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COMPLETE WWE BATTLEGROUND 2016 COVERAGE

By Mike Johnson on 2016-07-24 19:00:00

WWE United States champion Rusev with Lana vs. Zack Ryder

Lana introduced Rusev, pointing out he was her fiance, and the "one one who can have me."  Zack Ryder came out with a cool jacket that appeared to be inspired by the one Sting wore at the Great American Bash in 1990 when he won the NWA title.  They said it was an homage to Sting, Ultimate Warrior and Randy Savage. 

Rusev had control early and tried to manhandle Ryder, who shoved him back and nailed some right hand.  Ryder avoided a charge by the ropes and kicked him in the face.  Ryder went to the top but Rusev cut him off and clobbered him with right hands.  Rusev stomped him in the mid-section and then rode him on the mat with a bearhug, trying to squeeze the air out of Ryder.  Ryder fought his way to his feet.

Rusev sent him into the corner but Ryder avoided a charge.  Ryder was really aggressive with forearms and beat him down in the corner to set up the Browski Boot.  Rusev saw it coming and grabbed him and nailed him.  He suplexed Ryder but Zack turned it into a neckbreaker.  They put over that Ryder was hanging in there and showing how versatile he was.

The battle went to the floor, where Rusev picked up Ryder and dropped hm across the barrier.  Rusev went back to the floor and charged Ryder, who moved out of the way.  Rusev smashed into the barricade and was nailed with a missile dropkick off the top of the barrier.   Back in the ring, he nailed the Rough Ryder and went to the top for a flying elbow but Rusev pulled his knees up.

Rusev drilled him with a kick in the head and called for the Accolade.  Ryder tried to fight it off and almost escaped but Rusev snapped him backwards and Ryder had no choice but to tap.

Your winner and still WWE United States champion, Rusev!

Rusev was going to lock Ryder back into the move but the Hype Bros music started and out came Mojo Rawley, who charged the ring and faced off with Rusev.  Rusev left the ring and walked off.  Mojo dared him to come back to the ring.

Another solid match.  Ryder looked good and Rusev came off strong from the finish, which looked ferocious.  This was easily the best bout they'd had together.  Show has been solid so far.

Backstage, Mick Foley and Stephanie McMahon were talking when Seth Rollins showed up.  He was shocked they were talking abut Bayley when tonight is the biggest night in the history of Raw and in his career.  Steph said this was his chance to show why they picked him as number one in the Draft.  Rollins boasted about how great he is.  Foley said it was good to see his loss to Dean Ambrose didn't hurt his confidence.  Rollins said it wasn't going to change anything.  He said he was getting the belt that he never lost back.  He said Roman Reigns is an animal and attacked him at a live event over the weekend.  Rollins said he was going to take the belt and tonight was going to be so great, in nine months, there was going to be a boom of babies.  He walked off.  Foley said to Steph that she can't blame him, because she drafted him.

Sami Zayn vs. Kevin Owens

They began brawling right away, sending each other into the barricade.  Owens was nailed with a Zayn clothesline on the floor. They returned to the ring and exchanged right hands.  Zayn nailed Owens and charged for the top rope but was crotched.  Owens nailed him with the cannonball in the corner.  The usual good work you'd expect from these two.

Owens stalked Zayn as he chopped him down over and over.  Owens scored a two count.  Zayn fought back and they battled over a suplex.  Owens punt kicked him and nailed a back senton splash for a two count.   Owens teased kicked him in the back but stopped and cinched in a side chinlock.   Zayn fought back but was yanked back down to the mat.  Owens mocked fans chanting for Sami.  Zayn finally caught Owens with a clothesline that stunned him.

Zayn caught Owens charging and nailed him with a Michinoku Driver.  Owens went to the floor.  Zayn went to go for a dive but Owens grabbed him and pulled him down.  Owens went for the Package Piledriver on the floor but Zayn pulled out and landed on his feet.  He kicked him away and went for an Arabian Press but rebounded up instead of away from the ropes and scared the hell out of everyone watching as he almost came down head and shoulder first on the apron. 

