Roman Reigns vs. Brock Lesnar (c) for the WWE Universal Championship
It’s main event time. We’ve seen Reigns vs. Lesnar before, and again before that, but maybe this time will be different. Maybe. Listen, I’ve got a few minutes left to be optimistic that this will be a short affair, or Strowman will cash-in immediately, or basically anything that doesn’t result in 15-20 minutes of one-on-one Roman Reigns vs. Brock Lesnar.
Some of these AR entrance graphics are pretty cool, and others are Roman Reigns’ weird dog thing that just looks dumb as hell.
They should have done AR pyro for Lesnar. I miss his pyro.
Braun Strowman’s music just hit! The crowd finally cheered for something in this match! CASH THAT BRIEFCASE IN YOU BEAUTIFUL MAN
Brock Lesnar is SO PUMPED about this, Reigns does not look very excited. Strowman is apparently going to wait for the match to end, and then cash in on whoever is left standing. They’re gonna get these hands.
Reigns came out of the gate ON FIRE, hitting multiple Superman punches and then a trio of spears while Strowman watches from the outside. Lesnar now has a guillotine choke in, but Reigns got out of it with a one-armed spinebuster-ish counter. There’s a second guillotine choke, though, and Reigns is grounded once more.
Lesnar took his gloves off, so Reigns is about to get his head punched in with some huge knuckles. Here come the German suplexes — that’s the prelude to punches.
Brock sidestepped a Reigns’ spear, and Reigns went flying outside of the ring and hit Strowman with it — Lesnar now picked him up for an F5 on the outside. Apparently, the plan now is to destroy Strowman so he’s not 100 percent when he comes in for the second match. Will Strowman decide to cash-in during the match instead now?
Lesnar just threw the briefcase all the way up the ramp, so now Braun doesn’t have it on hand. Reigns take the moment of distraction and spears Lesnar, and gets the pin! Roman Reigns is the WWE Universal Champion now! Except he didn’t kill Brock in the process, so don’t brag too much there, Roman. And Braun still exists.
Or, apparently, Braun doesn’t exist — he’s still down, and the case is far away, and we just faded to black. The good news is now we’ve got Braun with briefcase still in hand, and he wants that title. And someone he knows he can beat is holding it.
Ronda Rousey vs. Alexa Bliss (c) for the RAW Women’s Championship
Here. We. Go. Natalya is here to support Ronda Rousey, who she trained and is pals with, while Alexa Bliss came out alone, but the camera panned to the Bella Twins at ringside. CURIOUS. The Bellas would definitely join forces with Alexa to stop Ronda’s rise. I don’t care how good being a face has felt for them the last few years.
Rousey looks like she went to the back and asked the makeup artists to give her the Kefka. Not everyone can pull off Bull Nakano, okay?
The good news is that she still brought her violent tendencies, and she got amped up enough that it was clear she remembered at the last second she couldn’t yell “motherfucker,” so I’m still enjoying what’s on screen.
The armbar is locked in already, and it looks like Bliss’ arm is being ripped out of its socket. Rousey finished with one arm and went to the other, and Bliss tapped out! Rousey is now the RAW Women’s Champion, and suddenly we’ve got the “leader” of the (MMA) Four Horsewomen with a major women’s title
Also, this is the kind of beatdown that Alexa Bliss has needed to have happened to her for months: it’s a shame Nia Jax wasn’t responsible for it months ago, but hey, better late than never.
Jeff Hardy vs. Shinsuke Nakamura (c) for the United States Championship
Jeff is here after getting kicked right in the Hardy Boyz, but this time he’s ready to wrestle. They’re trying to out-weird each other, which is a battle where either everyone or no one wins, depending.
This match is going fine, but it’s also a reminder that these shows are a little too long. We’ve got two matches left after this — three if Braun Strowman cashes in after Lesnar vs. Reigns.
Nakamura went for the low blow, but Hardy pushed him back before it could connect. True veteran experience right there. Jeff answers with a Twist of Fate, and then goes up top for a Swanton Bomb, but doesn’t cover Nakamura right away! He’s not going to get the pin in time, and Nak grabs the rope for good measure.
