Elimination Chamber 2013 Review
The Elimination Chamber.
Written by Tommy Croot.
Held February 17, 2013 at the New Orleans Arena in New Orleans, Louisiana
- This was the fourth annual Elimination Chamber event
- In Germany this event is called No Escape
This is my first review and I just want to say it’s an absolute honor to be here reporting on #ilikewrestling!
Unfortunately, my PPV airing began pretty much disastrously – with a terrifying, inexplicable and awkward screen pause on John Cena’s face during the customary parental advisory advert. The advert (which airs over here in the UK) is always overdubbed by a man who talks in a confusingly sensual granddad voice accompanied with an English accent. All I kept thinking was, “I hope this will un-pause soon” and tried to remain impossibly positive.
So with John Cena already heading towards what we presume will be a title win over The Rock at next month’s Wrestlemania event, the Elimination Chamber (here to serve as the last stop on the road before it) was hopefully not going to be a thing at all like my screen glitch. However, with there being quite a lack of attention being paid to Cena right now and the outcome of The Rock’s match arguably not in much doubt, this meant the rest of the roster had a golden opportunity to get us hyped for the grand finale of, “Wrestlemania Season.”
I really love the Elimination Chamber and believe it to still be one of the greatest gimmick matches in wrestling. There isn’t really even that much of a need to try and create an angle or give fans a reason to care about it. For me, this match will always be entertaining and is always a really exciting thing for them to shoot, kind of like The Rock. I’m ashamed to admit it, but I guess I’m still not bored of these promos illuminating Dwayne Johnson’s almighty stature in Hollywood, wrestling and in life yet. It helps that they’ve always been produced to the WWE’s finest standards.
Probably the most notable bit of news to come out of this PPV was Jack Swagger’s victory in the Elimination Chamber match itself. Whilst it is disappointing to see the WWE not creating the right context over on RAW to justify there being two of these gimmick matches, I truly believe the heat behind the newly developed Swagger character leading into this match was more than enough of awesome to justify you watching this PPV. Imagine him feuding with Del Rio and it’s already better than what we’ve currently got on Smackdown. This character, already being viewed by a lot fans as very edgy, seems like a giant step in the right direction for WWE creatively. The fact that he rolled up Orton out of nowhere immediately following Randy’s elimination of Jericho was so irritating that I actually quite liked it. Isn’t that what a good heel should do? The match itself was more than satisfactory and of course worth a viewing. It’s an Elimination Chamber match; so it’s not going to be bad. The best moments came rather surprisingly from Mark Henry, who not only tossed Randy Orton convincingly through his pod; and managing to completely shatter it, but found himself on the receiving end of some of the biggest pops of the night. Watching Mark Henry on fire and stealing the show whilst Daniel Bryan, for example, had been bumping around and working his butt off was bizarrely enjoyable.
The Rock’s title defense victory over CM Punk wasn’t a classic, but still a thoroughly enjoyable match. I felt like the start of the match underwhelmed, but the latter stages off the bout I found to be truly exciting. There were one or two moments when the officials were being knocked out where I felt like CM Punk could pull off the upset. The most satisfying part of this match for a lot of fans was when Punk managed to kick out at two to The Rock’s (in-)famous sequence of a spinebuster and People’s Elbow, which was the finish used in their Royal Rumble encounter where Punk had lost the belt. It was nice in a match
between these two to see a table not break under the weight of the competitors before the move has even executed. Punk looked very cool in my eyes when he managed to pull off a Rock Bottom on the announcers table. Only this time the table didn’t break at all! I find that so confusing! It is unbelievable that this match was so anticipated and well received by the crowd, especially when considering the more than likely outcome of the result. I’m not sure who the credit goes to for building up this contest so well, I guess a lot of it goes to the talent, who are both playing their roles at the moment in this brilliantly. Despite what many assumed was a foregone conclusion, this was a good main event.
