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CALDWELL'S WWE ELIMINATION CHAMBER PPV REPORT 2/21: Complete coverage of Raw & Smackdown Elimination Chamber matches - Sheamus and Undertaker defend titles

Feb 21, 2010 - 9:52:56 PM
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WWE ELIMINATION CHAMBER PPV REPORT
February 21, 2010
St. Louis, Mo.
Report by James Caldwell, Torch assistant editor


Monday through Friday, join Wade Keller and a guest co-host for the PWTorch Livecast, featuring live callers, live chart oom question, and conversation on the latest breaking news in pro wrestling from WWE, TNA, and other organizations. The show launched in late-December and is already one of the top sports talk shows at the Blog Talk Radio network. To access all recent shows, CLICK HERE

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***

The WWE PPV started with a video package on the ominous nature of the Elimination Chamber structure. And the long road through the desert to WrestleMania 26 becomes twisted in two miles of chain link and 16 tons of steel. "Enter the Chamber of Horrors," Triple H said. Oh no. No. No. Viewers didn't pay $44.99 to see Abdullah the Butcher electrocuted?

Arena: Michael Cole welcomed us to the show inside the Scottrade Center. Cole, Jerry Lawler, and Matt Striker on the call tonight. Cue up the Music of Doom hit to bring down the Chamber structure to start the PPV. They're starting with the Raw brand's Chamber match for the WWE Title. Interesting. Out first was John Cena, who was sent to one pod. The big pop for Cena was followed by Ted DiBiase in pod #2. Randy Orton came out for another pod, then Triple H did his complete entrance. Cole said Sheamus has to eliminate five men to retain. Not really. He just needs to eliminate one and have the others do the work. Kofi Kingston came out fifth, so he's starting the match. Kofi actually looked around to make sure he wasn't going to get ambushed like Edge last year. And, finally, the WWE champion Sheamus. Sheamus proudly held up the title belt for everyone to get a good look at, including John Cena, who he took the belt from at TLC in December.

1 -- WWE champion SHEAMUS vs. KOFI KINGSTON vs. TRIPLE H vs. RANDY ORTON vs. TED DIBIASE vs. JOHN CENA -- WWE Title match -- Raw brand Elimination Chamber match

The bell sounded and Matt Striker gave us the first piece of history on the night that the WWE Title last changed hands in St. Louis in 1998. Fact check: correct, as it was Survivor Series 1998 when The Rock won the title from Mankind. Sheamus dominated Kofi early on in the match as Randy Orton's hometown crowd chanted, "RKO," while Orton watched from inside a pod. Sheamus continued to hit a move, then play to the crowd. Kofi then came back with an enziguiri kick and a springboard splash for a two count. Sheamus shook off Kofi's offense and regained control as they closed in on the five-minute mark.

At 5:00, the screen bounced from pod to pod before stopping on...Triple H. The spotlight focused on Hunter's pod and he had a big smile on his face before turning serious and entering the Chamber to go nose-to-nose with Sheamus center ring. They picked up from the end of Raw, where Sheamus gave Hunter the running Outsider's Edge, with Hunter in control giving Sheamus a beating using the cage as a weapon. Sheamus then tried to come back with the running Edge, but Hunter blocked and hit a DDT for a two count. Kofi, who was MIA for a few minutes, then came off the top with a splash that Hunter ducked and Sheamus ate. Kofi then stacked up Hunter and Sheamus in the corner before cat jumping Sheamus for some weak-looking right hand blows out of a corner mount before hitting a leaping clothesline. Kofi then followed with an innovative Boom Drop over the top rope onto Hunter, who was on the platform on the other side of the ring. Both men sold the effects here.

At 10:00, the spotlight went to Randy Orton, who exploded out of his pod and went right after Sheamus to take the fight to the champ. Orton then played pinball with Sheamus's head to send him face-first into the structure walls over and over. Same with Triple H. Kofi then took out Orton, Hunter, and Sheamus on the platform before trying a springboard move onto Orton, only to have Orton counter in mid-air with a textbook dropkick. Hunter re-entered the action and Orton knocked him down before stalking him for the RKO. Orton wanted it, but Hunter shoved him away. Kofi, Hunter, and Orton danced before Orton back dropped Hunter over the top rope to the wire platform. Orton is the focal point here thus far. Suddenly, Sheamus rammed Orton into the ringpost and everyone was down and out.

