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WWE Elimination Chamber 2018: Previews and Predictions

WWE Elimination Chamber 2018: Previews and Predictions

WWE Presents the Elimination Chamber from the T-Mobile Arenas in Las Vegas on February 25, 2018. Elimination Chamber this year is a Raw branded PPV. This year we will get to see the first ever Women’s Elimination Chamber take place as Alexa Bliss puts her Raw Women’s belt on the line. We will also get to see the first ever 7-man Elimination Chamber for the #1 contender’s spot heading into Wrestlemania.

Match Card

The following matches are announced for Elimination Chamber 2018 as of the morning of February 17, 2018.

Elimination Chamber for WWE Universal Title Match at Wrestlemania 34

Braun Strowman vs. Elias vs. Finn Bálor vs. John Cena vs. Roman Reigns vs. Seth Rollins vs. The Miz

With seven men in the chamber and only four pods, it’s safe to assume this match will start out in a triple threat. With his loss to Cena, The Miz will be one of the first three men in the chamber. For stylistic and storytelling, I’d like to see Rollins and Finn Balor join him as the first entrants. With Elias slated for last, the interim of the match will be very interesting. Will Elias be able to pick the bones of everyone by that time?

Unless WWE has drastically altered their plans by now, it’s almost a certainty that Roman will walk out of the chamber victorious. So what WWE can do is at least set up some exciting singles matches for down the line. The Elias and Cena storyline can be advanced in the chamber with Elias picking up a pin on Cena in some fashion. With Balor and Rollins out of plans at the moment, I’d like to see one of them set up against the Miz for the Intercontinental Title at Wrestlemania. On paper, this bout has all it needs to be a fantastic match, and I hope it can deliver as it did last year.

Elimination Chamber for WWE Raw Women’s Title

Alexa Bliss (c) vs. Bayley vs. Mandy Rose vs. Mickie James vs. Sonya Deville vs. Sasha Banks

The winner of this match will likely go on to Wrestlemania as the Raw’s Women’s champion, so there are some high stakes in this bout. Going into this match, Bliss hasn’t had a PPV title match since TLC in October. It seemed like WWE was waiting until Mania season to potential move the title around and this is the opportunity.

Rose, James, and Deville would seem to be the least likely to win the chamber. Mickie has mostly been brought in to enhance talent, and I don’t think WWE would hand her the belt for a Mania run with it. Rose and Deville are a bit too green at this point to carry a title into Mania. The Absolution gimmick has gotten better, but choosing them as a favorite is a tough call.

Taking all that into consideration, it leaves Bayley and Banks as the likely candidates to dethrone Bliss should it happen. Bliss has dominated Bayley in the past in singles competitions, and I’m not sure WWE has faith in her at this point. Banks is teetering on a heel turn going into Mania, and character-wise, her and Bliss are the top heels that could go against Asuka should she choose to go for the Raw brand belt. Either Banks or Bliss would be a marquee winner of the inaugural women’s chamber match, and a legit champion is going into Mania.

Singles Match

Asuka vs. Nia Jax

If Nia Jax wins, she’s added to the Elimination Chamber. Asuka puts her undefeated streak against Jax’s chance for a title shot at Mania. Should Nia Jax win, this could set up an interesting scenario of a potential triple threat match for the Raw Women’s title at Mania. I’m not sure that WWE is willing to burn Asuka’s winning streak at Elimination Chamber, but they could pull a fast one here if they intend to push Nia over the hill the year finally.

Potential Matches

With only three matches announced for the card, I would assume WWE is going to announce at least another bout. The Raw tag team champions The Bar currently don’t have an opponent, so a last minute match against The Club wouldn’t be a shock. Also Matt Hardy and Bray Wyatt being a pre-show match wouldn’t exactly be out of the blue. A real shocker would be Wyatt and Hardy teaming up to face The Bar. We saw inklings of the pair working together at the Rumble, and if creative has nowhere to go with their feud, they could pull the trigger on a tag team.

The Elimination Chamber will set the stage for Raw’s headlining matchups at Wrestlemania 34. Barring some quick belt swaps going into Mania, expect Raw to solidify their Mania picture after next Sunday night.

Peace.

Markus X. Murden, Esq.

Senior Editor/Heels of Wrestling

@MXMurden and @TheHowPod

Heels of Wrestling Episode 20: WWE vs Everybody in 2018

Episode 20: WWE vs. Everybody in 2018

Does WWE need to worry about competition in 2018?

Happy New Year! 2018 is poised to be a big year in wrestling. New Japan Pro Wrestling and Ring of Honor are heading into 2018 with full heads of steam. Wrestle Kingdom 12 was excellent and lived up to the hype. Ring of Honor Final Battle was great as well, and they’ll be pushing out their Women’s of Honor tournament soon. WWE will debut a women’s Royal Rumble this year and a Mixed Match Challenge. The following few weeks will say a lot for WWE for the next few months, can they keep pace with the independent scene?

