Match #7: Naomi, Carmella & Becky Lynch vs. Natalya, Alexa Bliss & Nikki Bella
Alexa & Becky to kick things off, Bliss with a quick roll-up for 1, goes in for another, Lynch catches her in a backslide for 2, back up quick and Alexa goes to the midsection with a knee. She shoots Becky to the corner, The Lass Kicker looks to hop up and over, nobody’s home and Bliss slaps her across the face, goes into a cover and Lynch bridges to her feet after a 1 count. She hits the ropes, Alexa drops down, The Lass Kicker catches her trying to leapfrog over, tag to Naomi and Bliss squirms away to tag in Nattie. Naomi with a side headlock, springs off the top rope into a sunset flip for a count of 2, Natalya goes to the abdomen with a knee, whips Naomi to the corner, Naomi hops up, catches The Queen Of Harts coming in with the Rump Shaker and kicks her away.
She charges Nattie in the opposite corner for a splash, Natalya side-steps out of harm’s way, picks her up for a rope assisted atomic drop, steps over her, hits the ropes for a basement dropkick, but misses the mark. Naomi with a split leg drop for a count of 2, Carmella gets a tag, Nattie immediately drives her backwards into the corner, the official steps in to force a break, The Queen Of Harts charges back in for a clothesline, The Princess Of Staten Island ducks out and then moonwalks away. Natalya doesn’t appreciate it and pushes her, shoots her to the ropes, Carmella with a flying headscissors, rushes Nattie in the corner, but The Queen Of Harts ducks to the outside and has some words for the fans at ringside.
She turns around and The Princess Of Staten Island meets her with a clothesline, throws Natalya back inside, rams her face-first into the boot in the corner and hops to the 2nd rope. Alexa creates a distraction on the apron and gets kicked away, The Queen Of Harts takes the opening to bring Carmella out with a powerslam, hooks the leg and gets a count of 2 before tagging out. Nikki comes in and hits a snap suplex for a 2 count, posts her knee into the spine and wrenches back on the neck, Carmella battles to her feet, hits the ropes, gets planted by a spinebuster and Nikki gains another count of 2. She does some push-ups to show off, chokes Carmella in the corner and makes a tag, Alexa brings her out by the hair, The Princess Of Staten Island with a modified monkey flip, rolls through and unloads with right hands, crawls towards her corner, Bliss grabs her by the neck and slams her into the mat.
She drives double knees to the back, scores with the Bliss Flip for a near fall, Natalya re-enters the match, they both slam Carmella back down with a handful of hair, Nattie with a lateral press for another 2 count. She baits Naomi into the ring, puts Carmella into her corner and buries knees to the midsection, snapmares her out for another 2, then slaps on an abdominal stretch. The Princess Of Staten Island fights out with a hip toss, can’t capitalize and gets driven into the wrong corner again, this time, fights out and knocks Alexa & Nikki off the apron, rolls under a Natalya clothesline and finally tags out.
The Lass Kicker hits the ring and flattens Natalya with clotheslines, connects with a heel kick, tosses her with the Bexploder, Bliss comes in and gets thrown with one for her troubles, Nikki sneaks in from behind for a clothesline, Becky ducks under it and stacks them all up in the corner for multiple springboard sidekicks. She crushes Nattie with a running forearm in the corner, hits another Bexploder suplex, covers, Bliss comes in to break it up, but Lynch sees it and dumps her to the outside. The Queen Of Harts takes the opening for a roll-up from behind for 2, blocks a kick, The Lass Kicker brings the other foot around for an enzuigiri, positions Nattie and then goes to the top rope for a leg drop, Nikki coming in to break the count at 2.
Natalya rolls away to tag out, Alexa comes in and faceplants Lynch into the mat, sends her to the ropes, Naomi makes a blind tag, Bliss misses a wild right hand and Naomi springboards in with a crossbody, following with a cavalcade of kicks and a roundhouse to the head. She hops to the top for a split-legged moonsault, Alexa rolls out of the way, goes for a slingshot splash, Naomi gets the knees up, Nikki tags back in and prevents Naomi from tagging out.
She sets for a back suplex, Naomi flips out and makes a tag, Carmella coming in ducking under a clothesline, clocks Nikki with a superkick, measures her for a bronco buster, lateral press and Nattie & Alexa come in to break it up. Naomi steps in after them and gets driven shoulder-first into the ring post, The Princess Of Staten Island disposes of them with a double dropkick, turns around and Nikki clobbers her with forearm shot, connects with a Fireman’s Carry Cutter and that’s it.
