Let me preface this article to avoid disappointing those who are not a fan of predictions and speculation that is not grounded primarily in leaked information, with an acknowledgement that the following concept is nothing more than a fantasy booking.
Still, hosting the first-ever, six-man tag team Elimination Chamber match on Feb. 17 would seem a plausible and interesting way to continue the ongoing feud between The Shield and three of the company's top faces.
For those who are long-time fans of THQ's WWE video games, you may recall that 2003's "Here Comes the Pain" featured a 3 vs. 3 elimination chamber match type—a concept that has never crossed the line into reality.
The Shield will take on John Cena, Ryback and Sheamus at the pay-per-view, but the match currently lies on the card without stipulation. Considering the success of The Shield's debut in a Tables, Ladders and Chairs match at the last major event of 2012, it would seem a shame to have them compete in a normal tag team match this time around, especially given the two-month build since their last in-ring competition.
By booking the team elimination chamber concept, WWE could have its top faces defeat The Shield, whilst keeping its top antagonist faction strong by allowing them a couple of eliminations.
For example, the entry order into the match would remain random, which could allow for The Shield to gain an early but clean advantage over their opponents.
With an entry order such as...
- Dean Ambrose
- Seth Rollins
- Roman Reigns
- John Cena
...The Shield could eliminate Ryback as a result of the numbers game, without making him look particularly weak.
The issue with having a straight-up tag team match on the event before WrestleMania is that it is hard to imagine anything other than a simple and clean win for team babyface, whereas the chamber concept would allow for a more interesting finish, keeping The Shield strong while still allowing the faces to get the better of them in the end.
Furthermore, with both world titles being defended in singles matches, there is only one chamber match set for the pay-per-view, and Cena's rumble win makes a RAW chamber match highly unlikely in any other situation.
Having just the solitary chamber match would be no disaster, but fans will arguably be more invested in the six-man, tag matchup if it is held inside the steel chamber structure.
Please feel free to share your views in the comments section below or contact me directly on twitter (@jamielogue94) to continue the debate.