Every WWE Elimination Chamber Match, Ranked From Terrible To Incredible
The final stop on the road to Wrestlemania 36 is at hand. The 2020 Elimination Chamber pay-per-view will go a long way in shaping WWE's biggest show of the year, especially where the Raw Women's Championship is concerned. The winner of the women's Elimination Chamber match will face Becky Lynch at Wrestlemania for her title.
In that Chamber match, though, there will be plenty of brutality. That's simply how the Elimination Chamber works. The massive cage structure is unlike anything else WWE has ever attempted, with steel grating surrounding the ring and four pods--one in each corner--housing a new superstar waiting for their chance to enter the foray.
In year's past, the Elimination Chamber has seen dazzling acrobatic displays, more spilled blood than practically any other match type in WWE history, and a shocking number of memorable moments and title changes. Still, just because it's an Elimination Chamber match it's not automatically worth your time. While there have been some Chamber bouts that have more than delivered on the hype, there are others that are best left forgotten.
In preparation for the upcoming Elimination Chamber pay-per-view, GameSpot has revisited every single Chamber match, dating back to the first one at Survivor Series 2002. Take a look at our ranking below for the good, the bad, and the ugly of WWE's nefarious structure.
24. December to Dismember
When: December 3, 2006
Who: Big Show (c), Test, Rob Van Dam, Bobby Lashley, Hardcore Holly, and CM Punk
Winner: Bobby Lashley to become ECW Champion
Easily the most disappointing Elimination Chamber match. This "extreme" version of the match saw a bunch of weapons tossed into the cage and was the main event of what is regarded as possibly the worst pay-per-view of all time, ECW's December to Dismember. The match was sloppy, the wrong person won, and it signified the beginning of the end of WWE's ECW reboot.
23. Elimination Chamber 2015 (Intercontinental Championship)
When: May 31, 2015
Who: Ryback, Sheamus, Dolph Ziggler, Mark Henry, R-Truth, and King Barrett
Winner: Ryback to become Intercontinental Champion
The Elimination Chamber match, in theory, was a marquee bout filled with the company's biggest stars. In this 2015 version, though, it was filled with guys that struggled to ever make it past the middle of the card. Using this match type for a secondary championship weakens the meaning of the match itself. What's more, this was a completely forgettable bout.
22. Elimination Chamber 2015 (Tam Team Championships)
When: May 31, 2015
Who: The New Day (c). The Prime Time Players, Tyson Kidd and Cesaro, The Ascension, The Lucha Dragons, and Los Matadores
Winners: The New Day
While this wasn't as bad as the other Chamber match on this show (for the Intercontinental Championship), it's still not a great bout. This was during New Day's first run with the Tag Team Championships before they had really caught fire as a trio. While there's some decent talent in the ring--including Tyson Kidd, Cesaro, and the Lucha Dragons--this particular Elimination Chamber was just forgettable. Theoretically, changing up the match formula to include even more wrestlers should be exciting. It just didn't work here and, given New Day performed as a three-man team, there was never a chance they were going to lose.
21. Elimination Chamber 2010 (Raw)
When: February 21, 2010
Who: Sheamus (c), Triple H, John Cena, Kofi Kingston, Ted DiBiase, and Randy Orton
Winner: John Cena to become WWE Champion
This was the first match on the inaugural Elimination Chamber pay-per-view, and it was quite a mess. While the match itself was decent, in the aftermath Vince McMahon marched out and demanded new champion John Cena immediately defend his title against Batista--a match the champion ultimately lost. While this had happened before via a Money in the Bank cash-in, there was really no reason given for this second title defense, which made the match seem pointless.
20. SummerSlam 2003
When: August 24, 2003
Who: Triple H (c), Goldberg, Chris Jericho, Shawn Michaels, Randy Orton, and Kevin Nash
Winner: Triple H to retain the World Heavyweight Championship
The second-ever Elimination Chamber match is more or less a showcase of Goldberg, even though he doesn't actually walk away with the win. The highlight was clearly Goldberg spearing Chris Jericho through a pod. What hurts this match was how obvious it was they're keeping Triple H sidelined throughout the bout, due to an existing injury. He spends far too long in the match just hanging out in his pod, and those who should want him eliminated just let it happen. Also, Kevin Nash was in this and probably shouldn't be.
