matt Hardy and Jeff Hardy) and The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray Dudley and D-Von Dudley)||Triple Threat Tag Team TLC Match for the WWF Tag Team Championship||SummerSlam||August 27, 2000
Raleigh, North Carolina
|2||Edge and Christian defeated The Hardy Boyz (Matt Hardy and Jeff Hardy) and The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray Dudley and D-Von Dudley) (c)||Triple Threat Tag Team TLC Match for the WWF Tag Team Championship||WrestleMania X-Seven||April 1, 2001
|3||Chris Jericho and Chris Benoit (c) defeated Edge and Christian, The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray Dudley and D-Von Dudley) and The Hardy Boyz (Matt Hardy and Jeff Hardy)||Fatal 4-Way Tag Team TLC Match for the WWF Tag Team Championship||WWF SmackDown||May 24, 2001
|4||Kane (c) defeated The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray Dudley and Spike Dudley), Christian and Chris Jericho, and Jeff Hardy and Rob Van Dam||Fatal 4-Way Tag Team TLC Match for the World Tag Team Championship||WWE Raw Roulette||October 7, 2002
Las Vegas, Nevada
|5||Edge (c) defeated Ric Flair||Singles TLC Match for the WWE Championship||WWE Raw||January 16, 2006
Raleigh, North Carolina
|6||John Cena defeated Edge (c)||Singles TLC Match for the WWE Championship||Unforgiven||September 17, 2006
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
|7||Edge defeated The Undertaker||Singles TLC Match for the vacant World Heavyweight Championship||One Night Stand||June 1, 2008
San Diego, California
|8||CM Punk defeated Jeff Hardy (c)||Singles TLC Match for the World Heavyweight Championship||SummerSlam||August 23, 2009
Los Angeles, California
|9||D-Generation X (Triple H and Shawn Michaels) defeated Jeri-Show (Chris Jericho and Big Show) (c)||Tag Team TLC Match for the Unified WWE Tag Team Championship||TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs||December 13, 2009
San Antonio, Texas
|10||The Miz (c) defeated Jerry Lawler||Singles TLC Match for the WWE Championship||WWE Raw||November 29, 2010
|11||Edge defeated Kane (c), Alberto Del Rio and Rey Mysterio||Fatal 4-Way TLC Match for the World Heavyweight Championship||TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs||December 19, 2010
|12||CM Punk (c) defeated The Miz and Alberto Del Rio||Triple Threat TLC Match for the WWE Championship||TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs||December 18, 2011
|13||The Shield (Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns) defeated Team Hell No (Kane and Daniel Bryan) and Ryback||Six-Man Tag Team TLC Match||TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs||December 16, 2012
Brooklyn, New York
|14||CM Punk (c) defeated Ryback||Singles TLC Match for the WWE Championship||WWE Raw||January 7, 2013
|15||Randy Orton (c - WWE) defeated John Cena (c - World)||Champion vs. Champion TLC Match to unify the World Heavyweight & WWE Championships||TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs||December 15, 2013
|16||El Torito defeated Hornswoggle||WeeLC Match||Extreme Rules||May 4, 2014
East Rutherford, New Jersey
|17||Bray Wyatt defeated Dean Ambrose||Singles TLC Match||TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs||December 14, 2014
|18||Sheamus (c) defeated Roman Reigns||Singles TLC Match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship||TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs||December 13, 2015
|19||AJ Styles (c) defeated Dean Ambrose||Singles TLC Match for the WWE World Championship||TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs||December 4, 2016
|20||The Shield (Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins) and Kurt Angle defeated The Miz, Braun Strowman, Kane and Cesaro and Sheamus||5-on-3 Handicap TLC Match||TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs||October 22, 2017
|21||Seth Rollins (c) defeated Baron Corbin||Singles TLC Match for the WWE Intercontinental Championship||WWE Raw||December 10, 2018
San Diego, California
|22||Braun Strowman defeated Baron Corbin||Singles TLC Match||TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs||December 16, 2018
San Jose, California
|23||Asuka defeated Becky Lynch (c) and Charlotte Flair||Triple Threat TLC Match for the WWE SmackDown Women's Championship||21:45|
Usage in other promotionsEdit
Extreme Championship WrestlingEdit
In other promotions, the TLC match has quite the following, appealing to a niche market within professional wrestling. Predating the TLC matches, two "Tables and Ladders matches" took place. These were traditional matches won by pinfall or submission, not by climbing the ladder for the belts. However, the term "TLC" itself was trademarked by WWE, thus other promotions give different names to these types of matches despite having an identical setup. In more hardcore-style promotions, the chairs were often replaced, or were used alongside, chains. One example of a variation of the TLC match is the Tables, Ladders, Chairs, and Canes match. This match is a TLC match with the addition of Singapore Canes. The first and only TLC match was at Guilty as Charged on January 7, 2001 at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York, New York, involving Steve Corino, Justin Credible, and The Sandman.
