ppv · Rehash · SummerSlam

PPV Rehash: SummerSlam 2016 – Brooklyn, New York

Welcome to this year’s SummerSlam! It’s an awfully long program we have booked this year, but I’m not going to complain about extra wrestling. 

I mean, who am I kidding? I’ll complain about plenty.

Jess here, because Steph’s trying to get her life together, or something. Possibly getting dinner before a long, long night.

Renee kicks us off on the kick-off show, with Booker T, Lita and Jerry Lawler. I keep forgetting that Lawler is still employed by WWE and I have to see his face from time to time. Lawler obviously also forgot that he is still employed, because he appears to be wearing a bed gown.

After an aside to Tom Phillips in the social media lounge, we’re back to our panel. Lita says that she’s most looking forward to Dean Ambrose vs. Dolph Ziggler, and I definitely can’t argue with that. Lawler goes on a weird aside about Finn Balor, and his jokes are so awful that Renee starts talking about clothes in order to distract from the fact that Lawler is trying to make sounds with his mouth.

We cover, briefly, the three matches from the kick-off show. The 12 man tag match has a lot of people in it. Cesaro vs. Sheamus is something that we’re going to have to get used to, because we’ll see six more of them. Booker T is trying to talk about his personal relationship with Cesaro, but he’s stumbling over his words so badly that I’m actually not quite sure what his point is. Something about how Cesaro is banging on the door looking for an opportunity, just like Booker used to do, I think.

A video package commences about AJ Styles and John Cena, touching on all the best moments in their relationship. AJ Styles yelling that Cena sucks and that he’s going to beat up John Cena, and Cena claiming AJ has no honour or balls. Cena’s speech about how he’s in WWE out of love plays again, and it still distracts me a little; I’m still drawn in to what he’s saying just a little more than I think I should be. Of course, that moment led into AJ’s challenge for this match.

On the panel, Lawler is easily distracted because he wants to talk about Booker going golfing. Actually, he’s trying to make some kind of tortured analogy about how beating Cena is like a hole in one and no one gets a hole in one twice. Basically, Lawler thinks that AJ Styles has no hope of beating John Cena, and Lita agrees, but Booker’s backing Styles.

Can anyone explain to me why there’s an ad for SummerSlam on the kickoff show? Just wondering. Who’s watching the kickoff show and doesn’t realize that SummerSlam is on in an hour and a half?

Next up we’re talking about the Intercontinental Championship. Crews beat out Corbin and Kalisto for his title shot, and The Miz can’t remember that his name is Crews, not Creed. It’s not all that interesting, honestly.

Tom Phillips is interviewing Chris Jericho and Kevin Owens. I’m highly distracted during this segment because Jericho is wearing a shirt with his scarf. It’s actually really weird! But that’s not the point, the point is that they’re polite Canadian boys who need to apologise for getting Tom Phillips’ name wrong. Also, Jericho looked up how to become a certified G and he became one, paying a nominal fee, thus proving that you can teach that, but you still can’t teach chemistry. Kevin naturally points out that you can totally teach chemistry, it’s part of a regular science class, but Jericho explains that he meant that they’re the closest tagteam in WWE. There’s a lot of tagteams that I feel like would argue with that, but…

After that, we’re straight into the 12 Man tag match. Do I have to recap this? I feel like I recapped this on SmackDown this week.

MATCH: The Vaudevillains, the Ascension & Breezango vs. the Hype Bros, the Usos & American Alpha

The Vaudevillains and the Ascension make their way to the ring followed by Breezango. I can’t help but notice that Breezango get a bit of a pop, though that may just be because the other two teams get virtually no crowd reaction. All three of the face teams get a bigger pop, as I’m sure comes as no surprise.

  • Tyler Breeze and Chad Gable start in the ring together. Tyler looks annoyed at the crowd.
  • Collar and elbow tie-up, go behind from Gable, into a pair of waistlock takedowns into a back elbow to break the hold from Breeze.
  • Gable rolls out of the wrist lock and reverses into strikes and a leg scissors take-down, tapping in Jey Uso.
  • Jey drags Tyler into the opposite corner, where he is able to tag in Aiden English. Some back and forth until Jey hits a scoop slam on English, then Mojo Rawley tagging in.
  • Rawley works on English’s shoulder with a series of arm-wringers, then tagging in Zack Ryder for the the Hype Ryder for a nearfall.
  • Ryder with forearms in the corner against English, then goes for the Broski Boot but interrupted by Simon Gotch, and then all the heels entering the ring, followed by all the faces.
  • The Ascension end up standing tall in the ring until they’re taken down by American Alpha with a dual aerial assault. Breezango drag Alpha out of the ring by their ankles, but take a wrecking ball dropkick from the Hype Bros when we cut to commercial.
  • When we’re back, Zack Ryder is in the ring with Simon Gotch, who has him in a chinlock, which he transitions into an armbar.
  • All the heels on the apron yelling at Ryder, who breaks the hold but is backed into the corner to make the tag to Viktor.
  • Viktor goes for a cover and gets a two-count, then transitions into a chinlock.
  • Ryder to a vertical base, into a jawbreaker, but he’s up on Viktor’s shoulder before he can make the tag, going down to a tagteam move from Konnor who is tagged in and gets a two-count.
  • Ryder into the turnbuckle, and Konnor tags in Tyler Breeze who lays in stomps in the corner. The ref tries to create separation, and it looks like Tyler’s temper is going to distract him as an Uso tries to enter the ring, but the referee saves things.
  • Tyler transitions a chinlock into a leg scissors takedown into a half Boston crab, and tags in Fandango for a leg drop on Ryder.
  • Fandango goes for a cover, getting a two-count, and makes the tag to Viktor, who knocks the facs off the apron and tags in Konnor.
  • Konnor goes for a Canadian backbreaker on Ryder, but Ryder reverses into a neckbreaker. Both men make the hot tag to Tyler and Jimmy Uso.
  • Jimmy with a Samoan Drop on Tyler, and Konnor tries to interfere but takes an enzuigiri. Jimmy whipped into the ropes by Tyler, but makes the tag to Jason Jordan who hits a pair of suplexes on Tyler, then Fandango as he attempts to interfere.
  • More interference that it’s difficult to follow; a spinning sit out powerbomb from one of the Vaudevillains, and then Tyler Breeze is back in the ring and attempts a double superplex on Ryder with Viktor, when Mojo Rawley interferes.
  • Tyler on the mat takes an Elbro Drop from Ryder, who takes a guillotine leg drop from Fandango, who takes a superkick from one of the Usos.
  • Superkicks in stereo from the Usos sending the heels off the apron, then a pair of flying Usos takes them to the ground.
  • Spear in the corner from Jordan onto Simon Gotch, and Jordan tags in Gable, but one of the Usos tags himself in so as Gable and Jordan hit Grand Amplitude, Uso comes in for the pin.

After the match, the faces are standing tall but there looks to be some tension between them thanks to that weird play.

When we go back, Renee seems pretty pleased, and Booker’s all up for it, too. It’s Steph here now, finally, and I’m enjoying Renee’s ringmaster look, and hating the fact that Jerry Lawler is here. We’re talking about the new tag team titles, we’re hoping for gold and bling and SmackDown blue, apparently.

