TJRWrestling WWE Elimination Chamber 2023 Preview

wwe elimination chamber 2023 preview main

It’s time for WWE Elimination Chamber with Roman Reigns facing Sami Zayn in his hometown, two Chamber matches and a lot more!

John: I am looking forward to the show mainly for the Roman Reigns-Sami Zayn match thanks to the nine months of building leading to The Bloodline breaking up with Zayn, so to speak. The fact that this show is in Montreal, which is the hometown of Zayn (and Kevin Owens) means it will be one of the loudest crowds of the year. The match result for Reigns-Zayn likely won’t surprise us, but I think the way the fans react to everything is going to tell an incredible story.

There is some predictability on the card, but the Royal Rumble was more predictable. It doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a bad thing anyway. I think the quality of the matches will be strong and everything should get plenty of time other than the Lesnar-Lashley match since Brock usually has shorter matches these days.

Something that I don’t like about the card is that it’s Raw heavy. I feel bad for the Smackdown talent because it’s mostly a Raw show. The Men’s Elimination Chamber, Lesnar/Lashley, mixed tag match and half of the women’s Elimination Chamber match are Raw wrestlers. Smackdown only has Reigns/Zayn and three of the women in the Elimination Chamber match. That’s five Smackdown wrestlers on the whole card.

Joining me for the preview are TJRWrestling writers Joel McIntyre, Matthew Fowler, Lyle Kilbane, Alex Podgorski, Kelly Dishnow, Marc Madison and Kristian Thompson. Here’s Marc with some French since it’s a Montreal show.

Marc: Le samedi 18 février, la WWE présente l’Elimination Chamber de Montréal, Québec au Canada. Pendant que vous lisez, il s’agit d’une traduction google directe de ce qui a été écrit en anglais déplacé vers le français. Alors même si je pourrais vous éblouir avec ma connaissance de la poutine et des sandwichs à la viande fumée, on parlerait plutôt d’hommes et de femmes qui cherchent à se brutaliser à plusieurs reprises.

Bien que l’émission ne comporte que cinq matchs, elle durera probablement moins de trois heures et divertira une foule canadienne-française très chaude. Comme Sami Zayn l’a dit dans ses publicités promotionnelles, dans n’importe quelle langue, cet événement va être BRUTAL.

wwe elimination chamber 2023 women

Women’s Elimination Chamber Match: Asuka vs. Raquel Rodriguez vs. Liv Morgan vs. Nikki Cross vs. Natalya vs. Carmella

The winner of this match earns a Raw Women’s Championship Match against Bianca Belair at WrestleMania 39.

Joel: I like all the participants in this match. I’ve really enjoyed the new aggressiveness of Liv Morgan and I am glad Carmella is back after everything she went through last year. That being said, the rebirth that Asuka has gone through over the last three weeks has been one of my favorite things on Raw. Out of all the participants, she makes the most sense. I think an Asuka and Bianca Belair match could steal the show at WrestleMania.

Wrestler That Lasts The Longest: Liv Morgan

Most Eliminations: Asuka

Final Two: Asuka and Liv Morgan

Winner: Asuka

Matthew: Many wrestling fans thought that when Rhea Ripley won the Women’s Royal Rumble Match, that she would challenge Bianca Belair for the Raw Women’s Championship at WrestleMania 39. When Ripley choose to challenge Charlotte instead however, Belair was seemingly left without a challenger for the biggest event of the year. The winner of this match will now get that opportunity, with none of them feeling like the obvious choice to face Belair. Obviously, someone needs to win this, and I will go with the newly packaged Asuka to win the match and go on to Mania.

Wrestler That Lasts The Longest: Raquel Rodriquez

Most Eliminations: Raquel Rodriquez

Final Two: Asuka and Liv Morgan


Lyle: An interesting mix of stars could throw up more stories for the future than just who faces Bianca Belair at WrestleMania. The reborn Asuka looks like she’s on the rocket ship – especially following the reaction to her face paint at the Royal Rumble – to WrestleMania but it could be a star making night for several others in this match.

Raquel Rodriguez is clearly someone that WWE management is high on and her imposing presence means she is a threat in what is often a chaotic match. Liv Morgan stands a chance to put herself in the Raw Women’s Title picture and a switch to the red brand could rejuvenate the popular star following her run as SmackDown Women’s Champion in 2022.

Carmella and Nikki Cross are two stars looking to relaunch themselves as credible threats following absences and character changes while Natalya, as the WWE veteran, should provide a steady hand to keep the bout on track.

Wrestler That Lasts The Longest: Raquel Rodriguez

Most Eliminations: Asuka

Final Two: Asuka & Raquel Rodriguez

Winner: Asuka

Alex: WWE is going full steam ahead with making Belair into some kind of historic women’s champion. To continue that plan, she needs a bigtime opponent for WrestleMania. Unfortunately, based on this line-up, I can only think of one or maybe two women that fit that bill.

Carmella lacks credibility and I think she’s just in here to round out the numbers so she’s not winning.

Nikki Cross still hasn’t washed off the stink of being Nikki A.S.H. and, like Carmella, lacks credibility.

