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Roman Reigns looks to be added to the Universal Title match at Clash of Champions when he faces Universal champion Kevin Owens in the first Raw against Monday Night Football. …
WWE Raw TV Report
September 12, 2016 – Episode #1,216
Live in Baltimore, Md.
Report by James Caldwell (@JCTorch), PWTorch assistant editor
MOBILE ALERT: If you are reading the Report on a handheld device, visit the mobile version of the report by HARD-PRESSING THIS LINK for the most frequent updates. VIP MEMBERS: Access your ad-free version by HARD-PRESSING THIS LINK.
- Week 8 of the Brand Split – Raw run by Stephanie McMahon & Mick Foley
- Universal champion Kevin Owens vs. Roman Reigns – non-title match – Reigns added to Owens vs. Seth Rollins at Clash of Champions if he wins
- Sheamus (3-1) vs. Cesaro in Match #5 of Best-of-Seven Series
- WWE tag champs New Day’s Kofi Kingston & Xavier Woods vs. New Day in a non-title match
Raw opened with a live shot of Baltimore and Michael Cole introducing the show. Cole hyped Kevin Owens vs. Roman Reigns in a “massive main event” later tonight.
Mick Foley’s music played and Foley was standing by in the ring for opening thoughts on tonight’s show. Foley said summer might be over (technically not yet), but things are heating up leading into Clash of Champions. Foley said they will settle the Universal Title main event for the Clash tonight on Raw.
Foley then hyped last night’s Backlash PPV, giving credit where it’s due for a good show and determining a new Smackdown Women’s champion, Becky Lynch. But, he believes they have the best Women’s division going today. So, say hello to Raw Women’s champion Charlotte.
Charlotte walked out with a red Women’s Title belt around her waist, flanked by Dana Brooke. They recapped Bayley beating Charlotte in a non-title match last week after Dana messed up again. Charlotte said she really needs to say something here tonight. She said that an apology is in order. Dana said Charlotte doesn’t need to apologize to her. No no, Charlotte said she will never apologize to Dana. Charlotte told Dana that she needs to apologize to her.
Charlotte said she can’t believe she lost to little Bayley last week. (The same Bayley she hugged at NXT Takeover?) Charlotte told Dana that her mentorship is over. Tease #85 of a break-up. Foley said she didn’t ask Charlotte out here to air her grievances. Foley started to re-announce the Women’s Title match for Clash, but Sasha Banks’s music interrupted.
Sasha Banks walked out to the ring to notify Charlotte that she is going to take the Women’s Title from her at Clash of Champions. Everyone looked at each other for a while, then Foley started to talk. Suddenly, Bayley’s music played to a big reaction. Out came Bayley with something to say about this situation.
Bayley grabbed a mic and waited out a “Bayley, Bayley” chant. Bayley said she wants to see Sasha compete against Charlotte for the title tonight. But, but, she’s the new girl and all, but “I beat Charlotte. So, maybe, maybe, if the person who deserves a title shot is me.” Sasha was upset by her friend stepping on her toes.
Sasha calmed down Bayley, saying they go way back, all the way to NXT. She said Bayley had her back at Battleground, but when it comes to the title, she has no friends. Sasha told Bayley to get to the back of the line. Charlotte interrupted, telling Sasha that the only business they have is her finishing that career-ending back injury from Summerslam.
Sasha removed her jacket and tossed it at Charlotte, who tried to brush that aside. Charlotte said she’s the only champion in this ring, so Sasha doesn’t get to dictate when she defends the title. Foley said that’s right, because he calls the shots, not Charlotte.
[Q2] After some more back-and-forth, Foley said he’s heard enough and made a decision. He said it will be Sasha against Bayley to determine Charlotte’s opponent at Clash of Champions. Charlotte, angered, yelled at Dana to shut up for making suggestions. Dana then slapped Charlotte across the face, drawing “Yes!” chants from the crowd. Suddenly, Foley threw Dana into the title contendership match.
So, it’s Sasha vs. Bayley vs. Dana in a triple threat match to determine who faces Charlotte at Clash of Champions. And, it’s next. Charlotte, embarrassed, walked out of the ring holding her face while Sasha made the belt-around-the-waist motion toward Bayley.
