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WWE Extreme Rules: Brock Lesnar Cashes In, Wins Universal Championship

Brock Lesnar cashes in his Money in the Bank contract on Seth Rollins to win the Universal Championship after the main event of WWE Extreme Rules. While Lesnar’s advocate Paul Heyman had teased that the former UFC fighter would indeed cash in on either Rollins or WWE Champion Kofi Kingston during Extreme Rules, most figured it was just another fake out. Even when Heyman reiterated the declaration earlier tonight, many fans thought it was just more mind games from the devious ECW founder.

Obviously, that turned out to not be the case, and Heyman had in fact delivered a spoiler earlier on. After Rollins and Raw Women’s Champion Becky Lynch emerged victorious over opponents Baron Corbin and Lacey Evans in the main event of Extreme Rules, it looked like the celebration would be on, but things quickly went south for Rollins.  Lesnar arrived fast, wasting no time in cashing in his contract on a weakened Rollins after hitting a few high impact German suplexes.

Related: WWE Extreme Rules: AJ Styles Beats Ricochet for U.S. Championship

Lesnar finished Rollins off with an F-5 after the bell officially rang, continuing the usual pattern of Money in the Bank winners successfully cashing in to a win a championship, although a handful of wrestlers have failed. In doing so, Lesnar effectively avenged the WrestleMania XXXV match in which he lost the same title to Rollins in April. The era of The Beast looks to be resuming right where it left off, whether the WWE fans like it or not.

Lesnar now embarks on his seventh world title reign in WWE, and his third with the Universal Championship in particular. While Lesnar will presumably defend the title at SummerSlam in August, him recapturing Raw’s top belt opens the door for The Beast to resume the pattern so many WWE fans have grown sick of since his return to WWE as a part-time performer. Lesnar only wrestles on pay-per-view, and only a handful of them per year, due to his specialized, big money contract.

This has led to Lesnar being a Universal Champion that rarely defends his title, leaving many pay-per-views without a world championship main event. That finally seemed to be over, as a lot of Rollins and Lesnar’s story leading into WrestleMania centered on the idea that the fans were tired of a part-time champion. Yet, that’s now what they have to live with again after Extreme Rules. In a time when WWE recently took the step of hiring Heyman and Eric Bischoff to oversee Raw and SmackDown creatively, due to falling ratings, it’s baffling why they would immediately run back to Lesnar’s stale act as Universal Champion.

More: WWE Extreme Rules: Undertaker & Roman Reigns Win No Holds Barred Match


2019-07-14 08:07:19

Michael Kennedy

WWE Extreme Rules: AJ Styles Beats Ricochet for U.S. Championship

“The Phenomenal” AJ Styles defeats Ricochet for the United States Championship at WWE Extreme Rules, with help from Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson. Well, help probably isn’t a strong enough word, as Styles’ reunited teammates in The Club faction interfered in the match multiple times. As Jesse “The Body” Ventura used to say though, the record books don’t care how one wins, only that they do. Now, Styles becomes the fourth competitor to walk out of Extreme Rules with a title they didn’t have walking in.

The match at Extreme Rules between Styles and Ricochet was the culmination of a rivalry that’s materialized over the last few weeks. Three weeks ago on Raw, Styles went one on one with Ricochet, who defeated Samoa Joe for the United States Championship at June’s Stomping Grounds event, in a non-title match. Ricochet seemed to have stars in his eyes over taking on the veteran Styles, and ended up losing to him. Then, Ricochet won a rematch with his title on the line on the following Raw.

Related: WWE Extreme Rules: New Day Wins 6th Tag Team Championship

Unfortunately, Styles then joined old friends Gallows and Anderson in a beatdown on Ricochet in retaliation, turning heel and reforming The Club faction. Another title match was booked for Extreme Rules, but the encounter quickly went sideways, with Gallows and Anderson attacking Ricochet before the bell. The two bald brawlers would also end up costing Ricochet the match late in the game, sending him crashing down onto the top turnbuckle. Style then hit Ricochet with a second-rope Styles Clash for the win, and the title.

And just like that, Ricochet’s first title reign since being called up to WWE’s main roster ends after only a handful of weeks. Of course, losing at Extreme Rules to a top star like Styles won’t hurt his standing one bit, and it seems likely the two men will have a rematch sooner or later. This is Styles’ third reign with the United States Championship, and his fifth overall title in WWE to date, having also held the WWE Championship twice. While that number isn’t as high as some, Styles’ reigns tend to be long, with one lasting for over a year.

As good as Styles is as being either an underdog babyface or a cocky heel, he’ll hopefully have at least one clean match against Ricochet at some point, as all three they’ve had so far have been marred by some type of shenanigans. Then again, one can’t fault a bad guy for cheating to win. As the late, great legend Eddie Guerrero used to say “if you’re not cheating, you’re not trying.”

