Here’s my final thoughts on Raw and SmackDown Live’s WWE Elimination Chamber 2019!
Buddy Murphy (c) vs Akira Tozawa (WWE Cruiserweight Championship)
Reactions: This match will forever be remembered as featuring the best Frankensteiner’s of the year! At this point, everyone knows they’re going to get a quality matchup whenever the Cruiserweights are involved. Murphy and Tozawa put on their working boots during this encounter and put on a pretty fun matchup.
Tozawa actually got in a lot more offense than I originally thought he’d get. This match did a great job of giving everyone slight hope that Tozawa could actually beat Murphy. The drama behind this match definitely added to its overall quality. But in the end, Murphy took down another 205 Live challenger. One thing about the current landscape of wrestling is certain – Murphy’s PPV title defenses are always a good time.
Rating: 3 & a Half out of 5 Stars
Nia Jax and Tamina vs. Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville vs. The Riott Squad (Liv Morgan and Sarah Logan) vs. The IIconics (Billie Kay and Peyton Royce) vs. Bayley and Sasha Banks vs. Naomi and Carmella (Tag Team Elimination Chamber Match for the Inaugural WWE Women’s Tag Team Championship)
Reactions: This was a pretty solid way to start the show. There were some sloppy interactions littered throughout, which were definitely hard to ignore. But every team who participated in the match looked good, even some of the duos I didn’t expect to see much from. Even The IIconics looked decent for once!
There weren’t a whole lot of “OMG!” moments to speak of aside from your usual Tower of Doom spot that isn’t exactly a jew-dropper anymore. But the action maintained a steady pace during its long run time. Never thought I’d say this, but Jax and Tamina actually added to the match instead of taking away from it. Their period of domination ended up being the most fun portion, honestly. Bayley and Banks damn near put in an Iron Women performance since they started the match and ended up winning it in the end. All in all, this ended up being a serviceable affair.
Rating: 3 out of 5 Stars
The Miz and Shane McMahon (c) vs. The Usos (Jey Uso and Jimmy Uso) (WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championship)
Reactions: And here’s our first shocking win of the evening! I figured The Miz and Shane McMahon would remain tag team champs for a while longer before their eventual breakup. But I guess WWE wants to get the ball rolling a bit sooner on their rumored WrestleMania 35 matchup. Even though Miz told Shane to take a huge risk with that announce table elbow drop, Miz will probably still blame their tag team title loss on his partner.
As for the match itself, it was alright. When The Usos took control of The Miz, their beatdown section was a bit boring and went on a bit too long for my tastes. When Shane entered the match, it got slightly better. Not gonna lie, though – Shane’s Coast to Coast maneuver isn’t all that exciting to watch anymore. Since he does it every time he competes, its finally lost most of its luster. Surprisingly, Miz’s springboard spot ended up being one of the few highlights from this match. The end result was quite the shocker, but everything leading up to it was passable at best.
Rating: 2 & a Half out of 5 Stars
Bobby Lashley (c) and Lio Rush vs. Finn Bálor (Handicap Match for the WWE Intercontinental Championship)
Reactions: So this match ended up going exactly how I thought it would. Lashley and Rush took turns assaulting Finn for an extended amount of time. Finn made some light comebacks here and there, but he was mostly on the defensive from the start of the match up until the middle portion. Once Rush got a little too cocky, Finn finally got a chance to run wild.
Finn’s hot ending run was the only part of this bout that I truly came alive for. The end result was pretty cool to see, too. The match as a whole though really belonged within the second hour of a Monday Night Raw. Which means it was more of a time killer instead of a match worth watching. As for the post-match events, I’m a bit sad to see Lashley and Rush part ways. Hot take time! Rush was the most interesting part of Lashley’s act. Without his presence, Lashley will sadly sink back into mediocrity.
Rating: 2 out of 5 Stars
Ronda Rousey (c) vs Ruby Riott (WWE Raw Women’s Championship)
Reactions: This was practically a WrestleMania 35 hype segment. Ruby was only there to eat the quick loss. And that’s fine. We all know the world is looking forward to seeing how the Raw Women’s Championship situation turns out. Charlotte’s heel act works, Ronda’s a killer, and Becky got to take out her frustrations on the both of ’em. The crowd enjoyed it and I got a kick out of it, too. This worked perfectly! Side notes – Charlotte’s…well, “assets” looked impressive in that tight fitting attire she wore and Ronda’s Sonya Blade cosplay was pretty dope.
Braun Strowman vs. Baron Corbin (No Disqualification Match)
Reactions: So this match’s stipulation changed twice if you really think about it. It went from a regular bout to a No Disqualification Match, then ended up being a Handicap Match on top of it. It was just an extended three-man assault that was kind of a bore to sit through. Even The Shield Powerbomb table spot was kinda meh. Judging by how all this went down, it looks like Braun and Baron’s feud is going to continue. And that’s not exactly a good thing…
Rating: 1 & a Half out of 5 Stars
“The New” Daniel Bryan (c) vs. AJ Styles vs. Jeff Hardy vs. Kofi Kingston vs. Randy Orton vs. Samoa Joe (Elimination Chamber Match for the WWE Championship)
Reactions: Like the Women’s Elimination Chamber Match that took place at the start of the show, the Men’s version was the perfect show closer. However, this match was a step above the Women’s opening Chamber bout. Daniel’s pre-match promo was a ton of fun. And once he got into a chopping contest with Joe, I knew we were in for an entertaining main event. Joe’s destructive offense was a joy to watch, AJ pulled off some pretty impressive springboard maneuvers, Jeff provided a cool spot when he landed a unique Swanton Bomb on AJ, and Orton’s RKO counter to AJ was cool as hell.
But the MVP honors for the entire match have to go to Kofi. Ever since his show-stealing Gauntlet Match performance on SD Live, he’s been experiencing a new career high. The crowd was behind him the whole way through and he gave them a whole lot to cheer for during his finishing stretch against Daniel. The insane amount of near-falls and rope breaks added that much needed sense of drama to the match as a whole. Daniel ended up retaining the title, but the true winner of this match was Kofi. This was an emotional roller coaster of a match that gave me hopes of a continued singles push for Kofi.
Rating: 3 & a Half out of 5 Stars
Match of the Night
The Men’s Elimination Chamber Match!
I figured this show would be a step below the Royal Rumble and I ended up being right. The Elimination Chamber matches were the most high profile bouts and they (predictably) offered up the best bouts of the evening. Everything that transpired in between those bouts was nothing special, but a few of the results that came from them delivered some nice surprises. The 2019 Elimination Chamber PPV ended up being a subpar show once it finally came to a close. Seek out the Cruiserweight Championship match and the two Chamber bouts if you’re pressed for time.
Final Score: 2 & a Half out of 5 Stars
Click here to see if our 2019 Elimination Chamber predictions came true!