19. No Way Out 2008 (Smackdown)
When: February 17, 2008
Who: The Undertaker, Batista, Finlay, Montel Vontavious Porter, The Great Khali, and Big Daddy V
Winner: The Undertaker
No Way Out 2008 was the first time a single show had two Elimination Chamber matches. It's hard not to compare them. While this one--Smackdown's offering--featured The Undertaker and Batista, everyone else was just a middle or lower-card filler wrestler there taking up space and it was obvious from the start. There's no way Big Daddy V, Finlay, or MVP were going to best The Undertaker, and the match suffered from how obvious that was. What's more, with the likes of V and The Great Khali in the match, there were stretches of slow, plodding, and clumsy wrestling that seriously hurt this one. At least there was some decent drama between Undertaker and Batista at the end of the match, as they beat each other senseless.
18. Elimination Chamber 2012 (Smackdown)
When: February 19, 2012
Who: Daniel Bryan (c), Santino Marella, Wade Barrett, Cody Rhodes, Big Show, and The Great Khali
Winner: Daniel Bryan retains the World Heavyweight Championship
The issue with this match was the competitors. There was no chance Santino Marella, The Great Khali, or practically anybody else in this match posed an actual threat to Daniel Bryan's title reign. The quality of the match itself was fine, but there were zero stakes, and the match suffered because of it.
17. No Way Out 2009 (Smackdown)
When: February 15, 2009
Who: Edge (c), The Undertaker, Triple H, Jeff Hardy, Big Show, and Vladimir Kozlov
Winner: Triple H to become WWE Champion
This match was more or less a means to an end. It was designed to quickly get the WWE Championship away from Edge, so he could move to the Raw brand later in the evening. As a result, the match that followed was fun but not earth-shattering. It simply left this particular Elimination Chamber feeling average.
16. Elimination Chamber 2011 (Raw)
When: February 20, 2011
Who: John Cena, CM Punk, John Morrison, Sheamus, Randy Orton, and R-Truth
Winner: John Cena to become #1 contender for the WWE Championship
The outcome of this match was predictable. There was no chance anyone but John Cena was going to Wrestlemania to face The Miz for the WWE Championship. He was also plagued by the long-running "anonymous Raw general manager" storyline, which sort of tainted everything happening with the Raw brand at the time. That said, this wasn't a bad match. However, it's also nowhere near the best version of this format. It's just average.
15. Elimination Chamber 2012 (Raw)
When: February 19, 2012
Who: CM Punk (c), The Miz, Chris Jericho, Kofi Kingston, Dolph Ziggler, and R-Truth
Winner: CM Punk to retain the WWE Championship
Another in a long line of average Chamber matches. It's not that there was anything wrong with this bout, but it was pretty clear Punk was going to walk out retaining his WWE Championship. That said, this Elimination Chamber opening with a great match between Punk and Kofi Kingston helped raise its profile a bit.
14. New Year's Revolution 2006
When: January 8, 2006
Who: John Cena (c), Carlito, Chris Masters, Shawn Michaels, Kane, and Kurt Angle
Winner: John Cena to retain the WWE Championship
What matters most about this Elimination Chamber match is what comes after it. John Cena won a decent Chamber bout. At its conclusion, though, Edge cashed in his Money in the Bank briefcase and beat Cena to become WWE Champion. As for the Chamber match itself, this entry featured a good mix of veterans and younger talent. It should come as no surprise that Shawn Michaels and Kurt Angle more than carried their weight. However, Carlito and Chris Masters held their own against the more established stars.
13. Elimination Chamber 2014
When: February 23, 2014
Who: Randy Orton (c). Daniel Bryan, John Cena, Cesaro, Christian, and Sheamus
Winner: Randy Orton retains the WWE World Heavyweight Championship
While Randy Orton won this match, retaining his title, he was not the focal point of the match. This was the final pay-per-view before Daniel Bryan's Wrestlemania takeover. He was the clear star of the Chamber match, attempting to win the World Heavyweight Championship and ensure his place in the Wrestlemania main event. While that didn't happen here, it just made audiences want him to win the ultimate prize even more, so the Chamber accomplished its purpose. This was also the match that showed how well-suited Cesaro and Sheamus were to be in the ring together, either as opponents or partners. The two were an exciting addition to the mix of in-ring veterans and top stars.
