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Sami Zayn Has The Hometown Advantage Over Roman Reigns At Elimination Chamber
Is Sami really the underdog when he has an entire nation supporting him?
There are three days remaining until Elimination Chamber, where one of two things will happen.
Either Roman Reigns continues his legendarily dominant run as Undisputed WWE Universal Champion and goes on to defend against Cody Rhodes at WrestleMania, or Sami Zayn does the impossible, wins the title against all odds, and throws the Road to WrestleMania entirely off course for everyone involved.
Sure, Roman Reigns has proven for years that he is the unquestioned “top guy” in all of professional wrestling. He’s even proven that he has all the physical ability in the world to keep his coveted championship for as long as he desires. But unfortunately for The Tribal Chief, there is one thing he won’t have on Saturday: hometown advantage.
As fate would have it, Elimination Chamber will stream live from Montreal, Quebec, Canada — a city that just so happens to be Sami Zayn's hometown. In fact, the ex-Honorary Uce was born in the town of Laval, just 30 minutes away from downtown Montreal. And predictably, in the days leading up to this weekend’s gigantic showdown with Roman Reigns, Montreal has rolled out the red carpet to support its favorite son.
Check out what happened earlier this week during a Montreal Canadiens NHL hockey game when Sami took part in a shooting competition inside the same arena that Elimination Chamber will be taking place in:
Our initial reaction? Sami shouldn’t quit his day job. But there’s a reason why he’s challenging for the top prize in all of wrestling this weekend as opposed to lacing up a pair of skates on a regular basis. Although Sami wasn’t exactly thrilled with his performance on the ice (“I haven’t shot a puck in a while,” he confessed after failing to hit all four targets hanging in the net), he was quick to convey the importance of this weekend’s event.
“It’s actually the biggest WWE event we’ve had in Montreal in over 25 years,” he told the crowd at Bell Centre.
Although Sami didn’t get into specifics, he did admit that in regards to the Undisputed WWE Universal Championship match, he is “confident.” And hey, why wouldn’t he be? Judging by the crowd’s reaction, he’s going to be able to ride the wave of crowd support to give Roman Reigns his biggest test to date.
The hometown advantage in wrestling is real, especially in Canada: Just ask the Hart Foundation how their main event match at In Your House: Canadian Stampede went in 1997. The Calgary crowd willed Bret Hart, Owen Hart, and their teammates to victory in one of the best-ever examples of wrestlers feeding off the crowd’s energy:
Can Sami Zayn harness the momentum he’s built up over the past few months, take the overwhelming support from the WWE Universe, and leverage this crucial hometown advantage to pull off the upset of the century? Would fans even consider it an upset at this point?
At any rate, it sure seems like Sami Zayn is poised to ascend to the top of WWE in just three days.
Whether Roman Reigns still holds his own destiny in his hands remains to be seen — The Tribal Chief is about to collide head-on not only with Sami Zayn, but an entire country.
Watch WWE's Elimination Chamber LIVE on Saturday, Feb. 18 at 8 p.m. ET, streaming only on Peacock.