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411’s WWE Elimination Chamber Preview

February 18, 2023 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas
Elimination Chamber Women, Raquel Rodriguez Image Credit: WWE

Hello 411 guys, gals, enbies, and everyone else! Welcome to 411’s WWE Elimination Chamber 2023 preview! I’m Jeremy Thomas, here as always, and today WWE is in Montreal for their final PPV stop on the Road to WrestleMania. And hey, nothing bad happens when WWE goes to Montreal, right? There are five matches announced for tonight’s show, including two Chamber matches and a highly-anticipated bout for the Undisputed WWE Universal Championship. WWE knows expectations are high for the latter match and they’re no doubt figuring out how to thread that needle. There’s a lot on the line here, so let’s go ahead and jump right in!

Bobby Lashley vs. Brock Lesnar

Image Credit: WWE

First up we have a battle between two men that have been feuding on and off for the better part of a year. Bobby Lashley vs. Brock Lesnar was an anticipated feud for many years until WWE finally pulled the trigger on it in the road to last year’s WrestleMania, where Lashley defeated Lesnar at the 2022 Royal Rumble due to Roman Reigns’ interference. Lesnar would re-ignite the feud after some time away last October, leading to their match at Crown Jewel where Lesnar picked up the win. And we’re back at it again after Lashley eliminated Lesnar in this year’s Royal Rumble match. With both men having a win over the other, this is the rubber match and there’s plenty of question as to where this might go. One might expect Lesnar to go over, but that’s only if the feud is going to end here and I don’t think that’s the case. Lashley winning would help them carry to WrestleMania, and he has a potential ace in the hole if the Hurt Business finally reunites. That’s most likely how this goes, and in the meantime these two know how to deliver in the ring against each other so the match should be good. I don’t expect Brock to lose cleanly, but he will still likely go down in defeat to set up one more match at WrestleMania between them.

WINNER: Bobby Lashley

Edge and Beth Phoenix vs. Finn Bálor and Rhea Ripley

Image Credit: WWE

Edge’s storyline with The Judgment Day has been going on since WrestleMania, and shows no signs of abating until at least this year’s iteration. The latest stop in that arc sees Edge and his wife Beth Phoenix teaming up to battle Finn Balor and Rhea Ripley. Traditional WWE booking would have the babyfaces pick up the win here to make the part-timers look strong, but WWE has goals beyond just that and those goals lead to Los Angeles where Edge is expected to face Balor and Ripley has a date with Charlotte Flair. While Balor doesn’t need to win for the feud to continue, it keeps him strong and tells a more compelling story for Edge if he needs to come back from a loss here. Plus, WWE will want Ripley to have as much momentum as possible heading into her Smackdown Women’s Championship match. The probable involvement of Prison Boss Dominik can’t be discounted here, at least enough to allow Ripley to get the pinfall on Phoenix and pick up the win. Hopefully the shenanigans between Dom and perhaps Rey standing up to his son at last won’t overshadow the in-ring action, which should obviously be great considering those involved.

WINNER: Finn Balor & Rhea Ripley

WWE United States Championship
Elimination Chamber Match

Austin Theory vs. Seth Rollins vs. Johnny Gargano vs.
Bronson Reed vs. Damian Priest vs. Montez Ford

Image Credit: WWE

The first of the Elimination Chamber matches sees Austin Theory put his United States Championship on the line against an intriguing set of opponents. Theory has been soaring after the transition from Vince McMahon to Triple H left him in an uncertain state, and he’s been a reliable hand who is doing good work around the title. Obviously, his main rival in this match is Seth Rollins, with whom he has been feuding over the title for some time. But Rollins will be busy with Logan Paul for WrestleMania and doesn’t need the title for such a feud.

The other four men are new to the US Title picture and represent a wide variety in WWE’s undercard. I love Johnny Gargano and Bronson Reed, but neither of them are in a position where they’re likely to win the title and being in this match alone is enough for them as they try to elevate their position. Damian Priest is a former champion who had a dominant reign, while Montez Ford has been primed for a push for some time and would be hugely benefited by a title win here. I don’t see Theory not being involved in a US Title match at WrestleMania in some capacity and could definitely see WWE switching the title onto Ford or Priest. But ultimately I think that Theory retains here, putting a further stamp on his position on the Raw roster and giving him more bragging rights for his character.

WINNER: Austin Theory (STILL WWE United States Champion)

Raw Women’s Championship #1 Contender’s
Elimination Chamber Match

Asuka vs. Liv Morgan vs. Nikki Cross vs.
Raquel Rodriguez vs. Natalya vs. Carmella

Image Credit: WWE

The women’s Elmination Chamber match is a lot easier to predict than the men’s this year. Nothing against the competitors here but Nikki Cross, Carmella, and Natalya are out right off the bat as they’re not in a position where they would be remotely credible challengers to Belair for the Raw Women’s Championship. That leaves us with three potentials in Liv Morgan, Raquel Rodriguez, and Asuka — and while I am a big fan of all three, the choice is obvious. Rodriguez still has plenty of time left and could probably stand to use a little more experience on the main roster before she is in a WrestleMania title match, and Morgan is just a less intriguing choice to face Belair than the returned Asuka. The Empress of Tomorrow represents a new challenge for Belair and one that fans would definitely buy into as a marquee WrestleMania match. I expect this to be a really fun Chamber match, but who wins is one of the easiest predictions of the show.


Undisputed WWE Universal Championship Match
Roman Reigns vs. Sami Zayn

Image Credit: WWE

And here we have it. Despite the draw of the Elimination Chamber match, this is what everyone is coming to this PPV to see. Sami Zayn and The Bloodline has been without question the most compelling storyline on WWE television, and Zayn’s title shot against Reigns has major implications for WrestleMania. I don’t really need to point out how masterful the storytelling and performances by everyone involved has been here, and there’s a lot of intrigue going into this match. Does Zayn have Roman’s number? Will Jey Uso pick a side? Will Cody Rhodes or Kevin Owens get involved? Will someone get screwed in Montreal — and if so, who? All that could be in play for this match, which almost certainly will main event the show.

Now, I am under no illusion that Reigns will leaving Montreal without his titles. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t potential for a major moment here. Zayn getting screwed over could factor into his somehow getting a rematch in some form (triple threat, night one match) against Reigns at WrestleMania. I’m not sure if that will happen, but it would add a hell of a wrinkle to things. On the other hand, if Jey proves loyal to his family and Owens gets involved, could we get Owens & Zayn vs. The Usos for the Tag Team Championships? Frankly, that seems like the more likely option here. But the fact that I can’t be sure is a credit to how well WWE has been serving this storyline. No matter what happens, this should be a hell of a match and — if handled right — set WWE on a ton of momentum heading into WrestleMania.

WINNER: Roman Reigns (STILL Undisputed WWE Universal Champion)

And that’s all we have for WWE Elimination Chamber! With five matches on the card (as of this writing) there’s going to be a lot of room for quality matches to unfold, so my expectations are high. Thanks once again for reading and remember that we will have live coverage of the show courtesy our own Thomas Hall right here on 411mania.com. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m getting the heck out of dodge before Asuka decides that I’m not ready for her…

Image Courtesy of WWE