Star power.

WWE fans have thrown those two words around a lot lately, mostly in the context of its absence from the current roster.

One needs to look no further than the two world title bouts announced this week for the upcoming Elimination Chamber pay-per-view to see where these complaints originate and develop.

On Monday night's Raw, it was announced that CM Punk would defend his WWE Championship against Chris Jericho, Dolph Ziggler, The Miz, R-Truth and Kofi Kingston.

Smackdown's match, which pits World Heavyweight Champion Daniel Bryan against Big Show, Randy Orton, Wade Barrett, Cody Rhodes and the Great Khali, was announced on Friday night's show.

With two main event matches requiring 12 superstars, one can't expect everyone in the matches to be on the fast track to the Hall of Fame, but a closer look at this listing leaves much to be desired.

Punk, Jericho, Orton and Big Show are all established top-tier contenders in WWE. Bryan, Ziggler, Rhodes and Barrett are definite stars on the rise, and the first two have been flirting with the top of the card in recent months. Yes, Bryan is a world champion, but I cannot in good faith say he's cemented a spot atop the mountain.

Miz has been knocked down about as far as he could fall after his major push, which included headlining last year's WrestleMania. R-Truth has been nothing but his midcard foil.

That leaves two men, one from Raw and one from Smackdown, who have absolutely no place in the Elimination Chamber matches.

Outside of winning the tag team titles with Evan Bourne - and then frequently not defending them because of his partner's suspensions - Kingston has done little other than handstand his way out of an elimination at Sunday's Royal Rumble match.

Khali, meanwhile, has literally don't nothing in recent months. He's been off television, resting at home in India. For him to come back and less than a week later be inserted into a world title match is a ludicrous concept. No one wants to see Khali near the top of the card, as demonstrated by his previous failures as a world champion.

It's a sad state of affairs at the top of card for WWE right now, and matches like these Elimination Chamber contests highlight the real need for new stars.

But who's to blame for this ongoing plight? The WWE for continuing to focus on stars of the past - like Triple H and his apparent unprecedented third shot at ending Undertaker's WrestleMania streak - or fans for not being willing to accept new stars - like Sheamus during his first run or The Miz during title reign - on top?

Fans keep looking for the next"Stone Cold" Steve Austinor Shawn Michaels rather than letting the superstars of today develop into this generation's Dolph Ziggler and Daniel Bryan.


Quick Hits


  • Orton put Barrett away in a no-disqualification match that appears to be the end of their feud. The two worked a really good match within the confines of the stipulation without going overboard and excessive. I expected this feud to continue through a midcard match at WrestleMania, so now I'm left with a lingering fear Orton will prevail at Elimination Chamber. In some ways, that's a good thing, as it makes the outcome of that title match a little less certain. Maybe next week will be more of an indicator, as Bryan goes one-on-one with Orton.