2019-02-13 by W.M.
Kofi Kingston to Replace Mustafa Ali in WWE Elimination Chamber 2019 Match | Bleacher Report
It was announced on Tuesday’s edition of WWE SmackDown Live that Kofi Kingston will be replacing Mustafa Ali in the Elimination Chamber match for the WWE championship:
Per Dave Meltzer on Wrestling Observer Radio, Ali suffered a concussion at a Sunday house show in Fort Wayne, Indiana. The WWE announced on Tuesday that Ali would be replaced by a member of The New Day. Kingston got the nod over Big E and Xavier Woods.
Daniel Bryan will be defending his title against Kingston, AJ Styles, Jeff Hardy, Randy Orton and Samoa Joe on Sunday at the Toyota Center in Houston.
Bryan defeated Styles for the WWE championship on a mid-November episode of SmackDown Live. He’s defended his title against Styles twice, at TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs and the Royal Rumble pay-per-views.
Kingston hasn’t been involved in an Elimination Chamber match since 2010. He was the third man eliminated in that match, and Kingston hasn’t received a WWE title shot since. Therefore, this is a big opportunity for the 37-year-old, who has won the intercontinental belt four times and the Raw and SmackDown brand tag team belts a combined seven times.
Kingston took part in a Gauntlet match on SmackDown Tuesday to decide the last participant in the Elimination Chamber. He lasted one hour and beat Bryan, Hardy and Samoa Joe and before being eliminated by AJ Styles. Randy Orton hit Styles with an RKO after sneaking in from the side of the ring to earn the right to go last.
On the flip side, this is a tough break for a rising star in Ali, who has been on SmackDown for just two months. The high-flyer made his name on 205 Live for two years before getting the call to the blue brand.
If there is a silver lining, it’s clear WWE brass thought enough of him to give him a title shot within two months of being on SmackDown brand, so the former 205 Live star could still be on the rise once he returns healthy.