The Road to WrestleMania is setting up a WrestleMania show on Sunday with the Elimination Chamber and giving fans a shocking end.
This does not mean that the show was very good.
Instead, it was relatively useless with only two moments worth mentioning. And one of them was a weak attempt at shock value while the other produced a clear.
After the Elimination Chamber was alive the night before, Roman Reigns defeated Daniel Bryan to retain Daniel Bryan. But Edge then came down and hit Reagan with Spear to formally announce his rival for the WWE’s biggest event.
On the other hand, The Miz cashed in his Money in the Bank briefcase and got some help from Bobby Lashley to pin Drew McIntire and claim the WWE Championship. That finale would certainly be met with criticism as The Miz gained very little momentum while carrying the briefcase. But here we are.
Here’s how it all went down.
Defeated Daniel Bryan. Kevin Owens, Jay Uso, Sami Zine, Cesaro and Baron Corbin (Elimination Chamber)
The match took too long, and it hurts because it wasn’t necessarily bad. But with the contestants dropping out of the pod having such a full time, it just wasn’t particularly appealing.
If there are no storylines between the contestants then the Elimination Chamber is a challenge to pull the match. And outside of Owens vs. Usso and Bryan vs. Cesaro, there was not much story to tell anyone other than Bryan fighting a knee injury. Strangely, that did not factor into the decision.
Allegiance ensues with Corsin forcing the Sharpshooter and Owens to get rid of Zan with Stanner. Oss silently finishes Ovens after trapping his arm in the Chamber and unloading a wife of Superkicks before splashing to get the Chamber.
This could mean that Owens and Uso would join the feud at WrestleMania. Cesaro’s speed halted when Uss finished him off after a superkick during a huge swing.
But Bryan got the last laugh by hitting Uso with a knee while running to secure the pin and then challenging Roman Rance for the Universal title.
He had no chance to win that match, which makes the entire first match a moot point. WWE had the opportunity to create a new angle during this match, but it did not. Why? Who knows?
Grade: C +
Daniel Bryan retains Roman Raj defeated WWE Universal Championship
This was not a match. It was a vehicle to transport us to the main event of WrestleMania with Edge finally picking up his rival.
With Bryan beaten, Riggs immediately attempted a spear but Ya reversed into the lock. A freshman reign was able to get out of the hold and Bryan off the field and pound. A powerbomb and guillotine followed to end the squash match.
But the real story was Edge, after which it was decided to challenge Reagan at WrestleMania.
You cannot grade it. It was more a story than a match.
Defeat the puzzle. Bobby Lashley and John Morrison for United States Championship
The match was a last-time change: Keith Lee was sidelined due to injury and was replaced by Morrison, who won the fatal match four times over Preshow. The bout suffered a loss without Lee, but now WWE has the chance to make Riddle the star he feels destined for.
Riddle has spent the last few weeks being snapped up by Lashley and is stuck with a different man who hasn’t done much to show that he is an outstanding wrestler. Maybe WWE will pull the trigger now because he definitely has “it”.
The match was fine and Morrison guarded Lashley by eating a pin. Everything else was like there.
Defeated Nia Jax and Shayna Basler. Sasha Banks and Bianca Beller to retain WWE Women’s Tag Team Championship
Why are we increasing the inevitable banks-bellier fights? And why is Reginald involved in this bank-belayer angle?
The match was another vehicle for storytelling. It became clear that Reginald would involve himself and spend the banks and Bellaire, but why? Banks and Belair showed superb chemistry against the champions, but once Reginald – who inexplicably split from Carmela – appeared, the match was doomed.
Reginald made his way into the ring with a bottle of champagne and then rolled it into the ring while Banks had Jax in the bank statement. Why? nobody knows.
Banks withdrew Reginald’s help and met Jackson with a Samoan drop for the pin.
It was really dumb.
Earlier, Banks and Belair looked like stars as they continued to whet the appetite for their outspoken performances at WrestleMania. But it is absurd to inject Reginald into it and eat the banks’ pin.
Defeated Drew McIntire. Jeff Hardy, Randy Orton, Kofi Kingston, Sheamus and AJ Styles to retain the WWE Championship
In the second Elimination Chamber match of the night, McIntire successfully defended her title with a superb title, intercepting Styre’s phenomenal forearm with a Claremore kick.
The match had bizarre abs and flow. Moments like Kingston finishing Orton earlier and some solid chemistry between Stiles and McIntire. But it also had moments that lacked logic, as Stiles inexplicably entered the match and Orton tried to take advantage of RKO’ing Kingston and Hardy. It was also strange that Kingston and Hardy do less than jump things.
Earlier in the night, we saw The Miz interacting with the MVP and it became clear that something would happen after the match. That little information sucked any drama out of it.
After Hardy met McIntire with a Claymore kick, Hardy met at his demise, Kingston was sent for packing via a brogue kick by Shimus, and Styles tied Sheamus with the Phenomenal Fourarm to limit the field to two. Naming done.
But, as mentioned earlier, the finish was not in doubt. She made it no less notable to see McIntire’s Claymore Kick Land as she retained the title.
But then what we had after the match. . .
Defeated The Miz. Drew McIntire for the WWE Championship
Seafarer So what did it come down to?
The Miz plans a money-in-the-bank briefcase from Otis, when he successfully fails to cash in and is needlessly returned. At some point it was to be redeemed and WWE decided to do it in the Elimination Chamber.
McIntire was attacked by Bobby Lashley after the match and then The Miz walked in, Skull Crushing hit the finale and became the champion.
This is an absolute head-scratch as the Miz has done little since receiving the briefcase and is feuding with music superstar Bad Bunny. He has not won many matches, which earned him a pin from one of the more effective champions in recent years and was not the best way to close the show.
What does this mean for WrestleMania? WWE of course is taking its wagon to The Miz. There is still another PPV with Fastlane and whatever deal between The Miz and MVP will definitely take place in the coming weeks. But it wasn’t just fun and we don’t find anything interesting at WrestleMania.