Kofi Kingston Lasts An Hour In Smackdown Gauntlet Match; Orton Wins To Earn Last Elimination Chamber Entry

Kofi with an unreal performance but "The Viper" strikes last.

The main event of tonight's edition of SmackDown Live went for an hour as there was a gauntlet match featuring the competitors in this Sunday's WWE Championship Elimination Chamber match. The winner of that gauntlet match was former 13-time WWE World Champion Randy Orton as he ran in and hit an RKO out of no where on AJ Styles to leave with partial momentum heading into Sunday's Chamber match.

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It was reported here on Fightful that it was likely that Mustafa Ali was going to be replaced in the Chamber match due to a number of injuries that he has compiled over the past few weeks. Ali was replaced by New Day member Kofi Kingston and Kofi started off the gauntlet by defeating the WWE Champion Daniel Bryan with a "Trouble In Paradise".

Next up in the gauntlet match was former three-time WWE World Champion Jeff Hardy and he was also eliminated by Kofi. The "Samoan Submission Machine" Samoa Joe made his way out to the ring and gave Kofi a beating while he was out there and towards the end of their match, Joe set Kofi up for the "Coquina Clutch" but Kingston countered into a pin and was able to keep Joe's shoulders pinned to the mat for a three count. Samoa Joe was not pleased about that and decided to choke Kofi out on the outside.

AJ Styles jetted to the ringside area to stop Joe from further choking Kofi and once the New Day member regained his wits, AJ told Kofi that he did not have to compete but Kofi alerted AJ that this moment has been eleven years in the making and he was not going to quit on an opportunity to increase his chances of becoming WWE Champion.

Kofi Kingston gave it his all until AJ caught him in the "Calf Crusher" and after one hour of wrestling, Kofi tapped out and was carried out by his New Day brethren Xavier Woods and Big E. As AJ was awaiting "The Viper" Randy Orton to come down the entrance ramp, Randy struck from behind and hit an RKO on AJ to pick up the victory and earn the right to enter the Elimination Chamber match last on Sunday.


Kofi is now a part of the WWE Championship Elimination Chamber match and to view the updated match card for the 'Elimination Chamber' pay-per-view, head over to Fightful's "events" page.

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