This was written the morning after the show.
WWE Elimination Chamber 2011
February 20, 2011
Oracle Arena in Oakland, California
The announcers for the PPV were Michael Cole, Josh Mathews and Booker T. Cole called Booker a five-time World Champion even though it was six. It was five times in WCW and one time as World Champion King Booker in WWE. They bickered a lot through the show. Congrats to Mathews for climbing the ladder in WWE as an announcer. He’s earned his spot.
Alberto Del Rio vs. Kofi Kingston
I’m pretty sure Ricardo Rodriguez ripped the Oakland Raiders during his intro here. I loved that. A good choice for the opener since Kofi’s a very entertaining babyface. Kofi was dominant early, but Del Rio slowed it down with his submission based offense and the crowd was very hot throughout. Kofi came back with energetic offense and then ADR countered with an awesome double knee to the ribs of Kofi. That was like a Codebreaker onto Kofi coming off the top. Good nearfall for Kofi with the missile dropkick. He followed that up with a couple of other nearfalls. Then Del Rio dropped him with a sick neckbreaker off the top. That led to the Cross Armbreaker for the submission win for Del Rio. I like how Kofi fought it off before having to tap out.
Winner: Alberto Del Rio at 10:28
Analysis: **1/4 It was the right finish with Del Rio winning clean. He’s been booked so well since his debut. This match was pretty similar to the match they had on Smackdown a few weeks back. I like their chemistry. I’d like to see more from them in the future.
They had a backstage interview segment with Edge talking about how hard it was to walk out of Elimination Chamber as champion noting that no champion has walked out of the Chamber as champion in the past five years. Drew McIntyre showed up, they referenced Kelly Kelly’s firing and that set us up for the Smackdown Elimination Chamber match.
Before the match, Teddy Long announced Big Show as the sixth man replacing Dolph Ziggler. Not an exciting choice, but I didn’t expect it to be much of a surprise.
Elimination Chamber Match for the World Championship: Edge vs. Rey Mysterio vs. Drew McIntyre vs. Wade Barrett vs. Big Show vs. Kane
Pre-match notes: The faces were World Champion Edge, Rey Mysterio and Big Show while Kane, Barrett and McIntyre were the heels.
Edge and Mysterio were the two best workers in the match, so it was a smart choice to have them start the match. Edge stomped away on Mysterio in the corner. Mysterio got his boot up followed by a headscissors. Mysterio with a kick, but Edge came back with a back body drop that sent Mysterio over the top onto the steel grating. Mysterio came back with a hurricanrana back in the ring. Edge took over again by shoving Mysterio back first into the cage repeatedly. Edge whipped Mysterio into the pod that Kane was standing inside of while Mathews said that Lexan glass is the strongest glass produced in the world. Mysterio with a drop toe hold sent Edge into the turnbuckle as the clock ticked down.
It’s Wade Barrett at #3 with a kick on Mysterio. Edge slowed down Barrett with punches. Edge launched Mysterio onto Barrett to take him down. Edge sent Mysterio face first into the steel. Barrett hit a side slam on Edge for a two count. Barrett hit a pumphandle slam on Mysterio for a two count. Barrett whipped Mysterio sternum first into the turnbuckle. Edge ducked a Barrett attack and sent Barrett onto the steel outside the ring. Mysterio with a dropkick on Edge. Barrett picked up Mysterio and used his feet to knock down Edge. Mysterio with a hurricanrana on Barrett to send him back into the ring. Mysterio dropkick on Barrett and Edge came in with a boot to the face knocked down Mysterio. The clock ticked down to zero again.
Kane is in at #4 as he decked Edge, Mysterio and Barrett with punches. Kane with another punch for Edge followed by a seated dropkick on Barrett. Kane splashed all three guys against the turnbuckle, kick to Edge and a sidewalk slam by Kane to Barrett. Mysterio with a kick on Kane for a two count. Edge and Kane each nailed Kane with kicks to the head. Barrett hit a clothesline on Edge and Rey at the same time as they went for a double clothesline on Barrett. Kane sent Mysterio and Edge onto the steel. Kane battled Barrett with Kane sending Barrett into the cage. Kane nailed Rey with a punch. With Mysterio on the top rope, Kane decked him with a punch to the throat leading to an Edge dropkick on Mysterio. Kane with a clothesline that sent Barrett over the ropes onto the steel.