We get a nice promo of Dean running and climbing in the desert – they’re old shots, but fuck it, we love ‘em, and then baby Dean in 2011. We get to watch Dean’s cash in, and the title, along with the #1 contender matches that meant we’re watching Dolph vs. Dean tonight. We see Dean and Dolph’s altercations that have been on SmackDown so far. I haven’t caught most of these, because I don’t cover SmackDown, but these seem to have been pretty hardcore, I’m liking the look of this. I’m fairly excited about it, even though both of these guys are personal favourites of mine.

Renee is talking about her boy’s championship, and then we let Jerry Lawler talk about how Dean doesn’t know what he’s doing – but he’s still gonna win. Lita says the window of Dolph’s chance is closing, and Booker says that it could be Dolph’s last chance to become champion. He actually says cash in… but we’ve already had Money in the Bank, Booker, don’t you remember? God, I hate a pre-show, I really do, so much talk for so little reward, and two hours? Two hours? The whole announce table says that Dean’s going to take the win tonight, making it the first time I’ve doubted that he will. Huh.

Baron Corbin ambles in and goes through Lita’s notes, before someone hands him a mic. He says he was meant to have a match with Kalisto, who isn’t medically cleared, but Baron’s about making money – he likes Booker’s watch. He’s angry that Kalisto cost him money, and says he hopes Kalisto’s wife enjoys his company. You know, my wife would enjoy my company, if I were across the hall and in my bed right now, but I’m here, with you, because wrestling is a labour of love. Corbin says he isn’t there to answer any questions that Renee might have, and ambles off.

We talk about the wedding stuff with Lana and Rusev, and Renee says that Lita has had a few wedding situations. Lawler starts talking about his weddings, and everyone has to cut that short, and then he’s creepy about Lana and the women both interrupt him. Creepy fucking dick. Booker T is talking about how bad it is to touch another man’s woman, because women are property, right? Christ, why not just call this ‘the sexist panel’ and make Lita and Renee leave? This is such bullshit.

From that, we go straight to the women. Appropriate. A video package on Sasha’s rise to the top, which is super emotional, and then Sasha’s in the social media lounge with Tom Phillips, asking a few questions from twitter. Sasha says Charlotte’s dirty and she smells… okay, I guess we’re going there. When a fan asks if she’s scared of Charlotte, her smile seems a little shaky as she says no, she was born to do this. You can really see the woman behind the wrestler there, holding the title a little tighter. It’s marvellous.

Lita says it’s going to be a hell of a match, and that the championship is really important. Lawler says that Sasha’s ego is too big, and that’s how you lose. Booker T says that Charlotte will take the win, Lawler agrees, and Lita says it’ll be Sasha.

Andrea D’Marco is backstage, looking tiny next to Cesaro, and asking how he feels about the best of seven series. He says that whoever wins the first match will be the one who shows physical dominance, and that on a good night, it could go either way between them – less talk, more wrestling. When we talk about the next match, Renee calls Neville ‘Adrian Neville’… I didn’t know we were doing that anymore!

MATCH: Neville & Sami Zayn vs. The Dudley Boyz

It’s Cole, Saxton, and Graves for this match, interrupted by the Dudley’s pyro, as they amble out. I don’t care for them, but it should be worth watching this match just for the high-flying combination of Zayn and Neville.

  • Starting with D-Von and Neville in the ring, locking up, before D-Von’s working the wrist of Neville
  • Sami tags in, and goes to work on the wrist of D-Von, Neville back in and they’re tagging in and out to give offense to D-Von’s left wrist, with a couple of elbow drops off the top rope to it
  • Springboarding off Sami, Neville flies onto D-Von. Bubba tags in, and there’s more launching tag team moves, this is really gorgeous
  • D-Von grabs Neville’s ankle so he can’t leap onto Bubba, and then there’s a huge blow from behind on Neville
  • D-Von and Neville, spinning elbow to Neville and a cover for one
  • Back from commercials and Bubba has Neville in the Dudley corner, and hit a neckbreaker off the top turnbuckles, slamming him hard into the mat, and making a cover for two
  • D-Von and Neville in the centre of the ring, keeping Neville away from Sami, leg drop from D-Von and a cover for two and a half
  • Neville backed into the corner for huge blows to the cut from D-Von, Neville taking an elbow to the head
  • Bubba tagged in, slapping Neville around with those big paws he calls hands, but Neville gets some blows back on
  • Bubba goes to the second rope, Neville rolls out of the way as Bubba comes off the ropes, and both men make tags
  • Sami with a dropkick to D-Von, takes an elbow to the face, and manages a Blue Thunder Bomb, the pin broken by Bubba
  • Bubba tagged in, but both Dudleys are in the room, hitting a double team move, and Neville has to break the pin apart
  • Neville manages to leapfrog over a 3D attempt, and dodges to let Bubba hit D-Von
  • Helluva Kick from Sami!
  • Red Arrow from Neville to Bubba, and then he gets the pin, as Sami hold D-Von away from his partner, keeping him on the apron – Neville and Sami get the win!

That was everything a pre-show match should be – short enough, impressive movements enough, and enough to keep the crowd awake without over-exciting them or risking being better than the main show.

We’re talking about Finn and Seth, and how that’s all been going down for weeks, which they manage to make look even more impressive than it has been. Booker T is excited about Seth, thinking he’s going to be incredible, and that he’s going to go over Finn tonight. Seth rather likes being first, I think the boy’s a little pathological about it all, really. Jerry Lawler says that Seth isn’t going to be afraid of a man in make-up, or a scary face, and I guess that’s because Seth’s never had to face Jerry Lawler. Lita says it isn’t just make-up, and that Finn’s drawing on something from deep within. Lawler and Booker T are on team Seth, Lita is on team Finn, which makes me feel grubby about being on team Seth. Poor company.

MATCH: Sheamus vs. Cesaro – 1st Match in a Best of Seven Series

Bioluminescent Sheamus looks like a Mountain Dew bottle, or what your piss looks like if you drink a whole bottle of Mountain Dew. Don’t ask me, I’m English, I’ve never tasted it. Cesaro’s got a white dinner jacket on, because he’s a classy guy, and then he strips, because he’s still a classy guy. What, you thought this was going to be something bad about strippers? Nope.