Smackdown plug: New WWE World Hvt. champion A.J. Styles addresses the audience.
[Commercial Break at 8:17]
1 — SASHA BANKS vs. BAYLEY vs. DANA BROOKE — triple threat match to determine #1 contender to Raw Women’s Title
Back from break, Charlotte was up on the stage at the announce position clutching her face. Michael Cole, Byron Saxton, and Corey Graves set up the match about to happen in the ring as Charlotte declined an invitation to talk about what just happened.
Sasha was cleared from the ring early on, leaving Bayley to dominate Dana for a while. Sasha was gone for a while, creating a deal where Dana tried to fight from underneath like a babyface against Bayley, who controlled her like a heel. This is all strange. Sasha then tripped Dana from the outside and yanked her out of the ring. So, it was Bayley against Sasha. Big mid-ring stare down. And they cut to break.
[Commercial Break at 8:24]
During the break, Dana yanked Sasha out of the ring, targeting her back. She then attacked Bayley back in the ring to control her. Suddenly, Sasha sprung back into the ring to surprise-pin Dana for a close two count.
[Q3] They followed with a Tower of Doom spot where Bayley got the worst of it, then Sasha nearly pinned Dana again. Sasha followed with a backstabber into the Bank Statement in the middle of the ring, but Bayley broke it up just before Dana tapped.
Bayley then tried to pin Dana with the Bayley-to-Belly, but Sasha broke up the pin. Sasha quickly rolled up Bayley from behind and trapped her for a three count, stunning Bayley and the crowd. Post-match, Charlotte stood up and held the Women’s Title in the air for Sasha to get a look at from the ring.
WINNER: Sasha at 12:22. This booking was all over the place. Dana has a babyface moment on Charlotte in the verbal exchange, but worked heel and face in the match, Bayley was turned into a caricature of her NXT character and then took the loss when she has potential to be a super-super-star when Raw needs superstars, and Sasha was made unlikable before challenging heel champion Charlotte at Clash of Champions.
Last Week: Cesaro beat Sheamus in London to keep the best-of-seven series going. It’s Sheamus 3-1 and Match #5 is later tonight.
Still to come: Owens vs. Reigns.
[Commercial Break at 8:36]
Backstage: Dana Brooke was shown walking down the hallway holding her stomach and neck. She walked up to Charlotte and said she is so sorry. Charlotte didn’t want to hear it, then told Dana to get her bags. Dana walked off with Charlotte’s suitcase.
Backstage: Shining Stars talked to R-Truth about investing in a time-share in Puerto Rico. Primo and Epico previewed celebrities hanging out in Puerto Rico. All Truth needs to do is make that one-time payment. Goldust interrupted to save Truth from making a bad investment. Suddenly, Big Cass was standing there. Enzo Amore jumped in noting there’s a couple of hatahs over here. Enzo challenged Primo to a match tonight. Primo smacked his brochure across Enzo’s chest and walked off.
Backstage: Tom Phillips brought in Universal champion Kevin Owens. Owens, dressed in a suit jacket, cut off “Tyler” before he asked his question about facing Roman Reigns tonight. Owens said Reigns doesn’t belong in the same ring with him. Not tonight, not at Clash, not ever. He also accused Mick Foley of stacking the odds against him because Foley is mad that he never was at the level of his mentor, Triple H. Owens said he will take care of Reigns tonight, then take care of Seth Rollins at Clash. Owens left.
And then Chris Jericho walked up to Phillips’s other shoulder. Jericho quoted C.M. Punk that Phillips is a hack journalist, and he does not have a guest for the Highlight Reel tonight. So, he’s calling out Sami Zayn to be his guest tonight. Jericho vowed to expose Zayn for who he really is. Because he is a stupid idio…it!
[Q4] In-ring: Bo Dallas was introduced to the ring holding his “Bo-Lieve in Bo” political sign. He’s in action next.
[Commercial Break at 8:46]
Back from break, Bo Dallas was in the ring opposite a jobber. Dallas recited a poem about being done lending help. Bo growled that only he can believe in Bo. Cole identifed the jobber as Brandon Scott.