12. Elimination Chamber 2010 (Smackdown)
When: February 21, 2010
Who: The Undertaker (c), John Morrison, Chris Jericho, Rey Mysterio, CM Punk, and R-Truth
Winner: Chris Jericho to become World Heavyweight Champion
This particular match didn't get off to the best start as Undertaker was accidentally set on fire. No, seriously. His pyro malfunctioned, with flames shooting up all around him. Thankfully, he wasn't seriously injured. That incident has been cut from the version of the match on the WWE Network, so you won't find it there. Outside of that mishap, this was a really fun match given all of the talent involved. What's more, this was at the height of Straight Edge Society-era CM Punk, so the match also included a great promo. Plus, Shawn Michaels made an appearance at the end to set up a Wrestlemania match with Undertaker, putting a cherry on top of this sundae.
11. Elimination Chamber 2018 (Men's)
When: February 25, 2018
Who: Roman Reigns, Braun Strowman, Seth Rollins, Finn Bálor, John Cena, Elias, and The Miz
Winner: Roman Reigns to become #1 contender for the Universal Championship
WWE claimed this was the biggest Elimination Chamber match ever because it includes 7 superstars. They clearly forgot about the tag team match in the cell. Regardless, this isn't a bad match. It's just an inconsequential one. It was clear going in that the plan was for Roman Reigns to win and go on to face Brock Lesnar at Wrestlemania. That said, the match showcased Braun Strowman wonderfully, letting him be the beast he is, and with a good mix of talent--including Finn Bálor, John Cena, Seth Rollins, and Elias--there was plenty of thrilling action throughout.
10. Elimination Chamber 2013
When: February 17, 2013
Who: Jack Swagger, Randy Orton, Chris Jericho, Mark Henry, Kane, and Daniel Bryan
Winner: Jack Swagger to become #1 contender for the World Heavyweight Championship
This match was an odd one as it was used to showcase Jack Swagger, who was seemingly being primed to win the World Heavyweight Championship at Wrestlemania. Unfortunately for Swagger, he was arrested for driving under the influence of marijuana two days later. He ended up losing at Wrestlemania and wasn't featured as a main event performer after that. That all said, this match was an entertaining one. Randy Orton was oozing charisma at the time, while Daniel Bryan and Chris Jericho spent a big chunk of the match wrestling each other, which is always entertaining. It's worth noting this was also the point at which Mark Henry's "Hall of Pain" gimmick was firing on all cylinders, breathing new life into his career.
9. Elimination Chamber 2019 (WWE Championship)
When: February 17, 2019
Who: Daniel Bryan (c), Kofi Kingston, Randy Orton, AJ Styles, Jeff Hardy, and Samoa Joe
Winner: Daniel Bryan retains the WWE Championship
This match followed the WWE Women's Tag Team Championship Chamber match, and seemed basic by comparison. However, being a traditional six-person Chamber match worked in its favor. Practically everyone was made to look strong and this match set up Wrestlemania perfectly, as it showed just how popular Kofi Kingston had become with the audience. There was little doubt that Daniel Bryan would retain the WWE Championship, but that's not what this Chamber match was about, ultimately. Instead, it was the continuation of Kingston's underdog journey.
8. Elimination Chamber 2019 (Women's Tag Team Championship)
When: February 17, 2019
Who: Sasha Banks and Bayley. Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville, Nia Jax and Tamina, The Riott Squad, The IIconics, and Naomi and Carmella
Winners: Sasha Banks and Bayley become WWE Women's Tag Team Champions
The women of WWE took their Chamber matches to the next level in 2019, using the structure to determine the first-ever WWE Women's Tag Team Champions. While not as strong as the inaugural women's Chamber match, this tag team bout was filled with many exciting moments and several instances that left you wondering who would wind up with the titles. In the end, it was Bayley and Sasha who became first champions in a hard-fought and fun-to-watch victory.
7. No Way Out 2009 (Raw)
When: February 15, 2009
Who: John Cena (c), Rey Mysterio, Edge, Chris Jericho, Mike Knox, and Kane
Winner: Edge to become World Heavyweight Champion
While Smackdown's match was nothing special on this show, Raw's was one of the better Chamber bouts. Edge attacked and replaced Kofi Kingston, which somehow meant he was officially a Raw superstar now. What's more, though, was he ended up walking away World Heavyweight Champion. This match features top-notch wrestling from the likes of Chris Jericho, Rey Mysterio, and John Cena, and Mike Knox didn't last long.