In this episode, the guys give their review of Wrestle Kingdom 12, offer predictions for the winners of both WWE Royal Rumbles in 2018 and more.

Follow the Heels of Wrestling on Facebook and Instagram @TheHoWPod for more excellent wrestling content.

 

10 Best WWE Superstars of 2017

10 Best WWE Superstars of 2017

2017 was a rough year for WWE Superstars. There were plagues of injuries, subpar storylines, and pushes that halted. However, some Superstars did become brighter in 2017, and others kept their remarkable paces going. The Superstars on the list are a mix of the best in-ring matches, promos, storylines, and overall entertainment value of the wrestler. These are those Superstars.

Honorable Mentions

Rusev and Aiden English

Randy Orton

Asuka

Sami Zayn

Chris Jericho

10. Brock Lesnar

BROCK LESNAR. The man was so busy defending WWE against the Universe that he shows up when he wants. When he does, there’s usually carnage and a lot of big moves to go with it. Holding the red strap since Wrestlemania, the Beast Incarnate may keep the belt until mania, and there’s not much any mortal man could do about it.

Notable Match: AJ Styles vs. Brock Lesnar (Clash of Champions)

WWE Superstar Brock Lesnar

9. Kevin Owens

The former Universal Champion had a quietly excellent year in WWE. The breakup of him and Jericho was the story of WWE heading into Mania, and Chris left putting Owens over.  Ownes had a period of being saddled without a great opponent who could bring out his best in-ring work. He and Zayn have been fantastic together at the end of the year, and I hope he gets into the WWE title picture very soon in 2018. He’s probably the best heel Smackdown has at the moment in their single’s division.

Notable Match: Kevin Owens vs. Shane McMahon (Hell in a Cell)

8. The Bar (Sheamus and Cesaro)

Collectively Sheamus and Cesaro have helped to keep Raw’s tag team division at a good caliber. The two European born stars have gelled into something great together. Their seemingly year-long feud with The Shield is hopefully coming to an end, but with the current booking, who knows?

Notable Match: The Bar vs. The Shield (Raw 11/7)

WWE Superstars The Bar

7. Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins (The Shield)

After the brand shakeup in 2017, it was almost impossible to see one of these men without the other one. I thought about separating them on this list, but their best run was once they joined forces. Their matches against the Bar were tremendous and after the inclusion of their third wheel Roman Reigns, these two still shined together, especially in Reigns’ absence. Hope you come back stronger than ever, Dean.

Notable Match: The Shield w/ Kurt Angle vs. Braun Strowman, Miz, Kane, and The Bar (Summer Slam)

WWE Superstars Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins

6. Roman Reigns

The current Intercontinental champion Roman Reigns had a great year. At Wrestlemania, he beat the Undertaker being his highlight of the year. Roman’s being kept in the chamber so he can slay Lesnar at Mania and we all know it. However in-ring he’s had some great moments and his “This is my Yard Now” promo may be the best of his career.

Notable Match: Roman Reigns vs. Undertaker (Wrestlemania)

WWE Superstar Roman Reigns

5. Braun Strowman

BAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAUN. Talk about a breakthrough year for a Superstar. Strowman was let loose from the Wyatt Family and spent most of the year laying waste to Roman Reigns. After having his momentum halted by Brock, hopefully, next year brings some gold his way.

Notable Match: Braun Strowan vs. Roman Reigns (Ambulance Match) (Great Balls of Fire)

4. The New Day

After their historic title reign was ended by The Bar, The New Day seemed aimless on Raw. Then they were moved to Smackdown and had the feud of the year with The Usos. It’s only a question of whether The New Day should be separated or kept going, either way, all these guys are incredible talents, and I look forward to everything they do.

Notable Match: The New Day vs. The Usos (Battleground)

3. AJ Styles

It feels like AJ Styles spent most of 2017 in subpar feuds that ended up with fantastic matches. A run with Baron Corbin made him cool off a bit, but high level matches with Lesnar, Cena, Balor, and more established Styles was high on this list. Plus he somehow made Jinder look okay for 15+ minutes. The Phenomenal one is the current WWE Champion and I hope 2018 brings memorable feuds for him while he’s in this position.

Notable Match: AJ Styles vs. John Cena (Royal Rumble)

WWE Superstar AJ Styles

2. The Miz

The only reason Miz isn’t #1 on this list is that he didn’t have a remarkable match this year. The Miz’s mic work, in-ring psychology, and just overall wrestling business sense aren’t matched by many this year. Taking him off of Smackdown was a massive mistake by WWE, he owned that show and Talking Smack. I can only hope The Miz comes back, gets his IC Title again, and keeps his fantastic run going. Thank you, Miz.