2 — BO DALLAS vs. BRANDON SCOTT
Bo charged Scott, who sidestepped and flung him out of the ring to the floor. Scott delivered a dropkick, but ran into a bodyslam. Dallas growled as the crowd picked up a “Let’s Go Jobber” chant. Dallas then dropped Scott with a spinning facebuster for the pin and the win. Post-match, Dallas paraded around ringside with his giant yard sign.
WINNER: Dallas at 1:14.
Up Next: Chris Jericho’s “Highlight Reel” with guest Sami Zayn.
[Commercial Break at 8:52]
Highlight Reel Segment
Chris Jericho’s music played to bring out Jericho sauntering to the ring displaying his latest fancy scarf and leather jacket combo. Jericho sneered at the crowd, then said he was supposed to have the longest-reigning Universal champion in WWE history, Kevin Owens, as his guest tonight. But, Foley took Owens out of the Highlight Reel and left him holding the bag.
Jericho said he was going to have the highest of the high stars, but now he has the lowest of the low (Jericho stooped all the way down until he was face-down on the mat). Jericho welcomed out Sami Zayn while laying down next to the mic.
[Q5 — second hour] Zayn walked out not appreciating the gesture. Jericho said he wasn’t going to come out here singing Ole!, Ole!, Ole!. The crowd did the chant to spite Jericho, then Jericho taunted Zayn that Owens changed his phone number and Zayn doesn’t even have his new number.
So, Jericho, why did you ask me out here? Jericho said he realized the problem is not Owens, but Zayn. Zayn said he’s not out here to talk about Owens because he’s done with him. Well, not all, because he wants the Universal Title. And one day he will get it. Zayn had a piece of advice for Jericho while he was out here. See, if you really think Owens is your brother and best friend, then you are a stupid idiot. Jericho cocked his head, not wanting to believe that.
Jericho told Zayn that he’s just like everyone here in the building – condescending, rude, and a giver. But, he’s a giver. See, he gives all these heathens the Gift of Jericho. Zayn cut him off, saying that gift sucks. And, Jericho needs to listen to him that Owens doesn’t care about the fans or Jericho. Jericho accused Zayn of being jealous. Because he’s just Sami Zayn.
Zayn asked Jericho if he hears himself. Where is the old Chris Jericho? Do you realize that he and Kevin traveled all over the world to get here because of Jericho. Zayn said they were inspired by Jericho, Dean Malenko, and Eddie Guerrero. He tried to wake up Jericho that he’s the first-ever Undisputed champion and now he’s been relegated to Kevin Owens’s b—-. The crowd oohed as Jericho tried not to react. “Jericho Sucks” chant from the crowd.
Jericho pulled out his phone. He said he got a text from Kevin Owens before this segment telling him what to expect from Zayn. Want to know what it said? Jericho held out the phone, then suddenly smashed it over Zayn’s head. Jericho followed with the Codebreaker to a reeling Zayn. Jericho smirked and left the ring to boos as Zayn sold head pain. That was good.
Still to come: Owens vs. Reigns in the main event.
Up Next: Cesaro vs. Sheamus in the Best-of-Seven Series.
[Commercial Break at 9:07]
In-ring: Cesaro was introduced to the ring first for Match #5 in the series. They showed ringside footage from Cesaro beating Sheamus last week in London to keep the series alive. Sheamus was out next looking to close out the series tonight. In an inset promo earlier today, Sheamus said Cesaro got lucky last week in London. He just needs one more win to send Cesaro back to the Swiss Alps.
3 — CESARO vs. SHEAMUS — Match #5 in Best-of-Seven series — Sheamus up 3-1
Cesaro went for the Neutralizer in the opening minute, but Sheamus drove him into the corner to target Cesaro’s injured back. Suddenly, Cesaro just charged the ring and smashed Cesaro with an uppercut. Cesaro quickly went for a Sharpshooter, but Sheamus escaped to the floor. Cesaro exploded on Sheamus with offense on the floor, stopping to take a front-row victory lap in the process.
Back in the ring, Cesaro covered Sheamus for a two count. Cesaro in control heading to break.