  • We start off with the two men dodging each other, Cesaro moving away as the crowd chant ‘you look stupid’
  • Lock up, Sheamus in the corner, Cesaro ducking out of the way of an early brogue kick, hitting with an uppercut
  • Springboard from Sheamus, caught by Cesaro, double stomp and Sheamus send over the top rope
  • Cesaro runs into Sheamus’ arm on the ropes, then a dropkick from Cesaro and a kick out from Sheamus
  • Commentary respects this match by talking about The Rock
  • Sheamus whipped across, Cesaro bounced over onto the apron, and Sheamus stretching Cesaro over the ropes for the ten beats, Cesaro shifting out of position
  • Hug over the top rope, Sheamus bounces Cesaro off the ring post
  • Suplex from Sheamus, cover for one on Cesaro, then a wristlock
  • Cesaro with a sideslam, wincing at his shoulder
  • Suplex by Cesaro, cover for one
  • Both men already look knackered, like they overdid it in the early parts
  • Huge blow to Cesaro’s face, then Sheamus gets him in the corner
  • European uppercut from Cesaro, elbow and a slam from Sheamus, pin for two and a half
  • Back from commercials, Sheamus has Cesaro in a headlock, Cesaro gets out and comes off the ropes with an uppercut to Sheamus
  • Irish Curse Backbreaker from Sheamus and a pin for two
  • Blow to Sheamus’ gut to make him release a headlock, and then Sheamus with a rolling senton on Cesaro, grandstanding to the audience
  • Sheamus goes for a suplex, and they trade attempts and blocks for a moment, before both men come off the apron and onto the floor in what looks like a clumsy spot
  • Both men back in the count, Sheamus at six, Cesaro at nine and – huh, commentary are on two tables, one for Raw and one for SmackDown. What do they do for the crossover matches, do we get six-man tag commentary?
  • Uppercut after uppercut onto Sheamus in the corner, and then Cesaro lifts Sheamus to the top turnbuckle, hits a huge dropkick, and sends him tumbling to the apron
  • Cesaro takes Sheamus to the top rope, and there’s a superplex, and a pin for two for Cesaro
  • Roll up from Sheamus off the swing attempt, and a pin for two
  • White Noise from Sheamus off the Neutralizer attempt from Cesaro, and another pin for two, getting close to the end now
  • YOU LOOK STUPID chants as he gives blows to Cesaro on the apron
  • Cesaro on the shoulders of Sheamus on the second rope, rolling senton and a pin for two
  • We catch the tail end of Cesaro telling Sheamus what’s happening next, and Sheamus goes to grandstand to the booing crowd as Sheamus’ hair melts
  • Sheamus goes for the Brogue, but gets a kick from Cesaro, followed by a huge clothesline and Sheamus down for two
  • Cesaro up to the top of the ring post, uses the top rope as a springboard for a cross-body and a pin for two
  • Cesaro goes for the swing, and manages five revolutions
  • Sharpshooter attempt, Sheamus gets to the bottom rope, but Cesaro stays on him until the ref pushes him away
  • Pin attempt from Cesaro, he gets a boot to the face, and Sheamus manages to send Cesaro into the ring post, then a Brogue kick – and Sheamus gets the first victory.

Pretty good, not too slow or ponderous, and this leaves Cesaro as the face, chasing the wins, means he’s got more to be frustrated about and more to worry about in trying to win. Pretty excited to see the rest of these matches now, as these guys are solid, and always a pleasure to watch.

Last bit of the kick off show, and we’re talking about Brick and Rondell. I’m sorry, but I just… I don’t care, really. I know we’re supposed to, but I don’t find either of them interesting or charismatic, I’m annoyed that Brock hasn’t been suspended, and I’d love to see more of Randy being a person, rather than a big slab of beef that we’re supposed to care about. The video package is nice, but… I don’t know. If this match is on last, I might tag out and give it to Jess, if I can get away with it!

MATCH: Enzo Amore & Big Cass vs. Chris Jericho & Kevin Owens

Enzo Amore catches the sun for SummerSlam on his home ground in Brooklyn
Enzo Amore catches the sun for SummerSlam on his home ground in Brooklyn

Big Cass and Enzo obviously get a huge pop, because it’s their hometown, and also because everyone loves them. Enzo is wearing overalls like he just got done painting his house with murals of naked ladies, and Cass… looks like he normally looks, with his shirt sliced open because it’s literally the only way they can get the damn things off him. Enzo also looks like he’s borrowed his hair off Draco Malfoy tonight. They say they’re going to dedicate this match to the teachers who told then they’d never amount to anything, and the people of their city, because I you can make it in New York, you can make it anywhere. Cass tries his hand at a little New York, New York, and it’s not half bad, actually.

Chris Jericho finally comes out, ambling out like he’d rather not look at anyone in the crowd, with scarf and tiny trunks, sneering at us like the most evil magician dad in the world. Then it’s Owens, walking out to join his partner, who waits for him like a twink waiting for his bear hook-up. We’re introduced to the Spanish announce team – RIP your table, guys. It’s just a fact.

  • Starting with Cass being knocked off the apron, KO and Jericho on Enzo before the ref sends KO out
  • Suplex from Jericho, Enzo bounced off the turnbuckle as the ‘stupid idiot’ chant rises from the crowd
  • The two dodge clotheslines from each other, cross-body from Enzo, and scrappy blows, cover for two
  • KO on the apron looking like a perplexed otter
  • KO and Cass tagged in, brutal blows from Cass to KO, and KO fights out of the corner with kicks, before KO flings Cass like he weighs nothing
  • Enzo tagged in, Enzo suplexed onto KO, who gets away to tag in Jericho
  • Depp arm drag and dropkick from Enzo, launched into Jericho, but KO comes in as well
  • Jericho and Owens thrown out of the ring, and Enzo launched onto the top of them
  • Jericho and Enzo, punches from the second rope from Enzo to Jericho
  • Distraction from KO, dropkick from Jericho and a pin, kick out at two from Enzo
  • Jericho with his knee on Enzo’s head, letting him choke on the rope as KO mocks Enzo’s dance along the apron
  • KO tagged in, big stomps to Enzo’s belly, huge chops as Enzo rises from the mat
  • Jericho back in, snapmare from Jericho, and then a kick to the back, blows to the back, before a headlock as the crowd tries to rally their hometown heroes
  • Enzo back to his feet, comes off the ropes into a dropkick, and a pin for two from Jericho
  • KO tagged back in, backbreaker and then a senton to Enzo, coming off the ropes into a… headlock. Well, he is the headlock master
  • Cass claps to rally Enzo, and Enzo gets out, collapsing into the JeriKO corner, but he starts to fight his way out, kicking Owens away from him, but it’s a long way across the ring
  • Owens with his hand on Enzo’s ankle, keeping him, in, but Enzo kicks him away, then punches Jericho off the apron, huge dropkick from Enzo to KO as Jericho whines about his face
  • Enzo nearly makes the tag, but Jericho in, springboard dropkick to Cass, then Owens tagged in, frogsplash to Enzo, pin for two and a half!
  • Slap from KO to Enzo’s face as the ref has to pull Owens away, huge kicks and knees in the corner, but as Owens runs back in, Enzo comes back with a punch
  • Enzo to the second rope, Owens drags him down, goes for the cannonball, blowing a sarcastic kiss, but Enzo dodges
  • Tag made to Cass! And to Jericho! Shoulder tackles from Cass, a huge boot to KO to take him off the apron, and then Empire Elbow to Jericho
  • Jericho to the top rope, leaps down into a big boot, Enzo tagged in, but KO pulls Enzo down onto the turnbuckle
  • Cass out of the ring with huge blows traded, Cass sent shoulder-first into the post, then hit with a cannonball
  • Jericho and Enzo on the top rope, Enzo throws Jericho off him and he hits the matt
  • DDT from Enzo, pin for two, KO breaks it up
  • Enzo with huge blows to KO, but he’s bounced over KO’s shoulders and into a Codebreaker from Jericho!
  • Jericho makes the pin for three!

The heels have a cuddle on the outside, and Kevin’s really snuggling in, actually, that’s sort of cute. They make their way onto the ramp, arms held aloft as KO shouts ‘I LOVE YOU CHRIS’ and Jericho shouts ‘I LOVE YOU TOO’ and Cass and Enzo sit together in the ring.