Liv Morgan is a maybe, but her experiment appears to have failed. If the company still had faith in her, she’d still be SmackDown Women’s Champion and not be in this match in the first place.

Natalya is the eternal bridesmaid. She always seems to get into these big matches but never wins them. Even though this match is happening in Canada, there’s no way she’s winning. There has been no indication that WWE will ever give her a proper singles run, especially not now with Triple H’s personal pet project running the women’s division on RAW.

That leaves Asuka and Raquel, and this could go either way. Asuka would be the safe bet because she’s more experienced, more successful, and more talented. She can pull off a much better match out of Belair than Raquel. But Raquel is bigger, stronger, and more imposing. If WWE wanted to build up a monster that actually poses a threat to Belair, then here and now would be the place to do so. And just for the hell of it, I’m going with that wilder choice. WWE can save the competitiveness and length for the men’s EC match. Let Rodriquez run wild, demolish everyone in front of her, and turn into the kind of monster that Belair has yet to face as champion.

Wrestler That Lasts The Longest: Raquel Rodriguez

Most Eliminations: Raquel Rodriguez (4 or 5)

Final Two: Asuka & Raquel Rodriguez

Winner: Raquel Rodriguez

Kelly: This one is almost a no brainer. Since her Kana personality is back, there is literally no reason for Asuka to lose this match. I can see this run with the darker character as a way to right the wrongs done to Asuka. The first wrong to be righted will be winning a title at WrestleMania. There are several people in here with Chamber experience, so it’ll be a really good match. I would not be surprised if this was the opener.

Wrestler That Lasts The Longest: Liv Morgan

Most Eliminations: Asuka

Final Two: Asuka and Liv Morgan

Winner: Asuka

Marc: Several interesting names are part of this match, and it’s intriguing to see what could come about. First, fans have the returning Carmella who (I have a soft spot for considering an ectopic pregnancy could kill someone), and just having her back and competing is something anyone with a heart should want to see. But we’re all he-man-woman haters (Little Rascals reference) and only want to see blood and guts. Not exactly.

We’ve seen Liv Morgan compete with more confidence than she had when she was the champion, Nikki Cross resume that unhinged persona that was so popular with fans, and a new aesthetic to Asuka that is what fans are excited at having since her days as Kanna. But we have Raquel Rodriguez, who has the biggest chance to make a stamp in this match. After considering what she did in her title match against Ronda Rousey, it is exciting to think of what she could do in this type of match.

Wrestler That Lasts The Longest: Raquel Rodriguez

Most Eliminations: Raquel Rodriguez

Final Two: Raquel Rodriguez and Asuka

Winner: Asuka

Kristian: Since Rhea Ripley (from Raw) chose to face SmackDown Women’s Champion, Charlotte, at WrestleMania, here we have Raw and SmackDown women vying for the right to face Bianca Belair. Whilst I was hoping for Belair vs Ripley at WrestleMania, WWE has opted for a possible redemption story for Ripley against Flair, and at the same time keeping us guessing on who will face Belair. It’s really easy to rule out most of the competitors in this match. Cross, Natalya and Carmella aren’t going to featured in a big match so they’re just making up the numbers. Raquel was given a chance and impressed against Rousey. Liv vs Belair is a fresh match up and I personally thought Liv did a very good job as SmackDown Champion. Then you have the returning Asuka. All of these women are currently faces so unless there’s a turn it will be a face vs face match up. That worked for Ripley vs Asuka two years ago and I think it can work here, if that’s the path they choose. It’s down to those three women for me, but I think Asuka gets the nod because she’s the biggest name and that’s the match I’d prefer.

Wrestler That Lasts The Longest: Liv Morgan

Most Eliminations: Raquel Rodriguez

Final Two: Liv vs Asuka

Winner: Asuka

John: This one feels pretty obvious to me in terms of Asuka coming in as the favorite to win and the most popular pick to win. The challenger against Bianca Belair is likely going to go into the match looking very strong. That’s why I think Asuka winning makes a lot of sense since we know Triple H tends to book her in a dominant way just like he did when she was in NXT. This past Monday on Raw, Asuka dominated everybody there too. I don’t think that is going to hurt Asuka’s chances in this match. Asuka has been my pick since the match was announced.

I’m picking Raquel Rodriguez to be the wrestler in the match that starts it off perhaps with Liv Morgan and Raquel will last until the end. I think Raquel is going to be in the ring for over 30 minutes, put up a tremendous performance and end up losing to Asuka in the end.

I like and respect Natalya, Nikki Cross, Carmella and Liv Morgan as veterans that are former champions. I think Natalya could do very well among that group just because she’s so experienced and can help carry the match. As others alluded to above, it’s good to see Carmella back in the ring after the personal ordeal she went through last year. None of the women I just mentioned here really stand out as potential winners to me. I’m going with my Asuka pick.