More: WWE Extreme Rules: Undertaker & Roman Reigns Win No Holds Barred Match


2019-07-14 07:07:32

Michael Kennedy

WWE Extreme Rules: New Day Wins 6th Tag Team Championship

New Day’s Big E and Xavier Woods defeat Daniel Bryan and Rowan and Heavy Machinery to capture their sixth tag team championship at WWE Extreme Rules. The three-man unit known as The New Day have spent lots of time divided recently, although it’s been for a very good reason. At WrestleMania XXXV in April, New Day member Kofi Kingston defeated Daniel Bryan to capture the WWE Championship. Thus, he’s been primarily occupied with defending his singles gold ever since.

This has left Big E and Woods to focus on the tag team division as a duo. While one of New Day’s big advantages has always been having three members to choose from to both compete for and defend the various tag team titles they’ve held, it’s now clear that E and Woods are just as formidable a tandem by themselves as they are with Kingston in he mix. The New Day last held the SmackDown Tag Team Championship in the fall of 2018, losing them to The Bar, Sheamus and Cesaro. Tonight, they recaptured the titles.

Related: WWE Extreme Rules: Undertaker & Roman Reigns Win No Holds Barred Match

Heading into Extreme Rules, former champions Bryan and Rowan weren’t too pleased to be stuck by Shane McMahon in a triple threat title defense, as that instantly makes their odds of retention worse. Sure enough, that worry proved to be a correct one. At several points, it appeared that upstart challengers Heavy Machinery would win the titles, but in the end, it was veterans The New Day that got the victory, pinning Bryan after their Midnight Hour double team finishing move.

And with that, Big E and Kofi Kingston ended Daniel Bryan’s second reign as a tag team championship, his first coming alongside Kane back in the Team Hell No days. Hopefully though, WWE isn’t quite ready to pull the plug on Bryan and Rowan’s quite entertaining run at or near the top of the SmackDown tag team division. As for Heavy Machinery, Otis and Tucker made a great showing for themselves, hanging with their much more experienced opponents, and nearly winning via their Compactor finishing move.

As fun as the actual match was at Extreme Rules, one can’t help but wonder why WWE felt the need to take the titles away from the still fairly new team of Bryan and Rowan and give them back to New Day, who it could be argued need a break from being tag champs for awhile. Still, at least it did provide the feel good moment of Big E and Xavier Woods celebrating their victory with fellow champion Kofi Kingston, at least until Paul Heyman interrupted.

More: WWE Extreme Rules: Shinsuke Nakamura Wins Intercontinental Championship


2019-07-14 06:07:42

Michael Kennedy

WWE Extreme Rules: Shinsuke Nakamura Wins Intercontinental Championship

“The King of Strong Style” Shinsuke Nakamura defeats Finn Balor to win his first Intercontinental Championship at WWE’s Extreme Rules pay-per-view. Well, the match technically took place on the Extreme Rules pre-show, or as WWE calls it, the kickoff. The match was a late addition to the card, with many fans left scratching their heads at the decision to have two main event-caliber performers serve as the night’s opening match. Still, Balor and Nakamura did the best with the slot they were given, engaging in a fun, fast-paced contest that never dragged.

Balor and Nakamura of course have history from their days wrestling in Japan, with both men having been former members of the Bullet Club faction. Despite that past, tonight’s match was actually only Balor and Nakamura’s third one on one encounter under the auspices of WWE. The first was an absolute classic that happened on NXT TV shortly before Balor left the brand permanently for the main roster, and only a few months after Nakamura’s NXT debut against Sami Zayn.

Related: Former WWE Villain Muhammad Hassan Is Now Junior High School Principal

The second WWE singles match between Balor and Nakamura took place last Tuesday on SmackDown, another opening match that tried its best to steal the show early. Nakamura came out on top in that non-title contest, and that actually turned out to be a bad omen for Balor’s title reign, as the Irish superstar ended up pinned by Nakamura on the Extreme Rules kickoff after a deadly Kinshasa knee strike. The Intercontinental Championship now belongs to Nakamura.

The Intercontinental Championship joins a growing list of accolades for Nakamura, who spent much of 2018 feuding with AJ Styles over the WWE Championship. While Nakamura never managed to capture that gold, he did win the Royal Rumble match to get it, joining a very select group of wrestlers. He’s also a 2-time former NXT Champion, and a 2-time former United States Champion. It’s hard to imagine him not holding either the WWE or Universal Championships before his time in WWE ends.

That’s one thing Balor has on Nakamura, having been the inaugural Universal Champion, despite only holding the title for 24 hours due to injury. While WWE no longer enforces the old rule where champions automatically received a rematch after losing their title, one assumes this will likely just be the beginning of a long feud between Balor and Nakamura, two of WWE’s finest competitors, and a combo that would make a hell of a WrestleMania main event at some point in the future.

More: GLOW Star Alison Brie & WWE’s Becky Lynch Unite On ESPN Magazine Cover


2019-07-14 03:07:58

Michael Kennedy

WrestleMania: Kofi Kingston Defeats Daniel Bryan for WWE Championship

Kofi Kingston has captured his first WWE championship at WrestleMania XXXV after defeating Daniel Bryan in a highly anticipated match. This moment is eleven years in the making for Kingston, who has had a very successful in-ring career over the last decade. Over the last few months, Kingston has grown in popularity with the WWE universe after an awe-inspiring performance in a gauntlet match. Kingston earned his spot against Bryan after his fellow New Day partners, Big E and Xavier Woods, successfully completed a tag team gauntlet match on an episode of SmackDown.

