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The Big Takeaway: In the one place he never should have returned, Braun Strowman returned to get revenge on Kane after being laid out last week. Once again, Finn Balor was the setup man for Strowman. The fact that Kane is running for mayor in nearby Knox County wasn't lost on a few fans at ringside, who could be heard chanting "Let's Go Mayor" during an impromptu match with Balor. Before the match with Balor, Kane faced Jason Jordan, who looks to be turning heel, and it's certainly time. The tandem of Paige, Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville have been named "Absolution." After laying out Bayley (off camera) and Mickie James (off camera), Absolution beat up Sasha Banks in the ring. Later, in a weird angle, Absolution surrounded Asuka. The two sides glared at each other, then Asuka smiled, Paige waved and Asuka cautiously walked to the back. After losing to Bray Wyatt, Matt Hardy teased the long-awaited "Broken" angle by repeatedly chanting "delete."
Reigns came out to noticeably more jeers than at any point since the Shield reunion. Reigns said last week was a big week for him: the Shield reunited, they defeated the New Day; and he won the Intercontinental Championship. There was a small "You deserve it." Reigns said The Miz ran his mouth. They showed video after Miz dropped the strap last week when the Shield gave Miz the Triple Bomb through the annoncers' table. Reigns said we won't see the Miz for awhile, but you will see a lot of the championship. Reigns said as long as he has the Intercontinental Championship, the title will remain presitgious. Reigns said if anyone wants the championship, anyone has to step up and take it.
Miz's music played, but Bo Dallas and Curtis Axel (still in a neck brace) walked out. Dallas chided Reigns for disrespecting the most must-see Intercontinental Champion of all time. Axel said they were in no condition to avenge an injustice, but they knew someone who can. Elias came out playing a guitar. Elias said the Miz was a good guy and when he saw Axel and Dallas lost after their leader feel in defeat, he knew he could lead them and ignite the fire that burned in their hearts. Elias said he was going to take Reigns' Intercontinental Championship. Reigns agreed to a match, but he told Elias to take a look at Axel. He told Elias he hopes he can sing in a neck brace because before the end of the night he could be wearing one.
Seth Rollins came out as Reigns was leaving and the two bumped fists. The "Burn it Down" wail was missing from Rollins' music, but he came out in a "Burn It Down" t-shirt. Michael Cole announced that Sheamus was taking an annual sabbatical to Ireland and Dean Ambrose was on his honeymoon.
Seth Rollins defeated Cesaro (18:17)
Rollins attempted a crossbody off the top, but Cesaro caught him in mid-air and delivered a spinning backbreaker. Rollins came back with a Blockbuster and a tope. Great near fall with an inside cradle by Cesaro, which led to Cesaro putting Rollins in the sharpshooter, but Rollins forced the rope break. Cesaro attempted the Gotch Neutralizer, but Rollins backdropped him over and hit a superkick for a two count. Cesaro attempted a springboard uppercut, but Rollins hit another superkick and got the win following the Rainmaker Kneestrike (which STILL doesn't have a name seven months after Rollins started using it.)
Charly Caruso did an in-ring interview with Rollins. She asked since Reigns won the Intercontinental Championship and Ambrose is on his honeymoon, does that mean that the Shield is going in different directions. Rollins said he hadn't heard from Ambrose in a week, then actually said that Ambrose "put the hotel room in Renee's name." He asked Charly, since she was Rene's friend, if she knew anything about it. He said that the Shield would only get stronger, Ambrose would return next week and they would invoke their rematch clause for the Raw Tag Team titles against Sheamus and Cesaro next week.
They showed footage from 205 Live showing the Zo Train laying out Rich Swann, Akira Tozawa and Cedric Alexander last week. Swann, Tozawa, Mustafa Ali and Alexander met with Kurt Angle backstage. Alexander said they wanted an opportunity against the Zo Train. Angle said it's time to determine the next challenger for Enzo Amore's championship. Angle ordered a Fatal Four-Way match tonight. Then next week, there would be another Fatal Four-Way. The winners of the two matches would meet in two weeks to determine the new #1 contender.