Drew McIntyre is #5 in the match, he picked up Mysterio and launched him into the glass pod. Ouch. Barrett and McIntyre worked together on Kane with a double clothesline on the steel grating. McIntyre looked like he would work with Barrett, but McIntyre hit a low blow and then sent Barrett back first into one of the empty pods to break the glass. McIntyre with a suplex on Edge. Edge came back with a DDT on McIntyre. Kane grabbed Edge by the throat, kick to McIntyre, Edge punched Kane and Rey wanted a 619 on Kane, but Kane decked Rey with a punch and a kick by Kane for Edge. Kane sent Mysterio face first into a pod. Ouch! That looked nasty. Kane with a back body drop on McIntyre took down Barrett on the steel. Kane and Edge hit a boot to the face at the same time to knock them down. The clock ticked down to zero.
Big Show is the last man at #6 with the crowd cheering him. Show threw everybody out of the ring including a hard chop on McIntyre. Show chased after Barrett and whipped him back first into the pod. Show worked over Barrett with five hard chops to the chest followed by a whip into the cage. Show decked Barrett with a KO Punch and pinned him.
Wade Barrett eliminated by Big Show
Kane jumped off the top with a clothesline on Show and Edge hit an elbow off the top on Show for a two count. McIntyre hit the Future Shock DDT on Show for a two count. Mysterio was on top of one of the pods. Mysterio jumped off the pod with a seated senton splash, which looked impressive, but it only got a two count on Show. Kane kicked Show, Mysterio with a 619 on Show and Edge hit a Spear on Show. Kane knocked down Edge and Mysterio with punches. Kane hit a Chokeslam on Show and covered for a pinfall to eliminate him.
Big Show eliminated by Kane
McIntyre jumped off the top rope to try to attack Kane, but Kane caught him and hit a Chokeslam. Kane pinned McIntyre to eliminate him.
Drew McIntyre eliminated by Kane
Kane dumped Edge over the top to the floor. Mysterio hit Kane with a spinning DDT for a two count. Mysterio with a springboard leg drop to the back of the had of Kane for two. Mysterio headscissors led to the 619 connecting for Mysterio and Mysterio went up top, but Kane caught him. Edge hit a Spear on Rey and Kane at the same time while Kane was holding Rey. Edge pinned Kane to eliminate him.
Kane eliminated by Edge
After the elimination, Kane nailed Edge with a boot to the face. Kane picked up Mysterio and spiked him with a Chokeslam. Kane with a Chokeslam for Edge as well. Kane finally left.
Edge and Mysterio both used the ropes to get back to their feet with the crowd cheering both guys. Edge went for a Spear, Mysterio got a rollup for two and the crowd thought that was it. Mysterio with a cross body block, Edge rolled through for a cover and Mysterio kicked out. Mysterio with a boot to the face followed by a bulldog for a two count. Mysterio went up top, he jumped onto Edge’s shoulders and Edge countered with a sitout Powerbomb for a two count. The nearfalls are getting better every time with the crowd believing all of them. Mysterio countered a Powerbomb attempt with a headscissors, Rey wanted the 619, but Edge caught him and slapped on the Edgecution submission hold on the legs of Mysterio and Mysterio countered by getting a pinfall attempt where he sat on top for two. Edge charged in, Mysterio moved and Edge hit the turnbuckle. Mysterio ran the ropes and Edge hit a Spear for a two count! The nearfalls keep getting better. Mysterio sent Edge into the ropes, 619 and a splash off the top rope got a two count. The crowd thought that was it too and so did I. The announcers did a good job of marking out for the nearfalls. Mysterio with a headscissors and he connected with a 619 again. Mysterio went up top, he jumped off the top, Edge got back to his feet and hit a Spear leading to the pinfall win for Edge. The crowd was cheering loudly for that finish. The match went 31:30.
Rey Mysterio eliminated by Edge
Both guys were exhausted as the bell rang. Replays aired of all the big spots in the match including the midair Spear from Edge that won the match.
