Elimination Chamber is just days away, and even though the arena may be empty, that doesn’t mean we’re not excited!
With WrestleMania so close, Sunday’s show is loaded with some juicy implications. When the WWE shuts of its cameras we will have filled in at least two big answers on the WrestleMania crossword puzzle. We’ll know who’s destined to face Brock Lesnar in New Orleans on top of who will bring the RAW Women’s Championship to the mega show. Even more, we might know what Ronda Rousey will be doing at ‘Mania.
Rousey’s appearance is certainly Sunday’s cherry, and if WWE contract signings have taught us anything, it's that they always end in chaos.
But let’s get into it, here’s your official Elimination Chamber Preview and Predictions:
Ryan Droste: It very well could be. Look, the failure of "Woken Matt" on WWE television isn't WWE's fault. They've let Matt have the freedom to do the gimmick that got over in TNA and on the independents. The difference? There's a lot more competition for attention on WWE programming than there is on Impact Wrestling, and the gimmick just hasn't clicked. In fact, it's been dreadful. With WWE moving to co-branded shows moving forward, it's difficult to imagine him being a regular on cards that will be very competitive.
Connor Casey: True, but not because of his lackluster push. With Jeff Hardy getting closer to a comeback, I think they try to re-establish the WWE version of the Broken Universe by having Jeff come back as Brother Nero and the two go after the Raw Tag Titles for a good while.
Jack Snodgrass: This will be his last big match as a solo competitor. Jeff is coming back and RAW's tag division is thinner than a strand of Baron Corbin's hair. Woken Matt isn't totally dead, but a pay-per-view loss to Wyatt could be the kiss of death.
Ryan Droste: This might be the most intriguing match-up on the show. It's going to be intriguing because you wouldn't think they would take the steam out of Asuka's sails with a loss this early, but at the same time they need to protect Jax for a possible title match with Bliss at WrestleMania. All signs point to some kind of false finish.
Connor Casey: Nobody is ready for Asuka! This one plays out like many of their previous matches. Asuka is undersized but cuts Jax down with her vicious kicks.
Jack Snodgrass: Nobody is beating Asuka until Ronda Rousey is ready!
Ryan Droste: If the direction for WrestleMania is indeed a mixed gender match between Rousey/Partner and Triple H and Stephanie McMahon, you've got to imagine Stephanie is involved here in some fashion and there's a physical altercation between her and Rousey to set the table for Mania season.
Connor Casey: Stephanie McMahon and Triple H are out in the ring. Rousey comes out, signs the deal, but then McMahon starts running her mouth about how she's Rousey's boss now. This leads to a pull-apart and suddenly we've got a Mania match to promote.
Jack Snodgrass: Steph is getting a belly to belly through a table.
Ryan Droste: Zero chance that anyone besides Alexa Bliss walks out winner. None. The WrestleMania women's title matches will either be Bliss/Asuka and Charlotte/Rousey or Bliss/Jax and Charlotte/Asuka. I see no way Bliss doesn't walk in champion.
Connor Casey: It has to be Alexa Bliss. Asuka is taking on Charlotte, Ronda Rousey is going to be involved in that mixed tag match with Triple H and Stephanie McMahon, leaving the Raw Women's Championship as the odd match out. I see Bliss taking on Nia Jax at Mania. While it may not be the most exciting match given the size difference, there's a least a story they can play off of to give Jax her first championship with the company.
Jack Snodgrass: There have been rumors citing that Sasha Banks is a growing consideration, but plans already look to be in motion. Bliss will meet Jax in New Orleans while Bayley and Sasha Banks will finally get a main roster match worth getting excited about.
Ryan Droste: All of the signs would point to Sasha, but I maintain that turning Bayley would be the right move. The Bayley character has failed to get over to a large level on the main roster, and a heel turn and fresh character would be exactly what the doctor ordered. Though it's true that Sasha's character is better as a heel, Sasha is already over with the crowd. If Sasha turns, she'll still be over and Bayley still won't be (I don't think the sympathy bit will help that much). However, if Bayley were to turn, she really could get over as a big time heel.
Connor Casey: I'll go with Sasha Banks. People tend to forget this because she turned pseudo-babyface during their feud in NXT, but Banks has been at her absolute best when she's a cocky heel. I get that WWE like to subvert expectations from time to time for the sake of subversion, but this one just makes sense.
Jack Snodgrass: As good as Banks is as a heel, it's Bayley who needs it. And it's time, Bayley as the sunshine babyface is done in WWE, let's add a new layer.
Ryan Droste: Roman Reigns. With a year of planning toward Lesnar/Reigns, it's difficult to imagine that anyone else would win here or that they would make a last minute audible. If for some crazy reason they did decide to change it up, I'd see Strowman getting the victory. Rollins had a great hour and a half on RAW this past Monday night, but I have a feeling that is setting him up for a title program with Reigns after WrestleMania.
Connor Casey: Roman Reigns. Yes it's boring, yes it derails the momentum of Braun Strowman and (out of nowhere) Seth Rollins, but it's the match WWE has been planning for over a year.
Jack Snodgrass: Well, there's a foul stench on Reigns at the moment thanks to growing steroid allegations. However, those likely aren't significant enough for WWE to audible off of Reigns on Sunday. But for what it's worth, I'm going to be screaming for Seth Rollins.
Ryan Droste: Braun will likely demolish nearly everyone in the match (while still losing). I've got to imagine that he'll accomplish some kind of destruction as it pertains to the cage itself as well.
Connor Casey: One of the pods. With the outcome fairly obvious, WWE will spend a good portion of the match setting up some other WrestleMania matches. Strowman will look dominant for most of the match, but I expect Miz to eliminate him through some sort of nefarious means. This will send him into a rage and he'll smash his way through one of the pods, probably by throwing Miz through it!
Jack Snodgrass: I can't really speak to what, but I know who is doomed on Sunday. The Miz may be a heap of raw meat by show's end.
Ryan Droste: It's certainly possible he could cost Cena the match to set-up a WrestleMania storyline. Odds wise, I'd probably put it at 50/50 or a little bit less.
Connor Casey: 10 percent chance he shows up. It appears the story they're going with is that Cena is unsure of himself and his spot at WrestleMania 34, which will continue to play out when he loses in the Elimination Chamber match (if I had to guess, he'll be one of the first men out). That will lead to a surprise appearance from Undertaker setting up their match, though I think it's more likely they wait until an episode of Raw to carry that out.
Jack Snodgrass: 0%. Taker will need his own runway. WWE will used the Chamber match to create several stories and adding The Undertaker could make him look like a footnote.