Winners: Natalya, Alexa Bliss & Nikki Bella (Nikki/Fireman’s Carry Cutter)
- EA’s Take: Good to see Nikki back in this match that gave all of the participants a little bit of time to show what they can do. To me, Naomi is the most impressive and has been the most underrated woman for some time now, but whether the company decides to actually do something with her this time around is yet to be seen. Not a big surprise that Nikki returned after it was revealed only a couple of days earlier she was finally cleared. Her being on SmackDown is also not really a revelation either if that is in-fact the case.
Backstage: Maria Menounos welcomes in WWE United States Champion Rusev & Lana, The Bulgarian Brute still incensed over his loss to Roman Reigns last week on RAW. He states he wants to rub Roman’s face into the ground everytime he sees him for humiliating his wife, Lana saying that Reigns will pay for it. Rusev claims he is the true champion and he will crush The Big Dog into dust.
Match #8 for the WWE Universal Championship – No Disqualifications, No Count-Outs: Seth Rollins vs. Finn Balor
Balor explodes out of the corner right at the bell with the running dropkick, goes to the top rope for the Coup De Grace, Rollins rolls to the outside, Finn drops down, hits the ropes and flies over the top with a somersault plancha. He sends Seth back into the squared circle and slides in, The Architect surprises him with a kick to the breadbasket, shoots him to the corner, Balor rebounds out with a dropkick to the knees, then targets the leg with kicks to the hamstring. He puts Rollins in the corner and gets kicked away, rushes back in, Seth puts the boot up, Finn blocks it, scores with a knee drop to the hamstring and The Architect ducks under the bottom rope to the floor.
The Demon King steps out to the apron, Seth sweeps the legs, brings him down to the floor for a snap suplex, then launches him into the timekeeper’s area. Finn rises up, springs off the top of the barricade with a forearm shot, tosses Seth back in, Rollins catches him with boots sliding back inside and tries taking control. Irish whip to the ropes is reversed for a back body drop, The Architect counters to a sunset flip, Finn rolls through for a basement dropkick, lateral press and a 1 count. He crosses Rollins legs and wrenches back, Seth tries crawling to the bottom rope, Balor drags him back to the middle, looks for a surfboard, Rollins fights it off and The Demon King stomps the knees into the canvas.
The Architect back to his feet and rushes Balor in the corner, Finn hops to the apron to avoid him, looks for forearm shot, Rollins blocks it, rolls outside, pulls him off the apron in position for a powerbomb and deposits him into the barricade. The Architect tosses Finn into the ring for a count of 1, puts the boots to him in the corner, chokes him with the bottom of his foot, then cracks him with a modified backbreaker for a 2 count. Seth grounds The Demon King with a rear chinlock, Finn battles to a standing position, staggers The Architect towards the corner, runs in, Rollins catching him with a reverse STO and Balor goes face-first into the 2nd turnbuckle for another 2 count.
The Architect starts toying with Balor, Finn rises up and fights back, Seth smacks him with a knife-edge chop, talks trash to him in the corner, snapmares him out and hits a stinging kick to the spine. He delivers a body slam and hits the ropes for a knee drop, Rollins with crossface shots before going back to a chinlock, switches to a rear naked choke, The Demon King attempts to break out with shots to the knee, but Seth releases and stomps him in the back of the head. He scores with more chops to the chest, slaps Balor in the back of the head, Finn fires up with forearm shots, irish whip to the corner is reversed and The Architect rushes in with a running forearm.
He steps to the apron and springboards in with a high knee, climbs to the top turnbuckle for a frog splash, hooks the leg and gains a count of 2. He brings Finn up and floors him with a short-arm clothesline, goes back to the well for another, picks him up for one more, Balor ducks under it and spikes him with a DDT. The Demon King staggers to his feet in the corner, Seth runs in and meets double boots to the face, Finn charges out with running forearms, irish whip to the ropes is reversed, he ducks under a clothesline and connects with another forearm. He clobbers Rollins with running chops in the corners, snapmares him out and sends him to the outside with a basement dropkick, steps out to the apron and drills The Architect with a punt kick.