Analysis: ****1/2 It’s an amazing match. Fantastic work by Edge and Mysterio in being the focus of the match as the two guys that started it and ended it. Those last eight minutes were special. Drew McIntyre had a pretty good showing although I wish he lasted longer. Everybody worked their ass off. It’s the perfect kind of match for guys like Show and Kane because they can stick with their power moves without tiring out. Both guys were effective as the biggest guys in the match that had some memorable spots, but they couldn’t get the job done. Whoever put this match together did a tremendous job. They really planned all the spots well. One of the most important things is that the crowd bought into this match so much and they got louder as the match went on. When the work is great and the crowd is hot, that’s when you have the makings of a special match.
Wrestler that lasted the longest: Edge and Mysterio at 31:30.
Most Eliminations: Edge and Kane with 2.
Best Performers (3): Edge – He started it and finished it in spectacular fashion.
Rey Mysterio – Same as above. Incredible performance.
Kane – He was needed as a veteran heel big man to work over Edge and Rey.
Most Memorable Moment: Edge hitting the Spear on Mysterio when Mysterio was jumping off the top rope. That’s what I’ll remember the most.
Post match, Edge was attacked by Royal Rumble winner Alberto Del Rio because they were set for a WrestleMania. Christian made the save for Edge. He got a big ovation because he was out for about six months when Del Rio took him out in an injury angle. Christian beat up Del Rio and then Edge hit a Spear.
Analysis: That set up Edge vs. Del Rio at WrestleMania 27 not in the main event of course, but the PPV opener. Sadly, Edge found out soon after that his neck injury was really bad and he was medically disqualified from ever wrestling again because he might get paralyzed if he took another bump. The feud turned into Christian vs. Del Rio with Christian getting his first World Title win in his career.
Backstage, Matt Striker talked to Jerry Lawler. His mom died a week ago and he’s dedicating his WWE Title match to her. He mentioned how he’s never held the WWE Title or wrestled at WrestleMania, but if he can win this match he gets to do both. The tone of this segment was well done.
They had Booker T. introduce a special guest to the audience. It’s one of the trainers from WWE Tough Enough along with Steve Austin and Booker T. It’s Trish Stratus. Yes! Oh yes! Trish! Canadagasm time! Haha. She looks amazing as always sporting her Stratusphere Yoga shirt. She goes: “Finally The Trish has come back to Oakland to deliver Stratusfaction to the millions…suckaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!” As much as I love Trish this wasn’t a great segment. The crowd wasn’t into it too much. However, my interest in Tough Enough is very high since Steve Austin, Booker T. and Trish Stratus are coaches on the show. She said she was there to watch Lawler win the title.
WWE Tag Team Championship: Santino & Kozlov vs. Heath Slater & Justin Gabriel
The Corre’s theme music sucks. Ezekiel Jackson was at ringside with The Corre. I give credit to both Gabriel & Slater for improving over the course of the last year since they’ve been on TV regularly. I’m especially impressed by Gabriel. The majority of the match saw the heels working over Kozlov, which isn’t the most exciting thing to watch. He got the hot tag to Santino, who woke up the crowd. He hits The Cobra onto Gabriel, who wasn’t legal. The “One Man Rock Band” is a terrible nickname, by the way. The heels got control with typical heel tactics thanks to a blind tag. That led to Gabriel scoring the pinfall with the 450 splash. New tag champs.
Winners: Heath Slater and Justin Gabriel at 5:08
Analysis: *1/2 This was a TV match basically. The heels got back the belts they lost a few months ago to Santino & Kozlov although now they’re part of The Corre instead of Nexus. Could this lead to a possible Corre vs. Nexus match at WrestleMania? Heel versus heel doesn’t really work.
Are they going to add more names to the Hall of Fame? It’s only six weeks away. Shawn Michaels as the main event is great. I could see Booker or Trish being added along with rumored names like Arn Anderson, Ron Simmons and the Fabulous Freebirds.
Todd Grisham talked to The Miz. He cut the same promo he always does cutting down everybody else saying it’s his time. He ended it saying he’s earned the right to say “I’m The Miz and I’m Awesome.”
