The WWE 2013 Elimination Chamber delivered as promised, giving fans a very exciting show which set the table for the real main-event in a few weeks. The WrestleMania championship main-events are now officially set as the WWE puts its promotional machine in high gear from now until April 7.
The Rock pinned CM Punk to retain the WWE championship in the main-event. The stipulation was that if Rock got himself disqualified or counted out that Punk would win the title. Punk tried to bait Rock into getting disqualified early on, think Christian vs. Randy Orton. Punk gave Rock a Rock Bottom on the table at one point. The finish came when Punk tossed the Rock into the referee who went down. Punk then hit Rock with a GTS and covered him for the pin while the referee was down. Punk then begged a new ref to get in the ring. As he did The Rock caught him in a spine buster and then dropped a People’s Elbow recreating the sequence he used to win the Rumble match but Punk kicked out. Punk rolled onto the new referee’s ankle shortly thereafter who went down. Heyman handed Punk the belt. Heyman held Rock who ducked and took the belt shot. Rock hit a Rock Bottom on Punk for three. I thought for a second the referee would see the belt in the ring and teased a DQ but he didn’t. JBL put over the fact that Punk had Rock beat and no referee was there. This could be a tease for a Triple Threat Match if The Undertaker isn’t wrestling Punk at Mania. I liked this match a lot better than their Royal Rumble match. Punk was on offense for most of the match. It had a faster pace and told a better story.
[adinserter name=”366 left”]Alberto Del Rio retained the WWE world heavyweight championship in the opener against The Big Show. Del Rio tapped out Show after hitting an enzuigiri into a cross armbreaker. I thought it was a pretty average match, especially coming off of a Last Man Standing Match last month. The shocker to me was Dolph Ziggler not cashing in Money in the Bank here. I was so convinced that I probably would have bet on it.
Jack Swagger won the Elimination Chamber and a title shot against the world heavyweight champion at WrestleMania. I don’t think anyone could have predicted that a year ago right? This was just a fantastic match. Chris Jericho and Daniel Bryan started the match off. Bryan and Kane worked together initially until Bryan tried to pin Kane with a school boy. The crowd loved this. Mark Henry was the last to enter and all men were still alive in the match at this point. Henry quickly eliminated Daniel Bryan. Henry then tossed Randy Orton through the glass pod. Henry eliminated Kane next with a slam. Jericho and Jack Swagger worked together to double suplex Henry on the steel floor. Orton wound up sneaking up behind Henry with an RKO and eliminating him after Henry took a code breaker from Jericho and a kick to the face from Swagger. Henry came back in and delivered slams to Swagger, Orton, and Jericho, laying them all out until Booker T ordered him to the back. Orton eventually pinned Jericho with an RKO. Swagger snuck in behind and pinned Orton with a school boy to win the match and pull off the upset. Everyone here worked real hard and got an early lead on the WWE Match of the Year.
This now confirms what I wrote last week in that the Uncle Zeb angle on RAW looked like it was to start some heat for an Alberto Del Rio feud. It makes sense and the win tonight was super impressive, but I just think that Swagger needs a little more time to get people believing in him as a title threat. Swagger has been jobbed out for the last several years and fans remember that. I have always thought Swagger was underutilized but I think he still needs time. Regardless, they are going with Del Rio vs. Swagger and I’d expect a ton of cheap heat to get anyone caring.
Where this leaves Dolph Ziggler is what I want to know. He won Money in the Bank over the summer and hasn’t cashed in. Logically you’d think he’d want to cash in at WrestleMania at this point. Throwing him into the match would muddy it down. The only idea I see coming out of this is Del Rio retaining and Ziggler cashing in at WrestleMania and winning the world heavyweight title. Anything else would make no sense to me.
The Shield defeated Ryback, John Cena, and Sheamus. I was disappointed in this one early on but they really picked it up towards the end. The crowd absolutely ate it up which made it even that much more exciting. Seth Rollins pinned Ryback after Roman Reigns nailed Ryback with a spear while he was going for Shellshock. I have to admit that I am real surprised to see Ryback take the pin here. Reigns is being pushed here as something special with the emphasis clearly on him as a monster. One thing I should point out here is that Ryback stormed out and left without Cena and Sheamus. That could be a set up for something. I suspected that he’d be turning coming out of the Royal Rumble. I haven’t heard anything but I sense something there. Regardless, The Shield get a big win here and Ryback takes a big loss.
The table is set for the top of the WrestleMania 29 card with The Rock vs. John Cena for the WWE championship and Jack Swagger vs. Alberto Del Rio for the WWE WHC. At this point I’d look for something with Ryback and possibly Sheamus. If The Undertaker is returning I’d expect your first big hint on Monday night along with some movement towards the Brock vs. Triple H rematch. All in all it is one of the more loaded WrestleMania lineups in recent years.
[adinserter name=”366 right”]Overall I’d give this pay per view a huge thumbs up. This one was exciting and fast paced for most of the night and delivered three fantastic matches (four if you count the four great minutes of Kofi vs. Ziggler). I can’t recall a time in recent memory where the WWE has been this hot. This is exactly what you want heading into WrestleMania.
Full WWE Elimination Chamber 2013 results & winners…
The Rock defeated CM Punk to retain the WWE championship
Kaitlyn defeated Tamina to retain the WWE Divas title
Dolph Ziggler defeated Kofi Kingston
The Shield defeated John Cena, Ryback, and Sheamus
Jack Swagger pinned Randy Orton to win the SmackDown Elimination Chamber Match
Antonio Cesaro defeated The Miz via DQ
Alberto Del Rio defeated The Big Show to retain the WWE WHC
Brodus Clay and Tensai defeated Team Rhodes Scholars
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