[Commercial Break at 9:17]
Back from break, Sheamus was in control, working on Cesaro’s back again. The two men went back-and-forth beating each other up to the point of both stopping to catch their breath in the corner. Cesaro suddenly sprung on Sheamus with a springboard spinning European Uppercut, then he went for the Sharpshooter. Cesaro could not sit down on it because of the back, though, allowing Sheamus to get the bottom rope for a break.
Cesaro tried to follow with the Big Swing, but he couldn’t lift Sheamus in the air. Sheamus tried to capitalize with the Celtic Cross, but Cesaro slipped out the back door. Cesaro then rolled up Sheamus, put his foot on the bottom rope to add leverage, and he kept Sheamus pressed down for a three count.
Post-match, the announcers justified the babyface’s heelish tactics as being desperate to keep the series alive while wrestling through a back injury. Cesaro ran out of the ring to check the Titantron, which now displayed 3-2 in favor of Sheamus. Meanwhile, Sheamus yelled at the referee in the ring for missing Cesaro’s cheating.
WINNER: Sheamus at 9:59; Sheamus up 3-2 in the series. This show really captures WWE losing its way creatively.
Foley’s Office: Seth Rollins walked into the office to talk to Mick Foley. What’s the deal with giving Roman Reigns an opportunity at the Universal Title tonight? Foley said it’s about fairness. Seth said that’s a lame excuse because he’s beaten Roman Reigns every time they’ve been in the ring. Seth wanted to get the principal, Stephanie McMahon, but Foley said she’s off in Singapore speaking at a conference. Seth pressed Foley’s buttons questioning his integrity, drawing an irate response. What are you going to do, suspend me? He called Foley a fool if he’s going to keep being in Stephanie’s pocket.
[Commercial Break at 9:28]
[Q7] Breaking News: Sami Zayn vs. Chris Jericho has been added to Clash of Champions in two weeks.
In-ring: Alicia Fox was introduced to the ring for women’s division action. They replayed last week’s odd exchange between Fox and Nia Jax after Jax squashed her friend.
Backstage, Tom Phillips asked Nia Jaz about dealing with Fox tonight. Jax said she doesn’t deal with crazy and she’s going to beat the crap out of her. Back in the arena, Jax walked straight to the ring looking to take care of A. Fox.
4 — NIA JAX vs. ALICIA FOX
The match turned into a scrap that moved to the floor, where Alicia hopped on Nia’s back, but Nia rammed her into the ringpost. Jax then pummeled Fox on the outside, dropping her hard on the floor. Jax followed with a spear sending Fox crashing through the gimmicked ringside barricade. Cole said Fox might be broken in half. Refs spilled out to check on Fox, who sold being knocked out by Nia Jax’s attack. Nia eventually left ringside as Fox was checked for signs of life.
WINNER: No Decision announced around 2:14 when Fox got knocked out; should have been a double count-out.
Smackdown plug: A.J. Styles is the new WWE World Hvt. champion. And he has something to say tomorrow night on Smackdown.
[Commercial Break at 9:38]
Moments Ago: Nia Jax annihilated Alicia Fox. Cole said Fox is being evaluated by medical personnel for her injuries.
Back in the arena, WWE tag champs New Days were introduced to the ring. They paused on the way to the ring to pour some Booty O’s (with additional meaning in Baltimore for the Orioles) in cereal bowls held by ringside fans.
Once in the ring, Xavier Woods waited out rising crowd support to speak. Xavier ran down The Club’s attempt at entertainment last week with the Old Day skit. Xavier said that is their thing. Do Not Touch Our Thing. Xavier sent to the footage. Sike! They would never show that again. Kofi Kingston said The Club wasted five minutes and 37 seconds of time. In that time, you could have looked up Baltimore Ravens highlights! Big E. asked Kofi if they’re pandering now. Well, he just wanted the reaction, but there might be some Redskins fans in here.
[Q8] They all agreed that in 5;37, they could have poured a big old bowl of Booty O’s. Xavier apologized for The Club wasting their time last week and vowed to never let it happen again as long as they are your WWE tag team champiooooons.