At 15:00, the spotlight focused on DiBiase to bring in the fifth man of the match. DiBiase immediately started cleaning house as Cena waited for the final entry in the match. DiBiase then walked over to Orton and stared him down before extending a hand. DiBiase helped up Orton, then Legacy talked strategy. They targeted Hunter with kicks and stomps before targeting Sheamus to ram him shoulder-first into the ringpost. Legacy then took Kofi's head and tried to ram him through one of the square bars. They eventually squeezed his head through the chamber wall and DiBiase put him in a Boston Crab. That was sick. Orton and DiBiase then took apart Hunter including the horizonal DDT off the middle rope onto the platform. Nice. This happened right in front of Cena's pod. Orton and DiBiase stared down Cena as the countdown went on.

At 21:00, the door opened for Cena as the final entrant in the match. Cena came out fighting with right hands for both DiBiase and Cena to run wild on Legacy. Cena then hit the Five Knuckle Shuffle on Orton before teasing the Attitude Adjustment on DiBiase. DiBiase tried to hook the ropes to block, so Cena dumped him over the top rope onto the platform to hit the AA. Cena then applied the STF on DiBiase, but Orton broke it up. Remember that. Cody Rhodes then stormed the ringside area and slipped a pipe into the ring. He was yelling for Orton, but DiBiase took the pipe as Cena had Orton up in the air for the AA. DiBiase then blasted Orton with the pipe, followed by Cena. Cena and Orton were KO'ed on the mat, then DiBiase had to make a choice. He opted to cover Orton and score the pin for the first elimination.

*** Randy Orton eliminated at 24:00***

After the elimination, Orton was escorted out of the Chamber, but he looked back to shoot DiBiase a look. DiBiase focused too much on Orton, allowing Kofi Kingston to surprise him with the Trouble in Paradise for a pin on DiBiase. *** DiBiase eliminated at 25:33*** Sheamus immediately followed with a bicycle kick on Kofi before putting him up in the air for the running Outsider's Edge, which he connected with. Sheamus then covered Kofi for an elimination. ***Kofi Kingston eliminated at 26:14***

So, now it's Hunter, Cena, and Sheamus. Sheamus held the early advantage looking for a top rope Outsider's Edge on Cena, but Hunter punched Sheamus in the lower region to stop the move. Hunter then followed with a Pedigree on Sheamus. Hunter slowly reached over to Sheamus and rolled him over to score a pin for the win. There will be a new WWE champion. ***Sheamus eliminated at 28:38*** With it Cena vs. Hunter, Cena slapped on the STF and tried to settle down Hunter in the middle of the ring to force a tap out. Hunter then lightly began tapping the ring mat and the referee called for the bell with John Cena the winner and new WWE champion.

WINNER: Cena at 30:34. An okay Chamber match. They had a few memorable spots, mainly Kofi's head getting squeezed through the Chamber wall and DiBiase picking to pin Orton instead of Cena, but it was mainly a by-the-books ordeal. Not particularly memorable overall. (***)

Post-match: Cena sold the effects of the match while kneeling down on the mat. He received the WWE Title belt and stared down at the belt before Vince McMahon's music hit to bring out McMahon in a typically flashy jacket. McMahon congratulated Cena on going to WrestleMania...as long as he can defend his title right now against this man. Cue up Batista's theme music to bring out Batista for an immediate WWE Title match.

2 -- WWE champion JOHN CENA vs. BATISTA -- WWE Title match

"The fish was thiiiis big." Striker said Cena just endured 45 minutes of hell, then Striker said Cena just endured 50 minutes. The bell sounded and Cena tried a right hand blow that just upset Batista. Batista then speared a wobbly Cena before hitting the Batistabomb. Batista with the cover for the pin and the win. There's your new WWE champion. Post-match: Batista walked up the ramp nonchalantly in possession of the WWE Title belt. He then left as Cena limped out of the ring staring back at the WrestleMania banner hanging atop the building.