Jon Stewart is here, telling Mick Foley off for working with the bad guys, and Steph’s right behind him, so that’s… you know, was pretty amusing. Xavier and Kofi are here, and their colours are all fucked up. Peach? No thank you. Kofi and Xavier spirit Jon away, as Mick calls Steph misunderstood, and says she has layers. Okay.

MATCH: Sasha Banks vs. Charlotte – WWE Women’s Championship Match

Baywatch Sasha Banks - more like BABEwatch, right?
Baywatch Sasha Banks – more like BABEwatch, right?

We get a gorgeous video package, and then Charlotte’s out in a new black feathered robe, and I love it, I want them to make them because I would love one of those for when I find out my billionaire husband has suspiciously died, leaving everything to me. But, I’m a little worried about the other women’s match, if this one is so early. Maybe we’ll get a title match an hour, and that’s how they’ll do it, but I just… one day it’d be nice to see a women’s match be the main event, and these two could pull it off.

Sasha’s here looking fucking amazing in red and black and I love her so much, she’s so amazing, I want her to keep her title so badly, because she deserves that. Also because I love hearing her talk, all cocksure but still technically face.

  • Slow start, the two women circling each other before Charlotte tests it, bouncing off the ropes, and then Sasha almost running into a boot
  • Sasha backed into the corner, she comes back with huge blow and a side-headlock
  • Hurricanrana from Sasha, gets the Bank Statement locked in right away, Charlotte managing to roll out of the ring
  • Charlotte to the apron blows to Sasha, roll up from Charlotte, kick out, roll up from Charlotte, kick out
  • Chop for Sasha to Charlotte
  • Sasha bounces Charlotte’s face off the turnbuckle, goes to the top ropes, and Charlotte lays Sasha out over the rope and puts her boot on her face
  • Knees to the face from Sasha, Charlotte back up, lifting Sasha and coming off the rope, dropping Sash on the ropes in something that legitimately scares the hell out of me as she catches her legs on the ropes and drops on her head and neck
  • Charlotte comes back in for a pin, twice, the ref keeping her away
  • Knees to the small of the back from Sasha, backslide, Charlotte rolling through and pinning Sasha for two
  • Sasha stretched on Charlotte’s back, backslide, Sasha rolls through
  • Big blow from Sasha to Charlotte, but she’s falling to her knees, catches Charlotte’s boot and knees her in the face
  • Sasha still holding her back, repeated backbreakers Charlotte to Sasha, then knees to her back in the corner
  • Charlotte and Sasha up to the top rope, Charlotte going for a superplex, Sasha turning it into a hurricanrana, but Charlotte rolls through, looking for the figure four
  • Sasha has to hold herself on the ropes as Charlotte kicks her in the chest and stomach, climbs back up to the turnbuckle and there’s more blows from Charlotte to the back of the champ
  • The women sit back to back on the top turnbuckles, and Sasha stands, Charlotte going for a razor’s edge, but Sasha counters, rolling both women through and landing Charlotte on her back in what is a HELL of a move!
  • Both women down hard, slowly fighting to their feet as the women trade blows in the middle of the ring, then Sasha in with wild slaps to Charlotte, rolls away from Charlotte
  • Charlotte send into the ring post, Sasha holding Charlotte’s leg and pulling up for four
  • Sasha balances Charlotte on the ropes and drops the double knees to the small of her back, crumpling her to the floor
  • THIS IS AWESOME chant – fuck yes it is!
  • Charlotte over the ropes, Sasha sent down with a kick to the knee, head bouncing off the second turnbuckles
  • The women fight on the corner ropes, Charlotte sent to the outside, and Sasha hitting a huge double knee off the top rope, onto Charlotte on the outside
  • Sasha throws Charlotte back into the ring, snapmare from Sasha, pins Charlotte for… two and a half, so close!
  • Backstabber on Charlotte but it doesn’t quite get there as Sasha struggles with her back
  • Natural Selection from Charlotte, but Sasha rolls it through into the Bank Statement, but Charlotte manages to scramble away and out of it
  • Neckbreaker from Charlotte, dives for Sasha’s knees and takes her down, another Natural Selection and a pin for two!
  • Cover once more, again Sasha kicking out at two
  • Charlotte for another pin, and once more at two, Charlotte practically sobbing with frustration
  • Huge slaps to Sasha’s face, Charlotte going for the tilt-a-whirl backbreaker, Sasha gets her into the Banks Statement
  • Charlotte manages to roll through and pin Sasha – for three!

Charlotte took the championship back? I’m… Sasha looks devastated, absolutely heartbroken at the loss of her title as Charlotte smiles on the apron, holding her title aloft. Fuck, that match went just shy of fifteen minutes, and my heart is still pounding as Michael Cole manages to mistake Charlotte for Sasha, because he’s tripping over his words. To be fair, Cole, I made a lot of typos in the draft of this match, because that was… really, really fucking good.

Oh, Gallows and Anderson talking about balls, and they’re getting a visit from good ole boy AJ, who’s turned up to chatter to his boys about how much he misses them. Finn rocks up, and there’s a weird, awkward moment, before the three club members too sweet each other, and Finn just looks at them like they’re the embarrassing cousins no one wants to admit to being related to.

Steph can’t handle anything after that women’s match, and in any case, I’ve got more of a vested interest in the SmackDown titles, so it’s Jess back again for a match!

MATCH: The Miz vs. Apollo Crews

The Miz, the only man who would legitimately wear chinos on the beach.
The Miz, the only man who would legitimately wear chinos on the beach.

So a part of me wants to complain that our champion is coming out first for this match, but god – The Miz and Maryse look absolutely amazing as they make their way to the ring. I mean, Maryse looks amazing. The Miz looks like the Phantom of the Opera on BDSM night. Apollo Crews makes his way out to follow while Miz and Maryse are just kissing and biting each other, and I can’t blame them, really.

  • The two men circle each other, then the Miz going in on the offensive, backing Crews into the corner with hard knees.
  • The referee creates separation and MIz backs off only for exactly long enough to avoid a DQ, before going in for more, then a running knee to Crews’s neck.
  • Crews ducks under another kick, then goes for a roll-up. Miz kicks out.
  • DDT from Miz, backpress for a two-count.
  • Rear chinlock from Miz; Crews tries to slide out, then lifts Miz and throws him into the corner.
  • The Miz sends Crews onto the apron, then knocks his feet out from under him so he lands face-first on the apron.
  • Miz posturing outside the ring, then double axe-handles off the turnbuckle into a standing dropkick from Apollo Crews.
  • Stinger splash in the corner from Crews, then a splash onto the mat. Kip-up from Crews and then a slam to Miz for two-count.
  • Miz locks in the full nelson for the Skull-Crushing Finale but Crews breaks out. An enzuigiri into a standing moonsault, but Miz gets his knees up.
  • Side-press from Crews onto Miz for a two-count.
  • Crews lifts Miz again; Miz ducks out and lands on his feet, going for a corner splash.
  • Crews hits an overhead belly to belly suplex followed by a standing moonsault for a two-count.
  • Crews tries to lift Miz again but Miz climbs out of the ring and looks like he’s simply going to walk away. Crews throws him back into the ring.
  • Maryse distracts long enough for another attempt at a Skull-Crushing Finale, but Crews breaks out.
  • A second attempt at the Skull-Crushing Finale for a successful pinfall, and The Miz retains!