Many fans couldn’t believe The Shield managed to score a victory over the very strong team of John Cena, Ryback & Sheamus. I’m still not totally convinced that this angle is as captivating as they’re pretending it to be at this moment in time, but there are ways in which the WWE presents this gimmick that feels eerily reminiscent of the embryonic stages of the nWo. That’s something I do really like. I truly believe that this, “John Cena Problem,” that The Shield are mentioning in their promos is a very marketable concept, because I think that it makes good material for Cena to fight back against. It’s easy to forget that The Shield has barely wrestled more than one match and yet they’ve created such a buzz already. It is an old formula but it is obviously working. Also in this match, Ryback looked pretty cool when he came out for his entrance. That guy is a beast. Naturally, I was genuinely excited for The Shield’s entrance too, because it looks so different from everyone else. All in all, this was another solid match, with Rollins & Ambrose again looking comfortable and impressive whilst mixing it up with Vince’s top stars. Unfortunately, the same could not be said for Roman Reigns. Sometimes he was looking like a million bucks out there, but then occasionally he looked as green as grass. To counter balance, he still has plenty of time on his side.
I just want to take this opportunity to explain how much I really like imagining that potential Alberto Del Rio and Ricardo break up angle. I think it would be a fascinating storyline to watch unfold. There are some genuinely interesting emotions to uncover and I reckon there is a lot of great drama to be explored there. If they were to dwell on Ricardo in a baby-face role, as the once adorable servant in a previously abusive partnership, then this could be an unforgettable angle. It’s unusual for this to be the case as Ricardo is essentially a manager, but I bet many of those struggling in the back would cherish playing a character of such depth.
JBL, rather typically was not on my wavelength during the bout. He was constantly trying to interrupt these thoughts by pointing out that Alberto Del Rio should be in jail. He repeatedly said this because Del Rio poured Nickeloden-like slime all over Big Show on Smackdown, as well as stealing the tyres off of his bus. For sure, this really is, “World Championship,” material from the writers. A nice belt like this probably deserves some better treatment. Overall, this was a good match between these two and I was delighted to see Del Rio really trying to put an explanation mark on his athleticism. He connected some nice enzurguris at great heights as well as pulling off a suicide dive through the ropes, which was sold like it had collided with Big Show’s temple. He also landed Sweet Chin Music which appealed to the young Shawn Michales fan in me. This match started the PPV off, considering what else was on the card; that’s crazy. In conclusion, this contest was entertaining for sure, but whilst their spot involving the enzurguri bouncing off Ricardo’s bucket onto the skull of Big Show was nicely executed leading to the finish, it does perhaps emphasize a concerning lack of attention being paid to Smackdown’s storylines right now.
All in all, the Elimination Chamber PPV set the tone nicely for the upcoming weeks. It is still unclear of what exactly is going to unfold before Wrestlemania, but the action here was more than solid enough and some storylines were furthered expertly. There wasn’t too much for those ‘internet guys’ to moan about and I want to believe it had all us cats at #ilikewrestling thoroughly entertained.
- Tommy Croot
- *Pre Show* Brodus Clay and Tensai (with Cameron and Naomi) defeated Team Rhodes Scholars (Damien Sandow and Cody Rhodes)
- Alberto Del Rio (c) (World Heavyweight Championship) (with Ricardo Rodriguez) defeated Big Show
- Antonio Cesaro (c) (WWE United States Championship) defeated The Miz via disqualification
- Jack Swagger (with Zeb Colter) defeated Chris Jericho, Daniel Bryan, Kane, Mark Henry & Randy Orton (Elimination Chamber match)
- The Shield defeated John Cena, Ryback & Sheamus
- Dolph Ziggler (with AJ Lee and Big E Langston) defeated Kofi Kingston
- Kaitlyn (c) (WWE Divas Championship) defeated Tamina Snuka
- The Rock (c) (WWE Championship) defeated CM Punk (with Paul Heyman)