Vickie Guerrero came out saying “Excuse Me” in a much more serious way than she usually does. She said it was a tragedy that Dolph Ziggler got fired. In case you’re wondering it’s not legit. She admitted that Dolph took out Long, but that it was a “crime of passion” for her. Haha “please excuse me.” Vickie’s great. Teddy Long came out. Vickie tells him: “You look amazing!” Teddy says he’s in a hiring mood. She assumes it’s Dolph, but he says no. He hired back somebody else…”holler holler holler.” It’s smiling Kelly Kelly. What a shock that she got re-hired after a two week absence. Kelly puts her down with a kick and slams her head to the mat. Here’s Laycool to save Vickie. Out for the save is Trish Stratus. Laycool attacks her. Trish comes back with a Thesz Press on Layla and a kick on McCool. She didn’t hit her hurricanrana on Layla perfectly. Must be tough in six inch heels. She hits the Stratusfaction bulldog on both Laycool members to end the segment. Is this a possible WrestleMania match? I have no idea, but I am fine with Trish being back on WWE TV.
WWE Championship: The Miz vs. Jerry Lawler
Alex Riley comes out wearing an “I’m Awesome” shirt as well as his ring attire. Why does somebody need to wear their ring attire when they aren’t wrestling? And why is he still carrying a briefcase? It’s not like he’s Irwin R. Schyster ready to do taxes. He quickly got thrown out after interfering a number of times. I’m happy about that because Miz shouldn’t need help to beat Lawler. The best moment of the night might have been when Lawler threw Miz into Cole at the announce table. Booker was laughing his head off. I enjoyed that spot. Haha. The crowd was very much into everything that the King did. They wanted him to win the belt and believed he actually could. Late in the match he hit a DDT on Miz to put him down, he went up top, pulled the strap down and hit the first drop. Miz got his foot on the ropes. They even did some great pinfall reversal sequences that the crowd really believed. Miz eventually put him away with the Skull Crushing Finale for the clean win. Post match, Michael Cole went into the ring to raise the hand of The Miz.
Winner: The Miz at 12:09
Post match, Cole really put Miz over on commentary while the crowd chanted “Jerry” out of respect for The King. That was a very genuine moment. Cole ripped him, saying he shouldn’t even be allowed to be an announcer at WrestleMania.
Analysis: **3/4 A very solid match considering Lawler’s 61 years old. Lawler worked his ass off and was in great shape. The fans were eating it up. They wanted him to win. I’m glad Miz won clean. That’s what should have happened. I’d expect Lawler to be in some kind of match at WrestleMania. I doubt they do Lawler vs. Cole, but maybe a 5 minute match against Riley that ends with Lawler punching Cole. That would go over big with the crowd.
They had a corny bit with John Cena backstage eating a giant bowl of Fruity Pebbles. It was cheesy, but it was funny too. I like that Cena’s able to laugh at himself. His promo on Monday’s Raw is going to be very important, though. They need it to be more serious than it is funny.
Elimination Chamber Match for the #1 Contender to the WWE Title: John Cena d. CM Punk, John Morrison, Randy Orton, Sheamus & R-Truth
Pre-match notes: The faces were John Cena, Randy Orton, R-Truth and John Morrison. The heels were CM Punk and Sheamus.
The announcers are Michael Cole, Booker T and Josh Mathews.
Sheamus took down Morrison with a running shoulder tackle early on. They battled on the steel grating with Morrison going for a leaping attack, Sheamus moved and Morrison landed on the cage leading to a leaping kick to the head. Sheamus nailed Morrison with two clotheslines. Morrison knocked down Sheamus with a kick to the head. Morrison went up top, but that was a bad move because Sheamus shoved Morrison into one of the pods. Sheamus whipped Morrison into the cage. The clock counted down to zero. It felt like less than five minutes, but I wasn’t timing it.
Randy Orton is #3 with the crowd cheering him. Orton hit Sheamus with two clotheslines, clothesline for Morrison and Orton hit powerslams on both guys. Orton clothesline sent Sheamus out of the ring. Orton with a back body drop on Morrison that sent Morrison onto Sheamus on the steel. Orton whipped Morrison into the pod that Orton once occupied. Orton clotheslined Sheamus back in the ring. Orton nailed Sheamus with a DDT on the steel grating. Orton stared at Punk after it. Orton was in control of both guys in the ring. Orton set up Morrison on the top rope in front of Punk and Orton hit a superplex on Morrison for a two count. Orton set up Sheamus on the top rope and Orton hit a superplex on Sheamus. The Miz was shown watching on a TV backstage with his buddy Alex Riley standing beside him. Orton was still in control in the ring as the clock went down to zero.