Wrestler That Lasts The Longest: Raquel Rodriguez

Most Eliminations: Raquel Rodriguez (with 3)

Final Two: Asuka vs. Raquel Rodriguez

Winner: Asuka

wwe elimination chamber 2023 edge beth phoenix finn balor rhea ripley

Edge & Beth Phoenix vs. Finn Balor & Rhea Ripley

Joel: Rhea Ripley won the Royal Rumble so that makes booking this match a little tricky. I’ve enjoyed most of this feud but feel like it needs to end. I do think it is going to continue until WrestleMania. The best way for that to happen is for Edge and Beth Phoenix to get the win here, setting up a final Edge and Finn Balor match at WrestleMania. Rhea should not and probably will not take a pin here.

Winners: Edge and Beth Phoenix

Matthew: Edge and The Judgement Day have been feuding for seemingly forever, with this match seeming like a blow off before everyone involved does something new for Mania. With the show being in Canada, obviously Edge and Beth Phoenix will have the home field advantage for this match. With Sami Zayn likely losing to end the show, I feel that Edge and Beth will win here to give the crowd some happiness and excitement. I expect Balor to take the pin, with Ripley staying strong for her match with Charlotte.

Winner: Edge & Beth Phoenix

Lyle: If this was at any other time of year, it would be hard to look past the WWE Hall of Fame pairing of Edge and Beth Phoenix but given Rhea Ripley’s role at WrestleMania 39 coming ever closer, The Judgment Day pair could pull off a huge win.

Ripley will face Charlotte Flair at WrestleMania 39 and the sight of her pinning Beth Phoenix could build belief that Ripley is set to avenge her loss to The Queen from WrestleMania 36.

Whichever team wins, Rhea Ripley won’t be seen losing so it could be a tough night for Finn Balor, who already owns a huge win over Edge from Extreme Rules.

Winners: Edge & Beth Phoenix

Alex: This match looks like it should be saved for WrestleMania but it’s happening a month early, which is strange. There has been heat for this match and the story has been easy to follow. And yet, I’m just not that into it. It’s a bit too predictable because I’m almost certain Edge and Beth will win to get their revenge here. I wish WWE would take more risks with some surprise angles, injury storylines, or something else to give midcard feuds like this one a fresh coat of paint. Instead, this’ll be a good match, but I don’t think it’ll be anything great.

The only surprise that I can think of that could happen is Dominick somehow getting involved to save Rhea from getting pinned. There’s something to his relationship with Rhea that fans like and it still has plenty of steam. This’ll probably go around 15 minutes and will have some sort of screwy finish courtesy of Dominick that’ll allow Balor & Ripley to walk out victorious.

Winners: Finn Balor & Rhea Ripley

Kelly: This will be a tough one to call. The Edge/Balor feud is going to get heated back up for their rumored Hell In A Cell WrestleMania match while Ripley is on her way to becoming the first ever singles grand slam champion at WrestleMania. They are in Canada and Edge is Canadian. There isn’t much left for the Edge/Judgment Day feud, so I expect this to be one of the wind down matches. I’ll have to give the edge here to Edge and Beth. Edge will likely pin Balor to set up the justification for their WrestleMania match.

Winners: Edge and Beth Phoenix

Marc: This has been a long time coming, but it has finally come to be. While it would have been preferred that we had also had Rey Mysterio and Dominik Mysterio also involved in this match, we will settle for these four to battle against each other. Fans know full well what happened last Summer at the hands of Rhea Ripley against Beth Phoenix and who she hit her with a one-woman concerto while Edge was restrained and forced to watch.

With Rhea a month away from her Smackdown Women’s Championship match against Charlotte Flair, to expect anything less than a statement match would be a disappointment. If there was always one thing Edge wanted to do, pay it forward to a younger generation. But what if someone that all this initially all began with plays a part in this match and helps the Grit Couple?

AJ Styles has as much to prove against Finn Balor as Edge does. Wouldn’t it be so fitting that the one guy Edge looked to take out in his formation of the Judgment Day is the same one that comes to support him in destroying them? But while Styles and Balor may come to blows in this match, Rhea Ripley will lead her team to victory.

Winners: Finn Balor and Rhea Ripley

Kristian: This has been fun to watch over the last couple of weeks, even though again it’s an obvious angle. Sometimes it’s good to just play the easy storylines out as they work well. You could make a case for either side winning here. Edge hasn’t had much revenge on his former allies, but Ripley is going into another huge WrestleMania match against Charlotte. She needs the momentum so I think Balor and Ripley win, but then Edge gets his revenge over Balor in singles action at Mania.

Winners: Ripley and Balor (Ripley pins Phoenix)

John: It’s an extremely long storyline (that’s not a bad thing) with Edge & Phoenix back three weeks ago at the Royal Rumble to try to get some revenge. This match has been teased for a long time since Ripley did the Conchairto to Phoenix at Extreme Rules in October. It makes a lot of sense for the babyface husband/wife team of Edge/Beth to get the win likely with Edge pinning Balor. I doubt the Royal Rumble winner Ripley is going to get pinned before her WrestleMania 39 match. If Ripley pins Phoenix then that’s fine with me too. I don’t know if they will go with Edge vs. Balor in singles again at WrestleMania or something else. It should be a good match that is well booked.