Notable Feud: The Miz vs. WWE

1. The Usos

Welcome to the Uso Penitentiary! 2017 was the year of The Usos. At the beginning of the year, The Miz and The Usos made Smackdown the program to watch. Heel Usos have been the best makeover in WWE in quite some time. The rap battle promos, the matches with New Day, American Alpha, and others have solidified The Usos as my favorite Superstars of the Year. If WWE had any sense, they’d give these guys the main event match at a PPV. Every Smackdown PPV slumped after their matches, and they’d usually be the first ones. I’m all in on some Day One Ish, and I hope WWE gives them their due come Wrestlemania 2018.

Notable Match: The Usos vs. New Day (Hell in a Cell)

WWE Superstars The Usos

Agree or Disagree? Leave a comment below. Then head over to Twitter and Instagram to follow us @Baselinetimes and @TheHoWPod. Peace.

Markus X. Murden, Esq.

Senior Editor/Heels of Wrestling

@MXMurden on Twitter and Instagram

10 Best WWE Matches of 2017

10 Best WWE Matches of 2017

2017 is in the books for WWE and all the booking decisions for the year are now part of history, for better or worse. So what matches shined in WWE in 2017? There were some spectacular matches this year, and it’s time they get their recognition. Here are my top 10 matches from WWE for 2017.

Honorable Mentions

AJ Styles vs. Finn Balor (Tables, Ladders, and Chairs)

Braun Strowman vs. Brock Lesnar vs. Roman Reigns vs. Samoa Joe (Summer Slam)

Braun Strowman vs. Roman Reigns Ambulance Match (Great Balls of Fire)

10. Aj Styles vs. Brock Lesnar (Survivor Series)

AJ Styles will bring the best out of anyone in a match. This match was no exception as we finally got to see Brock Lesnar in a real match, something we haven’t seen in quite some time. This survivor series brawl pitted Universal champion against WWE champion to see which Brand had the better belt holder. Brock ultimately picked up the win, but not before selling hard for AJ in what was a major highlight of a mostly dull PPV.

9. Kevin Owens vs. Roman Reigns (Royal Rumble)

I wish this match had more context to it, but it felt like two feuds just colliding for one night, and it worked. Kevin Owens and Reigns beat the hell out of each other as Jericho watched on from in a shark cage above the ring. Ultimately a run in by Braun Strowman led to KO keeping his Universal Title.

8. Men’s Money in the Bank Ladder Match (Money in the Bank)

Despite a questionable winner, this match did deliver. We got to see a great showdown with AJ Styles and Nakamura in the middle of the ring at one point, and it worked the crowd great. Baron Corbin ultimately left with the briefcase, and well history didn’t like that much I guess. In hindsight, this match may have foreshadowed so much for Smackdown over the year.

7. Pete Dunne vs. Tyler Bate (NXT 12/20)

Pete Dunne and Tyler Bate put on a clinic in singles matches this year. Right before the year is over, they decided to put on another great performance. The fact they’re not on the main roster or featured more frequently is a crime.

6. Ember Moon vs. Asuka (NXT Takeover: Brooklyn III)

Asuka’s dominance is evident in the women’s division. But that hit a road bump right before she departed NXT with Ember Moon. The now current NXT women’s champion Moon took Asuka to her limit. The second match of theirs this year, it improved on the first one with the chemistry between the two. Asuka went over in the end, but this match made Ember Moon even hotter.

5. Authors of Pain vs. D.I.Y. vs. The Revival (NXT Takeover: Orlando)

This match might be my favorite tag team match ever. It had every element that you would want. The addition of AoP might have seemed shaky at first, but boy did they deliver in the match. D.I.Y. and the Revival put on a technical clinic, with the Authors physically dominating the match mixed in. If you want to see a well-scripted match that plays to each wrestler’s strengths, then watch.

4. The Usos vs. The New Day (Hell in a Cell)

This was the year of Tag Teams in WWE. With the men’s singles division being mapped out until Wrestlemania, it was up to the tag division to add some intrigue to WWE in 2017, and they did not disappoint. The Usos and New Day put on a show this year with their feud, promos, and matches. Big E and Xavier Woods took on the Usos in a Cell, and there was carnage aplenty. As usual for them this year, this match was the star of the night and a gem for the year.

3. Tyler Bates vs. Pete Dunne (NXT Takeover: Chicago)

Remember how I said these two are amazing? This was the match that kicked it off for them this year in WWE. Completely stealing the show at Takeover Chicago, these two men put on an in-ring clinic here. Easily the best technical match in WWE this year.