Similar to Bryan’s rise to main event status in 2014, Kingston’s sudden career shift relies heavily on his support from the fans. Capturing a singles championship hasn’t been an issue for the tenured performer, as he has held the United States and Intercontinental titles on numerous occasions. However, Kingston had never held the WWE or Universal championship, despite being with the WWE for over a decade. Despite many believing Kingston deserved this spot, it is important to remember that his recent booking is due to Mustafa Ali coming down with an injury. Ali was set to challenge for the WWE title at the Elimination Chamber event in the titular match, but Kingston replaced him at the last moment. After failing to capture the title at the event, Kingston fought for another shot at Bryan, but was then replaced by a returning Kevin Owens. However, Kingston continued to fight for another chance, which led to his overdue world title match and victory.

Related: Exclusive WWE: The Official Cookbook Recipes Have WrestleMania Flavor

After a grueling battle between Bryan and Kingston, Kingston put away Bryan to win his first WWE championship. Fans rejoiced as the new champion proceeded to celebrate in the ring with Big E and Woods, as well as his two children. Ironically, Kingston’s victory over Bryan mirrors the way Bryan won the title when he was in Kingston’s position five years ago in a match against Batista and Randy Orton. However, since Kingston wasn’t originally intended to be in this spot, his reign will probably be simple and quick to please fans.

Many memorable moments have been made at WrestleMania, and Kingston’s victory over Bryan will go down as another great moment. Earlier this year, Vince McMahon assured his audience that they would get more of what they want and less of what they don’t want. Kingston’s victory was certainly a case of McMahon living up to his promises. Sadly, Kingston will probably be a transitional champion, as Bryan had done great work while holding the title, and he will probably reclaim it sooner rather than later.

With Kingston prevailing over Bryan in a thrilling back-and-forth contest, fans should expect a championship celebration this week on SmackDown. His victory over Bryan was an exciting moment, and WWE hopefully treats his reign with respect. It’s unlikely that Kingston will hold the WWE championship for long, but the stint that he has with the title can still be memorable.

More: WWE Legend Bret Hart Attacked by Fan at Hall of Fame Ceremony


2019-04-07 08:04:21

Eric Trigg

WrestleMania: Seth Rollins Defeats Brock Lesnar for Universal Championship

Seth Rollins defeated Brock Lesnar for the WWE Universal championship to kick off WrestleMania XXXV. Lesnar had held the title since Crown Jewel last year after Roman Reigns had to relinquish it due to illness last October. Rollins earned the opportunity to challenge “The Beast” earlier this year at the Royal Rumble event, where he won the titular match. Rollins’ victory over Lesnar makes him the sixth person to hold the championship since its inception in 2016.

The history between Rollins and Lesnar dates back to WrestleMania XXXI where Rollins cashed in his Money in the Bank briefcase during Lesnar’s bout. More recently, Rollins had been feuding with Lesnar and his advocate Paul Heyman for the past several months on his quest to “slay the beast.” Rollins, who calls himself “The Beast Slayer,” felt that Lesnar wasn’t qualified to hold the title since he is never around to defend it. Since returning to WWE in 2012, Lesnar has been on a limited schedule and only appears at major WWE events. Feeling as though fans deserved a fighting champion, Rollins set out to dethrone “The Beast.” While this is Rollins first reign with the Universal championship, many fans will recall that he was a participant in the first match to crown a Universal champion. While Rollins didn’t capture the title that night, he made up for it tonight at WrestleMania.

Related: WWE Reportedly Adding Second Yearly WrestleMania Event in 2020

In an unexpected turn of events, Rollins defeated Lesnar for the championship in the opening match at Wrestlemania XXXV. Prior to the match, Heyman marched his way down to the squared circle in order to proclaim that he and Lesnar didn’t want to wait all night, so he proceeded to introduce his client. However, Lesnar assaulted Rollins before the match could get underway. After brutalizing Rollins outside the ring, the match finally got started and Rollins made quick work of Lesnar. After delivering three curb stomps to Lesnar, Rollins picked up the victory to claim his first Universal title.

Rollins will look to have a lengthy reign with the championship, and he will more than likely look to give Reigns a shot at the title, since he never lost it. The two are known for their tenure as members of the dominant trio, The Shield. And, with WWE removing rematch clauses for former champions, Lesnar will have to earn his rematch against Rollins. Since Lesnar doesn’t show up very often, chances are Rollins’ first challenger will be his former tag partner, Reigns.

Rollins’ quick victory over Lesnar is shocking, but many fans will be excited to know that the championship will be back on weekly television. With Rollins being a more consistent member of the roster, fans will finally have a fighting champion on Monday Night Raw. The Universal title hasn’t felt important since its inception, but with Rollins now holding it, WWE can finally highlight the title appropriately.

More: WrestleMania 36 Heading to Tampa Bay Next Year


2019-04-07 07:04:11

Eric Trigg