The Club’s music played to bring out Karl Anderson and Luke Gallows with a rebuttal. Anderson said New Day is going to stand out here pandering to a stupid crowd like Baltimore, talk about Booty O’s, and talk about unicorns, and they’re the ones who are wasting people’s time? Gallows vowed to beat New Day unconscious at Clash of Champions and win the Tag Titles. Their non-title clash is next.
[ Reax: Can they reach a truce where everyone agrees they’re wasting everyone’s time trying to fill a three-hour show? ]
[Commercial Break at 9:48]
5 — WWE tag champions NEW DAY (KOFI KINGSTON & XAVIER WOODS w/Big E.) vs. THE CLUB (KARL ANDERSON & LUKE GALLOWS) — non-title match
Kofi held control early in the match, but Club took down Kofi and smacked him around on the outside. Kofi barely made it back into the ring before a ten-count, then Club isolated Kofi and worked him over in their corner.
Hot tag to Xavier as they approached the top of the hour. Xavier nailed Karl with the Honor Roll for a close two count. They came to their feet trading bombs mid-ring. Big forearms from Woods. But, Anderson nailed him with an uppercut. And, Xavier responded with a leaping DDT.
Woods climbed to the top turnbuckle, then he walked the tight-rope to deliver a big elbow drop. Kofi and Gallows then got involved in the ring. Action everywhere with no order. Club then dropped Woods with the Magic Killer right in the middle of the ring. No sign of Kofi and Anderson pinned Woods for the win as Big E. watched helplessly from ringside.
WINNERS: Club at 9:50. Basic booking re-establishing Club as a threat to the Tag Titles heading into the Tag Title match in two weeks.
Backstage: Tom Phillips approached Roman Reigns backstage. Reigns scowled and said he’s only concerned about facing Kevin Owens tonight. He said that’s his ticket to Clash of Champions – kicking Owens’s ass. “Yessir” he called out after walking away.
[Commercial Break at 10:04]
Cruiserweight plug: The CW tournament ends this Wednesday on WWE Network. Kota Ibushi, T.J. Perkins, Gran Metalik, and Zack Sabre, Jr. were identified as the Final Four.
Announcers: Cole, Graves, and Saxton were shown on-camera to hype the finals of the tournament on WWE Network this Wednesday. Then, next Monday, the Cruiserweights are coming to Raw.
In-ring: Jinder Mahal was introduced for the next match. Mahal was introduced as the man who “comes in peace.” Mahal spoke that he hasn’t had the chance to explain his absence. When he left, he felt rage and anger toward everyone and everything. But now he has learned to let that all go. Mahal said he trekked in the Himalayas and he has found inner peace. He said it’s his way of life. He wants to share this gift with everyone in the audience.
Suddenly, Jack Swagger’s music interrupted. Swagger did the “We The People” routine on the stage, then approached Mahal, who indicated that he’s about peace.
6 — JACK SWAGGER vs. JINDER MAHAL
Once the bell sounded, Mahal knelt down in the ring to indicate he’s about peace. Swagger approached him to wrestle, but Mahal cheap-shot him. Mahal worked on Swagger, then the fight moved to the floor. Swagger pounded Mahal with right hand blows, but Mahal cut him off back in the ring.
Swagger tried to come back with a Swagger Bomb, but Mahal blocked by getting his feet up. Mahal then grabbed Swagger for a sweeping neckbreaker of sorts. Mahal scored the pin for the win, stunning Swagger and the crowd.
WINNER: Mahal at 3:18.
[Q10] Backstage: Enzo Amore and Big Cass were shown walking down the hallway. Enzo is in action next.
[Commercial Break at 9:16]
Backstage: Jack Swagger walked down the hallway selling frustration. Tom Phillips approached him to ask about his Raw contract expiring soon. (Did he sign a three-month deal? How would his “Raw contract” be expiring this quickly after the Draft?) Swagger just kept breathing, ignoring Phillips’s question disguised as an insinuation that he’s not any good. Swagger walked off without speaking.
