WWE’s most demonic structure returns to terrorize Smackdown!
Elimination Chamber is back. It’s not usually the most pleasant event to watch, here at Coast 2 Coast we’re both pretty excited to see what the redesigned structure will look like. Plus, the World Heavyweight Championship is on the line so of course we’re going to watch.
1) We are now heading into week 2 of John Cenas record tying 16th World title run. What are your thoughts on this?
Corey: Well for one I wish he would have won it at either a WrestleMania or SummerSlam. Also, I think WWE missed out on a solid opportunity to add another dimension to Cena’s character if they would have had him lose at the Rumble, then slowly but surely have that desire to win his 16th title turn into an obsession which could have, if booked correctly, been built to SummerSlam and also leading to a Cena heel turn. Also it doesn’t seem like he’s going to have a long run with rumors going that he’ll most likely be in a mixed tag match at WrestleMania with Nikki against Miz and Maryse which is also why I feel they went too soon with his win.
Josh: There really isn’t much to say about his title reign so far. It’s weird because they’ve made a much bigger deal of his 16th title win on social media than on the regular WWE programming. I get the sense that they’re more interested in the Cena storyline where he breaks Ric Flair’s record. Just a guess, but I’m assuming they’ll want to do that storyline this next year, maybe at next year’s WrestleMania. But so far 16 is a dud.
2) Dolph Ziggler is set for a handicapped match against Kalisto and Apollo Crews this coming Sunday at Elimination Chamber. How do you see this match going?
Corey: It can only go one of two ways. 1) It will end in disqualification so everyone can save face or 2) Kalisto and Crews will pick up the win because if they both lose it will make them both look incompetent which Crews’s character can’t afford right now.
Josh: It has to be a DQ or count-out victory for Crews and Kalisto. This match makes zero sense so unless they plan on a swerve, maybe have Crews turn on Kalisto during the match and align with Ziggler, they’ve booked themselves into a lose-lose scenario.
3) The Smackdown tag titles will be on the line in a tag turmoil match with the defending champions, American Alpha will defend against The Usos, Breezango, The Vaudevillains, The Ascension, and Slater & Ryno. Who do you see picking up the win?
Corey: Personally I want the Usos to win. Ever since they turned heel I’ve been in full support of these guys, but if American Alpha retain I won’t be upset about it.
Josh: American Alpha should pick up the win in this match, they haven’t defended the titles yet and they need a little build after being all but forgotten about during the run to Royal Rumble, especially after the ‘upset’ win over the Wyatt Family which should have been a huge momentum boost. If you’re going to strap the rocket to these guys as the top of the tag division then you can’t bail on it now.
4) Not long ago Kenny Omega finally answered the wrestling world’s question of “What are you going to do next?” By finally saying be will be staying in Japan for the time being. Did you see this coming?
Corey: Based off of some of his interviews I kind of saw it happen but since it wasn’t confirmed until recently I still had hopes of a Kenny Omega debut at the Royal Rumble which obviously didn’t happen. There’s still lots that he can do in NJPW and the bigger of a star he becomes over there then the more of an asset he’ll be when/if he finally comes to WWE.
Josh: I’m not surprised. Omega has a great spot in NJPW that he’s earned after years of hard work. He’s only recently worked his way into the heavyweight division after primarily being in the junior-heavyweight division, he speaks fluent Japanese, and he seems to enjoy the Japanese culture. Pure speculation since I’ve never spoken with Kenny Omega, but I imagine he feels there’s still more to accomplish in NJPW so he’ll stay until he feels he’s done all he can and then eventually move on.
5) Shinsuke Nakamura has not debuted on the main roster just yet. He lost the NXT title to Bobby Roode and generally once they put over the next champion the former champion will have one more losing match before they debut. If you had to book his main roster call up how would you do it and on which brand would he go to?
Corey: First off I would put him on Smackdown just so we can eventually see AJ Styles vs Shinsuke Nakamura again but on a bigger stage. Those two had unbelievable chemistry when they were in NJPW. I would actually have him wait until the Smackdown after WrestleMania to debut. Let whoever is champion get ready to close the show with a promo and have Nakamura interrupt and claim that the entire roster is now on notice that the King of Strong Style has arrived.
Josh: I think Raw could really benefit from Shinsuke Nakamura. The question you have to ask is what’s the best way to get him over. If the plan is to have Samoa Joe tear through the Raw roster as Triple H’s heavy then what better way to debut Nakamura than have him show up as the foil to Joe’s destruction. Let’s carry Joe and Nakamura’s great rivalry in NXT over to the main roster and let them destroy each other on Raw for a few months.
– Big congrats to the Big Show. He’s lost a lot of weight and looks a whole lot healthier. Still don’t wanna see him in the ring anymore but still, congrats!
– Whoever is booking the Cruiserweights should be fired.
– Braun Strowman is impressing me week after week. His powerslam on Reigns through the barricade was pretty dope.
– Dave Meltzer is reporting that Seth Rollins should be ready in time for WrestleMania which WWE brass should be ecstatic about. Triple H versus Seth Rollins is back on for WrestleMania!
– So nearly every pro wrestling insider is saying Bray Wyatt will walk out of Elimination Chamber as champion, which immediately makes me think he won’t and that Cena will retain. If the plan is Orton vs Wyatt at WrestleMania for the title there is still plenty of time for Cena to drop the title on one of the many Smackdowns leading up to WrestleMania.