Tables and Ladders/Tables, Ladders, Chairs and Canes matchesEdit
Total Nonstop Action Wrestling / Impact WrestlingEdit
TNA Wrestling used a variation of the TLC match called Full Metal Mayhem as a bout between Jeff Hardy and Abyss at Against All Odds 2005. The added stipulation to the match was that "anything metal is legal", though this only included the use of Abyss' trademark chain and bag of tacks. In reality, anything is legal; it's just that TNA provides tables, ladders, chairs and chains.
Abyss defeated Jeff Hardy by climbing the ladder to retrieve a contract for a shot at the NWA World Heavyweight Championship on a future episode of TNA Impact!. Abyss was never granted such title shot, and the story was retconned to state he lost his title shot to A.J. Styles at Lockdown, even though the shot Styles won was used at Hard Justice and not on Impact!, though Abyss would later get title shots at Slammiversary and No Surrender that year.
TNA used the "Full Metal Mayhem" match again at Sacrifice 2006 on May 14, 2006 when Abyss went one on one with Christian Cage for the NWA World Heavyweight Championship. Cage defeated Abyss to retain the championship.
It made its third appearance at Victory Road in 2008, in a 6-man tag team match featuring Christian Cage, A.J. Styles and Rhino against Kurt Angle and Team 3D, where Angle pinned Styles to win the match for his team.
TNA held the fourth "Full Metal Mayhem" match at Bound for Glory 2009, in which four tag teams (The British Invasion, Team 3D, Scott Steiner and Booker T and Beer Money, Inc.) competed for both the TNA World Tag Team Championship and the IWGP Tag Team Championship. The British Invasion grabbed the TNA World Tag Team Championships whilst Team 3D got the IWGP Tag Team Championships.
On December 5, 2010, at Final Resolution, The Motor City Machine Guns (Alex Shelley and Chris Sabin) defeated Generation Me (Max and Jeremy Buck) to successfully retain the TNA World Tag Team Championship in the fifth "Full Metal Mayhem" match.
The seventh edition of the Full Metal Mayhem match occurred on the April 11, 2013 edition of Impact Wrestling. It is the first such match not aired on pay-per-view and also the first Full Metal Mayhem match to decide the TNA World Heavyweight Championship. Jeff Hardy was challenging for Bully Ray's championship in a rematch from Lockdown (2013). Ray was victorious after sending Hardy through a table from atop the ladder and claiming the belt.
The November 7, 2013 edition of Full Metal Mayhem match was decided by "The Wheel of Dixie", a roulette that determined the match type for all participants in the qualifying tournament for TNA World Heavyweight Title. On November 7, 2013, Jeff Hardy pinned Chris Sabin to win the first round bout.
List of TNA Full Metal Mayhem matchesEdit
Lucha Libre AAA WorldwideEdit
Tables, Ladders and Chairs matchesEdit