Okay, now Hardy is doing the Twist of Fate and Swanton combo but without a shirt. Nakamura rolls to the apron, and Jeff attempts the Swanton to the apron, but Nakamura moves and oh my god that hurt to watch.
Nakamura ends up taking control because of this, and without having to punch Hardy in the dick. Nakamura retains after a Kinshasa, and that’s it for Jeff Hardy.
Here comes Randy Orton, though, who has been creepily watching this feud from afar and sometimes from close enough to hit people in the groin. Orton walks down to the ring, then walks back up the ramp — he just didn’t want Hardy to forget he exists and is waiting for him.
Constable Baron Corbin vs. The Demon Finn Balor
Yes, apparently the Demon version of Finn Balor is here, and he’s got an AR graphic cloud with lightning overhead, too. This is a good way to change things up, as these two have already wrestled each other a bunch on free television. Corbin, who looks like he just showed up from his shift at Ruby Tuesday’s, is visibly not thrilled about the surprise appearance of the Demon. He also just lost a match that was about as long as Balor’s entrance: that was a breath of fresh air. Surprise Demon, cool entrance, Corbin getting his ass kicked by a superior opponent.
Daniel Bryan vs. Miz
This has the potential to be the top match of the night, to the point it will be disappointing if it’s anything but. Now, don’t confuse “disappointing” for “bad” — I’m just saying this has real upside.
Daniel Bryan is wearing blue, not maroon or red, but he is team SmackDown, so I’ll allow it. A shocking number of Miz chants going against the Daniel Bryan chants, and while I do not agree in this specific instance, I one hundred percent understand.
Running bulldog from Bryan, and Miz is now on the ground after starting the match in charge. Miz recovers, though, and is attempting a surfboard! He’s going to continue playing the role of Bryan, even against him. Daniel Bryan knows how to counter every submission, though, so he did, and now he’s got Miz in a much better surfboard.
Miz is back in control, asking Bryan “Who’s better at wrestling?” after putting him into a cravat. I want Miz to lose here, but the rules so hard.
Bryan is starting to feel it, doing his pump up thing that’s been the harbinger for so many hot minutes of ass kicking. He’s got Miz in a corner, and it’s time for those flying dropkicks until Miz falls down.
Bryan’s got Miz at the top of the turnbuckle now, and there’s a back body drop from all the way up there. It’s not enough to get Miz to go down 1-2-3, though, so Bryan will have to try something else.
Miz avoided the final YES Kick, then hopped up to DDT Bryan. Now it’s his turn to deliver YES Kicks, which are getting a split YES and NO from the crowd and are also apparently recharging Daniel Bryan, who is now leaning into them.
He caught the last one, and now he’s slapping Miz as hard as he can right in the face. Miz might be in trouble here.
Miz tried to get Bryan into the Figure Four, but Bryan wouldn’t let him lock it in. He paid for that with a Skull-Crushing Finale, but Bryan was able to kick out at two. Miz looks like he’s wondering what it’s going to take to down Bryan.
Miz finally successfully locks in a Figure Four after Bryan’s leg takes damage on the ring post, and he’s having trouble reversing it. He’s got a new plan, though, as he slid Miz’s knee pad down and is now punching that and also Miz’s face. That did enough damage for Bryan to reverse the pressure and the move! Now it’s Miz who needs to escape the Figure Four!
Bryan’s got the Yes Lock in on Miz, who is nowhere near the ropes. He’s trying to get to them, though, and he’s bitting Bryan, but Bryan decided to start punching him in the back of the head, so, you know, Bryan won that little encounter. Miz eventually gets to the rope and breaks the hold, then rolls outside.
Maryse just handed brass knuckles to Miz while he was outside the ring, and he got a punch in with them equipped without the ref noticing. It was enough to take down Bryan, and Miz wins by CHEATING with brass knuckles, how RUDE.
I’m very excited for the Elias concert, but not excited that this is how Bobby Lashley is probably going to end up appearing at SummerSlam.
Oh no, the neck of Elias’ guitar snapped right as he was about to play us all an incredible song! I blame Bobby Lashley for sabotaging this concert somehow.
Samoa Joe vs. AJ Styles (c) for the WWE Championship
The WWE Championship and AJ Styles are once again performing in the middle of SummerSlam, this time against Samoa Joe. Samoan Joseph is about to have his first shot at the WWE title — previously, he’s had opportunities to win the WWE Universal Championship, but not SmackDown’s primary title.