Maryse celebrates with her man in the ring and I think we can confidently say that they’re in at least the top three hottest couples in WWE. I disagree with their claims that they’re the hottest, but I can’t argue.

Mauro invites up back to the Barclay Centre, and I love watching JBL look at Mauro with half-admiration, half-stunned surprise. He looks like he’s just seen a cake he really likes, and it’s talking to him.

We get a video package about the AJ Styles vs. Cena match, and it’s very flashy, I don’t like that. Also I realise that my tea’s gone cold, and I didn’t take the IC match break (I made Jess do it) to refresh the pot. *sighs* Thankfully, the video package runs long enough that I can do exactly that.

MATCH: AJ Styles vs. John Cena

AJ comes out and commentary try to sell us Hulu, as the crowd start to boo. Then it’s Cena out, and the crowd can’t decide if they’re cheering or booing him, until the theme kicks in properly and there’s a rousing chorus of ‘John Cena sucks!’ which is my favourite song. Cena’s in his Big Match Jorts today.

  • David Otunga ruins this match by saying ‘asterix’ when he means ‘asterisk’. Already, David? The chants duel for AJ and Cena
  • AJ’s mouthing off as the two circle each other, clocking up dramatically, AJ sent to his knees as the two test each other’s strength
  • The hold is finally broken, and they circle again, before locking up, AJ getting a side headlock locked in, but AJ gets out of it
  • This is like watching two male moose having a fight, it’s just lock up after lock up until Cena comes off the ropes right into a huge dropkick from AJ
  • Punch to the face from Cena takes down a showboating AJ
  • There’s a rough spot where Cena’s dropped on his face and AJ comes off the turnbuckle hard
  • AJ takes a couple of rough hands from Cena, and the crowd continues to sing that Cena sucks
  • AJ onto the shoulders of Cena, he’s looking for the AA, but AJ gets himself out and there’s a suplex from AJ onto the apron
  • Commentary tell us three times that the apron is the hardest part of the ring, because they don’t listen to each other
  • Massive back body drop from Cena, AJ getting serious air, and a pin for one
  • Dropkick from Cena and a pin for two
  • Right hand from Cena, then a headbutt as AJ is trying to get up from his knees, AJ crumpling to the mat
  • More heavy punches from Cena, but AJ gets his offense in as well, Cena on the ground before a huge kick to the face from Styles
  • Styles lifted and slammed back to the ground by Cena, Five Knuckle Shuffle
  • AJ up on Cena’s shoulders, looking for the AA, AJ lands on his feet and hits a Pelé kick
  • Styles Clash! Pin for two, looks really close!
  • Both men crumpled on the mat, AJ to his feet first, but Cena rises and this time hits the AA, pin for two from Cena
  • Cena gets AJ onto the top rope, lifts him high on his shoulders, but AJ rolls over, and lifts Cena into a torture rack, spinning powerbomb and a pin for two
  • Styles catapulted into the top turnbuckles
  • Pin from Cena, two and a half, so close
  • Roll up by Styles, two count
  • Drop toehold from Cena, AJ dodges, modified AA from Styles sending Cena to the ground
  • Cena on the mat, crawling his way up just to be punched back down to the ground again, but Styles makes the mistake of going to the top rope
  • Springboard 450 from Styles, lands flat on his face, then a roll up from Cena for two and a half!
  • Rolling German suplex and a facebuster from Styles, pin for two
  • Styles rolls away from Cena, under the ropes, and goes for the Phenomenal Forearm, Cena catches him by the leg and locks him into the STF
  • AJ gets out of it, into a cross-face from Styles, Cena struggles to his feel with AJ still on his shoulders, tries to get AJ into the AA
  • AJ rolls through to put on the Calf Crusher
  • Cena manager to roll AJ over, into the STF again, but AJ crawls through as well, another reversal, this time into a pin for a two kick
  • Enzuigiri from Styles, Cena looking dazed in the corner
  • Cena to the top rope, tornado DDT, pin for two
  • Leg drop off the top rope from Cena, pin for two
  • Cena gets AJ onto the top turnbuckle, then sits himself up there, going to the AA, but Styles elbows out
  • Frankensteiner off the top rope from Styles, Cena tossed across the ring
  • Phenomenal Forearm, pins Cena – two and a half!
  • AJ starts getting Cena into position for the Styles Clash, but Cena goes to try for the AA, Styles coming off the ropes into a huge right from Cena
  • Back into the fireman’s carry for Cena, AJ trying to elbow out, but it’s an AA, landing hard, AJ pinned and somehow managing to kick out at two
  • Cena’s sitting on the ropes in the corner, and AJ is crumpled in the opposite corner, and they’re both battered, Cena looking baffled
  • AJ backs into a fireman’s carry from Cena, but AJ turns it over and hits the Styles Clash, but he can’t get the cover, rolling away and under the rope
  • Phenomenal Forearm – and the pin for three!

Holy HELL that was a hard-fought match. I didn’t really expect to care about that one, but I guess I’d forgotten, with him being on SD now, how bloody GOOD AJ is. The battered AJ has his arm lifted, and he looks very fuzzy about where he is and what’s happening. Cena slowly makes his way out of the ring, leaving a sweatband in the centre of the ring as he slowly walks away.

Jon Stewart’s here. Are you gonna hit Cena with a chair again, and give Seth a title? Or are you just here to tell us you’re from New Jersey? No, apparently he’s not here to hit people with chairs, he’s here to talk at us and get booed by the crowd and have a ‘what’ chant shouted at him. He strips off to reveal a Booty-O’s shirt and puts on a unicorn horn. He announces The New Day.

Jess is taking the rest of the pay-per-view from here, because it’s late and this pay-per-view is just ridiculous length.

MATCH: The New Day vs. Gallows & Anderson – WWE Tag Team Championship Match

Kofi looks after Xavier as they soak up the sun before their gruelling match against the Club boys
Kofi looks after Xavier as they soak up the sun before their gruelling match against the Club boys

Xavier climbs up onto the turnbuckle to play Francesca II before Gallows and Anderson make their way down. Gallows and Anderson are wearing lab coats and carrying their sample jars, because apparently we’re still doing this. Haven’t we run out of testicle jokes yet?