WINNER: Batista at 0:32 to capture the WWE Title. Well, the double title switch seemed to cheapen the title, especially Batista's nonchalant acceptance of the title and viewers going through about nine months of Batista not being able to win the World Title on Smackdown, but it sets up some intriguing developments on this PPV and going to WrestleMania. (n/a)

Announcers: Cole, Striker, and Lawler were shown on-camera to talk about McMahon using Cena's defense of Bret Hart against him. They rolled footage from Raw with the Hart car crash. Cole said Hart's "personal physician" told WWE that Hart suffered a broken leg and ligament damage. Lawler talked in quiet tones about perhaps seeing the last of Bret Hart.

In-ring: Time for the IC Title match. Instead of going to McIntyre's ring entrance, they showed McIntyre's Titantron video for a good ten seconds. He then slowly walked out to his new ring entrance that works really well for his character. Cue up the hellfire and brimstone for Kane to come out as the challenger.

3 -- IC champion DREW MCINTYRE vs. KANE -- Intercontinental Title match

The match started slow with McIntyre trying to chop down the big Kane tree with half-hearted clotheslines before Kane clotheslined him hard over the top rope to the floor. McIntyre then re-entered the ring and found some offense as the announcers talked about Kane debuting in St. Louis 13 years ago. They didn't follow up on the other involved players - Hell in a Cell, Paul Bearer, Undertaker, and Shawn Michaels. Mac teased the double underhook DDT at 6:00, but Kane blocked, then hit an uppercut. Kane then followed with a sidewalk slam for a two count. Kane tried to follow with the chokeslam, but McIntyre slipped out and rolled to the ring apron. Kane followed by ramming McIntyre head-first into the ringpost before big-booting him off the apron to the floor. Kane rolled Mac back into the ring at six, then Mac tried to run away up the entrance ramp, but Kane met him and headbutted him back toward the ring. Kane rolled McIntyre back into the ring, then McIntyre met him with a thumb to the eye at 10:00. Kane sold blindness and McIntyre hit the Future Shock double underhook DDT for the pin and the win. McIntyre then bailed with the IC Title belt and took off with the win in hand.

WINNER: McIntyre at 10:11. Okay singles match for the IC Title. It started off slow with the audience recognizing this as the "come down" match, but picked up a little near the end with the false finish teased by Kane. Not a "star-confirming match" for McIntyre, who looked awkward at times working with the larger Kane. (*1/2)

Backstage: Gail Kim was shown walking down the hallway contemplating the Divas Title match to come. Maryse then walked up to her and tried to act buddy-buddy, but Gail had enough of her mind games and told her off before walking off to the ring.

In-ring: Maryse, then Gail Kim came to the ring ready to contest the match. Suddenly, Vickie Guerrero's music hit to bring out the Smackdown authority figure. This authority figure nonsense really doesn't fly on PPVs. Raw needs a designated PPV "guest host." Anyways, Vickie said she is officially postponing the Divas Title match for tonight and putting them in a tag match against "Smackdown's top two divas," Michelle McCool and Layla. They will officially never end this tournament.

4 -- GAIL KIM & MARYSE vs. MICHELLE MCCOOL & LAYLA

Smackdown's heel duo quickly took it to Gail Kim, knocking her to the floor, then Gail made a comeback and walked over to Maryse. She feigned a hot tag, but opted not to play nicely. Gail then tried to charge McCool, but McCool smashed her with a boot. McCool followed with the Styles Clash a/k/a Faithbreaker for the pin and the win. Post-match: Maryse walked over to Gail and trash talked her a bit while Gail was on the mat. Maryse then executed her hair-flipping DDT to put an exclamation point on a bad night at the office.

WINNERS: McCool & Layla at 4:28. Throwaway tag match to fill time with no Divas Title match. It set up the next step of the Maryse vs. Gail Kim program, but they just need to get this tournament over with. (*)

NXT plug: They showed a NXT video package with a shot of the eight NXT rookies standing in the ring in some dark lighting.

Backstage: Josh Mathews introduced the NXT concept, before welcoming in The Miz to talk about mentoring Daniel Bryan. Miz said he is the first WWE star to simultaneously hold the Unified tag titles and the U.S. Title. Miz said Daniel Bryan may be an "Internet sensation" or "King of the Indys," but he sees a guy with no personality or just as big of a loser as the St. Louis Rams. Miz said if Bryan listens to him and follows his instruction, he'll be as big of a star as he is. MVP then walked in to interrupt Miz's catchphrase to talk personality. MVP said it's more important to win than show off personality. MVP also reminded Miz that he pinned him on Raw this week in a tag match, so now they have a U.S. Title match tonight. MVP told Miz to go suit up because their match is up soon.