CM Punk is #4 with Orton waiting outside the pod. When Punk tried to get out, referee Mike Chioda had trouble unlocking it. Orton ended up punching Punk while he was barely out of the pod and eventually Punk got out of it. That was a nice spot that looked real even though obviously was just part of the story. Orton whipped Punk into the ring. When Orton went in the ring, he hit Punk with a RKO and pinned him to eliminate him.
When it appeared like Punk was going to leave the ring, the Anonymous Raw GM sent an email leading to Michael Cole reading the email. Massive heat for that, of course. Cole read that due to a malfunctioning pod, Punk was not given a fair chance to compete. It said that Punk can re-enter his pod and he is reinstated in this match. Punk crawled back into the pod with a big smile on his face. Booker complained about it while Cole said he just read what the GM had to say.
Analysis: I hated the Anonymous GM angle so much. The payoff wasn’t even good because they did a joke story out of it with Hornswoggle as the GM.
Sheamus hit Orton with a backbreaker for a two count. Sheamus tossed Morrison over the top and onto the steel. Sheamus went for a Brogue Kick, but Orton moved out of the way and Morrison hit a springboard kick to Orton’s head. Sheamus sent Morrison back first into the cage.
It’s John Cena at #4 (since Punk was back in a pod) and as soon as the buzzer hit, Sheamus kicked Cena. Sheamus whipped Cena back first into the cage. Cena recovered quickly going for a AA on Morrison, but Morrison landed on his feet and Sheamus hit Cena with a neckbreaker. Morrison hit a cross body block off the top to take out Orton and Sheamus. The crowd was doing their dueling chants against Cena as Sheamus hit a double shoulder tackle to knock down Cena and Morrison. Orton clotheslined Sheamus back into the ring. Orton worked over Sheamus with punches followed by a knee drop for two. Sheamus hit a knee to the ribs of Orton with Cole yelling way too loud about what excitement there was for this match. Fans did the dueling chants for Cena again as the clock ticked down again.
R-Truth is the next man up at #5 as he avoided an attack by Sheamus in the pod. Truth sent Sheamus’ head into the pod. Truth with a hip toss on Sheamus onto the steel grating. Truth with a face first front suplex on Orton and a neckbreaker on Morrison. Truth hit a running forearm on Punk. When Truth got to his feet, Sheamus hit a Brogue Kick and pinned him. Truth was only in the match for about two minutes.
R-Truth eliminated by Sheamus
Morrison worked over Sheamus with punches. More dueling chants for Cena even though he was just standing against the rope doing nothing while Morrison kicked Sheamus in the back. Orton took advantage of that by whipping Morrison into one of the pods. Cena and Orton exchanged punches with Orton saying enough of this and hitting a dropkick for two. Orton stomped on Cena as the clock counted down.
Orton went over to Punk’s pod to attack him, but Cena went after Orton and Orton hit a RKO on Cena on the steel. Sheamus with a Brogue Kick on Orton. Punk entered as #6 with a kick on Sheamus to knock him down. Punk covered Orton for a two count. Punk hit the mat similar to how Orton normally did it when readying for the RKO, Punk picked up Orton and he hit the Go To Sleep. Punk pinned Orton to eliminate him.
Randy Orton eliminated by CM Punk
There were fans chanting for Punk after he eliminated Orton. Punk with a running knee that took out Cena followed by a knee to the face of Sheamus, but Sheamus sent Punk into the pod and hit a forearm to knock Punk down. Morrison got going again with a running kick on Sheamus. Back body drop by Sheamus, Morrison landed on his feet and kicked Sheamus. Morrison climbed on top of a pod, but was tripped up when Sheamus went after him. Sheamus teased doing the High Cross (Razor’s Edge) off the top, but Morrison fought him off. Morrison kicked Sheamus to knock him off the top rope onto his back in the center of the ring. Morrison climbed the top of the chamber and reached nearly the center of it. Sheamus stood back up and Morrison jumped on top of Sheamus to pin him with a very innovative move.
Sheamus eliminated by John Morrison
Analysis: I remember when Morrison did that and some people complained about how the move didn’t look that impressive. He fell down from really high up to land on a guy. It’s not like he can do a fancy move off there. It made sense considering how high it was. I thought it was impressive.
