With the Elimination Chamber PPV this Sunday, the HTCWrestling Staff gives their thoughts on which Chamber match is their favorite in WWE history!
Matt: You can’t beat the first one from Survivor Series 2002. The intrigue of a new match, seeing the Chamber for the first time, then World Title on the line and Shawn Michaels winning the big one after essentially retiring for five years. Plus the entire match had current or future Hall of Famers in it: Shawn Michaels, Triple H, Booker T, Kane, Rob Van Dam and Chris Jericho.
Cam: Perhaps Eric Bischoff’s greatest contribution to the WWE in his tenure is the Elimination Chamber match. The mystique and drama has subsided some due to the WWE creating an entire pay per view around the chamber match itself and the usual placement of the event right before Wrestlemania. However, there have still been several moments and matches overall to view the Elimination Chamber as a successful idea. It’s easy to pick the first one at Survivor Series 2002 simply because, for obvious reasons, it was the first one and no one knew what to expect. But you should pick it because Shawn Michaels won and a lot of guys left a lot of blood on that canvas. With that said, my favorite chamber match is the WWE Championship match from 2012. In my opinion it was the best overall wrestling match considering the elements. CM Punk was at the top of his game at this time and every guy in the match looked like a million bucks.
The Chairman: I’m going to be honest and say I’m the worst person to ask this question to because the majority of the Elimination Chamber matches occurred when I stopped watching WWE from late 2004 – early 2012. Long story short, I turned 21 and thought it was more fun to party than to watch wrestling.
Anyways I will say none of the Elimination Chamber matches in recent years wowed me. Maybe it has to do with the timing. I feel an event of this caliber shouldn’t be stuffed in between Royal Rumble and Wrestlemania, just personal opinion of course. Hell it’s almost laughable when Jack Swagger won a Elimination Chamber setting up his match against Alberto Del Rio at Wrestlemania 29. So I will say my favorite was the first one at Survivor Series 2002. I remember the epic feud between Shawn Michaels and Triple H and these two about killed each other in the chamber. I was a big HBK fan and for him to win the title again was an amazing moment. Growing up in the Attitude Era and remembering all the talk that Shawn Michaels would never wrestle again was tough to stomach. Then all the sudden he came back and it was an unforgettable moment. Looking back I never thought I’d see HBK in the ring again, let alone holding the biggest prize in the game. So this is why the very first Elimination Chamber match holds a place in my heart. Someday though I’ll revisit those I missed during my hiatus and see if they stack up.
Justin C: I rewatched a handful of these over the weekend. I kept coming back to the original. When I think of the Elimination Chamber, I think of a match that should have blood, violence and drama throughout. This one had all of that. Others had their moments. The 2011 Chamber with Cena winning was good, but very predictable. Edge and Rey Mysterio had two great finishing sequences in the 2009 and 2011 matches. The 2014 and 2017 matches were also strong. But the 2014 one had interference by the Wyatts and Kane. And the 2017 one dumbed down the Chamber with padding on the steel grates. That’s why I come back to the original, with HBK winning the World Title again. The drama at the end was great and the reaction HBK got in MSG was phenomenal.
Heather: Well let me just say that the question is FAVORITE Chamber match and not best, so I feel good about my choice. While I have fond memories of Wade Barrett’s Elimination Chamber performance, of Shawn Michaels coming from under the steel structure to take out the Undertaker, of the first Chamber and of when Edge cashed in following a harrowing battle – my favorite has to be No Way Out 2009: John Cena, Chris Jericho, Rey Mysterio, Mike Knox, Kane & Kofi Ki- Nope! Edge.
When Justin posed this question it was the very first thing to pop in my brain regarding Elimination Chambers and I couldn’t tear myself away from thinking I just like this one best. Edge assaulting Kofi on the outside with the one man con-chair-to and inserting himself into this match after losing his WWE Championship earlier in the night was just an awesome beginning. Of course I’d have preferred to have Kofi over Mike Knox or Kane, but when it comes to surprises in WWE we have to take what we can get. The match is also pretty good. Knox and Kane are taken out early which was the right decision and the majority of the match is fought by Jericho and Mysterio followed by Edge. No slogging through those other guys? Lovely.
The best part is that Edge putting himself in Kofi’s pod isn’t even the only surprise we get. When we get to the moment in the match when it’s finally Cena’s turn to enter (last), the expectation was that he’d clean house on his way to victory. Or at least definitely be in the final two. Only- he wasn’t. After only about 3 minutes in the match, Jericho, Mysterio And Edge each hit their finisher to take John Cena, the champ, out of the match! Edge’s reaction alone was worth it, but he always did have the greatest faces. It was a genuine shock and a welcomed one for sure. After that it’s wrapped up fairly quickly and Edge comes out on top with all of this somehow just being okay even though he wasn’t a Raw Superstar. The unfortunate aftermath is that at Wrestlemania Cena winds up back on top and this ingenious Elimination Chamber play ended up meaning almost nothing
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