In-ring: William Regal came to the ring to plug the NXT concept. Striker said Regal is a free agent right now and he's "negotiating" with Raw and Smackdown. Who does Regal negotiate with on the Raw brand? Shaq, Hornswoggle, a NASCAR driver? Ugh. Regal cut a promo on his NXT rookie needing to listen to him, then he paused for the crowd's constant interruptions to demand respect. Suddenly, Edge's music hit to bring out the #1 contender for the WWE or World Hvt. Title at WrestleMania. Edge with nothing to do tonight, so he came out to chat with Regal. He said listening to Regal is like watching paint dry. By the way, Jim Ross just Tweeted: "Wish King would backhand Striker. Cole directing traffic. Chamber hard 2 follow. Striker's on an adjective rush. Intervention pls."

Edge said tomorrow night on Raw, he's going to make his decision on challenging for the WWE or World Hvt. Title at WrestleMania. Edge said he's here for something else, though. He then turned to Regal and surprised him with a spear in the corner of the ring. Edge wrapped his hands around his hair and celebrated his moment before leaving the ring. Fillllllllller.

In-ring: After WWE filled more time showing a video package on WrestleMania, The Miz came out to the ring with Big Show for the U.S. Title match. The Unified tag champs got their shine in the ring, then the announcers narrated a clip of MVP pinning Miz in the non-title tag match on Raw. The announcers seemed to be oblivious to this being the exact same booking as the Royal Rumble where WWE randomly added the U.S. Title match to the PPV. This time, no "Pants on the ground." MVP then came out with Mark Henry to challenge for the title. Striker, who couldn't sell a ticket in the independents, then talked up Miz's comments on Daniel Bryan on NXT, saying Daniel Bryan has ten years of experience "on the minor league independent scene," but this is WWE.

5 -- U.S. champion THE MIZ (w/Big Show) vs. MVP (w/Mark Henry) -- U.S. Title match

Miz started the match by trash-talking MVP center ring. MVP then knocked Miz to the outside as the announcers talked up the issues between them. The first Tiger Woods reference of the show, with Cole knocking Woods for reading his apology on Friday. Lawler is continuing to defend Miz, which is consistent from Raw. Back in the ring, Miz broke free from a mathold and shot MVP off to the ropes. MVP tried to leapfrog Miz, but Miz caught MVP and delivered a gut-buster across his knees. Lawler, obviously not aware "Rookie" Wade Barrett is an FCW announcer, asked if there will be any NXT rookies being mentored for an announce position. Cole said he's been mentored for 13 years, including tonight. Reference to Jim Ross right there. Striker picked up the Daniel Bryan conversation again as the wrestlers set up a series of pin exchanges, but only nearfalls resulted.

MVP blasted Miz with a right hand from his knees, then tried to land a blow in the corner, but Miz ducked and hit a clothesline for a two count. MVP then countered a mathold into a standing electric chair drop for a close two count. Miz came back with right hand blows and hit a swinging DDT as MVP was on his knees, but it was only good for a two count. Miz continued to work over MVP with Show adding some trash talk from ringside. Miz then hit his running clothesline through the ring corner before going up top. MVP crotched Miz, though, and landed right hand strikes before going up top. Miz knocked MVP off the top, anyways, only to have MVP pull off a Kurt Angle running up the ropes to execute a belly-to-belly suplex. Miz came up bleeding from the forehead and MVP made a cover for a two count. Apparently no stoppage for blood when going to the finish.

MVP ran over Miz with clotheslines and forearm smashes before hitting a facebuster across his knee. MVP then set up the Ballin' elbow drop and connected, but Miz put his foot on the bottom rope for a break. MVP then occupied the referee and Show pulled Miz out of the ring to safety. MVP followed to the outside, then Henry got involved. Henry tried to charge Show near the guardrail, but Show moved and Henry crashed hard through the barricade. Nice gimmicked spot that made a big impact. Back in the ring, MVP missed with a corner boot and his leg was hung up in the corner. Miz then occupied the ref and Show KO punched MVP behind the ref's back. Miz then made the cover for the win to retain the U.S. Title.