2. The Usos vs. The New Day (Battleground)

This match kicked off the best Feud of the year, and it was a barn burner. The more agile members of the New Day Woods and Kofi Kingston took on the Usos, and the aerobatics were on display. Please watch this match and then watch it again. Both these teams deserve so much for rescuing the summer for WWE in 2017, and I hope everyone appreciates it.

1. John Cena vs. AJ Styles

The match that just five years ago people would have told you-you were crazy for saying it would happen. A verifiable Dream Match that many had thought would be in their fantasies. The poster boy of WWE John Cena versus the phenomenal AJ Styles did not disappoint in any fashion. Fantastic in-ring work, beautiful near falls, and great storytelling. If you had doubts about Big Match John before this match, they should be gone. AJ Styles is currently the best in-ring worker in WWE; it’s not close. His ability to elevate his opponents is a rarity in WWE and the sport in general. AJ can have a significant match with anyone, but this is a Classic and best WWE match of 2017.

Agree or Disagree? Leave a comment below. Then head over to Twitter and Instagram to follow us @Baselinetimes and @TheHoWPod. Peace.

Markus X. Murden, Esq.

Senior Editor/Heels of Wrestling

@MXMurden on Twitter and Instagram

 

Heels of Wrestling Episode 18: WWE Clash of Champions 2018

Heels of Wrestling Episode 18: WWE Clash of Champions 2018

In this episode, your Hosts Markus and Bobby break down just how uninspired Smackdown’s last PPV of the year Clash of Champions was. We also touch on the historic Women’s Royal Rumble announcement.

WWE Clash of Champions celebration

Daniel Bryan celebrates with Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn

Heels of Wrestling Episode 17: Can WWE Be Elite Again?

Episode 17: Can WWE Be Elite Again?

The Heels give their final opinions and predictions for WWE’s Survivor Series 2017 and NXT Takeover: Wargames card. We then debate if WWE can compete with the juggernaut of Bullet Club and The Elite.

If you want to support Heels along with us, make sure to subscribe to our channel @TheHoWPod on Twitter Instagram and  Facebook.

Heels of Wrestling Episode 16: Jericho and Omega

Episode 16: Jericho and Omega

A dream match between Chris Jericho and Kenny Omega will take place at Wrestle Kingdom next year. Will it live up to the hype? And what last-minute changes to Survivor Series are WWE contemplating?

As always, like, share, and leave a comment or argue with me below. Then make sure to subscribe to our channels @Baselinetimes and @TheHoWPod on Twitter and Instagram and like us on Facebook.

Heels of Wrestling Episode 15: Surviving the Wargames

Episode 15: Surviving the Wargames

Next weekend all of WWE will be at war. We’ll have the battle of the big brands when Raw and Smackdown collide on WWE Survivor Series, and NXT Wargames looks to put the best of NXT against one another. The Heels go into their predictions for Survivor Series and NXT Wargame cards and whether the cards will live up to expectations. The Heels also air their grievances with WWE creative. Who will come out victorious over the weekend of Wargames?

As always, like, share, and leave a comment or argue with me below. Then make sure to subscribe to our channels @Baselinetimes and @TheHoWPod on Twitter and Instagram and like us on Facebook.

Heels of Wrestling Episode 14: WWE TLC 2017 Review and Survivor Series Intro

Episode 14: WWE TLC 2017 and Survivor Series Intro

WWE TLC 2017 has now come and gone. It was a night that had drastic changes due to superstars Roman Reigns and Bray Wyatt being out for the night due to medical reasons. We were gifted with last-minute substitutes in AJ Styles to step in for the latter and WWE Raw GM Kurt Angle to step in for the former.

Tables, Ladders, and Chairs 2017 also had the debut of Asuka to the main roster. Did her debut go well? Were Styles and Balor match too sweet? Was Angle able to survive the carnage of a TLC match after all those years gone from the ring? Find out on our weekly show.

 

Highlights from WWE Raw TLC 2017

The Shield at TLC 2017

The Shield is victorious at TLC 2017

Finn and AJ at TLC 2017

Too Sweet!

As always, like, share, and leave a comment or argue with me below. Then make sure to subscribe to our channels @Baselinetimes and @TheHoWPod on Twitter and Instagram and like us on Facebook.

 

Heels of Wrestling Episode 13: Hell in a Cell 2017

Episode 13: Hell in a Cell 2017

Hosts Markus, Bobby, and Wes cover WWE Smackdown Live’s 2017 Hell in a Cell PPV. We then breakdown The Shield reuniting on raw this week, Asuka’s debut opponent, more questionable choices involving the Wyatt family, and the future of 205 Live.

Follow the Heels of Wrestling on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook @TheHowPod. Make sure to like and subscribe to our content, and leave any comments you have on the channel below. Support your local Heels!

Hell in a Cell KO and Shane McMahon

Shane McMahon and Kevin Owens fighting in Hell in a Cell