The unforgiving Elimination Chamber match has become a staple within WWE over the years. While it's grown to that status, it's also become part of a crucial stop on the Road to WrestleMania. Sunday night, the next edition of the Elimination Chamber goes down inside the ThunderDome at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida. Once again, the two marquee matches on the show carry serious world title implications leading into the biggest show of the year.
The Chamber will be lowered twice at the event, once in a WWE championship match and once with six men from SmackDown vying for a shot at the universal championship. Adding an extra layer of drama to the proceedings, the winner of the SmackDown chamber match will receive their title shot against Roman Reigns on the same night.
Elimination Chamber will begin at 7 p.m. ET with the show expected to last anywhere from 3.5-4 hours, not counting the kickoff show, which starts one hour prior to the main card at 6 p.m. CBS Sports will be with you the entire way on Sunday with live results, highlights and analysis.
Let's take a look at how our experts believe Elimination Chamber will play out.
2021 Elimination Chamber predictions
United States Championship: Bobby Lashley (c) vs. Riddle vs. TBD
Hours before the pay-per-view, it was announced that Keith Lee is out of the match, which is a shame. On the Kickoff Show now, John Morrison, Mustafa Ali, Ricochet and Elias will battle it out to fill in as the replacement, Whatever the case, it really feels like WWE is heating Lashley up for something bigger, and losing the title could propel him to bigger things. Lashley has been out of control since the Royal Rumble and Riddle has repeatedly felt his wrath. Losing the title here could push Lashley over the edge and to a new level of rage, which would serve Lashley even better than a title that has largely been misused during his reign. Pick: Riddle wins the title -- Brent Brookhouse and Adam Silverstein
Women's Tag Team Championship: Nia Jax & Shayna Baszler (c) vs. Sasha Banks & Bianca Belair
With the build to Banks vs. Belair at WrestleMania on, it doesn't seem like the best idea to go down the road of tag champions who are future opponents -- though I wouldn't put it past WWE to do so. The WrestleMania match needs someone in more of a true heel role and a loss driven by miscommunication here can push that forward while letting Jax and Baszler continue in the only role WWE seems to have for them. Pick: Nia Jax & Shayna Baszler retain the titles -- Brookhouse and Silverstein
WWE Championship (Elimination Chamber): Drew McIntyre (c) vs. Sheamus vs. AJ Styles vs. Randy Orton vs. Jeff Hardy vs. Kofi Kingston
There's not really any drama here outside of how the match could play into McIntyre finding a dance partner for WrestleMania. It's hard to imagine he is losing the title in the Chamber. Orton is busy with other things, Hardy isn't really at a world title level anymore, Styles is still great but not winning the title here, same with Kingston. That leaves Sheamus, and while the story between Sheamus and McIntyre has been interesting, Sheamus as WWE champion makes no real sense here. Pick: Drew McIntyre retains the title -- Brookhouse and Silverstein
Universal Championship No. 1 Contendership (Elimination Chamber): Kevin Owens vs. Daniel Bryan vs. Jey Uso vs. Sami Zayn vs. Cesaro vs. King Corbin
There's three options coming out of this match, not only because of face-heel dynamics but based on storyline. The simple truth of it all is that Corbin and Zayn have no momentum toward a match with Roman Reigns, and Jey Uso has already been done multiple times. That narrows is down to the faces. Bryan has been on his back so much recently, that he lacks the necessary momentum here. And given the winner will be facing Reigns at this PPV and not WrestleMania, it would make no sense to throw that money match away. That leaves Cesaro and Owens. The Owens feud has been done to death, and I see this serving as a reprieve for both men with them linking up during a fill-in match at Fastlane. Instead, Cesaro -- who has taken two wins over Bryan and a few others recently -- will get his first world championship opportunity in a spot where losing will not damage him due to fighting two matches in one night. Pick: Cesaro wins -- Silverstein
There's not much to be interested in with Owens getting another title shot. Bryan should not get wasted one-off title shots either and it's hard to see Zayn, Cesaro or Corbin getting the victory. Where things could get interesting, however, is with Uso managing to steal a win. Would he lay down against his cousin later that night and give up another chance to become champion, or would he risk it all and find himself facing the wrath of The Tribal Chief? Pick: Jey Uso wins -- Brookhouse
Universal Championship: Roman Reigns (c) vs. EC Winner
It seems entirely unlikely that Reigns will lose the title, even for a short program before he goes and wins it back at Fastlane. There's too much to be done with a program building to Reigns vs. Edge at WrestleMania. As mentioned in the Chamber prediction, there's a lot of drama to be had in an Uso win, especially if he chooses to actually give it a real go and try and win the belt, leaving Reigns to decide if he wants to remove Uso from the family for his insubordination, or keep around his biggest backup ahead of his match with Edge on the biggest show of the year. Pick: Roman Reigns retains the title -- Brookhouse
As much as fans would love Cesaro to win the universal title and beat Reigns for it, there's just no way that happens on the Road to WrestleMania. Perhaps this serves as a showcase that will allow Cesaro to get a rematch down the line once we get past April, but it's not going to happen here. In fact, it doesn't matter who wins the Chamber on Sunday. Reigns will walk out with the title with a clear path to Mania. And I wouldn't be surprised to see Edge blindside him with a spear before the show goes off the air. Pick: Roman Reigns retains the title -- Silverstein