Post-match: Cole told Striker to shut up as Striker tried to defend Miz's actions. The doctor then hit the ring to clean up the blood on Miz's forehead as Miz celebrated in his face. Show then paraded around the U.S. Title belt before the medic checked on MVP. Miz taunted MVP, then Show and Miz took off from the ring celebrating the victory. Meanwhile, Cole talked up Daniel Bryan challenging Miz on his strategy during the NXT debut on Tuesday.

WINNER: Miz at 13:02 to retain the U.S. Title. Good title match. Nice to see them in the semi-main event slot. WWE obviously didn't trust Miz and MVP to pull off a match by themselves, though, as the other involved parties were heavily involved and the announcers were heavily, heavily over-produced to the point of distracting from the match at times. (**)

In-ring: After a pause for a breather before the main event, Rey Mysterio's music hit to bring out the first Smackdown wrestler for the main event Elimination Chamber match. John Morrison then came out second as the announcers talked about the lingering "ankle injury" for Morrison. No sign of Shawn Michaels here. Morrison was locked into his pod and he did a few chin-ups to warm up. Next out was Chris Jericho. The Undertaker then stormed the ring without the traditional slow entrance, tossing aside his ring jacket and hat. The announcers sold that Taker means business. He gets the fourth pod.

So, we're starting with C.M. Punk, who came out next, and R-Truth. Punk needed his entourage with him here. Punk's music stopped and he walked while he talked about four extremely weak individuals stuck in a prison of addiction right now. Punk said the four of them are locked inside the Elimination Chamber with him, and be sure he's not locked in here with them. "It's you locked in here with me," he said. Punk said they're nursing the pain and the wounds from this Chamber and from himself, he wants them to remember that when they fail, think of it as him saving them. Punk stared down at Rey to tell him he's setting himself free. Punk said when they drown themselves in a sea of prescription medication and alcohol tomorrow morning...suddenly R-Truth's music interrupted Punk's speech. Truth asked what's up. I don't think I'll ever be able to get the image of Truth and Morrison rapping backstage on Smackdown out of my head.

6 -- WWE champion THE UNDERTAKER vs. R-TRUTH vs. C.M. PUNK (w/Luke Gallows and Serena) vs. CHRIS JERICHO vs. JOHN MORRISON vs. REY MYSTERIO -- WWE Title match -- Raw brand Elimination Chamber match

Truth started with a dropkick for a two count to start the match. Truth then clotheslined Punk over the top rope to the Chamber platform. Truth followed with a dive from the top rope taking both men down to the platform. Back in the ring, Truth wanted his corkscrew flying fist smash, but Punk ducked and Truth ate the mat. Punk then hit the enziguiri kick and Go 2 Sleep on Truth that KO'ed Truth. Punk with the pin for the first elimination.

***R-Truth eliminated at 3:34***

Just like the Royal Rumble, Punk took a mic mid-match and walked over to Taker. He told Taker to pray that his pod opens last because he's going to make him tap out just like before. Punk walked over to Morrison and said he's going to prove his rock lifestyle is a waste. Punk then turned to the hard camera and told the viewers at home to put their hand on the screen to feel his flow. Pause. Lawler asked Cole if he put his hand on the monitor. After waiting for the five-mintue mark, the first pod opened to reveal Rey Mysterio. Mysterio came out hot on Punk, but Punk blocked a 619 with a mid-ring tackle. Striker with another elaborate, wordy analogy on the Chamber being the seeds of life for WrestleMania. Punk then rammed Rey head-first into the Chamber wall repeatedly. Cole equated it to a baseball bat, like Albert Pujols swinging. Cole is officially a heel announcer in my book with a Pujols reference. Punk followed up by ramming Rey head-first into his own Pod, with Rey smacking the Pod to make a good scene that wowed the audience. The action moved to the corner with Rey executing a nice huracanrana off the top to the platform. Punk rolled back into the ring and Rey hit his springboard dive to score a pin to eliminate Punk.