It’s down to Cena, Punk and Morrison. Cena battled Punk with Cena hitting a spinning sitout slam on Punk followed by the Five Knuckle Shuffle fist drop. Punk left the ring, Cena went after him and Morrison jumped off the top rope to take out Punk and Cena with a double axehandle. Punk covered Cena on the steel for a two count. Cena was up against the Lexan pod, Morrison charged in, Cena moved and Morrison’s right knee went crashing into the pod. That sounded nasty with Morrison grabbing the knee to sell the pain. Punk with a submission on Cena’s throat, but Cena powered back to his feet, he had Punk in the air and Morrison jumped off the top with a clothesline on Punk for two and a clothesline on Cena for two as well. Cena got back to his feet and he hit the Attitude Adjustment on Morrison. When Cena turned around, Punk nailed a roundhouse kick to Cena’s head. Punk went the top rope with a clothesline on Cena while on the steel. Punk catapulted Cena into the pod. Morrison scaled the cage, walked across it a bit and Morrison nailed a kick to Punk’s head. Morrison was selling the right knee heavily. Morrison went for Starship Pain, Punk moved out of the way and Punk hit the GTS to pin Morrison.
John Morrison eliminated by CM Punk
Cena grabbed Punk, put him on his shoulders, he wanted the AA, Punk grabbed the ropes, so Cena gave him the AA onto the steel grating. Cena covered Punk to get the pinfall win at 33:12.
CM Punk eliminated by John Cena
Winner: John Cena
Analysis: **** A very good match with a lot of people looking good even though the Cena win was obvious. Orton pinned Punk and then got eliminated by him after the cheap re-entry from Punk, so it set up their WrestleMania match effectively. John Morrison starred in this match with his athleticism. He also sold the knee well. There weren’t a lot of guys selling specific body parts, so Morrison stood out a bit due to that. R-Truth felt out of place because he was barely in the ring. It was one of those situations where they had five guys they really liked, but they needed a sixth and it ended up being him just to take a pinfall in about two minutes. Sheamus was effective as the power guy.
Wrestler that lasted the longest: John Morrison at 32:50.
Most Eliminations: CM Punk with two.
Best Performers (3): John Morrison – He did a great job of doing cool looking moves, selling the knee injury and making people think he might win even though it was obvious it wouldn’t be him.
John Cena – He spent a lot of the match selling to try to make the others look good. There wasn’t that much Cena offense in this match.
CM Punk – I miss this guy. He was so great.
Most Memorable Moment: Morrison climbing to the top of the cage and falling onto Sheamus was what I’ll remember most.
Post match, The Miz and Alex Riley were shown watching. Miz held up the WWE Title in the air.
Cena celebrated the win. Cole said Miz vs. Cena was the match the world was waiting for. Cena saluted the camera and that ended the show.
Analysis: With all due respect to Cena and Miz, it was not a match the world was waiting for. It was one of the worst WrestleMania main events ever.
Was it predictable in terms of the results? Yes. I went perfect in predictions. So what? It was the right booking. Cena’s main evented WrestleMania a lot, but do you really think Vince isn’t going to put his top guy in the title match? Of course Cena’s getting the title shot. Edge winning was predictable too. So what? We got a ****1/2 match from those guys in the Smackdown Chamber. It’s the match of the year so far. The two Chamber matches really delivered. I was pleasantly surprised to see both Trish Stratus and Christian, two of my all-time favorites and fellow Canadians of course. I wish the material they gave Trish to say was a lot better than it was, though. Miz beat Lawler clean, which he should have. Del Rio beat Kingston clean, which he should have. The tag titles changed. That’s fine. They don’t matter anymore. The last thing is that the crowd in Oakland deserves a pat on the back. They were great.
Five Stars of the Show
1. Edge – Tremendous job in carrying the best match.
2. Rey Mysterio – Same as above.
3. CM Punk – He was the best part of the Elimination Chamber
4. John Morrison – His athleticism is amazing. Push this man.
5. Christian – I’m happy to see him back. That was a lot of fun.
I really enjoyed this show. It ended at 5 minutes before the top of the hour, so it was a 2 hour, 55 minute PPV. Fine by me. Just because the outcomes are predictable doesn’t make it a poor show. The work was very good. Kudos to everybody involved with this show. They worked their asses off. Call it a 8 out of 10 and I’d recommend that you watch it if you missed it.