In-ring: Enzo Amore and Big Cass were introduced to the ring. The Ravens fans jumped in with the “Enzo Amoreeeeee” as he strutted in the ring. Enzo said he’s not sweating Epico, then vowed to send him to a dirt nap, where he will probably soil himself. Big Cass finished out that there is only one way to describe the Shining Stars – S-A-W-F-T!
Shining Stars were out next looking to unload some timeshares on unsuspecting fans, who willingly accepted brochures providing more information on the vacation opportunity.
7 — EPICO (w/Primo) vs. ENZO AMORE (w/Big Cass)
Epico cut off Enzo early on, then delivered two suplexes into a super-delayed vertical suplex. Enzo came back with a one-two combo, then he climbed to the top turnbuckle looking for Air Enzo, but Primo hopped on the ring apron to distract Enzo. And, Primo took a big boot from Big Cass for his trouble. Enzo then wiped out the Stars with a big splash.
Enzo tried to suplex Primo back into the ring, but Primo grabbed Enzo’s feet from the outside, causing Primo to fall on top of Enzo. Primo continued to hold down Enzo’s feet from the floor, out of the ref’s view, and Epico got the pin. Enzo sold shock over the loss, while the Stars got out of the ring to celebrate one-upping Enzo & Cass for a second consecutive week.
WINNER: Epico at 3:18. How did Cass go from a Universal Title match two weeks ago to join Enzo slogging through a lower-card feud with Shining Stars over time-shares?
Up Next: Kevin Owens vs. Roman Reigns in the main event.
[Q11] [Commercial Break at 10:30]
Backstage: Kevin Owens was shown walking down the hallway. Seth Rollins stopped him in the hall. Owens reminded Rollins that he can’t touch him. Seth said he comes in peace. He said he wants the title match at Clash of Champions to remain one-on-one because he wants to take out Triple H’s golden boy at Clash. So, good luck. For real. Owens said he thinks Rollins would actually want Roman Reigns in the title match so that Reigns can do all the work and Rollins can take the glory, just like he’s done his whole career. Just like Dean, Reigns, Kane, J&J Security, and oh yeah, Triple H. See, Seth, you’re just upset that Hunter finally saw through you and picked me. Seth seethed and smirked. Owens said he has some other funny things to say, like how Seth has failed since returning from injury. It should be Rebuild, Redesign… Replaced. Seth grimaced. Mick Foley walked in to tell his champion pupil to go away. “Yessir,” Owens sarcastically told Vice Principal Foley. Foley told his other pupil not to give into temptation going after Owens.
In-ring: The Shield’s music played to bring out Roman Reigns looking to be added to the Universal Title match at Clash of Champions. Kevin Owens was out next proudly holding the Universal Title belt. He threw it in Reigns’s face, but Reigns ignored him. The match is next.
[Commercial Break at 10:40]
The Rock: WWE ran a dedicated WWE Network plug for The Rock’s career being on WWE Network.
8 — Universal champion KEVIN OWENS vs. ROMAN REIGNS — non-title match — Reigns added to Universal Title match at Clash of Champions if he wins
The bell sounded as soon as they returned from break. And, Owens immediately bailed from the ring to the floor. Reigns followed him to the outside and smacked him into the guardrail. But, Owens cut him off back in the ring. Owens worked over Reigns with blows to the mid-section, then he taunted him.
Reigns fired back to boos, then he kicked Owens in the shoulder. But, Owens ducked a big boot and rolled out of the ring to the floor. On the outside, Reigns bashed Owens into the guardrail. Back in the ring, Reigns lit up Owens with a right hand blow to keep applying pressure.
Owens cut off Reigns and put him in the world’s longest reverse chinlock, working the crowd while keeping it applied. Only Owens can pull that off. Reigns started to show life again, drawing a mix of boos and cheers. Reigns delivered a big clothesline, then he stalked Owens for the Superman Punch. But, Owens rolled out of the ring to the outside, drawing applause.
On the floor, Reigns stalked Owens for the Punch, but Owens intercepted him with a kick to the gut. Owens then chucked Reigns hard into the ringpost. Owens ran back into the ring to yell at the crowd as Raw cut to its final break.