He tosses Seth inside, Rollins tries a clothesline that misses the mark, Balor plants him with the Sling Blade, lines him up for a running dropkick in the corner, but The Architect explodes out with a dropkick of his own and sets for the Pedigree. Finn counters out with a back body drop, they trade shots, Seth scoring with an enzuigiri, Balor comes right back with an overhead kick and they double down. The Demon King rises up first and picks Rollins up for a lifting inverted DDT, Seth with a knee to the head to avoid it, Finn immediately plants him with a neckbreaker, connects with 1916, but only gets a near fall. He steps out to the apron and climbs upstairs for the Coup De Grace, The Architect just rolls out of the way, quickly locks in a triangle choke, Balor squirming to get out of it, reaches the bottom rope, but there’s no forced breaks.
The Demon King is able to drag himself under the bottom rope to the outside to escape, Rollins heads out to send him back in, Finn goes to the knee with another kick, tries again, Seth blocks it, lifts him up for a Buckle Bomb, follows with a superkick, but still can’t put it away. The Architect stands over Finn and bad-mouths him, hammers him with forearm shots, Balor blocks a shot, hits the ropes, gets cracked by a high knee, Rollins spikes him with a small package driver for a near fall. Seth looks to the high rent district, The Demon King pops up with an enzuigiri to send him spilling to the floor, rolls outside, gets a head of steam and scores with a running dropkick before tossing him back inside.
Finn goes to the top now and connects with a double stomp to the back of the head for a near fall, positions him, goes to the top again for the Coup De Grace, The Architect avoids it, plants him with a Pedigree and The Demon King just kicks out before the 3 count. Rollins starting to show his frustrations now, ascends the corner to the top turnbuckle for a phoenix splash, Finn rolls out of the way, Seth lands on his feet, turns around and gets driven into the turnbuckles by a running dropkick.
The Demon King heads up top, The Architect pops up to meet him with a superplex, rolls through for another Pedigree, Balor counters with a double leg takedown, delivers a double stomp to the chest and hits another running dropkick. Finn goes back to the well for one more, climbs to the top turnbuckle, connects with the Coup De Grace and wins the championship.
Winner and NEW WWE Universal Champion: Finn Balor (Coup De Grace)
- EA’s Take: Great match that was nearly overshadowed by the fans’ obvious hatred for the new title. While I agree with them that it looks ridiculous (although the rumors were true about it being the exact same as the WWE Title, but with red leather), it should not have taken away from their reactions of this highly anticipated match. Do I think that was the whole story? Not entirely because at this point, some in the crowd have been in those seats for nearly 5 hours. Additionally, I think it was the correct decision for Finn to win it. You destroy the credibility of The Demon King gimmick if he loses his very first match with the paint. I’m expecting this to continue into Clash Of Champions and hopefully by then some of the stench of the ugly new title will be worn off.
In The Arena: Our Kickoff panel of Renee Young, Lita, Booker T & Jerry Lawler break down what we’ve seen so far tonight and speak about what’s left to come.
Match #9 for the WWE United States Championship: WWE United States Champion Rusev w/Lana vs. Roman Reigns
Reigns steps in after his entrance and Rusev immediately goes on the attack, knocking him to the outside with a knee. The Bulgarian Brute unloads on Roman with clubbing shots, drives him into the ring steps over and over again, hammers him with heavy right hands, picks up the steps and pummels The Big Dog in the shoulder. He screams at him and looks to throw the challenger into the timekeeper’s area, Reigns turns the tables and throws the champion in, Rusev tries climbing back over into ringside and Roman clocks him with a Superman Punch.
The Big Dog hops over the barricade after him and pummels him with heavy punches, a group of officials come out to try and separate them The Bulgarian Brute grabs a chair, swings it at Roman, it’s blocked and the battle wages on, The Big Dog tossing the champion back to ringside. He grabs the chair and buries it into The Bulgarian Brute’s ribs, cracks him over the back, mounts Rusev and connects with another barrage or fists, then follows with a series of headbutts. The referees finally back Reigns off, the trainer checks on the champion and Roman walks off to the back. Jojo announces Rusev will be unable to compete, The Big Dog comes charging back down the ramp and splits the champion with a Spear before leaving for good. The match never got started.
- EA’s Take: I was left wondering this past Monday night why they essentially gave away their PPV quality match and now we know why. Like the previous match, I don’t see how this doesn’t continue into Clash Of Champions. Personally, I love how Rusev has been being built back up to be a monster, but I think Roman would do a lot of good for the US Title, much like Cena did last year.