  • Anderson and Kofi start in the ring together. Collar and elbow tie-up transitioned into a side headlock from Anderson.
  • Kofi to a vertical base but Anderson sends him back to the ground; rebound off the ropes which Kofi leapfrogs, then an elbow from Kofi to take Anderson down.
  • Anderson with Kofi in the corner, then whip to the opposite corner. Kofi lands on his feet from Anderson’s assault, then tags in Xavier for a double-team assault for a two-count.
  • Anderson backs Xavier into his corner to tag in Gallows.
  • Gallows whips Xavier across the ring, but Xavier ducks the assault and sets up for the Unicorn Stampede in the corner.
  • Commentary remind us that for all that Anderson and Gallows are pretending to be doctors, Xavier is actually a PhD. Well done, Xavier.
  • Flying Kofi over the ropes to take down Gallows.
  • Both men back in the ring, and Gallows with the upper hand, stomping Kofi on the apron.
  • Tag made to Anderson, throwing Kofi into the corner and working his shoulder until the referee creates separation, then a step-up kick for a two-count.
  • More pressure on Kofi’s shoulder as Anderson backs Kofi into his corner and makes the tag back to Gallows.
  • Trash talk from Gallows as he slaps Kofi to the ground, but Kofi rolls out of the way of the splash.
  • Hot tag made by both men; Anderson whips Xavier and Xavier slides under the assault, then hits a dropkick to Anderson’s spine for a two-count.
  • Anderson ducks under another kick from Xavier, then throws Xavier over the ropes onto the apron; Xavier hits an enzuigiri, sending Anderson to the mat.
  • Flying elbow from Xavier for a two-count.
  • Go-behind from Anderson, then sending Xavier into the corner, but taking a boot from him when he follows.
  • Kofi tag in for a double-team assault, Gallows disrupts the pin.
  • Dropkick from Anderson to Kofi, and Gallows tags in for the Magic Killer.
  • Jon Stewart suddenly in the ring trying to too-sweet the Club, then Xavier comes in to distract and eats a spinebuster.
  • Gallows aand Anderson set up in a very long and complicated way to assault Jon Stewart’s testicles, but then Big E comes in! Clothesline to Anderson then a belly-to-belly to Gallows. The bell rings! The New Day are disqualified, so retain the championship.

Jon Stewart joins in the gyrating celebrations and Big E takes a big swig of Gallows and Anderson’s sample. As we pretend like that didn’t just happen, more gyrating and dancing commences, as The New Day will now have officially held the belts for upwards of a year!

MATCH: Dolph Ziggler vs. Dean Ambrose – WWE World Championship Match

Dean Ambrose takes it easy, assured that he'll take an easy victory over Dolph Ziggler at the biggest event of the summer
Dean Ambrose takes it easy, assured that he’ll take an easy victory over Dolph Ziggler at the biggest event of the summer

Dolph Ziggler has shiny trousers. There’s a video package. I’m salty that this match is so early on the card. Way to make the title look important!

  • Straight into it when the bell rings, chain wrestling that I wasn’t prepared for! Mind you, I should have been, because it’s Ziggler and Ambrose, and that’s how all their matches go.
  • Splash in the corner from Ziggler, an attempt to transition into a neckbreaker, but Ambrose slips out of the way, out of the ring.
  • Swinging neckbreaker from Ziggler onto the floor, then both men back in the ring.
  • Dean attempts to lock in Dirty Deeds, but Ziggler blocks. An attempted DDT from Ziggler is caught by Dean, and Ziggler thrown over the ropes.
  • Dean bounces Ziggler’s head off the steel steps a couple of times then catches him for strikes before climbing together back into the ring.
  • Strikes in the corner from Dean, then Ziggler is propped up on the turnbuckle for an avalanche DDT.
  • Nearfall for Ambrose, and commentary talk some more about how Dean just “does stuff” and doesn’t know what he’s going to do.
  • Dean with a leg lock on Ziggler, but Ziggler able to break the hold. Dean sets up for a snap suplex, then… stops to shake the referee’s hand? Before hitting the snap suplex anyway? I don’t know what Dean’s doing, maybe commentary are right for a change.
  • Ziggler on his feet as Ambrose goes to the turnbuckle; the flying elbow drop meets a dropkick from Ziggler.
  • Superkick from Ziggler misses, and Dean lifts Ziggler up for a facebuster for a two-count.
  • Dean taunting Ziggler by stomping his feet and moving like he’s going for a superkick, then tries to lock in Dirty Deeds. Ziggler able to push him away and create space.
  • DDT from Ziggler, for a nearfall.
  • Strikes back and forth, Ambrose gets the upper hand. Ziggler goes for the Famouser, but Dean blocks.
  • Ziggler throws Dean shoulderfirst into the ringpost, then pulls him back and hits the Famouser for a two-count.
  • Strikes back and forth, then the two men rebound off the ropes and collide with dueling clotheslines. JBL seems to think they were crossbodies, because these days you crossbody with just your arm.
  • Strikes from Dean, then Ziggler floored with a clothesline. Ziggler back on his feet, reverses an Irish whip, but takes another clothesline.
  • Ziggler in the corner for a running bulldog, then Dean back onto the turnbuckle for a successful elbow drop for a two-count.
  • Dean gyrates his hips suggestively at Dolph Ziggler. Don’t ask me why. It gives Ziggler time to lock in a sleeper hold. Dean breaks the hold by throwing both men to the ground out of the ring.
  • Ziggler hits a superkick to Dean onto the barricade, then rolls Dean back into the ring just before a count of ten for a two-count cover.
  • Ziggler bouncing in the corner for the superkick, but Dean catches the leg and tries to go for Dirty Deeds. Ziggler blocks and reverses into the Zig Zag, but Dean kicks out at two.
  • Elbows to the back of Dean’s head, then Ziggler locks in the sleeper hold again. Dean powers to a vertical base, but looks woozy.
  • Dean with a lariat to Ziggler, taking him to the mat. He removes his tank top then climbs back up onto the turnbuckle.
  • Ziggler up after him, looking for the superplex. Dean fights him off with a headbutt, but Ziggler is back up again moments later.
  • Strikes from Dean to fight him off, but a headbutt from Ziggler slows him down. Ziggler takes Dean to the mat, but Dean locks in Dirty Deeds and takes Ziggler down for a successful pinfall.

JBL talks a little about Dean’s face that could “set off a fire alarm”. Are you saying he’s super hot, bro? Either way, Dean is celebrating with his title on the turnbuckle, and Ziggler is barely moving in the ring.

MATCH: Naomi, Carmella & Becky Lynch vs. Natalya, Alexa Bliss & TBD

Naomi sits on the beach and remembers when Eva Marie was meant to be in this match
Naomi sits on the beach and remembers when Eva Marie was meant to be in this match

Naomi makes her way to the ring first of all, looking day-glo and glorious with some fantastic dance moves. Carmella is out second with surprisingly little pop for a local girl before the Lass-Kicker Becky Lynch comes out to thunderous applause.

But here’s the part we’re really interested in! Natalya and Alexa Bliss come out, then… wow, they’re actually doing this. Eva Marie’s music hits, and her announcer talks her up, until finally announcing that she is suffering from exhaustion and holidaying in the British Isles. But that doesn’t mean that Natalya and Alexa will be outnumbered! Oh, no – it’s a returning Nikki Bella!

