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WWE No Way Out - February 15, 2009
by SamoaRowe

-They are airing from Seattle, Washington. Our hosts for the evening are Jim Ross and Tazz for Smackdown, Jerry Lawler and Michael Cole for Raw, and Matt Striker and Todd Grisham for ECW.

WWE Championship Elimination Chamber match:
Edge © vs. The Undertaker vs. Vladimir Kozlov vs. Triple H vs. Jeff Hardy vs. Big Show

Jeff Hardy and Edge start the match in the ring. Hardy dominates in the early going before running into a big boot. Edge tries to put Hardy away quickly. Jeff fights back with his educated feet. Edge blocks the Twist of Fate but Jeff tries again and hits it! Hardy goes high risk, missing a swanton bomb. Hardy counters the spear with an inside cradle and pins Edge around the 3 minute mark! Edge is outraged and the crowd is genuinely pleased. Kozlov is let out of his cell and puts Hardy down with a boot. Hardy kicks Kozlov off but flies into a head butt. Kozlov shoves Jeff into the chamber wall. Kozlov drives Jeff into the chains again before hitting a fall away slam into the ring. Kozlov pounds Hardy on the turnbuckle before hitting another fall away slam for a near fall. Backbreaker gets 2 for Kozlov. Cue the waist lock. Hardy counters, drop-kicking Kozlov into the corner and gets a near fall himself. Whisper in the Wind by Hardy leaves both men down as Big Show joins the match. Show goes right to work on Jeff, with Kozlov joining in on the fun. The two on one beat down continues for a while until Kozlov charges into Show. Show and Kozlov trade shots and block each other’s suplex attempts. Show drops Kozlov as Triple H enters the match. HHH goes right after Big Show, nailing a face buster. Knee lift by Triple H drops Kozlov. Spinebuster on Big Show by Triple H! HHH blocks a Twist of Fate and knocks down Jeff. HHH low bridges Kozlov onto the steel platform. Show saves Kozlov from a Pedigree on the steel. Side slam on Triple H by Show gets a near fall. HHH and Show brawl while Kozlov beats down Hardy. Show catches Hardy and uses him to ram Triple H into the cage. HHH and Hardy take down Show and nail a double suplex on Kozlov. Whisper in the Wind on Triple H leaves them both down as The Undertaker’s cell opens!

Business picks up as The Undertaker immediately targets Big Show and Kozlov. Undertaker cleans house on everyone, but Show saves Hardy and Triple H from a double chokeslam. Taker knocks down Show and goes old school on Triple H, but it’s interrupted by Big Show, who eats a DDT on the steel for his trouble. Taker tries again and hits old school on HHH. Kozlov pummels Taker into the corner until Taker counters with the Last Ride, eliminating Kozlov at 23:01! Chokeslam on Undertaker by Big Show! Show blocks a pedigree, sending HHH crashing onto the steel. Show press slams Hardy onto HHH on the steel. Hardy is tossed into the wall but hangs on to climb onto a pod. Show trips Jeff on the pod and climbs up for an attack. Undertaker climbs up as well and superplexes Show to the mat! Pedigree on Big Show, but Triple H is too tired to capitalize. Hardy swanton bombs Show from off the pod! HHH covers Show to eliminate him at 26:13! Hardy misses Whisper on the Wind, leaving Triple H to duke it out with Undertaker. Taker is crotched on the ropes by HHH while attempting old school on Jeff. Hardy uses Taker for Poetry in Motion on HHH into the steel. Jeff walks into a Tombstone piledriver from Taker and is eliminated at 28:38. It’s down to Triple H and Undertaker, with Taker picking up control after a big boot. Taker misses a running big boot. HHH flies into a chokeslam, earning Undertaker a very close near fall. Snake eyes by Undertaker, but Triple H rebounds with a Spinebuster for 2! Taker blocks a pedigree on the steel with a catapult into the cage. Taker tumbles into a Tombstone position and nails the piledriver, but Triple H gets a rope break! Pedigree by Triple H gets 2.9! They stumble to their feet for a slug fest. HHH escapes a Last Ride and nails the Pedigree for the win and the title at 35:58! It’s difficult to be annoyed with another Triple H title run when the match was this good, a true epic, ****.
Winner and new WWE Champion: Triple H

-Randy Orton cuts a backstage promo, mockingly asking Shane McMahon how his father is doing.