Samoa Joe defeated Titus O'Neil via tapout (2:31)
Samoa Joe won with the Coquina Clutch. There was a lengthy, awkward period where the two were locked in a clinch and one waited on the other to do something. Joe got the Coquina Clutch after Titus O'Neil got some stiff punches in, but the referee tried to back them out of the corner. Postmatch, Apollo Crews tried to give Joe an enzuigiri, but missed. Joe put Crews in the Coquina Clutch, as well, leaving him laying.
Alexa Bliss was out on commentary for what was supposed to be a six-woman tag between Sasha Banks, Mickie James and Bayley vs. Paige, Rose and Deville. Banks made her entrance. When James was supposed to come out, she never showed up. Then they started Bayley's music, but she was also a no-show. Then Paige, Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville walked out. James was shown on the TitanTron selling her left leg backstage. Then Bayley was also left laying after selling her neck.
Paige said she's been hounded on social media, at the airports and at the supermarket by people to explain her actions. She said one year ago, she was THE woman who stuck the flag into the ground and to erase the word "Diva' from the WWE encyclopedia. Last week, she was just making a statement about who she is. And she's back. Rose, Paige and Deville surrounded the ring. Paige said her group is called "Absolution." Rose said others may have forgotten, but before there was a Boss, or the Four Horsewomen, or a Goddess, there was a Paige. But they haven't forgotten. Devills said every woman has pushed the competition and every woman has raised the game, but the fact is nothing would have been raised if it wasn't for Paige. That's why she and Rose pledged their allegiance to Paige. That's why Absolution is going to push the women's revolution. Paige wanted Banks to pledge their allegiance to them. Paige said Banks was either with them or against them.
Banks punched Paige off the apron, but Deville and Rose swept right in and jumped Banks. Banks started to make her own comeback, but Rose tackled her from behind and Paige stomped her down. Devills delivered a roundhouse kick to Banks, while Rose hit the Angel's Wings where she dropped Banks on her head. Paige gave Banks the Rampage.
Bray Wyatt returned in his lair and simply said "I'm here."
Wyatt came out after a commercial break. Wyatt said he never had a childhood, he never celebrated holidays, he never carved a turkey and he never cared. Wyatt said the fans do. He said the fans' entire world exists in a cardboard box. They tell you what to buy, tell you who to love. He called the fans pathetic. He tried and he tried and the fans never listened when he tried to show them the way. Wyatt said their suffering brings him joy because his eyes are wide open. He can truly see them for who they are. He said none of you are alive, you are all dead. You're all dead and he laughed and laughed. He repeated while laughing "You're all dead." Speaking of which, Matt Hardy came out.
Bray Wyatt defeated Matt Hardy (2:43)
Hardy missed a moonsault, Wyatt did his upside down corner thing and pinned Hardy with Sister Abigail.
Wyatt left. Hardy was in the corner by himself while the fans chanted "Hardy." Hardy began screaming "delete" while laughing. Then he made the motion and screamed "delete, delete, delete" over and over. Reaction was a little disappointing, but it could mean the Broken character could finally emerge. This was followed by Reby Hardy tweeting as many references to his TNA gimmick as humanly possible for the rest of the hour.
Jason Jordan talked with Angle backstage about how Kane attacked Braun Strowman. Jordan said it was too bad Strowman was injured because he wanted to get even with him. Angle couldn't believe that and asked his son if he really meant that. Jordan sort of hemmed and hawed about how people on social media claimed he was exaggerating how bad his knee injury was. Angle claimed he didn't mean it that way. Angle brought up how Jordan could face Kane and beat the man who took out Strowman last week. Jordan agreed, so Angle announced Jordan would face Kane tonight. Jordan had a smile on his face but it was clear he was a little apprehensive about facing Kane.