Owens went right after the shoulder, with the announcers talking about Zayn's legitimate shoulder issues.  Zayn came back with a Blue Thunder Bomb.  He went to the top but Owens met him.  Zayn knocked him off the ropes but missed a move off the top.  He rolled through but was caught with an Owens superkick and locked in a crossface.  Owens nailed Zayn with a stiff clothesline in the corner and hit a second with authority.

Owens charged but was caught with an exploder in the buckles.   Owens ducked the Helluva Kick and went to the floor.  Zayn went to the top but Owens caught him and pulled him down onto his shoulders on the apron.  They battled and Zayn nailed a brainbuster on the apron.  Both went were down and out on the floor.  The crowd chanted, "This is awesome."

Zayn made it to the ring and Owens was almost counted out but made it in right before the ten count.  They exchanged right and left hands.  Zayn finally got the better of the exchange and Owens covered up like Tank Abbott fighting Dan Severn.  He went to the floor.  Zayn tried to hit a tornado DDT through the ringpost but Owens caught him with a superkick.  Wow.  Owens nailed a cannonball into the buckles, slamming Zayn, who was between the buckles and the ringpost, into the steel.

Owens pulled him in and nailed a top rope frog splash but Zayn kicked up at the last second.  This is great stuff.    Owens went for the Pop-up powerbomb but Zayn blocked it and nailed a tornado DDT off the ropes.  They went back and forth until Zayn nailed a series of back suplexes for a near fall.

Zayn charged Owens but was nailed with a Pop-up powerbomb.  The referee counted but Zayn got his foot under the ropes at the last second.  Owens screamed at him, asking Zayn why he wouldn't stay down.  Zayn told him to keep it coming, which only infuriated Zayn more.  He caught Owens with an exploder in the corner and nailed the Helluva Kick.  Zayn looked at his former best friend for a long time before hitting another Helluva Kick and scored the clean three count.

Your winner, Sami Zayn!

Absolutely awesome match that played off a lot of history between the two.  Just an awesome competitive bout.  Well worth going out of your way to see.  They presented Zayn as a kickass babyface and it was probably one of his best showings to date.  This was just pitch perfect, the type of match that makes everyone involved more important.

They went to the pre-show panel to get reactions from earlier.

Natalya vs. Becky Lynch

Becky went right after Natalya, but the referee held her back.  Lynch used a series of takedowns to make Natalya retreat to the floor to try and kill the flow.  Natalya stomped her upon returning to the ring but Lynch rolled her up for a two count, then nailed an armdrag and a dropkick to send Natalya to the floor.  She came off the apron with a shot on Natalya, who was on the floor.

Natalya cut her off and went after the knee before sending her into the ringsteps.  She worked over Lynch's knee on the mat as the crowd rallied Lynch to make a comeback.  Lynch almost shocked her with the Disarmher but Natalya swept her leg to escape.   Natalya continued working her over on the mat.  Lynch fired back with right hands but Natalya had too much control.  Lynch was pulled up and slapped back down to the mat.

Natalya locked her in a submission but Becky battled back and caught her with an enziguiri.  Lynch tried to use that time to recover to her feet, pulling herself up with the ropes.  Lynch nailed her with a clothesline.  Natalya tried to nail a discus clothesline.  Lynch went for the Disarmher.  Natalya slipped out and went for the Sharpshooter.  They went back and forth until Natalya cinched in the Sharpshooter.  Lynch fought her way to the ropes and broke the hold.

Lynch kicked her off and went to the top for a missile dropkick.  She covered Natalya for a two count.  Natalya took her down and cinched in the Sharpshooter again.  Lynch tried to get to the ropes but every time, Natalya pulled her back to the center and finally Lynch tapped.

Your winner, Natalya!

OK match.  They worked hard but you had the feeling the crowd was catching it's breath from Owens vs. Zayn.  Technically, it was fine.

Backstage, Shane McMahon and Daniel Bryan found WWE champion Dean Ambrose.  They talked him up for his title bout.  McMahon said that Dean keeps moving forward and that's why he's the champion and he's going to remain the champion.  Bryan said when he had his wars with the Shield, they worried about him because he was the best.  He cut a hell of a promo actually.  Ambrose said tonight he was going to prove something to himself because The Shield goes to war.  He said he's going to still be champion at the end of the night.

Coverage continues on Page 3!


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