  • Becky and Alexa start up together, Bliss going for a quick rollup. Becky kicks out and goes for a backslide, but Bliss kicks out.
  • Becky into the ropes, leapfrogging over where she clearly expects Bliss to be, but Bliss is holding back, readying to grab Becky’s arm.
  • Becky able to make the tag to Naomi, and then in comes Natalya. Sunset flip from Naomi for a two count, then she… puts her legs around Natalya’s shoulders and wiggles in Natalya’s face?
  • Natalya escapes from whatever that was, but goes down for a count of two. Carmella tags in, and Natalya able to get her in the corner for strikes. Carmella breaks out and moonwalks away, to Natalya’s disdain.
  • Flying headscissors from Carmella, but Natalya slips out of the ring before Carmella can capitalize. Natalya hits the floor from a clothesline, then carmella throws her back into the ring.
  • Natalya headfirst into the turnbuckle, then Carmella climbs up onto the top rope but is intercepted by Bliss. Natalya takes the opportunity for a powerslam for a nearfall, then tags in Nikki.
  • Nikki with a snap suplex into a lateral press for a two-count.
  • Chinlock from Nikki; Carmella to a vertical base, and rebounds off the ropes straight into a spinebuster from Nikki for a two-count.
  • Nikki does some push-ups, showing off the crowd, before tagging in Bliss. Bliss does some gymnastics – double-knees into a backflip double-knees, but Carmella able to kick out.
  • Natalya tags in, lateral press, two-count.
  • Natalya tries to knock Naomi off the apron and is unsuccessful. Snapmare to Carmella, then an abdominal stretch that Carmella makes look really painful.
  • Carmella eventually breaks out with elbows, throwing Natalya to the ground, but is unable to make the tag before Natalya throws her into the corner for some elbows. Carmella knocks NIkki off the apron then tries to make a break for her corner.
  • Natalya interferes, but Carmella just makes it, tagging in Becky Lynch for a leg lariat then an exploder suplex on Natalya, then on an interfering Bliss, then an interfering Nikki is thrown into the corner after them.
  • Springboard sidekicks send Bliss and Nikki out of the ring, then another exploder suplex on Natalya. Bliss interferes again and is thrown out of the ring, but Natalya capitalizes with a schoolgirl roll-up.
  • Becky back on the offense, however, onto the top rope for a diving leg drop, which is intercepted by Nikki Bella.
  • Natalya makes a break and tags in Alexa Bliss, who whips Becky across the ring; Becky able to make the tag to Naomi for a crossbody from the turnbuckle then a series of kicks.
  • Splitlegged moonsault from Naomi that doesn’t quite hit the mark, then Bliss goes for an aerial assault that hits Naomi’s knees.
  • Nikki and Carmella tag in, and the Princess of Staten Island throws herself into Nikki in the corner – both Natalya and Bliss come in to save the pin, and Carmella hits a dropkick taking down them both.
  • Carmella turns around straight into a clothesline from Nikki Bella, then she’s up for the Rack Attack for a successful pin.

Almost fifteen minutes for that segment, too; actually not too bad. I’m still surprised they played Eva’s music, but I suppose I shouldn’t be. It’s very cool to see Nikki Bella back in the ring!

Rusev and Lana are backstage with an interviewer I don’t recognize, and Rusev is absolutely furious about having to fight Roman Reigns tonight, because he’s still offended about what Roman said and the fact that the crowd cheered and laughed. Look, honestly – why is Rusev the heel in this match-up? He’s rightfully angry that someone interfered with his wedding celebrations and just wants people to respect him and his wife. I don’t see why he’s the bad guy.

Oh. Right. Because he’s not American, I suppose.

Can we take just a moment to address this really weird pay-per-view, though? Apparently the United States Championship match is coming up, but first, we have the Universal Championship match. Yeah. The WWE World Championship and the Universal Championship were defended before the United States title. Before Randy Orton vs. Brock Lesnar, a match I cannot bring myself to care even a little bit about. The WWE World Championship came before the women’s tag match from SmackDown – a lovely match, yes, but surely the title should be considered a little more prestigious?

I’m typing this over the video package for the Universal Championship match, because I’m trying not to get too excited about the fact that I’m about to see Finn Balor at a pay-per-view fighting for a championship. It’s so exciting, I can barely contain myself.

The universal championship is unveiled, by the way – all red, with rhinestones, and I can’t help but wonder when Eva Marie is going to try to get her hands on it.

MATCH: Seth Rollins vs. Finn Balor – Universal Championship Match

Seth Rollins gets caught with his pants down by the Demon King, Finn Balor!
Seth Rollins gets caught with his pants down by the Demon King, Finn Balor!

Seth is wearing black and yellow on his way to the ring today, which is not a great look for him. What happened to your shiny outfit, Seth? Did Dolph Ziggler talk you out of it so he could steal your look?

The lights are synced to Finn’s music, and it’s amazing, and I can’t recap his entrance because I just can’t help myself – I have to mark out for Finn. I’ll be back in a minute.

Alright, we’re back.

  • The bell rings, and Finn is straight into business with a dropkick. Climbs immediately onto the turnbuckle for the Coup de Grace, but Seth rolls out of the way and out of the ring. Finn throws himself over the ropes after him.
  • Both men back in the ring, and Finn knocks Seth off his feet, then a kick to the back of the leg.
  • Seth in the corner, and Finn springboards off the ropes to target Seth’s leg again.
  • Seth with a snap suplex on the ground next to the ring, then throws Finn into the timekeepers area and stops for a moment to check his leg.
  • Finn pops up again, with a big strike to Seth’s face, and both men make their way back into the ring.
  • Finn with a dropkick to Seth’s chest, then more submission targetting Seth’s legs and particularly the injured knee.
  • Seth kicks Finn away, then slides between his legs onto the ground for a powerbomb into the barricade.
  • Seth throws Finn back into the ring for a two-count.
  • Finn in the corner, taking a series of kicks to the midsection and chest, then a backbreaker from Seth for a two-count.
  • Cover transitioned into a rear chinlock, Finn powering to a vertical base and fighting out with strikes.
  • Seth throws Finn into the ringpost, then a cover, Finn kicks out at two.
  • Seth almost dismissively kicking Finn in the head; Finn gets to his feet and tries to fight back but Seth has the upper hand with kicks and chops, backing Finn into the corner again.
  • Snapmare from Seth then a kick to Finn’s spine.
  • Scoop slam from Seth, then a knee drop, and another rear chinlock.
  • Rear chinlock is transitioned into a sleeper hold, but Finn fights out with elbows to Seth’s knee.
  • Seth takes off his wrist covering, and wraps it around Finn’s nose – the referee has words with him about that so I don’t think that’s quite a legal play, Seth. You should know better.
  • Strikes back and forth, then Finn whipped into the corner, Seth following with an elbow.
  • Finn sent back onto the mat, and Seth hits a beautiful frog splash for a two-count.
  • Clothesline from Seth keeps Finn down as he tries to get to his feet. Seth postures a bit more, as he does, then lifts Finn to his feet and slaps him a little.
  • Finn reverses the waistlock into a DDT, which Seth sells incredibly.
  • Finn back and forth on the ropes, knocking Seth down with a shoulder block, then a clothesline as Seth gets to his feet.
  • Whip into the corner, then a knife-edge chop from Finn.
  • Low dropkick to a seated Seth, then a knee to the face as Seth tumbles out of the ring.
  • Seth back in the ring, and Finn hits a Sling Blade, then tries to run at Seth but meets a dropkick coming the other way.
  • An attempted Pedigree is reversed into a back body drop, then Seth hits an enzuigiri and Finn fires back with a Pele kick.
  • Finn Balor floors Seth with a slam, then sets up for the Coup de Grace, but Seth rolls out of the way.
  • Seth locks in a triangle lock, and Finn makes the ropes, but Seth sneers at him “no rope break, pal, tap out”. I did not realize that was the case in this match. What did I miss?
  • Finn rolls to the floor to break the hold, but looks exhausted by the effort.
  • Seth throws Finn back into the ring, but Finn able to rally for kicks to Seth’s hamstrings. Seth able to pick Finn up into a turnbuckle powerbomb, followed by a superkick to a seated Finn.
  • Rather than go for a cover, Seth tries to hurt Finn with his words. Finn gets to his feet, fighting back with fists, but takes a knee from Seth into a small package driver for a two-count.
  • Seth onto the turnbuckle, but Finn meets him there with a kick, sending Seth tumbling to the floor.
  • Dropkick from Finn sends Seth into the barricade, and Seth climbs back into the ring. Finn hits a double foot stomp from the top rope onto the back of Seth’s head for a two-count.
  • Finn attempts to follow up with the Coup de Grace, but Seth rolls out of the way and catches Finn with a Pedigree — but Finn kicks out of the cover at 2!
  • Finn looking absolutely exhausted, and Seth frankly baffled that Finn can still move. Seth up onto the turnbuckle for a moonsault – misses, but lands on his feet, for a dropkick from Finn.
  • Finn goes to the turnbuckle again, but Seth catches him there for a superplex. Seth tries to move into the Pedigree, but Finn blocks it, and is able to dropkick Seth into the opposite turnbuckle.
  • Finn climbs up onto the turnbuckle again for the Coup de Grace, and one, two, three – FINN BALOR IS OUR FIRST UNIVERSAL CHAMPION!

