Sunday night’s Elimination Chamber PPV was, for the most part, predictable.
Alexa Bliss retained the Raw women’s title. The Bar successfully defended their titles against Titus Worldwide. Asuka beat Nia Jax. Matt Hardy beat Bray Wyatt. Ronda Rousey did her thing. And, Roman Reigns became number one contender for the Universal Title. All in all, it was a straight-forward show for WWE.
Just because it was predictable, though, doens’t mean it was bad.
Actually, I’d say Sunday night’s show was a good one for WWE. Even though all the results weren’t surprising, the stories they told in the matches helped lay the groundwork for the next six weeks of build towards WrestleMania.
The first-ever women’s elimination chamber match delivered on multiple levels Sunday night. The women used the chamber effectively, incorporating numerous high spots throughout the match. They teased the Sasha Banks vs. Bayley feud again, which should be an excellent WrestleMania match between those two. Bliss looked great as well, getting a ton of offense before winning the match with that top-rope DDT to Banks. The promo Bliss cut afterward was also strong. It has me excited to see Bliss defend the title at WrestleMania, whether it be against Nia Jax, Asuka, or whomever it is.
Speaking of Jax and Asuka, they had an entertaining match despite knowing who was going to win. They did a really good job of selling Jax having a chance to end Asuka’s winning streak, and the crowd was into the match the entire time. Asuka winning on a roll-up was a nice way to keep Jax looking strong, making it seem Asuka “survived” against Jax. The beat down afterward was also well done, setting up a potential triple threat match for the title at WrestleMania.
For my money, the best segment of the night was the Ronda Rousey contract signing. Although Rousey’s promo skills need some work, she carried herself like a badass in the ring. Throwing Triple H through the table was an amazing moment, and it sets up a potential tag team match of Rousey and Kurt Angle vs. HHH and Stephanie McMahon. I know people are skeptical of Rousey’s first match being against Stephanie, but I’m okay with it honestly. It can bring closure to a feud started three years ago and hide any flaws Rousey’s wrestling abilities may have. It was a fun segment that got me excited about Rousey’s debut match. What else can you ask for?
Finally, the men’s elimination chamber match was a treat to watch. Seeing Braun Strowman manhandle other human beings never gets old. Him eliminating every person in the match was an excellent way to make him look strong. It also, though, led to the only true complaint I had about last night.
I understand Braun had taken a lot of punishment in the match, but for Roman Reigns to defeat him one-on-one in two minutes felt cheap. I’m in the minority when I say that I’m looking forward to Reigns vs. Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania, but having Strowman go down to the “mighty Roman Reigns” so quickly was hard to watch. I understand wanting to make Reigns look strong heading into ‘Mania. Having him pin Strowman to win the match is fine to me. But having Strowman look like this unbeatable force, only to lose two minutes later, was cheap.
Despite the end, I thought the men’s chamber match was well done. Every guy got their offense in. Nobody suffered from being in the match. The pacing was good, and the action was entertaining.
While Elimination Chamber was predictable, it was also a good show. Both statements can be true, and in this instance, they are.