***Punk eliminated at 9:59***

After a pause because WWE's timing is slightly off, the next pod to be spotlighted was Chris Jericho. Rey saw him coming and ducked a clothesline before flinging Jericho across the ring using his feet. Rey then hit the 619, but Jericho rolled to the platform rather than into the ring. Rey tried a leaping attack, but Jericho ducked and Rey jumped onto the Chamber wall ala Spiderman. Jericho followed by dropping Rey hard to the platform to begin an attack. Jericho then walked over to Taker's pod and taunted him a bit before returning to Rey. Rey teased a comeback with a moonsault, followed by a Dragon Sleeper mid-ring. Jericho countered into a Walls of Jericho, though, as the clock counted down to a new wrestler entering.

Next out was...John Morrison, who entered the ring and went after Jericho. Taker will be the last man in the match. Morrison cleared Jericho, then smashed Rey with a kick to the face that put Rey on the platform. Rey recovered, though, and kicked Morrison into one of the pods with Morrison smashing his head into the structure. Jericho followed by back dropping Rey over the top rope to the opposite side of the structure's platform. Morrison suddenly entered the scene with a flying splash on both Rey and Jericho. Back in the ring, Morrison hit a running Standing Shooting Press on Rey for a two count. Rey tried to come back with a 619, but Jericho ran up to Rey and hit a spinning backbreaker for a two count. Taker continued to pace as Jericho slowly walked around the ring in control of things. Morrison then came to life and hit the Starship Pain on Rey and scored an elimination on Rey.

***Mysterio eliminated at 20:02***

Morrison and Jericho were left in the ring while waiting for Taker here. Morrison seemed to lose track of where he was, then Jericho slapped on the Walls of Jericho. The clock eventually counted down and Taker hit the ring as the final entrant. Taker KO'ed Jericho to break up the Walls of Jericho, but Jericho came back with right hand blows. Jericho then tried to run away from Taker into one of the pods, but Taker followed him and landed a flurry of right hands and kicks to blast Jericho down to a fetal position. Jericho sold a battered head as Taker paced the Chamber. Taker then blasted Morrison, but Morrison suddenly came back with a major springboard Flying Chuck off the ropes. Morrison sold the injured ankle, though, and couldn't make a cover. He opted for a Starship Pain attempt, but Taker got his knees up to block.

At 25:00, everyone was KO'ed. Taker suddenly sat up and Jericho ran back into the pod and comically closed the door. Taker then chucked Morrison over the top rope and started blasting Morrison with strikes before running him into the pod where Jericho was holding on for dear life. Taker then teased the Last Ride on the platform, but Jericho came running out of his pod to attack Taker at the opportune time. Taker tried to tackle Jericho, but Jericho moved and Taker ate the opposite pod. Morrison tried a springboard move back in the ring, but Taker popped to his feet and chokeslammed Morrison over the ropes to the platform. Taker then rolled Morrison back into the ring and pinned him sort of anti-climatically.

***Morrison eliminated at 28:25***

With it now down to Taker vs. Jericho, Taker dropped the straps and squared off in a fighting stance. Jericho wanted no part of Taker, selling apprehensiveness as he slowly entered the ring. Jericho then charged Taker and ate a fist. Taker followed with a flying knee before missing with a corner boot and getting hung out to dry on the top rope. Jericho then followed with a superplex attempt and he connected. Jericho tried to follow with a running kick, but Taker countered into a chokeslam, only to have Jericho block. They traded submission attempts before Jericho slapped on the Walls of Jericho. Taker was like Triple H in the STF here, then Taker showed life and countered into the Hell's Gate submission. Jericho fought the hold and reached the ropes to leverage a break.

Taker sat up at 33:00 and teased the Tombstone, but Jericho blocked and hit the codebreaker center ring. Jericho then crawled over to Taker and made a cover, but Taker kicked out just before three. Jericho, frustrated, paintbrushed Taker and shouted at him to stay down. Jericho followed with right hand blows before making the classic mistake of a corner mount. Taker suddenly snapped to life for a Last Ride powerbomb center ring. Taker fell backward, though, and couldn't make a cover. Taker eventually pulled himself together and called for the end with the throat slash. There's your cue. Suddenly, Shawn Michaels entered the Chamber in street clothes. Michaels waited for Taker to turn around, then he dropped Taker with the Sweet Chin Music. Jericho, excited like a kid on Christmas morning, crawled over to his present and covered Taker for the pin to win the match and the World Title. Michaels never made eye contact and continued to stare down at Taker even through the pin. After the match, Jericho took his title belt and ran, ran away. They closed with a close-up of Michaels and his five o'clock shadow beard as Michaels continued to stare down at Taker. End PPV.