Winners: Edge & Beth Phoenix

wwe elimination chamber 2023 bobby lashley brock lesnar

Bobby Lashley vs. Brock Lesnar

Joel: These two are going to put on another stellar match. I have enjoyed both of their previous meetings and figured they’d hold off the final match until WrestleMania. I think this match will be good as usual for these two. I think Brock will probably be in line for a major match at WrestleMania so I think he gets the win here. It’ll probably lead to Bobby reforming The Hurt Business, which I am all ready for.

Winner: Brock Lesnar

Matthew: This is yet another match where both guys have had a long running feud, with it seeming that this will likely be the blow off match. WWE has been teasing the reformation of Lashley’s Hurt Business faction, with this seeming like the perfect time to pull the trigger. I expect Lashley to turn full heel here, while getting an assist from his old friends to get the win.

Winner: Bobby Lashley

Lyle: It’s not often that a Brock Lesnar match feels like an afterthought on a WWE event, but that’s exactly what this is. A rubber match between the two huge stars should see Brock Lesnar pick up the win, possibly ending the feud before WrestleMania.

Should Bobby Lashley walk away with a victory then it’ll likely be down to help from a reformed Hurt Business in the form of MVP, Shelton Benjamin, and Cedric Alexander. Neither of these former WWE Champions has a clear path to WrestleMania so a big win could jumpstart something for either man.

Winner: Brock Lesnar

Alex: The fact that this match is happening here gives me hope that Lesnar will be free to wrestle GUNTHER at WrestleMania, which is one of the big matches I’ve been hoping for. But to get there, he’ll have to make it through Lashley, which won’t be easy. This’ll be an eight-minute hoss-fest with lots of big throws, suplexes, and slams. I think we’ll see Lesnar counter the Hurt Lock into an F-5 to get the win after a compact but competitive match. I wouldn’t be surprised if this opens the show because it’ll be so explosive and intense. These two guys are great as monsters so this should be fun.

Winner: Brock Lesnar

Kelly: The setup for this match has been decent but there really isn’t anything on the line here but who is the better man. This time we should get a relativity clean match for the rubber match. I wish I could be more excited than ho-hum about this one.

Winner: Brock Lesnar

Marc: We have seen Brock Lesnar get the better of Bobby Lashley on a few separate occasions. But we have also seen Lashley look to embarrass Lesnar too. So with both men looking to get the better of the other, who walks away on top? We had Lesnar dominate Lashley, and Lashley sneaked out a victory against Lesnar.

We have seen Lashley dominate Lesnar, only for Lesnar to sneak out a victory against Lashley. Of their three matches, this needs to be the one where these two hit each other with everything and anything. We need to see Lashley kick out of an F5 and Lesnar fight out of a Hurt Lock. With WrestleMania around the corner, the question is, will nothing be solved here, leading to a multi-fall bout at the showcase of the immortals? I don’t think it ends here, but rather the entire match ends in a no-contest, with no one walking out as the winner.

Winner/Match Result: No Contest

Kristian: I’m pleased there’s another match between these two as I don’t think the first two hit the heights that I was hoping for. Lesnar has returned and dominated the feud again, which I’m getting pretty bored at by now (even though Lashley dumped him out at the Rumble). Continuous weeks of F5s might pop the crowd, but doesn’t make Lashley look great. I’m hoping for a Lashley win, but am doubtful.

Winner: Brock Lesnar

John: They are two of my favorites in WWE. It’s amazing how even in their mid-40s, these guys are still in amazing shape and both of them look younger than they are. I’m sure these two COULD have a very compelling 15-20 minute match that would be amazing, but I think 5-10 minutes seems more likely. That’s more of the style they like to be a part of these days as we saw in their last match at Crown Jewel.

Bobby Lashley has been a bit heelish in the build to this match with the cheap attack that took place last week on Raw during the contract signing. Maybe he embraces his former Hurt Business buddies and the group gets back together. While I think that could happen coming out of this match, I think Lesnar winning clean makes a lot of sense. I know there are rumors about GUNTHER’s WrestleMania opponent, but I keep thinking about the GUNTHER-Lesnar showdown in the Royal Rumble that the fans loved. I think Lesnar should win this match to set up the GUNTHER match at WrestleMania. I’ll go Brock to win in about eight minutes here.

Winner: Brock Lesnar

wwe elimination chamber 2023 us title

US Championship Elimination Chamber Match: Austin Theory (c) vs. Johnny Gargano vs. Seth “Freakin” Rollins vs. Bronson Reed vs. Damian Priest vs. Montez Ford

Joel: This is one that I am really looking forward to. So many talents like Montez Ford, Bronson Reed, Johnny Gargano all getting time to shine on the big stage here. Austin Theory has been a good United States Champion so far and a pretty good heel on top of that. I can easily see him winning and going on to defend against John Cena at WrestleMania. I could also see Seth Rollins winning the title back and defending it against Logan Paul at WrestleMania. I’m going to go with Montez Ford here, just to be unconventional.

Wrestler That Lasts The Longest: Johnny Gargano

Most Eliminations: Bronson Reed

Final Two: Montez Ford and Austin Theory

Winner AND NEW US CHAMPION: Montez Ford

Matthew: WWE has done a great job of rehabilitating Austin Theory, after completely botching his MITB cash in. Theory losing the US Championship a little over a month before WrestleMania would completely undo all that hard work. I expect Theory to continue his winning ways here, and somehow find a way to leave the chamber with the title.

