Written By: Alexander Settee
Elimination Chamber 2010, February 21, 2010, Scottrade Center, St. Louis, MO
Announcers: Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler, & Matt Striker
Over the last couple of years they’ve actually done a good job of turning this from a lame duck show into one that really matter in terms of the buildup to Wrestlemania. Obviously they’re banking everything on the Chambers as only two other matches were even announced in advance, and neither of them were going to mean anything. If they live up to last year where they delivered a **** and a ****1/2 effort in the big cage that will make the show right there pretty much regardless of what else we get. So let’s get right to it.
Opening Match, WWE Championship Elimination Chamber Match: Sheamus vs. John Cena vs. Ted Dibiase vs. Randy Orton vs. Triple H vs. Kofi Kingston
Orton gets a good babyface pop coming out, although it should be noted that we’re in his hometown tonight and he probably would have gotten one anyways. And in a nod to continuity, Kofi keeps looking behind him during his entrance, since you’ll recall that last year he was jumped in the aisle and never made it to the match. It’s amazing that they think of a small detail like that, yet their big picture continuity makes zero sense if you think back more than about three months. In the end, Kofi does successfully make it into the cage this time, so who says he’s not moving up in the world? He starts the match, along with the WWE Champion Sheamus. The announcers are making a big deal about how rare it is for a Title to be successfully defended in the Chamber, which I would normally interpret as a good sign for Sheamus, but we’ll see. Kofi gets him with some kicks and a few quick pinfall attempts that only get 1. There’s a “RKO” chant going on, which shows how over these guys actually are. Kofi lands on his feet when Sheamus tries to toss him and comes back with a springboard crossbody for 2. A rollup try fails though and Sheamus pounds him down for 2. This segment is doing nothing for me. Sheamus gets the backbreaker just before the countdown hits and the next man out is HHH. He gets a huge face reaction for his showdown with Sheamus as Kofi rolls over and plays dead. He starts with a high knee and kneedrop for 2, and then follows with a short clothesline for another 2. They go to they steel and tease sending each other to the cage, but they both block it and then HHH clotheslines him back into the ring. Razor’s Edge (still in desperate need of a name) is teased, but HHH escapes and hits a DDT for 2. Kofi finally returns and climbs up top, but the Smartest Man in Wrestling maneuvers things so that Sheamus gets nailed. Kofi does get some shots in on HHH too though, including the Boom Drop over the top to the steel. Sheamus gets him with a clothesline though and covers for 2 as the countdown hits and brings in Randy Orton. He runs wild to a good reaction from the crowd. The fans really want to cheer this guy so they need to pull the trigger soon. Sheamus takes a kneedrop for 2 and then Orton runs him to the cage three time. He then runs HHH to the cage three times as well. Kofi then comes off the top rope onto all three of them. He gets Orton in the ring and leaps at him, but gets dropkicked and covered for 2. HHH attacks Orton now and hits the facebuster, but then he runs into a powerslam. He sets up the RKO, which leads to a three way sequence with Orton, HHH, and Kofi of finishers being teased but not hit which ends when Orton backdrops both of them to the steel. Sheamus whips Orton to the post, but it’s time for the countdown again. Ted Dibiase is in now with a stungun on Kofi and a clothesline on HHH. He drops some fists like his Old Man, and then looks at Orton sitting prone in the corner. He slowly moves in, but in the end he extends his hand and helps him up for a double team on HHH. In fact, they dominate all three guys together. One cool spot sees them squeeze Kofi’s head through