It’s the final stop on the Road to WrestleMania!
WWE’s Elimination PPV will feature two Chamber matches. One will determine who faces Becky Lynch for the RAW Women’s Championship at WrestleMania 36 and the other has The Miz and John Morrison putting their SmackDown Tag Team titles on the line against five other teams.
I’ll be live-tweeting the event as well as running this live-blog, so follow me over at @TheMattFowler, if you’d like.
Elimination Chamber will also feature The Street Profits defend their newly-won RAW Tag Team titles against former champs Seth Rollins and
Buddy Murphy along with AJ Styles vs. Aleister Black, and Andrade vs Humberto Carrillo.
This…isn’t exactly a stacked card. Becky Lynch and Bayley aren’t defending their championships. Goldberg and Brock are nowhere to be found (naturally). Hell, Roman Reigns doesn’t even have a match. It just doesn’t feel like the PPV you’d get right before WrestleMania. Of course, that doesn’t mean the people who don’t have matches can’t show up, in some capacity, but it sure feels empty without them.
And while we’re at it, let’s also hope for cameos, run-ins, or segments from Bray Wyatt, John Cena, and The Undertaker.
Vikings Raiders vs. Curt Hawkins and Zack Ryder
Huh, so we’re not even getting a competitive match for the Kickoff bout. Okay, pre-show. Okay. I see what you’re about now. At lest this means Daniel Bryan vs Drew Gulak is definitely on the main card.
Okay, so they had Hawkins and Ryder deliver a bit more offense than they would on Monday Night RAW. Just to pad things out. Plus, it’s WrestleMania season. This is when these two underdogs shine the brightest. Ultimately though, leave it to this particular PPV, which feels very “meh” on paper (a lot like TLC did in December), to give us one of the most underwhelming pre-show contests ever.
Winners: Viking Raiders
Daniel Bryan vs. Drew Gulak
This is match fans have wanted ever since Drew got drafted to SmackDown in the fall. Hopefully it’s a feud that doesn’t end tonight. With the right tweaking, it can feed into ‘Mania! Let’s find out…
Post-Fiend, it’s the perfect time to reboot Bryan and even him out with Gulak, who wouldn’t be on Bryan’s kayfabe level normally. We got a got a rare catch-as-catch-can clinic here as Gulak got elevated up to a tier where he could go toe-to-toe with Bryan, even staying a few steps ahead of him. Bryan’s neck injury also came into play since Gulak is all about exploiting his opponent’s weakness. In many ways, this match felt more vital and dangerous than Bryan’s PPV main event matches with The Fiend.
As a match that got added last minute, this is already the sleeper hit of the PPV. And Gulak passed out in the Yes-Lock. He never tapped. This one’s not over! What a fun way to start a show where the main draw is a giant cage of gimmickry.
Winner: Daniel Bryan
United States Champion Andrade vs. Humberto Carrillo
Two stellar singles matches to start the show – whadya know!
In the case of Andrade and Carrillo, it’s two guys delivering a version of a match we’ve seen them have many times. Granted, it’s still a very good match, but this has to be the tenth time we’ve seen these guys clash and Carrillo come up short. Still, these two have abnormally-great chemistry. Carrillo seemed on the cusp of capturing the gold here, especially with Andrade just coming off a 30-day suspension, but they’re keeping the belt on Andrade a little while longer as the champ retained thanks to the hook of the tights here. No Angel Garza interference here, just Andrade eking out a solid heel win.
Winner, and STILL United States Champion: Andrade
SmackDown Tag Team Championship Elimination Chamber Match
Raw Tag Team Champions The Street Profits vs. Seth Rollins & Murphy
Aleister Black vs. AJ Styles (No Disqualification Match)
Intercontinental Champion Braun Strowman vs. Shinsuke Nakamura, Cesaro & Sami Zayn
Women’s Elimination Chamber Match: Shayna Baszler, Asuka, Natalya, Liv Morgan, Ruby Riott and Sarah Logan