The stars from Raw, Smackdown, and ECW gather in Seattle,
Washington, for WWE: No Way Out 2009. Here's the complete lineup:
• Edge vs. Triple H vs. Jeff Hardy vs. Big Show vs. Undertaker
vs. Vladimir Kozlov in an Elimination Chamber Match for the WWE Championship
Wow, No Way Out 2009 really kicks off with a bang, as six of WWE's
most popular athletes face each other in the big steel structure that is the
Elimination Chamber. Two wrestlers start out inside the ring, and every five
minutes another one gets to enter the battlefield. Whoever delivers the final
pin or submission hold wins the title. At 35 minutes, this is quite a long but
yet highly entertaining opener. The match slows down a tiny bit after a surprise
opening, but as more wrestlers enter the game, this well-coordinated battle gets
more and more intense and viewers get to experience a large variety of high-risk
maneuvers and impressive stunts. Great first match!
• Shane McMahon vs. Randy Orton in a No Holds Barred Match
Even though it's pretty ridiculous of course, this extreme match between Shane
and Randy is actually not as terrible as I thought. The first part is clearly
the most entertaining one, with especially Shane delivering his regular
high-risk moves. Unfortunately, the battle quickly slows down, and surprises
remain rather scarce in this decent but forgettable 17-minute hardcore fight.
• Jack Swagger vs. Finlay in an ECW Championship Match
Technically, this 8-minute ECW Championship battle is clean and precise. That
said, it's also rather boring, with both wrestlers wasting too much time with
standard kicks, blows, and Irish whips. Finlay and Swagger are both flexible
enough to deliver an extreme show with some strong maneuvers, but somehow, they
don't seem to be in the mood to pull off an entertaining show.
• JBL vs. Shawn Michaels in a All or Nothing Match
Michaels have been feuding for a while, and WWE writers finally decided to give
them the opportunity to face off inside the ring. Clocking in at 13 minutes,
this is a decent matchup, although it could have easily been better. Both
wrestlers start off a little too slow by delivering mostly submission holds, but
as the match progresses, the use of more powerful moves increases. Alas, the
final part is a tad too predictable. I expected more out of this one.
• John Cena vs. Rey Mysterio Jr. vs. Edge vs. Kane vs. Chris
Jericho vs. Mike Knox in an Elimination Chamber Match for the World Heavyweight
This pay-per-view started with a great match, and it also
ends with a great match. The Elimination Chamber returns for this big main
event, and the coordination among these top competitors is top-notch. Even
though this 30-minute final matchup is not as intense as the impressive opener,
it offers viewers a darn entertaining show filled with first-class high-risk
moves, some surprises and a memorable finish.
As usual, the quality of the full-frame presentation works just fine, and so
does the sound transfer. As far as wrestling is concerned, technical aspects
certainly don't matter as much as the actual action inside the ring.
The special features on this disc are mediocre at best. Besides a lame
interview with Edge, the bonus material also includes an unsanctioned match
between Randy Orton and Shane McMahon from Raw. It's a mostly repetitive
battle without surprises or suspense.
All in all, No Way Out 2009 is a decent PPV, even though it could
have been a lot better. The two Elimination Chamber matches really deliver the
goods, but everything else fails to impress.