This Sunday’s Elimination Chamber pay per view is sure to have some major repercussions for WrestleMania XXVI next month. I’m still not thrilled with the idea of having each brand’s world champion defending the title on pay per view just weeks before Mania (especially since there’s a strong possibility that at least one of the titles will change hands.) I’d prefer if the pay per view was built around one Chamber match that would decide the challenger to whatever world champion was not facing the Royal Rumble winner.
Nevertheless, the Chamber is always good for some thrills, and I like that the pay per view only has four announced matches – allowing plenty of time for each of the Chamber matches, even if another match is added to the show at the last minute.
Here are preview and my predictions:
Elimination Chamber for the WWE Championship: Sheamus © vs. Triple-H vs. John Cena vs. Ted Dibiase vs. Kofi Kingston vs. Randy Orton
There are definitely some heavy hitters in this one, and the potential for several Mania storylines to be advanced. We should see Orton and Dibiase mix it up, building to a singles match at Mania or perhaps a triple threat with Cody Rhodes. We may see Batista or Vince McMahon somehow get involved to screw over Cena. But I think the focus of this match will be building Sheamus as Raw’s number one heel, and Triple-H as his top contender. As such, I’d expect the two men to be the last remaining in the Chamber, and for Sheamus to do something particularly vicious to get the win. I wouldn’t be surprised to see this one end in Triple-H doing a stretcher job to set up their rumored WrestleMania bout.
Elimination Chamber for the World Heavyweight Championship: The Undertaker © vs. Ret Mysterio vs. John Morrison vs. Chris Jericho vs. C.M. Punk vs. R-Truth
This is clearly the less start studded of the two Chamber matches, but also the one I expect to be more newsworthy. There is some speculation that Shawn Michaels will somehow eek his way into this match, perhaps replacing an injured Morrison or R-Truth. That would give Michaels an opportunity to mix it up with Taker, perhaps pinning him to eliminate the Dead Man from the match. Also possible is that Michaels will somehow interfere in the match – perhaps hiding under the ring. Whatever the case, it’s a good bet that Michaels will somehow cost Taker his title in the match. I’d expect Jericho to go on and win the title – perhaps last eliminating Mysterio. That would set up the expected Edge vs. Jericho match for the World Heavyweight Championship at Mania. The best scenario of all would be that my favorite guilty pleasure, R-Truth, outright eliminates everyone in the match, wins the belt and goes on to headline WrestleMania. That would get a huge pop in my living room.
Intercontinental Championship Match: Drew McEntyre © vs. Kane
This match is on the card largely to give the audience a chance to catch its breath between the two big chamber matches. These two have shown little chemistry thus far, and so I don’t expect much out of them. Drew retains with a clean win.
Women’s Championship Tournament Final: Marysse vs. Gail Kim
I like how WWE has given this tournament plenty of time to play out, rather than rush through it in a single night. It’s helped to elevate the prestige of the women’s title. I’m a big fan of Marysse, who I think has the potential to be a main event heel persona, possibly as a valet. Kim lost all the momentum she brought with her from being TNA’s top ratings draw for a while in 2008. This may be the night WWE finally pulls the trigger on Kim’s push, so I’d expect her to win this one.