Wrestler That Lasts The Longest: Seth Rollins

Most Eliminations: Seth Rollins

Final Two: Austin Theory and Seth Rollins

Winner: Austin Theory

Lyle: It’s 21 years after the first Elimination Chamber match in WWE history and the United States Title will be defended inside the structure for the very first time.

Austin Theory and Seth Rollins remain the two favourites to win this bout and walk away with the title but, as with so much else on this show, WrestleMania considerations remain at the forefront. Reports suggest that Theory could face John Cena in Los Angeles, and it’s hard to imagine that Cena would lose that match – but given his own history with the US Title, maybe Cena has one more title reign in him, even if only for a night.

What’s Seth Rollins doing at Mania? For the second year in a row, it appears very uncertain at this time, a big US Title defence could guarantee him a slot on the card.

Johnny Gargano will need to be at his technical best to stand out in this match while a big beefy showdown between Bronson Reed and Damian Priest seems inevitable. Montez Ford is given a chance to stand out on his own, and will almost definitely dive off a pod with possibly the highest frog splash ever – with apologies to RVD.

Wrestler That Lasts The Longest: Austin Theory

Most Eliminations: Damian Priest

Final Two: Austin Theory & Seth Rollins

Winner: Austin Theory

Alex: It’s all but officially confirmed that Austin Theory will be wrestling John Cena at WrestleMania 39. That feud doesn’t need the US title so neither does Theory, which means he’s not walking out of EC as champion. The question then becomes, who does the title fall to? Let’s play the elimination game with the other five participants to find out.

I don’t see Montez Ford as US Champion. Sorry, he’s still just a tag team guy to me and I don’t see him beating someone like Rollins or Bronson if it came down to the two of them.

If the Judgment Day guys were booked more strongly and had big wins over bigger stars, then I’d say that Priest has a chance. But since neither he nor his stable have done anything truly exceptional, I don’t expect his fortunes to change here.

Johnny Gargano is in this match to do flips, stunts, and otherwise make everyone else look good. I’d be shocked if he pins a single person.

That leaves Bronson and Rollins. And judging by his recent comments, it sounds like Rollins will be feuding with Logan Paul going into WrestleMania. If that feud does happen, it too doesn’t need the US title. Thus, by process of elimination, we’re left with one man.

Wrestler That Lasts The Longest: Bronson Reed

Most Eliminations: Bronson Reed (3)

Final Two: Seth Rollins & Bronson Reed

Winner AND NEW US Champion: Bronson Reed

Kelly: This should be a really good match. There is quite a bit of talent in this match. I expect this to be a showcase for Montez Ford and Bronson Reed. Ford has singles gold in his future, but I don’t think it will be here. This could be a really good test run to see how well he could do as a singles star. Reed is back and another up and comer who’s ready to come. Theory has a rumored WrestleMania date with John Cena, and the US Title would be unnecessary for that match. I think this Chamber match is going to be all about making new stars. It should make two new ones.

Wrestler That Lasts The Longest: Montez Ford

Most Eliminations: Bronson Reed

Final Two: Montez Ford and Bronson Reed

Winner: Bronson Reed

Marc: Unlike the Women’s Elimination Chamber match, this one has a unique combination of names that you likely didn’t see being a part of the match. With that said, the inclusion of the likes of Montez Ford and Johnny Gargano. Ford is a dark horse that fans will need to keep their eye on. We have seen the heights that he can leap, and in this match, he is more than capable of doing in this type of structure.

The blend of strength in Reed and Priest with speed in Gargano and Ford with the technical prowess of Theory and Rollins that the mix of all of these competitors has the promise of one being one of the best chamber matches the promotion has ever put together. The sheer versatility of those involved will prove to mean everything.

But this match is. Theory’s to lose and to see him come out on top would secure his place on the card and as the United States Champion.

Wrestler That Lasts The Longest: Montez Ford

Most Eliminations: Bronson Reed

Final Two: Austin Theory and Seth’ Freakin’ Rollins

Winner: Austin Theory

Kristian: I feel this Chamber match is far more open than the women’s one. That’s a good thing. There are rumours of Theory facing John Cena at WrestleMania. He doesn’t need the championship for that match, so I can see him losing here. I don’t necessarily think that will happen though. Management seems really high on him, so they might like to establish a long title reign here. I’m also fine with that. I can see Ford doing something insane off the top of the chamber, much to the adulation of the crowd. I think there will be bigger plans for Seth Rollins at Mania (no disrespect to the title), Reed is too new, Ford is still a tag wrestler and Priest has had a run. So that leaves Gargano and Theory. I could see Gargano winning the title, as he has some backing from the crowd. No one really stands out though, so I’ll pick Theory to emerge with title in hand.