Oh yes. In his pay-per-view debut, Finn Balor becomes our first Universal Champion!

Now, we’ve had our big title matches, that means the pay-per-view is over, right? That was a heck of a show – we’ll see you tomorrow for…

Oh. Right. Yeah, there’s still two more matches to go. For some reason. No, I don’t understand it either. Finn celebrates with his title, and I just really wish we’d gotten to end the show on this moment. How wonderful would that have been? I mean, I suppose they don’t want to devalue either of the titles by having either be the main event, but… either would be a better choice than Lesnar vs. Orton, wouldn’t they? For heaven’s sake.

I don’t even want to talk about this ad, but I feel obligated to.  It’s The Miz dressed up like a chicken, and Dolph Ziggler as Colonel Sanders, having a fight in a domestic kitchen to advertise. Colonel Sanders wins in a squash. What just happened, and why?

MATCH: Roman Reigns vs. Rusev – United States Championship Match

Roman Reigns reinvents himself as a surfer on the premise that it couldn't be worse than whatever character he's meant to have at the moment.
Roman Reigns reinvents himself as a surfer on the premise that it couldn’t be worse than whatever character he’s meant to have at the moment.

Big mixed reaction from the crowd when Roman makes his way to the ring. By which I mean I hear booing. A lot of booing. But there’s some cheers mixed in, a few people clapping for him mixed in with the thumbs downs, so that’s a good start. We’re reminded that Roman won a match for Lana’s honour this week on RAW. I’m still not sure what that means. Does Roman own Lana’s honour now?

Before the match even gets underway, Rusev attacks Roman and they brawl outside the ring, Roman going shoulder-first into the steel steps, then the opposite steps. Rusev is furious, of course, with Roman, and that’s being made quite clear. Rusev lifts the stairs and strikes Roman in the head and arm with them, then as he tries to throw him into the ringpost, Roman is able to reverse and throw Rusev into the timekeeper’s area, followed by a Superman Punch.

Roman follows him in, laying in right hands on Rusev on the ground in the timekeeper’s area, until a whole mess of referees try to pull him away. Rusev picks up a chair, striking at Roman with it, but Roman catches it in the air and headbutts Rusev before throwing him out of the timekeeper’s area. Now it is Roman who has a chair, and he goes after Rusev with it, despite the referees pleading with him.

Roman eventually throws the chair aside, laying in more right hands and headbutts on Rusev. I notice now that Roman’s vest has accents in blue tonight, which is lovely. Is he trying to make a play for SmackDown?

Referees escort Roman from the ring area, as a medic checks on Rusev. Rusev insists that they leave him alone, but the ring announcer makes it clear that Rusev will be unable to compete. The crowd respond to this devastating news by chanting for CM Punk. As Rusev gets to his feet to leave, Roman comes back in and floors Rusev with a Spear before walking away again. Before he actually leaves, however, he stops to turn back and look back at Rusev, who is still laying on the ground clutching his side.

Roman just flew in to Spear an injured man, after insulting his wife and ruining his wedding celebrations. Why is Rusev the heel in this matchup??

Video package for Randy Orton and Brock Lesnar. Do you know how much I don’t care about this match? I was more emotionally invested in The Miz and Dolph Ziggler advertising KFC than this match. I’ve been not caring about this match for fifteen years. That’s a lot of disinterest I have cultivated. Bring on more weird chicken ads!

MATCH: Brock Lesnar vs. Randy Orton

You know how it goes. Paul Heyman says some things, Randy Orton poses on the turnbuckle. Let’s get this party started!

  • Brock Lesnar with his shoulder into Randy’s stomach in the corner, then big knees into Orton’s midsection.
  • Orton stumbles to the opposite corner, Lesnar sets up for a German suplex but Orton grabs the ropes so he can’t be thrown, and hits a standing dropkick.
  • Orton goes for the RKO, but Lesnar sees it coming. Lesnar hits a German suplex on Orton, then another.
  • Kicks from Orton into Lesnar’s midsection, then Lesnar comes back with knees to the midsection, and a third German suplex.
  • More knees to Orton’s midsection, now in the opposite corner. German Suplex count: 4.
  • Orton back on his feet and fighting with fists, but takes more shoulders in the corner from Lesnar. German Suplex count: 5.
  • Another knee in the corner from Lesnar, Orton cowering before Lesnar.
  • Another German suplex. That’s 6.
  • Orton rolls out of the ring, collapsed against the barricade as Lesnar comes after him. Orton valiantly comes up with forearms, but Lesnar picks him up onto his shoulder for a pair of power moves that I can’t identify through the announce table.
  • Both men back in the ring, and Lesnar hits a seventh German Suplex, before climbing out of the ring and clearing off another announce table.
  • Orton is draped across the table, and Lesnar goes to pick him up, but Orton jumps up for the RKO onto the announce table.
  • Orton climbs back into the ring, and Lesnar gingerly follows him. Orton hits a draping DDT onto Lesnar as he tries to climb back in.
  • Orton drops and pounds the mat, then hits another RKO on Lesnar. Lesnar kicks out at two.
  • Orton comes after Lesnar again, but Lesnar picks him up for the F5. Orton kicks out at two.
  • Lesnar takes his gloves off – it’s serious now. Strikes to Orton’s face, and Orton seems to be bleeding from the head – at first I thought it was the ear, but as he moves his head, a pool has formed and he’s barely moving.
  • Referees and medics in, but Lesnar pushes them away and goes back in for more strikes. He’s shooed away again, and the bell rings – the match has been called there.

Lesnar is declared the winner functionally by KO. Orton is moving, but barely, as he is surrounded by referees and medics, but Lesnar is back in with more strikes. Suddenly, Shane McMahon steps in, getting in Lesnar’s face and presumably demanding that he leave Orton alone. Lesnar takes Shane down with an F5, and Paul Heyman is begging Lesnar to stop, to not do it. Lesnar just steps out of the ring and starts to make his way up the ramp. And that is how we end – Brock Lesnar, a part-timer with known drug test failures on his record, beats his opponent bloody and hits a finishing move on a McMahon, then just walks away. Because… wrestling.

We’ll see you tomorrow night for RAW!