But these predictions are going to be a little quicker and probably filled with more typos than usual this week. I just got home from having grad class all weekend and had to spend most of the week preparing for the big garage sale at The 808 yesterday. So I’ve done no prep work for this blog at all. And, by glancing over the card earlier in the week I have NO CONFIDENCE in any of these picks for tonight. I really feel a lot of these are toss ups that could go any direction. So I’ll list my confidence picks again at the end of the blog but by no means do I think you should replicate those in your own pools. I feel shaky at best on these.
I’m pretty sure I’m going to predict Neville matches incorrectly on PPVs at least 85% of the time for the forseeable future. I think he’s a tough guy to predict. With his high-octane offense, he’s out there to get the crowd going. But does he actually have to win the match to keep the crowd excited? I think that answer is No but I have a feeling the WWE feels the answer is Yes. I’m getting the impression that Neville is a “gets beat on RAW a lot but wins at the PPVs” type of guy. But I can’t buy into that yet.
With this being Bo’s first real big match in forever, I don’t think he can take a loss here. Or at least a pinfall loss, maybe he gets himself DQed. With Bo just coming back I think he gets the win here to move this feud along. Neville is the higher priority for WWE right now, but Dallas needs the momentum a little bit more.
Winner: Bo Dallas
The New Day v. Kidd/Cesaro v. The Prime Time Players v. The Matadores v. The Ascension v. The Lucha Dragons
While I’m shaky on a lot of my picks for tonight, I’d be SHOCKED if The New Day doesn’t walk out of the chamber as champions. Just like Hansel, the New Day is so hot right now. Everything they are touching recently is turning to gold, so I don’t see them dropping their gold here. Even if they had to, I don’t know where the belts would go. Kidd and Cesaro just had them so I don’t see them getting them back so soon. I am as big of a Prime Time Players fan as you’ll find but they don’t have enough matches under their belt together yet since their reformation to justify getting the straps. The Matadores are garbage. The Ascension has been treated like garbage recently. And I don’t think the Lucha Dragons have been on the main roster long enough to buy them as champs. So Kidd/Cesaro would be my guess if the titles change hands tonight, but I think it’s a long shot.
Winner: The New Day
Nikki Bella v. Paige v. Naomi
I think it’s always hard to predict Diva Championship title changes because you never know really what they are planning to do with the division. It always seems so stop-and-go to me. But the division has been getting some more time recently and this feels like the time for a title change to me. If Nikki wins here, I’m not sure where the next move is I’d guess it’s just a recombination of the same people doing the same thing. And my guess is that’s what is going to happen anyways but changing the dynamics a bit would help, and a title change would facilitate that change. I think Naomi having the title makes the better story and provides more options down the road, so that’s the route I’ll take.
Sheamus v. Dolph Ziggler v. King Barrett v. Ryback v. Rusev v. R-Truth
Here’s another one where I have no confidence in who to pick. When they announced these 6 participants on RAW, none of them jumped out to me as wrestlers who felt like a good fit for the IC title right now. I listed the competitors in order from most likely to win least likely in my opinion. So let’s run them down in that order:
Sheamus: He’s been booked really strong since his return and a major title would keep that going. I’d say it’s his match to lose tonight, although a Sheamus Intercontinental Title run really doesn’t excited me.
Dolph Ziggler: I honestly don’t know who I am going to end up picking in this match but I have a feeling I’m going to talk my way into Dolph. I woulda went with Ziggler winning the IC title at WrestleMania but I understand why WWE went with Bryan. And I had Dolph pushed to the side in this match too because it looked like they were going to run with a Ziggler/Rusev feud and the IC title wouldn’t be needed for it. But now with it sounding like Rusev is out for the near future, that leaves Ziggler without anything to do. And Ziggler is too big to have nothing to do. Giving him the Intercontinental Championship helps solve that problem.
King Barrett: I don’t think it’s likely that Wade Barrett gets the King of the Ring gimmick and the IC title at the same time, although it could work. I think those two overlap each other too much though.
Ryback: If I was booking tonight, which for the record I am not, I think Ryback would be my choice. I think Ryback could be huge. He’s been really solid since his return and the fans seem into him again. Remember when he debuted a couple years ago and was fighting CM Punk for the title? He was over, big time. I don’t see why we can’t get him back there again. And if Punk wasn’t in his “longest reigning and defending” title reign, I think Ryback wins the title back then and his career arch is different. I’m not saying an Intercontinental title run puts him back to that level, but its at least a step in the right direction. If WWE was a stock market, I’d buy a lot of Ryback stock right now. I don’t know if it would turn out to be a good investment or not but I’d do it.