Wrestler That Lasts The Longest: Johnny Gargano

Most Eliminations: Damian Priest

Final Two: Rollins and Theory

Winner: Austin Theory

John: This should be a good match featuring a lot of talented people with different skillsets. Bronson Reed is the power guy, Johnny Gargano is the smaller guy that looks impressive about everybody, Seth Rollins has the most credibility after a decade of success, Montez Ford is a bit of an underdog as a tag team wrestler that’s an incredible athlete, Damian Priest is well-rounded with a lot of power and then you’ve got the cocky champion Austin Theory that the fans want to see without the US Title.

I think it’s wide open for the most part with my lean being toward the champion retaining. A lot of these guys are Triple H favorites from their NXT days like Gargano, Reed and Priest along with Theory himself, so maybe Triple H thinks that a guy like Gargano or Reed would be elevated by a win here. I doubt Rollins wins. It wouldn’t surprise me if they flew Logan Paul to the show to distract Rollins since that’s going to be a WrestleMania match. I’m going with Theory beating his former NXT mentor Gargano for the win. It should be an outstanding match.

As for WrestleMania, I think what will happen is Theory will do US Title open challenges for a few weeks on Raw and he’ll beat those opponents. After three weeks of that, John Cena either shows up in the building to confront Theory or do it via video message. Cena can say he had a lot of pride as US Champion doing open challenges while Theory just does it to mock him, so Cena will accept the open challenge for a match…at WrestleMania. That’s how it gets set up.

Wrestler That Lasts The Longest: Seth “Freakin” Rollins

Most Eliminations: Seth “Freakin” Rollins and Austin Theory (two each)

Final Two: Austin Theory and Johnny Gargano

Winner: Austin Theory

Undisputed WWE Universal Championship: Roman Reigns (c) vs. Sami Zayn

Joel: There’s not much I can say that hasn’t already been said. The Bloodline story is the best told story in years in the world of professional wrestling. Unlike what a lot of people have been saying online, I do not think an audible should be called.

The story from day one has always been Sami Zayn and Jey Uso. Roman Reigns has always been the common denominator in that story but it has always been about Jey and Sami. I think that continues here as I think Jey Uso finally makes his choice and screws Sami Zayn, helping Roman Reigns retain his Undisputed Championship. I wouldn’t rule out a return from Kevin Owens here either.

Winner: Roman Reigns

Matthew: We get to the match that has had the best build for any wrestling match in the last ten years. Sami Zayn has been the hottest act in the WWE for months, with comparisons to Daniel Bryan’s “Yes Movement” being made. Making this match even more interesting is that it is taking place in Zayn’s hometown, with the crowd likely being loud and enthusiastic for Zayn. So, will WWE pull the trigger here, and have Zayn get the win here? I highly doubt it. I expect Jey Uso to appear here, and prove his loyalty to The Bloodline by costing Zayn the win. The Bloodline will then likely attempt to beat down Zayn, with Kevin Owens coming out to save his old friend. Owens and Zayn can then go on to face The Uso’s at Mania, while Reigns moves his focus to Cody Rhodes.

Winner: Roman Reigns

Lyle: This match legitimately could have Rock/Hogan levels of heat and crowd noise as the hometown hero Sami Zayn fights against all odds against The Tribal Chief.

While some would have settled this story at WrestleMania, WWE has stuck to its guns and appears intent on Reigns defending his gold against Cody Rhodes on The Grandest Stage of Them All.

To avoid a riot or the crowd littering the ring with all manner of foreign objects, Zayn needs to stand as the hero when all is said and done but that doesn’t mean he will do so with the Undisputed WWE Universal Title.

The Usos are seemingly cleared to be in Canada and the prevailing belief is that the seemingly unsure Jey Uso will make up his mind and turn his back on Zayn, costing him the match. Enter Kevin Owens, with his own score to settle with The Bloodline following the vicious beating they gave him at the Royal Rumble. Expect Owens and Zayn to stand tall in front of their adoring public and the focus to shift for them from Reigns on to The Usos and the WWE Tag Team Championship.

Winner: Roman Reigns

Alex: This is the big one, the match we’re all waiting for. Zayn is probably going to receive a Hogan-level pop in front of his home crowd. He will have the fight of his life against Reigns and he’ll take these fans on one hell of a journey. But let’s be real here, Roman Reigns isn’t losing here. However, that isn’t the same as Zayn winning. Given the circumstances around this storyline, there are actually several different outcomes that could happen and most of them could make sense. We have a rare situation on our hands when the result of a big match isn’t too predictable and (almost) anything could happen. In keeping with that spirit, I’m proposing a bunch of different outcomes for this match, just to give you, dear readers, some extra thought going into this PLE:

  • Reigns wins clean after Zayn fends off both Usos and Solo Sikoa
  • Reigns wins after a Jey reunites with his family
  • Reigns wins after Kevin Owens turns on Zayn for letting him get destroyed at the Royal Rumble (“how could you let that happen to me? You’re supposed to be my friend!”)
  • Double Count-out (Dusty Finish) as both Reigns and Zayn can’t answer the count of ten because they hurt each other too much
  • Like at the Royal Rumble, Zayn gets a visual three-count but the ref gets knocked out and the process of waking him up lets Reigns recover and steal the win
  • Reigns wins via Montreal Screwjob 2023, because it’s Montreal
  • Zayn gets an actual three-count and wins for sixty seconds, only for the ref to then realize that Reigns had his hand/foot on the ropes and therefore restarts the match and then Reigns wins

I’m going with that last one because it’s the one that’ll generate the most heat for Reigns ahead of WrestleMania. Just imagine it: the most unlikely of underdog beats the handpicked chosen one “clean” and gets his big moment in front of his friends, family, and hometown fans, only for it to be ripped away from him a minute later. Fans will want to see Reigns beat more than ever, especially now that it’s proven that Reigns COULD be beaten.