[Commercial Break at 10:52]
Back from break, Owens had Reigns in another World’s Most Interesting Chinlock. Reigns took a nap in Owens’s arms, but Reigns refused to give up. The ref felt like Reigns showed enough life to continue. “Roman, are you with me?!” the ref asked Reigns. Reigns reached his hand out toward the crowd, then finally started wiggling and fighting. Reigns finally got to his feet and got separation, but he ate the ringpost shoulder-first.
On the floor, Owens smashed Reigns into the barricade. “Let’s go for a ride!” Owens shouted before smashing Reigns into the ring steps. Suddenly, Seth Rollins showed up and attacked Owens. The bell sounded for a DQ as Seth pounded away on Owens. Owens was then announced as the winner, meaning Reigns is not in the Universal Title match at Clash of Champions. For now.
WINNER: Owens via DQ at 13:10.
Refs spilled out to get Rollins away from Owens. Rollins smirked at the refs and agents Fit Finlay and Adam Pearce. Foley then showed up and yelled at Rollins for getting involved in the match. Rollins acted cocky like he does what he wants, but Foley said they’re going to have a talk. Foley led Rollins and Co. away, then Foley called for the match to be restarted.
8b — Universal champion KEVIN OWENS vs. ROMAN REIGNS — non-title match — Reigns added to Universal Title match at Clash of Champions if he wins
Owens angrily threw Reigns into the ring steps, then yelled at Foley for his decision. Owens threw Reigns back into the ring, where Reigns fought back with right hand blows.
[Q13 — over-run] Reigns tried a big boot, but Owens ducked. Reigns blocked a superkick and hit a Samoan Drop for a two count. Reigns took Owens to the top turnbuckle, but Owens bit Reigns’s arm to get separation. Owens then gripped Reigns for his top-rope Avalanche Driver, and he connected for a super-close two count. Owens then nailed a top-rope Frogsplash for another super-close two count. This is what gets the boos when Super Reigns comes out kicking out of two finisher-like moves.
The crowd fired up with a dueling chant as Reigns tried to recover in the ring. Owens kicked and punched and slapped and smacked Reigns, which just fired up Reigns. Reigns came back with right hand strikes, only to take a superkick. Owens then mockingly posed like Reigns and went for the Cannonball splash, but Reigns moved. Owens crashed hard into the buckle, then he slowly got up and took a Superman Punch. Reigns covered, but Owens kicked out just before three.
The match moved to the floor, where Reigns hit Owens with his double-foot dropkick to the head. Reigns winced and clutched his mid-section as Owens sold on the floor. Reigns slowly rolled Owens back into the ring, then he took a kick to the head and a superkick. This time, Owens nailed the Cannonball splash in the corner. Owens wanted a second one, and he connected.
Owens went for the pop-up powerbomb. But, Reigns jumped over Owens and rolled up Owens, then dropped him with a sit-out powerbomb, but Owens kicked out again. The crowd had lost their minds at this point.
Both men recovered and sold in their respective corners, then Rusev suddenly showed up and charged the ring. U.S. champ Rusev, who had not been on TV in weeks, provided a distraction that allowed Owens to catch Reigns with a pop-up powerbomb. Owens covered Reigns and it was good for the win.
WINNER: Owens at 21:45 after the re-start; Clash remains Owens vs. Rollins. Amazing TV main event. Owens put forth a star-solidifying effort as the top champion on Raw and Reigns was solid in his role trying to fight from underneath. This really was Owens’s shining moment since being called up to WWE’s main roster last year.
Post-match, Rusev attacked Reigns, pounding away on his recent foe. Rusev knocked out Reigns, then Lana appeared on the stage holding the U.S. Title belt. Rusev vowed to crush Reigns, then he stomped Reigns’s back and put Reigns in The Accolade. Cole called for some help as Rusev punished an unconscious Reigns with his submission hold. A ref finally showed up to pull Rusev off Reigns, who sold face-first on the mat. Raw went off the air with Rusev standing tall over Reigns ten minutes past the top of the hour.
OVERALL REAX: A dreadful show with misaligned or fuzzy characters and storylines … until the main event match and segment. That pretty much saved the show. Plus, it helped set up two big matches for the Clash PPV in two weeks.
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