While various wrestlers may have left Sunday's Royal Rumble pay-per-view in triumph, that doesn't mean the next few months are going to be easy.
In fact, some of them look to have a very tough time ahead.
The first name that springs to mind is, of course, Dave Batista.
Last Sunday, the returning Batista won the annual Royal Rumble match in what was possibly the most predictable booking move in years. The crowd in the Consol Energy Center booed the victory vociferously—they had wanted anyone but Batista to win, to the point even Roman Reigns (a heel) was garnering big cheers when it looked like he would throw him out.
As WrestlingInc.com reported, the overwhelmingly negative reaction seemingly led to “The Animal” mocking the fans after the pay-per-view went off the air.
The star’s reaction the following night on Raw left a lot to be desired. Fans jeered his verbal confrontation with Randy Orton and bombarded the pair with “Daniel Bryan!” chants.
It looks increasingly unlikely that Batista will be able turn things around in the next few weeks. Whatever he’s doing at Elimination Chamber, he’s bound to face a tough time from the fans.
Batista's presumed WrestleMania foe Randy Orton may also struggle at Elimination Chamber.
Orton received a hugely negative reaction from the fans at the Royal Rumble when he fought John Cena.
While the in-ring action itself was fine—if unspectacular—the crowd was absolutely merciless, with chants of “This is Awful,” “Boring” and “Y2J!” Orton looked visibly angered by the chants at various points.
Thanks to Bray Wyatt and friends, Orton ended up leaving the event with his WWE World Heavyweight Championship. But the above reaction—as well as the low buyrates for his pay-per-views in 2013—may not bode well for the 33-year-old's future.
Few seem excited by the prospect of Orton-Batista at WrestleMania, as Monday's Raw illustrated. Could management make the call to switch the belt in the Elimination Chamber?
It may not be as unlikely as it sounds. You have to wonder if, or when, Vince McMahon is finally going to give up on “The Viper.”
Bray Wyatt—the man who defeated Bryan in the opener of the event and, as noted, saved Orton's reign—could also be in trouble.
By the looks of it, he's headed into a feud with Cena. I fail to see how Wyatt costing Cena the title at the Royal Rumble is a big deal. Cena gets so many title shots that a heel costing him the belt should barely faze him.
Aside from the dull storyline, is Wyatt truly ready for a main event feud with the company's biggest star? His performance at Elimination Chamber, whatever he does on the show, will hopefully give us some insight into this.
Elimination Chamber will be an interesting event for WWE, not just from an entertainment viewpoint, but to see just how the aforementioned wrestlers will hold up. These guys are certainly under a lot of pressure right now.