This is the first non-big four PLE that I’ve watched in a while. WWE has made me care about the storylines that they have going on. The Bloodline story that they’ve been telling is the most invested I’ve been in a wrestling storyline in years, I don’t know how long its actually been.
Elimination Chamber 2023 was a really good show. There were only a few stumbles throughout, but nothing that was egregious. The final two matches had downer finishes, even if they’re setting up other storylines. There were several people with ring gear inspired by other things, whether it be movies, comics, or other wrestlers.
The card opened up with the Women’s Elimination Chamber match for the number one contendership for the Raw Women’s Championship. There was an awkward moment with the setup for a move, but it didn’t ruin the match. I thought this was a solid opener and had some fun moments but the winner was easy to predict when it was down to the final three. Asuka winning was the least surprising outcome.
The second match was Bobby Lashley vs Brock Lesnar, and it was a fun match, but it had a DQ finish. Brock Lesnar DQing himself possibly sets something up between them for WrestleMania.
The third match was the mixed tag match between Edge and Beth Phoenix vs Finn Balor and Rhea Ripley. This felt like the culmination of the Edge vs The Judgement Day storyline. Judgement Day losing this match possibly sets them up to either breakup or to shift focus back to the OC. I also have no idea where Edge and Beth Phoenix go from here.
The Men’s Elimination Chamber match for the US title was the penultimate match of the card. There was so much to like about the match that the ending feels like a gut punch. If there’s a match that you watch from the card I would say watch this one, even with the ending being a major letdown. Austin Theory ended up retaining his title after Logan Paul interfered.
The main event was Roman Reigns vs Sami Zayn for the Undisputed WWE Universal Championship. This continued the storytelling from the end of the Royal Rumble. To get the full weight of the storytelling you have to watch the match. I found myself getting into the match and going against what I knew would be the outcome. I found myself believing that Sami could win, even though I knew that Roman would retain. Roman did retain after some shenanigans. Kevin Owens came out to save Sami from a beatdown. Elimination Chamber went off the air with Sami Zayn standing tall in defeat.
Elimination Chamber 2023 was a fantastic B show. I’m going to fantasy book a little bit here. I hope that they end up splitting the belts up with both Cody and Sami pinning Roman at the same time. I don’t think that’s going to happen but I think it would be a great moment, and would set up interesting stories going forward. I give Elimination Chamber 2023 8 stars out of 10.