the chains and then Dibiase applies a Boston crab while Orton stomps him. HHH goes for Orton, but Dibiase attacks and they run him to the cage. Orton wants the hanging DDT, but Dibiase suggests he turn around and do it on the steel, so he does and HHH may be dead. As the final period nears an end they begin taunting Cena in the pod. They stand right in front of the door as the countdown goes, but when he’s unleashed he beats up both Orton and Dibiase. Orton takes the shoulderblocks and the Protobomb, followed by the Five Knuckle Shuffle. Dibiase gets the Throwback and the top rope legdrop. He sets up the Attitude Adjustment, swinging Dibiase’s legs into Orton in the process, and then gives it to him on the steel. Orton tosses Cena outside, but ends up going to the cage himself. Cena gets the STFU on Dibiase, but Orton makes it back to save and hits the backbreaker on Cena. Cody Rhodes runs in with a pipe in his hand. Orton appears to be calling him off, but he slides it in the ring anyways and Dibiase gets it. Cena gets Orton up for the AA, but Dibiase nails both of them (Orton first) with the pipe. He thinks about who to cover, and pick Orton, getting the 3 count to eliminate him at 24:02. Orton seethes while Dibiase has a look on his face like he planned it and then pulled it off. The announcers make a bigger deal of claiming that Rhodes cost Orton the match then that Dibiase was the one who beat him, so who knows exactly where everything will end up. Then, in a puzzling bit, Dibiase is promptly hit with Trouble In Paradise by Kofi and pinned at 25:32. It’s like he did his bit, so it was time to yank him off stage. And the rapid fire trend continues as Sheamus hits Kofi with the bicycle kick and Razor’s Edge to send him packing at 26:13. Cena tries the AA on Sheamus, but Sheamus escapes it and hits the backbreaker followed by the powerslam for 2. He works Cena over in the Tree of Woe, and then sets him up for the Edge, but HHH finally comes back to life following that DDT on the steel and nails a low blow on Sheamus. He then gets the Pedigree for the pin at 28:38. A rather unceremonious end to the reign of young Sheamus here that pretty much kills any aura he had built up to this point. And speaking of unceremonious, Cena hooks HHH in the STFU and after a bit of a struggle, HHH taps to end it at 30:23. I recall that last year in the opening Chamber match they did a really good final segment when it came down to HHH and Undertaker, but here they just went bang, bang, bang. So it felt rushed at the end, and it also felt like it dragged a lot early on. The first part with Sheamus and Kofi was particularly unexciting. **1/2
So now Vince McMahon comes out and congratulates Cena for earning a trip to Wrestlemania. That is of course if he can successfully defend his Title right now against… Dave Batista.
WWE Championship Match: John Cena vs. Dave Batista
Obviously this is both revenge against Cena for siding with Bret Hart and reward for Batista siding with Vince. The bell rings just as Cena struggles to his feet, and he takes the first shot. Batista sells that as nothing more than an inconvenience and then proceeds to spear and Batista Bomb Cena for the 3 count at 0:33. DUD So Batista is the new WWE Champion and will now defend against Cena at Wrestlemania. They do the thing where Batista leaves and Cena milks his exit to try and get a standing ovation while the announcers talk about how he’s out of Wrestlemania because of this. That annoys me because is there a single person out there who believes that barring an injury Cena won’t be on the card? Also, I wonder where that leaves HHH. If they go with the rumoured singles match between him and Sheamus without the Title on the line that will leave him about fifth from the top and I can’t see him settling for that.
We then get a recap of the Bret Hart leg breaking angle from last Monday. The smart money seems to say that it’s all a ruse on Bret’s part, but we’ll see how that plays out.
