After Universal Champion Seth Rollins scored a victory over SmackDown Tag Team Champion Daniel Bryan in Raw’s chaotic main event, Baron Corbin repaid The Beastslayer for his steel chair rampage with a steel-bending barrage of his own that concluded with End of Days in the middle of the ring. Will the WWE Universe witness a similar sight this Sunday at WWE Stomping Grounds, where a Special Guest Referee of Corbin’s choosing will be waiting?
And just like that, Ricochet is headed to WWE Stomping Grounds, where a United States Championship opportunity against Samoa Joe awaits. To get there, the former NXT North American Champion had to win a Fatal 5-Way Elimination Match, though all semblance of order quickly broke down when the ousted Cesaro and Bobby Lashley — both eliminated by The Monster Among Men’s Running Powerslam — lingered past their elimination to assault Braun Strowman and help Ricochet pin the behemoth with the 630 Splash.
With the three heavy-hitters dispatched, the match came down to Ricochet and The Miz, and while the former was smarting after Strowman hurled him over the top rope onto Lashley, a two-minute break in the action helped even things out a bit. Even with that breather, however, Miz was the fresher man and the smarter one, too. The Awesome One mangled Ricochet in the Figure-Four Leglock to clip his wings, but Ricochet amazingly still had some fight in him, and he reached the ropes to break the hold before battling his way to a match-ending 630.
Looking to get in some early work, Joe — who had been scouting from ringside — ambushed Ricochet from behind after the bell, only to find that he, too, had underestimated his new challenger. Ricochet retaliated by forcing Joe out of the ring and swooping down on him from over the ropes. The win seemed to energize Ricochet, who climbed a mountain to earn a title opportunity, but his excitement would best be tempered: With Joe on the horizon, now the hard part begins.
As you saw on SmackDown LIVE last week, The New Day are back to full strength, and they’re showing no signs of stopping. Using his status as WWE Champion to flout the Wild Card Rule, Kofi Kingston teamed with Big E & Xavier Woods in their Team Red return, a 2-out-of-3 Falls victory over Baron Corbin, Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn.
The match itself stemmed from a “Sami and Kevin Show” that took a turn for the bizarre when Corbin’s pick for Special Guest Referee this Sunday — EC3 — was clobbered into unconsciousness by a chair-swinging Seth Rollins and “Weekend at Bernies”-ed by New Day into sanctioning a Six-Man Tag Team Match. A presumably more conscious WWE official added the 2-out-of-3 Falls stipulation, but the semantics of how the match got made soon went out the window when New Day swept their opponents with two straight falls. Woods scored the first pin by rolling up Zayn, and the WWE Champion sealed the deal after Corbin seemingly mistakenly clotheslined Zayn down the stretch, leading to a retaliatory superkick from KO and a walkout by Owens & Zayn. Kofi took advantage with a Trouble in Paradise to hand ya boys the victory, though unfinished business lingers: Corbin needs his guest ref, and Big E & Woods will battle Owens & Zayn at Stomping Grounds this Sunday.
“Unstoppable” is a word that gets thrown around a lot, but it’s certainly looking apt for Seth Rollins, who pummeled all of Baron Corbin’s prospective guest referees with a chair — condolences to Elias, EC3 and Eric Young, and good on Paul Heyman for wisely begging off pre-emptively — and rode the same intensity to his first one-on-one victory over Daniel Bryan before retribution came calling.
Before his night's ill-fated end, however, Rollins technically won the match twice: Rowan almost immediately administered an Iron Claw to The Beastslayer on the apron, handing Bryan (who was Wild Carded over from SmackDown LIVE specifically for this match) a disqualification loss he was more than happy to accept in the name of a statement beating of Rollins after the bout. Unfortunately for Bryan, a cavalcade of Superstars hit the scene, leading to an all-out brawl and a restart of the match with no one allowed at ringside.
It didn’t seem, for a while, like Bryan needed have bothered with the shenanigans in the first place. Even with Rollins back in the fight, The Beard held firm, locking his foe in two torturous LeBell Locks — one with an added, bow-and-arrow style tweak to it — and blocking a Frog Splash with his knees. The Universal Champion answered with a quick-strike enzuigiri and Stomp for the win, but his celebration was short-lived when Corbin came calling with a chair of his own.
Looking to remind Rollins of who, exactly, he should be worried about this Sunday, The Lone Wolf tenderized Rollins with the chair with several mighty swings, planted him with the End of Days and posed with his title. It was a powerful statement from a powerful challenger, and that’s before we even get into Brock Lesnar potentially showing up or the big question of who will serve as guest ref. For all Seth Rollins’ confidence in bending the game to his will, he leaves Raw much as he went in: Two moves behind and one eye in the dark.
In other action … Lacey Evans confronted Raw Women’s Champion Becky Lynch … The Viking Raiders def. Russ & Randy Taylor; 24/7 Champion R-Truth and Carmella were spotted in the crowd … The Usos def. Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson … Roman Reigns brawled with Shane McMahon, Drew McIntyre and The Revival backstage … WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions The IIconics def. Alexa Bliss & Nikki Cross … and Bray Wyatt invited you to join him in the Firefly Fun House.