6. New Year's Revolution 2005
When: January 9, 2005
Who: Triple H, Randy Orton, Batista, Chris Jericho, Chris Benoit, and Edge
Winner: Triple H to become World Heavyweight Championship
*Shawn Michaels was special guest referee
The story that serves as the glue of this match is the inner-turmoil within Evolution. Randy Orton has already been ousted from the group, and Batista would soon follow suit when he chose to face Triple H at Wrestlemania 21. Still, this match was a major plot point in that slow build. Batista had no problem helping his Evolution mentor dispatch of Orton, but it's clear he had some uneasiness with having Triple H's back. This whole scenario gave an exciting story to the match, but it's Edge, Chris Jericho, and Chris Benoit that supplied high-quality wrestling. This was mere months before Edge would win the first Money in the Bank match that would propel him to the main event. On top of it all, Shawn Michaels served as guest referee in the match, just to keep things interesting. This match was simply a delight.
5. Elimination Chamber 2018 (Women's)
When: February 25, 2018
Who: Alexa Bliss (c), Sasha Banks, Bayley, Mickie James, Sonya Deville, and Mandy Rose
Winner: Alexa Bliss
In 2018, at the Women's Revolution rolled on, WWE's female superstars got their chance to step into the cell and the results were very positive. The women showed they weren't afraid to climb, slam, and jump off of things throughout the cell, making it by far the best Chamber match on this show and among the best ever.
4. No Way Out 2008 (Raw)
When: February 17, 2008
Who: Jeff Hardy, Triple H, Shawn Michaels, Chris Jericho, Umaga, and John Layfield
Winner: Triple H to become #1 contender for the World Heavyweight Championship
Talk about a study of contrasts. Smackdown's Elimination Chamber match on this show was one of the worst ever. On the other hand, this one from Raw was one of the best. There were no frills associated with this particular chamber, no special referees or surprise entrances. Instead, this was just a brutal and vicious Chamber match in which everyone in the ring gave their all.
3. Survivor Series 2002
When: November 17, 2002
Who: Triple H (c), Chris Jericho, Shawn Michaels, Kane, Booker T, and Rob Van Dam
Winner: Shawn Michaels to become World Heavyweight Champion
This was the first-ever Elimination Chamber match. And while it's not the best, it's an incredible example of just how brutal and unforgiving this match can be. It didn't go perfectly, with Triple H sustaining a throat injury and a latch on the Chamber itself coming undone at one point, which almost saw The Game tumble to the floor. Still, this first Chamber stands the test of time as one of the greatest.
2. Elimination Chamber 2017
When: February 12, 2017
Who: John Cena (c), AJ Styles, The Miz, Dean Ambrose, Bray Wyatt, and Baron Corbin
Winner: Bray Wyatt to become WWE Champion
After taking 2016 off, the Elimination Chamber returned in 2017, designed to be safer. The year break also allowed several new superstars to make names for themselves, making way for a slew of new talent in the match. That helps propel this to one of the best Chamber matches ever. A group of new guys brought fresh ideas, while veterans like The Miz and John Cena knew the lay of the land going in. This match worked on every level and even with a safer Chamber structure, managed to be just as thrilling as every entry that came before it--or after it. What's more, it ended with the crowning of Bray Wyatt as WWE Champion, marking his first time winning the company's top prize.
1. Elimination Chamber 2011 (Smackdown)
When: February 20, 2011
Who: Edge (c), Rey Mysterio, Kane, Drew McIntyre, Big Show, and Wade Barrett
Winner: Edge to retain the World Heavyweight Championship
Drew McIntyre's first run with WWE wasn't great and Wade Barrett as the leader of the Corre left a lot to be desired. However, this match was a blast and features a mix of superstars that bring different things to the table. Rey Mysterio was there to bring the speed like nobody else, Edge, Barrett, and McIntyre supply their superior wrestling talents, and lastly, Big Show and Kane are the big men in the Chamber. Everything was perfectly balanced and shined bright in this match. It deserves to be remembered as the best bout in this match's history.
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