Joe vs. Styles is well-tread ground out there in the greater wrestling world, but this is the first time they’ve faced off in WWE.
This has been hard-hitting so far, which is always good for a feud where they’re trying to tell us these people loathe each other. They’re moving a bit slow, though, giving people time to breathe after the tense finish of the SmackDown Women’s Champion match and Becky’s post-match beatdown of Charlotte.
We did get this, however!
The violence is slow but it is picking up!
A moonsault into a reverse-DDT into a cover… but it’s only a two count. Joe remains alive, Styles looks upset that his combo didn’t end the fight.
I appreciate that an Atomic Drop is one of the few legal shots to the groin in wrestling. In a related story, AJ Styles is wincing right now. Styles is also having some trouble lifting Joe, so he’s switching to lots of jumps and flips and, well, it just got him caught in a wicked power slam.
Styles isn’t incapable of lifting Joe, though! He just got him in a Styles Clash… but it didn’t get him the pin. Considering how quickly he had to do that move, before even fully locking it in, that might have been the only one Styles has in him during this match.
Business has picked up in this match, and it is Good. Both Styles and Joe are on the ground, struggling to get back up because they’re beating the shit out of each other.
Styles put Joe into a Calf Crusher, and his prize was Joe slamming his head into the mat repeatedly to break it loose.
Joe locks in the Coquina Clutch, and the only reason Styles will leave it while conscious is because he got a toe on the ropes to break the hold.
Joe just volunteered to be the daddy of AJ’s kids and wife, and uh, Styles did not like it. He tackled Joe into the barricade, grabbed a steel chair, and started beating Joe with it, getting disqualified. That’s a DQ I can get behind: one caused by righteous anger.
Becky Lynch vs. Charlotte Flair vs. Carmella (c) for the SmackDown Women’s Championship
Now it’s time for the SmackDown Women’s Champion triple threat, which is a triple threat because Charlotte Flair has to be involved in everything
jk ilu Charlotte, but Becky forever IMO
There’s a lot of potential in this triple threat: will Carmella leverage the tension between Charlotte and Becky to retain? Will Becky overcome the odds to be the SmackDown Women’s Champion once again? Or will Charlotte turn on Becky to ensure a victory? It’s probably that last one: she’s a Flair, you know.
Carmella is mad at Charlotte for beating up Becky Lynch, because Carmella wants to beat up Becky Lynch. wyd, Carmella, let the beatings happen and hide in the corner somewhere
Oh, I see, she’s trying to pit Becky and Charlotte against each other. It’s not working, though, because Carmella was too obvious about it.
Carmella goes for a pin against Charlotte after tiring of hiding in the shadows, but Charlotte kicked out with ease. Carmella is now heeling it up instead of putting more of a beating on Becky or Charlotte, and it feels like she could come to regret that!
I finished typing that sentence and Charlotte Flair started chopping Mella as hard as she could, so, yeah.
Becky from out of nowhere, and then goes to the top of the turnbuckle for a missile dropkick that hits both Carmella and Charlotte! Now she’s got Carmella isolated in the ring, and Carmella is reeling.
Charlotte is back in the ring, and she kept trying pins, but they didn’t succeed. Charlotte gets Carmella into a Boston Crab, and then converts to a Figure Four, but Becky Lynch leg drops off the top rope to break up the submission, and all three women are now laying on the floor, exhausted.
Becky has Charlotte in the Disarmer! Carmella recovered from Charlotte flying into her off the turnbuckle, though, so no submission there, either. Pumphandle Uranage from Becky, but that pin is broken up, too. Carmella puts her feet on the ropes — the second rope! — but Becky kicked out of it, and then Charlotte breaks up the followup attempt by Becky.
Carmella gets a rope break to escape the Disarmer, but here’s another one in the middle of the ring. Charlotte uses Natural Selection on Becky to break up the submission, and then scores the pin. Charlotte is SmackDown Women’s Champion once more.
Becky and Charlotte are hugging in the middle of the ring after the match YES YES BECKY ATTACKED HER SNAP HER ARM OFF DO IT, IT’S TIME FOR BECKY TO THINK ABOUT BECKY