As the Monday Night Raw roster begins building the card for Fastlane, those on SmackDown Live are preparing for their own pay-per-view (PPV) this Sunday with the Elimination Chamber. WWE had to go to work quickly after the Royal Rumble as there were just two weeks until Team Blue put on their next big show. Last week, four matches were confirmed, but more were needed, and there were three more big bouts added last night.
Everyone knew that more matches would be needed, but it was hard to figure out just who was left on the roster with the WWE Championship taking six superstars and tag team turmoil taking up 12 more from SmackDown Live.
Well, as recapped by the official website of WWE, last night’s episode was able to bring forth three more huge matches to fill out the card. One was rather expected as The Wyatt Family has fallen apart over the last few weeks and the announcement of this rematch was only a matter of time.
A couple of weeks ago on SmackDown, Luke Harper took on Randy Orton so that any issues in the family could be squashed. After Orton had picked up the victory, Bray Wyatt turned his back on his brother and sided with “The Viper” which didn’t sit well with Harper.
Since then, Harper has become a big-time fan favorite while helping out John Cena and not letting his former family members begin about him. Now, he has made the threat that Randy Orton will be “eliminated” at the Elimination Chamber, and a victory over one-half of the WrestleMania 33 main event would be huge for Harper.
For weeks now, Dolph Ziggler has brought about a whole new attitude, and the heel turn has been cemented in place now. Apollo Crews and Kalisto have both been trying to stop his rampage and carnage, but they have done nothing but been beaten down by chairs for their trouble.
In a bit of an interesting twist, Daniel Bryan ordered a handicap match at the Elimination Chamber as reported by Cageside Seats, and Ziggler must face both Crews and Kalisto. Now, if Ziggler ends up snagging the victory on Sunday, it would instantly elevate him to main event status.
Another match booked last night was a third woman’s bout for the PPV, and it will have a recently returned Mickie James against former SmackDown Live Women’s Champion Becky Lynch. It will be James’ first singles match since arriving back in WWE, and it will be fun to see a bit of the old era vs. the new breed.
As of this writing, there are seven matches scheduled for Sunday’s event, but one or two more could be added to the Kickoff Show. It isn’t quite known who is left to be on the pre-show, but something may be put on it to have more than discussion.
Here is the full card for Sunday’s Elimination Chamber:
- WWE Championship Elimination Chamber: John Cena (c) vs. AJ Styles vs. Baron Corbin vs. The Miz vs. Dean Ambrose vs. Bray Wyatt
- SmackDown Tag Team Turmoil Match: American Alpha (c) vs. The Usos vs. Breezango vs. The Ascension vs. The Vaudevillains vs. Rhyno & Heath Slater
- SmackDown Women’s Championship: Alexa Bliss (c) vs. Naomi
- Becky Lynch vs. Mickie James
- Nikki Bella vs. Naomi
- 2-on-1 Handicap Match: Apollo Crews & Kalisto vs. Dolph Ziggler
- Luke Harper vs. Randy Orton
Wrestling Inc. reported that the betting odds on Wednesday morning had Bray Wyatt as the ultimate favorite to win the WWE Championship followed by Cena, Styles, Miz, Corbin, and Ambrose. In other matches, Orton is favored over Harper, Bella over Natalya, and James over Lynch.
The Elimination Chamber is a very interesting PPV as it brings about one of the most demonic structures in all of professional wrestling. Unfortunately this year, WWE has only scheduled one match inside the chamber, but they may have realized how much of a mess the tag team attempt really was. Now, there are seven bouts on the card, and it is possible that at least one or two more could be added for the pre-show kickoff.
[Featured Image by WWE]