WWE TLC 2017: Which Match Stole The Show?


Everybody wants to steal the show, but only Asuka and Emma can say they did it at WWE TLC 2017.

The two (somewhat) surprise main events of WWE TLC 2017 delivered big for WWE. First, AJ Styles and Finn Balor put on a masterpiece. In the other main event, Kurt Angle replaced Roman Reigns in The Shield as they wrestled 3-on-5 in a Handicap Match that was way more entertaining than it had any right to be. However, it was Emma going against the debuting Asuka that surprised as a standout match from the Raw PPV.

To be fair, this probably shouldn’t have been much of a surprise. Their match at NXT TakeOver: London might have been the best match either of them had in NXT. Unfortunately, not everybody watches NXT. Couple that with the fact that Emma has never been taken seriously on the main roster and it’s easy to see why a lot of people had low expectations.

The reason this match worked so well is because of Asuka. After vignettes on Raw have spent weeks building her up, she did not disappoint. Her entrance is more enigmatic and mesmerizing than can be expected by anybody who hasn’t seen her before. The array of colors in her hair, gear and robe attract the eye. She also wears that signature mask, which certainly stands out as well.

When the match started, the moment never seemed too big for Asuka. She did a great job of showcasing the incredible speed with which she goes from move to move. She also delivered some very strong strikes. Those are the two wrestling attributes that stick out most about Asuka. She let them shine at TLC and the crowd ate it up.

For all the talk about Emma, she totally held her own against, arguably, the best female wrestler in the world.

Now, she did not wrestle a perfect match. The first couple of exchanges featured a few slight hesitations by Emma, but she settle down and both women were able to get on the same page.

Towards the end of the match, they were able to get the crowd to buy in that Emma could beat Asuka. Then, at the end, they popped for the Asuka Lock and Asuka getting the victory.

People did criticize the match for how competitive it was. With Emma not having a lot of heat and Asuka being this debuting, dominant force, some people argued that Emma looked too good against The Empress of Tomorrow. There is validity in that argument. However, looking at it in a vacuum, the effort these two women put forward need to be acknowledged and celebrated, because they topped a surprisingly strong undercard.

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Only time will tell if Asuka will go on to be an all-time great in WWE. If she doesn’t, it will probably be due to multiple reasons. This match will not be one of those reasons. First impressions last a lifetime and Asuka made a good one on the WWE Universe.

She didn’t just win in her debut match – she stole the show.