No Holds Barred:
Randy Orton vs. Shane McMahon

Shane jabs Orton, proving once again that Shane is better than any active WWE superstar. It’s amazing that Shane hasn’t become a full-time wrestler, he’d probably be on his fifth straight year as World champion by now. Back to the match, they keep trading punches, and Shane keeps gaining the upper hand. Shane baseball slides Orton into the barricade and fetches a table and trash can. Orton rebounds with his patented backbreaker. Orton takes control, directing Shane into the ring for some punishment. Shane tumbles to ringside and catches Orton off guard with kendo stick shots. The fight returns to ringside, where Shane prepares an announce table for Orton. Shane nails Randy in the head with a TV monitor, busting him open in the process. Shane attempts a top rope elbow drop, but Cody Rhodes and Ted Dibiase run in to lay a beating on Shane-O-Mac. Rhodes misses a chair shot, nailing Dibiase. Shane DDT’s Rhodes onto the chair and nails him with Coast to Coast. Orton is still dead on the announce table, so Shane tries his top rope elbow drop again, but Orton moves out of the way! Orton sends Dibiase and Rhodes away and DDT’s Shane onto the mat hard. Orton gets a series of close falls on McMahon. Orton sets a table up in the ring and plants Shane on the top rope. Orton connects with a superplex through the table! Cover by Orton only gets 2.5, and now this is becoming a tad ridiculous. Orton stomps a circle around Shane but still can’t get a cover. Shane blocks the death punt with a spear! Chair shots to the legs by Shane. Orton begs for mercy but eats a chair shot to the face. Shane looks hit a death punt of his own, but Orton springs up with a surprise RKO and gets the win at 18:17. It’s a bit silly that the Royal Rumble winner had to treat Shane like such an equal, but the match itself was brutal (in a good way) and satisfying in it’s storytelling, **¾.
Winner: Randy Orton

ECW Championship:
Jack Swagger © vs. Finlay (with Hornswoggle)

That’s right, the ECW title is now being used in the bathroom break spot. They go through the motions in the early going. Vince cannot be happy with the loud “We want Christian” chants from the crowd. Finlay tries to put Swagger away with a half Boston crab. Finlay tries to destroy Swagger’s leg in the ropes, but Swagger counters. Swagger knees the midsection and works a hammerlock. The crowd is displeased with the lack of Christian, so a few “boring” shout-outs can be heard. Swagger doesn’t help things by wearing down the arm. Finlay briefly escapes, but Swagger persistently keeps targeting the arm. The crowd is on the verge of outright turning on the match. Finlay counters and gets a near fall. Finlay protects himself in the ropes and rolls up Swagger, but has trouble getting the shoulders down. They fight on the top rope but Finlay shoves off Swagger. Finlay connects with a series of strikes. “You can’t wrestle” chant. Flying cross body gains a close fall for Finlay, who was briefly distracted by Hornswoggle. Finlay gains another near fall. Swagger rams into Hornswoggle, knocking him off the apron. Swagger connects with the Doctor Bomb for the win at 7:53. Nothing technically wrong with the match, but no where close to what it needed to be, *½.
Winner and still ECW Champion: Jack Swagger

Winner Takes All match:
Shawn Michaels vs. John Bradshaw Layfield

If HBK wins, he doesn’t have to work for JBL anymore. If JBL wins, then he owns Michaels for life. Rebecca Michaels is sitting at ringside to support her husband. JBL tries to intimidate but HBK unloads on him. JBL retreats to ringside and hands Michaels a chair, trying to tempt him into losing by DQ. Michaels directs Bradshaw back to the ring, but gets caught with some shots. Sunset flip by HBK is countered with a pinning predicament. JBL rolls through a backslide and drops an elbow. Cover by JBL gets 2. Figure four by Michaels, but JBL quickly gets the ropes. Crossface by Michaels but JBL counters into a cover. JBL reverses a hard Irish whip, sending HBK crashing to ringside. JBL backs HBK into the apron and directs him to the ring for a series of elbow drops. JBL attempts some covers and pummels HBK into the corner. Bear hug by JBL. Michaels chops out and nails a swinging Neckbreaker. HBK connects with a couple of inverted atomic drops but JBL rebounds with a hard Irish whip. JBL plants Michaels on the ropes and attempts a superplex. Michaels pushes JBL off to the mat but misses a flying elbow drop. Clothesline from Hell by JBL gets a cover for 2.5! Second clothesline from Hell by JBL! Michaels falls to ringside and JBL is content to win by count-out. Michaels barely makes it back in time. JBL tosses HBK over the ropes. JBL props Michaels up by the barricade, and Rebecca slaps JBL across the face! This fires up Michaels, who aggressively directs JBL to the ring where he unleashes a flurry of offense. HBK connects with the flying elbow drop and then Sweet Chin Music to win his freedom at 13:16. The stipulation made this a lot more interesting than it would have been otherwise, but it was a nice feel-good moment, **½.
Winner: Shawn Michaels

-Michaels celebrates with his wife.

-Chris Jericho cuts a backstage promo, further attacking Hall of Famers, especially Ric Flair.

-Kofi Kingston makes his entrance for the main event, but Edge takes him out and replaces him in the match. It’s later explained that since the McMahons had left the building, Vickie Guerrero was in charge of the show and let him get away with it.