Intercontinental Championship Match: Drew McIntyre vs. Kane
McIntyre has a new entrance since the last time we saw him on PPV. It seems cooler, but at the same time doesn’t seem like one designed to generate a reaction. He caused Kane to lose his Chamber qualifying match to set this one up here. McIntyre starts out by avoiding Kane, but then gets caught and hit with a seated dropkick for 1. Kane keeps him on the mat with a side headlock for a bit before McIntyre makes it to his feet only to be hit with a swinging neckbreaker for 2. Charge misses and McIntyre hits some chops. There is zero heat for this by the way. I don’t know how well this would have gotten over in a good position, but being in a death slot like this certainly isn’t helping the situation. I don’t get why the Women’s match wasn’t stuck here instead. So McIntyre runs into a clothesline, but comes back with a dropkick. He starts working the knee, but ends up getting backdropped to the apron where he drops Kane’s arm on the ropes. Single arm DDT gets 1 and then he goes to an armbar. Lawler says Kane will never tap to that, which is a great way to help moves get over. I wonder if he means that as an intentional shot at UFC, or if he’s just ignorant. The funny thing is, I could actually picture some old school worker bragging about how he’s been in a million armbars in his career and never once submitted to one as a way of putting over his own toughness compared to the real fighters of today. Kane makes it up and tosses McIntyre to the floor, but just gets him back in and takes another single arm DDT for 2. And it’s back to the armbar. This match pretty much sucks by the way. Kane fires out, but takes a big boot. McIntyre sets up the Future Shock double arm DDT, but Kane backdrops out and then hits a big boot of his own. Corner clothesline follows, but then he runs into an elbow. McIntyre goes up, but Kane nails him coming down and covers for 2. Side slam gets another 2 and now Kane goes to the top and connects with a flying clothesline. McIntyre escapes the chokeslam to the apron, but Kane runs him to the post. He briefly works McIntyre over on the floor before going back in and getting in more shots as McIntyre tries to beg off. McIntyre tries to take a walk, but Kane rams him to the barrier and gets him back in the ring again. He tries the chokeslam again, but McIntyre makes the ropes. As the ref breaks them up, McIntyre thumbs Kane in the eye and then hits the Future Shock for the 3 count to retain at 10:11. This was not good at all. If they want McIntyre to get over, they gotta do more for him than this because regardless of Mr. McMahon’s personal endorsement, nobody is buying this guy. Also, I still don’t understand why after all these years they still feel like the have to protect Kane. A strong clean win may have helped McIntyre, but this cheap crap isn’t helping anyone. ½*
Gail Kim et Maryse se rencontrent par hasard dans les coulisses où nous obtenons le choquante révèlent que Gail a compris ce que Maryse a toujours dit. Je ne suis pas plus ou moins intéressés dans le match alors que j’étais avant, c’est-à-dire mon niveau d’intérêt reste à zéro. Mon niveau d’intérêt pour Maryse reste cependant assez élevé.
Maryse & Gail Kim vs. Michelle McCool & Layla
This was promoted as the finals of the tournament for the Raw Divas Championship between Maryse and Gail Kim, but apparently Smackdown Special Consultant Vickie Guerrero has the power to overrule that and make this tag team match instead. I wonder if they’re quietly building to something here with the Smackdown people being in charge at the PPV’s since Raw has no permanent GM because it came up at the Royal Rumble too. Probably not. So Gail and Layla start off with Gail getting an armdrag. Maryse just isn’t there for the tag though so it’s gonna be that kind of match. Layla rolls through a hiptoss and covers for 1. She misses a charge though and Gail gets a rollup for 2. Maryse comes in and distracts the ref, which allows Michelle to come in and nail a big boot. She then gets the tag and she and Layla hit a double baseball slide. Back in, Michelle covers for 1 and goes to a rear chinlock. She puts her head down on a whip though and gets kicked and clotheslined. Gail looks for the tag, but Maryse just shoves her back, right into a boot from Michelle. Faith Breaker follows and gets the 3 count at 3:37. DUD The post match sees Maryse pick up the beaten Gail and drop her with the French Kiss. Was the bait and switch really necessary? Not that anyone was buying the show for this match, but still, was it that important that Michelle and Layla be on the show and that the tournament finals be delayed again? Like I mentioned earlier, I think this may be building to Raw getting a permanent GM and the dropping of the guest hosts because the format allows the Smackdown crew to run the PPV’s.
Next we get Josh Matthews promoting the debut of NXT which will already have happened by the time you read this. I need to check if it’s going to be on here in Canada because I do want to at least see the first episode before judging it. The Miz is interviewed and they’re clearly building up the dynamic between him and Daniel Bryan as a major selling point. Bryan was the only “rookie” who got his name dropped on the entire show here for what it’s worth. MVP comes in and announces that because he and Mark Henry beat ShowMiz on Raw last week, he gets a shot at the United States Title tonight, so Miz better get ready. Shouldn’t they get a shot at the Tag Team Titles? Well, I suspect they still will get one actually.