Rusev: Sounds like he may be out for awhile so not sure if he is even in this match or not. Even before his injury, I wouldn’t have given him much of a shot anyways. Like I said above, he seemed to be destined for a feud with Ziggler that didn’t require a title and not sure how a quick jump from US title holder to Intercontinental title holder would play out. So his odds were low to me even prior to injury.
HOWEVER, you always gotta pay attention to the “replacement” wrestler at PPVs. WWE loves to put those guys in and have them end up winning the match or title. Think it’s going to be a little more difficult to do that here in a multi-man match but its in play. If Rusev is out, I’d move his unknown replacement to the 3 seed here…..then up or down depending on who it ends up being.
If you want to take a real shot in the dark tonight….here’s how I say it “could” play out. What if Rusev’s replacement is Big E. You have Kofi and Xaiver win the tag title Elimination Chamber, and then Big E comes out later in the night and wins the IC Elimination Chamber. That’s something. Then on RAW tomorrow, The New Day all have gold and can boast about winning BOTH chamber matches. It looks like they are serious about pushing New day, and I think this does that. I don’t think it happens, but if you want to get crazy tonight I think that’s your play.
R-Truth: I’m not nearly crazy enough to think he’s going to win tonight but I wouldn’t hate it if he does. Again, the IC title with most of these guys really doesn’t excite me much. Why not give it to Truth and just see if it revitalizes his career a little bit? He entertaining, kids like him….maybe the title is a jumpstart he needs. If not now, when for R-Truth? Some of those NXT guys are coming up to the main roster quick. And that takes spots and TV time away from guys like R-Truth. Might be now or never time. I don’t think there’s much of a chance it happens for him tonight, but I’d like to be surprised.
Winner: No confidence here but I’ll go Ziggler
John Cena v. Kevin Owens
Stop me if you’ve heard this before, but I’m not sure what’s going on in this match. This match came out of nowhere. I just got into ROH about 2 years ago or so, and just caught the last part of Owens’ (Steen’s) run there and love the guy. So maybe I’m giving him a little too much credit here but Owens vs. Cena is a big time match in my opinion. I’d go as far to saying a WrestleMania worthy match. Which makes a two week build into a match on basically a Network Special, not even an original PPV, really surprising to me. Which tells me we end up with a screwy finish or they have a plan in place. I’ll lean towards screwy finish. The only finish I can’t see happening is Cena pinning Owens, everything else is in play. I’m paid to make predictions though, so I’ll say Cena wins tonight by DQ after Owens demolishes him. Owens HAS TO come out of this looking like a badass. I don’t see him winning the US title or pinning Cena (although I think its in play) so the next best way to accomplish that is to leave Cena beaten and battered after taking a DQ.
Winner: Cena by DQ
Seth Rollins vs. Dean Ambrose
I don’t care what happens in this match, I just hope we get to see a lot of Kane............ kid, I kid.
I’m going to play it safe here and say Rollins retains because that’s what normally happens. But something feels like it’s going to happen tonight. I don’t know why or why I even think it….but it feels like something big will happen in the main event. Maybe the quick buildup to this PPV adds a layer of unpredictability or maybe it was the Samoa Joe ending to the NXT PPV last week, but I’m excited to see this ending.
Again, I think Rollins retaining in the safe bet but Ambrose winning the title could happen. They are planting the Rollins/Authority break-up seed and a loss here by Rollins could roll that ball along. (That was a terrible mid-sentence metaphor change). Have The Authority at ringside, chaos breaks loose, and somehow The Lunatic Fringe sneaks out a victory amid the chaos. That still gives you two PPVs to get the title back to Rollins before SummerSlam if you want….or whenever you get Brock back, Seth/Brock is the feud WWE seems to be waiting on. But it adds a little life to the title scene until that time comes, it pushes the wedge in The Authority and Rollins, and gives Ambrose a nice run. Not going to go with it but something is happening tonight and I can’t wait to see what it is.
Winner: Seth Rollins
6- The New Day
2- Bo Dallas
***FYI: My confidence pool rules award points to both wrestlers in event of a Double DQ. If yours does not, I'd rank Cena at 2.