Winner and STILL Undisputed WWE Universal Champion: Roman Reigns

Kelly: This is the only match with the predictable winner to it. As much as we all want it to happen, Sami Zayn will NOT beat Roman Reigns. Zayn is on the run of his life, and I cannot see any scenario where he takes the title off Roman heading into WrestleMania. Jey Uso will prove his allegiance to The Bloodline and cost Zayn the match. KO will save Zayn from the Usos after the match to set up their Tag Team Championship match for WrestleMania where they will dethrone the Usos and hopefully split the tag titles up shortly thereafter.

Winner: Roman Reigns

Marc: Before we share about what to expect from this match, it’s equally to note WHO to expect to be a part of this match. As stated previously on TJR, the Usos are likely to appear in Montreal. With previous legal issues preventing Jimmy Uso from leaving the US; it appears that won’t be the case as it applies to this match.

We have seen the apparent solidarity between Sami Zayn and Jey Uso. But one prediction that seems to be apparent is that a turn is still very much a possibility here, with Jey costing Sami’s chance at the title. One thing that seemed odd was Sami getting a pep talk from Cody Rhodes leading into this match this past Monday.

He didn’t need to get one, so giving one didn’t make sense for what Sami had been doing by himself. He WAS his own island of relevancy. So to have Rhodes say to finish his story and Sami nod in agreement made him sound less confident and appear like an underdog.

As we are also in Montreal, the one other Quebec native that we haven’t seen since Royal Rumble is Kevin Owens, so to have him play a part in this match would also be fitting. But the book closes on this night for Sami. What it does is opens a reunion of friends in Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn in time for WrestleMania. What is next for these two? We’ll see soon enough.

Winner: AND STILL WWE Universal Champion, Roman Reigns

Kristian: The best storyline in recent memory will come to somewhat of a halt in Montreal. We know Sami isn’t going to win the title, so it’s all about how it plays out. My thoughts are, like many on this site have said since before Survivor Series, Jey Uso is torn between Sami and Roman, and finally turns on Sami. This will lead to Sami & KO vs the Usos at WrestleMania, where they can both get their revenge on the Bloodline and finally end the mammoth reign of the Usos. I’m sure there will be a spot where Sami has the match won; something like the referee gets bumped and Reigns is down for longer than the 3 count, but eventually Reigns will prevail as usual. Reigns vs Rhodes is the big money match, it seems.

Winner: Roman Reigns

John: It’s easy to get excited about this and I am looking forward to it. I write about it every show these guys are on. It’s such an incredible storyline with so many layers to it.

While I am excited about the match, I think they could have done a better job of having Sami earn this title match. Roman Reigns beat him up at the Royal Rumble, then he did it again on Smackdown and said he wanted to humiliate Zayn in his hometown. However, they could have had Zayn win a match or something like that to try to have him earn the Undisputed WWE Universal Title opportunity. By just giving Sami the match, they are forgetting about the step involved with somebody earning a title match. It’s not a major complaint, believe me. Sami is the right guy in this spot and it’s the right city. I just think you could have also had him win a battle royal or some kind of match to earn the shot.

I have written for over two weeks now that my prediction is that Jey Uso will show up, tease potentially helping Zayn win (much to the delight of the crowd), but instead Jey will superkick Zayn and Reigns will hit a Spear to win. Reigns will hug Jey to massive boos. At that point, The Bloodline will beat up Zayn with a steel chair, the fans will be booing loudly and Kevin Owens will make the triumphant save for his best friend Sami. End the show with Sami-KO hug. The two Montrealers stand tall to send the fans home happy. Sami & KO beat The Usos to win the Smackdown Tag Team Titles at WrestleMania. It would be a great ending.

The thing about that finish is that it is all too common in Reigns matches. We have seen Reigns beat numerous guys due to getting some help from the outside. We saw it against Drew McIntyre at Clash at the Castle, Brock Lesnar at SummerSlam, Edge & Daniel Bryan at WrestleMania 37 in 2021 and so on. While WWE can push the narrative that Reign is a “dominant” champion, it’s not really true based on how he wins. Yes, 900+ days as Universal Champion is impressive, but it’s not all clean wins.

I’m sitting here trying to convince myself that WWE may have Zayn win in such a controversial manner that it leads to a triple threat at WrestleMania with Reigns vs. Cody Rhodes vs. Sami Zayn. I just feel like WWE wants to ride the Sami momentum and get him into the title match at WrestleMania. That’s my vibe at this point. Whether right or wrong, it’s just how I feel. I’m going with the Reigns win, but I think WWE might be open to changing the Reigns-Rhodes match to include Sami. Just my hunch. I still think the right way to end Elimination Chamber is a Sami-Owens reunion in the ring in front of the hometown crowd. That will be an incredible sight.