Then we get another talk segment as William Regal comes out to the ring to promote NXT. He basically sums up the format again, but ends up being interrupted by Edge. Edge reminds us he won the Rumble and will announce who he’s challenging at Wrestlemania tomorrow on Raw. Spoiler alert: He picks Chris Jericho.
United States Championship Match: The Miz (w/The Big Show) vs. MVP (w/Mark Henry)
Miz trash talks, but ends up getting smacked and stomped. MVP then gets a slam and drops some knees for 1. Miz elbow him, but charges into a belly to belly toss. He then gets thrown to the floor where MVP rams him to the barrier. Miz misses a baseball slide and gets clotheslined which gets 2 back in the ring. Miz comes back with a elbow and chokes MVP on the ropes. MVP then ducks a shot and nails a forearm then pounds Miz down for 2. Miz sends him to the corner with MVP trying to go over, but he gets dropped for 2. More choking gets another 2 for Miz. MVP kicks him off and gets a cradle for 2. Miz is back with a boot for 2, but learned nothing from Monday as he uses the same non-chalant cover and gets hooked, but does kick out at 2 thins time. Miz taunts him, but MVP comes back with a big shot and some shoulders in the corner. Corner whip is reversed and Miz hits a clothesline for 2. MVP stands up out of a rear chinlock and hits an electric chair drop for 2. Miz nails him and hits a DDT for 2 then goes back to the rear chinlock. MVP runs him to the corner to break, but runs into a boot. Miz keeps working him over for a bit, but then goes up and gets crotched. MVP gets him off there with a belly to belly throw for 2. He then drops Miz with a flapjack, followed by a clothesline. Facebuster sets up the Ballin’ elbow which gets 2 as Miz gets the ropes. Show pulls Miz to the safety of the floor, which drawn Henry over and the go at it ending with Henry missing a charge and going through the wall of the timekeepers pit. Back in the ring, MVP works on Miz, but misses a charge in the corner. As the ref pulls Miz back, Show nails MVP with the Big Right Hand. Miz cover and gets the 3 count to retain at 13:02. Hopefully Daniel Bryan wasn’t watching because I wouldn’t want him to be influenced by anything I saw here. **
Main Event, World Heavyweight Championship Elimination Chamber Match: The Undertaker vs. Rey Mysterio vs. John Morrison vs. Chris Jericho vs. CM Punk vs. R-Truth
As I’m sure you’ve heard by now, there was an incident with the pyro during Undertaker’s entrance where his coat was lit on fire and he received first and second degree burns to his chest. Thankfully it wasn’t any worse than that. Watching live there was no indication that anything like that had happened, as all we saw then was him running out of the smoke throwing his coat down. In any case he did the whole match, so good for him. Punk and Truth are the first ones in with Truth hitting a shoulderblock, but then running into a kick and taking a backbreaker for 2. Truth gets a kick of his own for 2 and then clotheslines Punk to the steel. He then catapults Punk to the cage and runs him to the pod door. Flip off the top rope follow and then he whips Punk to the cage three times. Back in, Punk gets a GTS try, which Truth avoids, but then Truth misses a corkscrew. Punk kicks him in the head and hits the GTS for the pin at 3:35. So now Punk has time to cut a promo. He threatens to make Undertaker tap and then lets us know that straight edge means he’s better then us. The countdown brings Rey Mysterio in and he wipes out Punk quickly. Springboard bodypress gets 2, and then a kick after rolling through a sunset flip gets another 2. He sets up for the 619, but runs into a powerslam for 2. Rey then counters a GTS to a rana for 2. To the steel where he tries another rana, but Punk holds on and swings him to the cage for 2. He then whips Rey headfirst to the pod through the ropes for another 2 in a spot that looked really cool. He sets Rey on top, but Rey knocks him back. Rey starts climbing to the top of the pod, but Punk gets back up there and tries to set up the GTS from the top rope. Rey slips out though and crotches Punk. He gets a rana to the steel, then Punk rolls in only to take a springboard splash for the 3 count at 10:00. The next countdown brings in Jericho, who gets monkeyflipped, but comes back