It was a lukewarm build-up to SummerSlam, but WWE put on a hot show Sunday night — a hugely entertaining pay-per-view that sent fans home happy.
Here are seven things we learned from SummerSlam:
Ronda Rousey is the new Raw women’s champion
In a result that should surprise no one, “The Baddest Woman on the Planet” destroyed Alexa Bliss in just a few minutes.
Bliss tried to escape Rousey from the opening bell, so Rousey gave the champ a free shot — sitting in the ring with her back turned and eyes closed.
But even Bliss’ best choke attempt wasn’t enough. Rousey tossed her out of the ring and battered her with strikes and judo-style throws.
Rousey then bent Bliss’ arm backwards (we’ve seen Bliss’ double-jointed tricks before for extra realistic selling) and locked in the arm bar for a quick submission win.
Rousey celebrated with Natalya and the Bellas afterward, but the big question is, who will be Rousey’s first challenger?
After relinquishing the NXT women’s title at TakeOver, could fellow MMA Horsewoman Shayna Baszler come to Raw to clash with Rousey?
Braun Strowman saved Lesnar vs. Reigns … but still hasn’t cashed-in
Brock Lesnar vs. Roman Reigns was the main event rematch that nobody wanted. But WWE has learned from its booking mistakes at WrestleMania.
Braun Strowman — who had decimated Kevin Owens earlier in the night — arrived before the bell to declare he would cash in on the winner, firing up the fans.
Reigns came out fighting with three Superman Punches and three spears, but Lesnar reversed the final spear into a guillotine and dominated with suplexes.
Lesnar then laid out Strowman with an F-5 and chair shots, putting him out of action. Back in the ring, Reigns hit Lesnar with a surprise spear to win the Universal Championship.
It was disappointing to not get the cash-in Braun had promised, but his arrival changed the dynamic of the match. Expect him to come after Reigns on Raw.
AJ Styles has snapped
AJ Styles against Samoa Joe didn’t look particularly exciting on paper, but the experience of both men turned it into a gripping thriller.
Joe pulled out some exciting moves — a flying knee from the second rope and a lightning-quick power slam.
There was a scary-looking Styles Clash attempt (Joe is too big to take that move, which has a history of frightening injuries) before the shocking ending.
Samoa Joe taunted Styles’ wife and daughter in the crowd, saying, “I’ll be your new daddy!” (There really are no depths that WWE won’t stoop for cheap heat.)
Styles flipped and smashed Joe with chair shots — perhaps the most satisfying DQ finish in the history of WWE title matches. But this one’s far from over.
Seth Rollins is the intercontinental champion again
With the breakneck style of Seth Rollins and Dolph Ziggler — plus Dean Ambrose and Drew McIntyre in their respective corners — the intercontinental title scrap could have been the match of the night.
Instead it was a slow burner that never quite caught fire.
Ambrose got in McIntyre’s face early on, but the action was strangely subdued until the final minutes.
There were some nice spots, though. Ziggler hit a DDT on the apron and Rollins retorted with stunning inverted super-plex from the top rope.
Rollins got the win after Ambrose attacked McIntyre on the outside, allowing Rollins to hit a super kick and curb stomp on Ziggler.
But where was Ambrose’s heel turn? Maybe we’ll have to wait until “Raw.” After all, there are only so many turns WWE can do in one night…
Becky Lynch has turned on Charlotte Flair
Never mind Rollins and Ambrose or Sasha Banks and Bayley. Becky and Charlotte is the best friend bust-up we’ve been waiting for.
In fact, the “SmackDown” women’s triple treat was the surprise of the night, with exciting spots and storytelling.
Carmella played tricks from the start to turn Becky and Charlotte against each other. And there was more actual wrestling than we’re used to seeing from Carmella. (Though she’s still at her hellish best when mocking the other competitors to rile up fans.)
Charlotte launched a spinning moonsault to the outside that just about caught its targets, then caught Carmella in a brutal-looking Boston Crab, which Charlotte turned into a Figure-4.
Becky broke it up with a splash and locked Carmella in the Dis-Arm-Her, but Charlotte hit Becky from behind with Natural Selection to get the win.
Fans chanted for Becky as the pals hugged post-match. But Becky laid out Charlotte — to massive pop — and threw her (now former) best friend into the announce desk.
Has Becky Lynch actually turned heel? It’s hard to call anything that’s so popular with fans a heel turn.
The Miz and Maryse screwed Daniel Bryan
The Miz and Daniel Bryan — sporting Seattle Seahawks-inspired blue and green ring gear — fought a back-and-forth war in their much-anticipated grudge match. But it didn’t quite have the intensity to get fans fully invested and felt repetitive as they traded trademark moves.
But after eight years of buildup, could this one ever live up to expectations?
Miz’s wife, Maryse, sat ringside with their “baby” (the gimmick was a clue that something was up) and handed Miz a mystery object, which he used to knock out Bryan for a crafty win.
It was the right result. Miz will turn up the heel heat by gloating about his win, and Bryan will be coming for revenge.
Can WWE keep this feud going until WrestleMania?
Randy Orton wasn’t ready to strike
Jeff Hardy lost his US Championship match against Shinsuke Nakamura, succumbing to Nakamura’s Kinshasa knee strike.
But the real death blow came when Hardy missed a dangerous Swanton on the ring apron.
It’s madness that Hardy is still taking these risks at this stage in his career.
Randy Orton arrived post-match, but instead of nailing Hardy with an RKO — which he’s been doing for weeks on “SmackDown” — he just walked away.
Whatever the story is here (and to be honest, we’ve lost interest), it was good to see Nakamura get a clean win without any low-blows or being overshadowed by Orton.
Source: Read Full Article