As far as match quality goes, I think Reigns and Zayn will have an absolute classic match that goes 20-25 minutes with a bunch of nearfalls. The fans are going to be so into this match that it will feel like a WrestleMania main event. I’m excited to see how it is booked, but I’m just as excited to hear how the crowd reacts. This will be fun to watch. No doubt about it.

Winner: Roman Reigns


The Match I’m Looking Forward To The Most

Joel: Roman Reigns vs. Sami Zayn.

Matthew: Roman Reigns vs. Sami Zayn. The crowd will be electric.

Lyle: Roman Reigns vs. Sami Zayn.

Alex: Roman Reigns vs. Sami Zayn.

Kelly: US Title Elimination Chamber Match.

Marc: Roman Reigns vs. Sami Zayn.

Kristian: Roman Reigns vs. Sami Zayn. The crowd will be electric.

John: Roman Reigns vs. Sami Zayn.

The Match I Care About The Least

Joel: Edge and Beth Phoenix vs. Rhea Ripley and Finn Balor.

Matthew: Edge and Beth Phoenix vs. Rhea Ripley and Finn Balor.

Lyle: US Title Chamber match.

Alex: Edge and Beth Phoenix vs. Rhea Ripley and Finn Balor.

Kelly: Brock Lesnar vs. Bobby Lashley.

Marc: None. I’m looking forward to everything.

Kristian: I think they will all be very good. The Women’s Chamber match holds the least interest for me, though.

John: Edge and Beth Phoenix vs. Rhea Ripley and Finn Balor. I don’t think it’s bad. I just had to pick one.

Longest Match

Joel: Men’s Elimination Chamber Match.

Matthew: Men’s Elimination Chamber Match.

Lyle: Women’s Elimination Chamber Match.

Alex: Men’s EC match (~30-35 minutes)

Kelly: Men’s Elimination Chamber Match.

Marc: Men’s Elimination Chamber Match.

Kristian: Men’s Elimination Chamber Match.

John: Men’s Elimination Chamber Match.

Shortest Match

Joel: Brock Lesnar vs. Bobby Lashley.

Matthew: Brock Lesnar vs. Bobby Lashley.

Lyle: Brock Lesnar vs. Bobby Lashley.

Alex: Brock Lesnar vs. Bobby Lashley (8 minutes of carnage)

Kelly: Brock Lesnar vs. Bobby Lashley.

Marc: Brock Lesnar vs. Bobby Lashley.

Kristian: Brock Lesnar vs. Bobby Lashley.

John: Brock Lesnar vs. Bobby Lashley. That feels like an easy choice.

Excitement Level on a Scale of 1-10 (1 being low, 10 being high)

Joel: 8. The PLE in between the Royal Rumble and WrestleMania is usually a hit or miss, but this is the most I’ve looked forward to a PLE in February in years. The Bloodline is carrying the company along with Cody Rhodes right now. The WWE is firing on all cylinders and it’s great to see.

Matthew: 8. Sami vs. Roman alone makes this card a must watch for me. When you add two elimination chamber matches on top of that plus a crazy Canadian crowd, the excitement level only goes up. Hopefully WWE can find a satisfying ending to the Zayn and Roman story, and send everyone home happy.

Lyle: 8. Unusually for a show featuring two Elimination Chamber matches, all eyes will be on the main event with the Montreal crowd sure to make Sami Zayn’s shot at The Tribal Chief memorable for years to come. Should this story end with Zayn dethroning Reigns at WrestleMania? Perhaps, but having Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens standing strong to close the show will be the feel-good moment that everyone is talking about.

Alex: 8. I’m mostly excited about the main-event. For the first time in a long time, there’s something truly special in the show-closing match that could lead to something truly memorable. Will the crowd leave happy? Will they riot? Will the ghost of 1997 come back? At this point almost anything is possible which makes EC more must-see than almost any WWE PLE in months, if not years.

Kelly: I’m going to give this a 7. It’ll be a solid night of action to start shaping up WrestleMania matches.

Marc: 7.5.

Kristian: 8/10. Despite it seeming like a pretty obvious show from a booking standpoint, the match quality all night should be high and I’m excited to watch how the main event plays out.

John: 8. It seems like 8 is a popular number for our group in terms of this show. I think when you have five matches, it pretty guarantees the big matches like the two Chamber matches and Reigns/Zayn a lot of time. You know they will be able to tell whatever stories they want. Maybe another match or two could have been added, but I think generally speaking most people like this card. We saw with the Royal Rumble that the show ending angle they did there was incredible and maybe we’ll see something like that again here to leave a lasting impression. One thing I do know is the crowd is going to be insanely loud and that’s going to make it a lot of fun to watch. Make some noise, Montreal!

In Closing

John: I’ll be back with a review of WWE Elimination Chamber on TJRWrestling.net on Saturday night, so check that out live or any time after it’s over. You can also tweet me @johnreport as well.

If you want to send an email, send it to me at mrjohncanton@gmail.com. Thanks for reading.