WINNER: Jericho at 35:38 to capture the World Hvt. Title. Excellent Chamber match with the focus on Punk's character development like the Rumble, Morrison having some standout moments including a nice Flying Chuck on Taker, Rey's resilience, and Michaels's predictable (but approp) run-in to help Jericho win the World Title and set up Michaels vs. Taker at WM26. The announcing wasn't as horrible here as it had been the rest of the PPV. They got out of the way for the most part, which was to the benefit of the broadcast. (****)

FINAL THOUGHT: Underwhelming overall PPV with a weak, weak mid-card, a lot of filler in the second hour, and a "just okay" Raw Chamber match. For the second straight year, the Smackdown brand's Chamber match was much better. I don't recommend a replay order. There just wasn't enough here to warrant $44.99 if you already know the surprises.

WHERE WE'RE GOING - WM26: Batista vs. Cena (perhaps with Sheamus involved) for the WWE Title, Jericho vs. Edge for the World Title, Taker vs. Michaels, McMahon vs. Hart(?)

We welcome your 0-10 score and comments on this show for a "WWE PPV Reax" feature in the Torch Feedback section of PWTorch.com. To contribute your thoughts on the PPV, click here.


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THE TORCH REACHES MORE COMBAT ENTERTAINMENT FANS THAN ANY OTHER SOURCE

PWTorch editor Wade Keller has covered pro wrestling full time since 1987 starting with the Pro Wrestling Torch print newsletter. PWTorch.com launched in 1999 and the PWTorch Apps launched in 2008.

He has conducted "Torch Talk" insider interviews with Hulk Hogan, The Rock, Steve Austin, Kevin Nash, Scott Hall, Eric Bischoff, Jesse Ventura, Lou Thesz, Jerry Lawler, Mick Foley, Jim Ross, Paul Heyman, Bruno Sammartino, Goldberg, more.

He has interviewed big-name players in person incluiding Vince McMahon (at WWE Headquarters), Dana White (in Las Vegas), Eric Bischoff (at the first Nitro at Mall of America), Brock Lesnar (after his first UFC win).

He hosted the weekly Pro Wrestling Focus radio show on KFAN in the early 1990s and hosted the Ultimate Insiders DVD series distributed in retail stories internationally in the mid-2000s including interviews filmed in Los Angeles with Vince Russo & Ed Ferrara and Matt & Jeff Hardy. He currently hosts the most listened to pro wrestling audio show in the world, (the PWTorch Livecast, top ranked in iTunes)


REACHING 1 MILLION+ UNIQUE USERS PER MONTH
500 MILLION CLICKS & LISTENS PER YEAR
MILLIONS OF PWTORCH NEWSLETTERS SOLD
PWTORCH STAFF

EDITORS:
Wade Keller, editor
(kellerwade@gmail.com)

James Caldwell, assistant editor
(pwtorch@gmail.com)

STAFF COLUMNISTS:
Bruce Mitchell (since 1990)
Pat McNeill (since 2001)
Greg Parks (since 2007)
Sean Radican (since 2003)

We also have a great team of
TV Reporters
and Specialists and Artists.

PWTORCH VIP MEMBERSHIP

PWTorch offers a VIP membership for $10 a month (or less with an annual sub). It includes nearly 25 years worth of archives from our coverage of pro wrestling dating back to PWTorch Newsletters from the late-'80s filled with insider secrets from every era that are available to VIPers in digital PDF format and Keller's radio show from the early 1990s.

Also, new exclusive top-shelf content every day including a new VIP-exclusive weekly 16 page digital magazine-style (PC and iPad compatible) PDF newsletter packed with exclusive articles and news.

The following features come with a VIP membership which tens of thousands of fans worldwide have enjoyed for many years...

-New Digital PWTorch Newsletter every week
-3 New Digital PDF Back Issues from 5, 10, 20 years ago
-Over 60 new VIP Audio Shows each week
-Ad-free access to all PWTorch.com free articles
-VIP Forum access with daily interaction with PWTorch staff and well-informed fellow wrestling fans
-Tons of archived audio and text articles
-Decades of Torch Talk insider interviews in transcript and audio formats with big name stars.


**SIGN UP FOR VIP ACCESS HERE**

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