with a clothesline for 2. Lionsault misses and Rey sets him for the 619, which hits, but Jericho gets to the outside. Jericho ducks Rey who grabs hold of the cage, but Jericho yanks him down. After a whip to the cage, a slingshot splash gets 2. Rey elbows out of a rear chinlock and hits a springboard moonsault for 2. Rey then hooks a dragon sleeper, but Jericho runs him to the corner to break it. He hooks the Walls, but the countdown hits and he’s forced to let the hold go as Morrison comes in. Morrison takes care of both guys pretty well for awhile until getting knocked of the top by Rey. Rey then charges at Jericho and gets backdropped to the steel. Jericho runs him to the cage, but they both end up getting wiped out by Morrison. Morrison gets a standing SSP on Rey for 2. Rey comes back and sets up a 619, but runs right into a backbreaker from Jericho which gets 2. Rey and Jericho go toe to toe until Morrison hits a springboard kick on Jericho. Rey then gets Morrison to the top where he tries a rana, but it’s blocked and Rey hits the mat. Starship Pain follows and that gets the 3 to eliminate Rey at 20:02. Jericho immediately hooks the Walls on Morrison, but is again forced to let them go to deal with Undertaker as he comes in. Taker beats him from pillar to post, using Snake Eyes and a big boot, followed by a legdrop for 2. He tries to chokeslam both guys, but they kick him and execute a double suplex. Jericho clotheslines Taker to the steel, but then gets rolled up by Morrison for 2. Jericho then backdrops him to the steel as well. He slaps Taker, which is quickly no sold, so he tries to hide in the pod, but Taker gets right in there with him and beats him up. Finally Taker goes back after Morrison, hitting Snake Eyes, but running into a springboard kick. But he kicked him with the previously injured ankle and can’t follow up. He tries Starship Pain, but Taker gets the knees up. Jericho emerges from the pod, but Taker sitting up sends him fleeing back into it. So Taker just works over Morrison. He does ram him to the glass of the pod where Jericho is hiding though. Taker sets up the Last Ride, but now Jericho attacks as Morrison holds on to the cage. Jericho sends Taker to the pod door after which Morrison leaps on to him. He then hits a kick for 2. Finally though he tries one springboard too many and Taker catches him. Chokeslam follows and that ends Morrison’s night at 28:24. Now Jericho has to face Taker, but is still reluctant to do so. Taker punches him, but misses a big boot in the corner. Jericho takes advantage to hit a superplex, but his delayed cover only gets 2. He goes to work, but soon Taker catches him by the throat. Jericho does escape the chokeslam though and they trade submission attempts with Jericho finally getting the Walls hooked. Taker is obviously not tapping so he breaks it and hooks Hell’s Gates. Jericho makes the ropes, which the announcers stress doesn’t earn a break, but Jericho makes it a moot point by getting out of the hold himself. Taker tries the Tombstone, but Jericho slips out and hits the Codebreaker. He covers, but only gets 2. He uses some shoulders in the corner, then makes the mistake of mounting Taker for punches, and sure enough the Last Ride is set up and hit. But before Taker can cover, Shawn Michaels comes up from under the cage. Taker turns around, right into Sweet Chin Music. Always one to take advantage of unexpected good fortune, Jericho covers while Shawn just stares down at Taker and he gets the 3 count to win the World Heavyweight Championship at 35:38. The show ends with Shawn continuing to stare down Taker, never moving an inch. This match was better than the opener, but I still don’t think it quite got to the level of either of last year’s. ***1/2
Well, this was a two match show and one came through with a good showing while the other was really just ok. We did also get the surprise bonus Title change, but I’m not sure that was needed for this feud, which was developing pretty good on its own merits. Everything in between the big ones felt like a slapped together mess and it was all completely forgettable. Given the standards of past Chamber matches and the fact that nothing else was there to support them, I’m disappointed in this show. I have to go Thumbs Down for Elimination Chamber 2010.