World Heavyweight Championship Elimination Chamber match:
John Cena © vs. Edge vs. Kane vs. Rey Mysterio vs. Mike Knox vs. Chris Jericho

Rey Mysterio and Chris Jericho start the match. Rey is not happy to see Edge in the chamber. Jericho and Mysterio exchange headlocks. Shoulder block by Jericho. Rey monkey flips Jericho and sets up 619 but can’t follow through. Rey splashes Jericho onto the steel platform. Rey clotheslines Jericho into the ring. Jericho side steps a charging Mysterio, sending him crashing through the ropes into a pod. Cover by Y2J gets 2. Jericho wears down Rey and drops him onto the steel. Rey is catapulted into the wall but he climbs to the top of the chamber and crashes down on Jericho! Seated senton on Jericho gets 2.5! Bulldog by Rey leaves both men down as Kane joins the match. Kane cleans house on Rey and Jericho. Kane is also displeased to see Edge in a cell and threatens him. Kane nails a side slam on Rey for a 2 count. Drop-kick to the face of Rey by Kane gets another near fall. Jericho attacks Kane but gets clotheslined onto the steel. Kane drives Jericho’s knee into the steel floor. Rey baseball slides Kane to the floor. Rey counters and plants Kane on the mat. Jericho misses a lionsault and walks into a big boot by Kane. Rey attempts 619 on Jericho but Kane cuts him off. Rey nails 619 on Kane, who stumbles into a Code Breaker from Jericho. Instead of pinning Kane, Rey goes high risk on the pod and lands a seated senton to eliminate Kane at 9:20.

Mike Knox is let out of his cell and immediately drops Mysterio with his boot. Big boot on Jericho by Knox. Knox continues to clean house. Knox spends too much time on Rey and gets jumped by Jericho, who backdrops him onto the steel platform. Jericho springboards into Knox’s arms, who drives him into the cage wall. Rey dives onto Knox’s back but gets himself slammed into the wall. Rey’s foot is caught in the wall and suffers repeated shots from Knox. Knox press slams Jericho back to the ring. Rey slides through Knox’s legs and kicks. Knox grabs Rey for a backbreaker. Sudden Code Breaker on Knox allows Jericho to eliminate him at 14:27. Say what you will about Knox, he played his part well this time. Edge’s cell opens and Rey dives in to bring the fight to him. Springboard flying cross body on Edge by Rey! Rey runs into a Jericho clothesline. Edge and Jericho trade shots. Rey blocks the lionsault and Edge nearly pins Jericho. Edge misses a spear on Mysterio but manages to block a Code Breaker. Rey tries to 619 Edge, but Jericho cuts him off. Jericho pulls Rey to the top rope but Edge climbs up. Jericho sunset flips Edge who hangs on to Rey for a superplex! All three men are down for a bit. Edge is up first and throws Jericho onto the steel. A fresh John Cena joins the match, who goes right after Edge. Cena cleans house on whoever gets in his way. Five knuckle shuffle on Edge but Jericho stops the Attitude Adjustment with the Code Breaker. 619 on Cena by Rey and a spear from Edge eliminates Cena at 21:57!

It’s down to Jericho, Edge, and Mysterio. Rey fights off both villains with flying head scissors. He sets them both up for 619 but Edge moves out of the way. Rey gets caught in Jericho’s Walls, but counters to pin him at 23:30. Edge prepares a spear but misses. Rey rolls up Edge for 2.9! That was painfully close! Springboard lateral press gets another near fall for Rey. Sunset flip by Edge but Rey rolls through and kicks the head for another 2.9 count. Edge catches Rey but eats a tornado DDT for yet another near fall. These close calls for Rey are quickly becoming heart breaking. Edge kicks Rey off the ropes. Rey counters a Powerbomb on the steel with a face plant. Reverse 619 by Rey (which Lawler amusingly refers to as a “916”). Edge launches Rey head first into the pod glass! Edge nails a spear in the ring and picks up the win and the title at 29:15! Simply excellent match. Rey Mysterio looked better here than he has in the past three/four years. This was full of surprises, nasty spots, and drama. I’d say this is definitely an early MOTYC, ****¾.
Winner and new World Heavyweight Champion: Edge

Final Thoughts: Over an hour of the show was devoted to two Elimination Chamber matches and they both delivered with flying colors. The rebirth of Rey Mysterio as a top player in the Raw chamber match was simply breathtaking. I give credit to WWE for surprising us all, what with the defending champions both getting quickly eliminated, as well as Edge adding a new dirty stunt to his resume by losing one World title and winning the other in the same night. The rest of the card was rounded out nicely with two solid outings in HBK/JBL and Orton/Shane, though the ECW title match bombed with the crowd, it was more so due to the lack of Christian than anything Finlay or Swagger did wrong. This was a great show and it certainly made the Road to Wrestlemania a lot more interesting.

Big thumbs up!

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