Rich Swann pinned Noam Dar in a Fatal Four-Way match that also included Akira Tozawa and Ariya Daivari to advance to the #1 contender cruiserweight match. (12:33)
Swann pinned Noam Dar with the Phoenix Splash. Early hightlight was Swann doing a somersault tope on Dar and Ariya Daivari. Dar and Daivari gave Swann a double suplex on the floor. Tozawa being in Titus Worldwide has been dropped. Enzo watched backstage and made fun of Swann doing a tope saying it would only hurt himself. He must of studied Larry Zbyzsko's old commentary during WCW cruiserweight matches. After a Tower of Doom spot where Swann gave Dar a superplex, Daivari hit a frog splash for a two count. Tozawa hit a tope on Dar and a Shining Wizard on Daivari. Tozawa went to the top rope for the senton bomb, but Dar threw Tozawa into the post and pinned Daivari, but Swann broke it up. Dar tried to pin Tozawa with a schoolboy cradle holding the trunks, then hit a running dropkick. Swann pulled Tozawa out of the ring to avoid getting pinned.
Elias came out for a concert about how the Miztourage had not been the same since the Miz left.
Intercontinental Champion Roman Reigns defeated Elias to retain the Intercontinental Championship (14:43)
Dallas and Axel were at ringside and interfered, each jumping on the apron in opposite directions. Elias used that distractonto hit a jumping knee for a two count. Reigns hit the drive-by on Elias, then decked Dallas with a Superman punch. Reigns nailed Axel with a spear, but Elias jumped Reigns from behind, threw him into the post and hit the Randy Savage Elbow for a two count. Elias can do a top-rope elbow, then hit a turning Liger Bomb for another near fall. Regins got an inside cradle, then hit a Superman Punch for two. Reigns called for the Spear, but he ran into a knee lift, only to recover, bounce off the ropes and hit the spear for the pin.
After Reigns walked up the ramp, Joe ran out from behind and put Reigns in the Coquina Clutch. Referees, Jamie Noble and Fit Finley ran out to pull Joe off. Joe started to go back, but Joe ran back to put the choke back on. Finley had to grab Joe by the waist to get him to the back.
Dana Brooke did an inset promo saying she watched the tape of her match with Asuka over and over. Brooke claimed she found the hole in her game---she's a slow starter. Brooke told her to watch out.
Asuka defeated Dana Brooke via tapout (:04)
Brooke ran at Asuka, who immediately put her in an armbar for the tapout.
Absolution came down to surround the ring. They stood there glaring at each other for a minute. Then Asuka smiled and backed out of the ring. Paige waved at her. Asuka backed off and smiled as she made her way up the ramp after not one of the three women entered the ring, despite having a numbers advantage.
Jordan came out and grabbed the mic and said on social media over the past week, there's been speculation about his knee. There have been doubters saying he used the knee injury to try and get out of his match with Strowman. He said that couldn't be any further from the truth. Last week, when he slipped out of Strowman's powerslam, he felt his knee go. But after a week of rehab and the care of the WWE medical staff, he feels 100% and is ready to shut down the Big Red Machine. The crowd only cared because they wanted Jordan to pause long enough so they could chant "what." Then Kane came out to a total babyface reaction.
Kane defeated Jason Jordan by countout (1:43)
Jordan powered Kane into the corner and gave him a shoulder block into the midsection. Kane threw Jordan over the top rope and Jordan immediately started selling his injured knee. The referee counted Jordan out, but Jordan rolled back in the ring. Kane gave him a big boot and therw him over the top rope again.
They kept working with Kane chop blocked Jordan's left leg, stomped on it and slammed it in the mat. Then Finn Balor came out to a big reaction. They went to a commercial. Cole announced that Angle ordered a match between the two during the break, which bascially meant Angle didn't have a main event for this show before now.
Finn Balor defeated Kane by DQ (2:44)
Fans chanted "Let's go Balor" and pronounced his named like Baylor University. Kane jammed a chair into Balor's midsection outside the ring for the DQ. Kane took the chair over his head and slammed it over Baylor's back three times. Kane then put the chair around Balor's head and climbed to the second rope, but Strowman's music played. Strowman walked out and Kane looked stunned. Balor vanished. Kane slammed the chair on Strowman's back, but Strowman no sold it.
Strowman gave Kane a head butt and a running splash to no real reaction, then knocked him out of the ring with a running bodyblock. Strowman took the ring steps, picked up a portion of it and rammed them across Kane's head. You could hear small "Let's Go Kane" chants because, well, he's running for Mayor not far away. Strowman slammed the chair over Kane's back, then picked him up for the running powerslam onto the ring steps in the ring. Strowman protected Kane on the bump to the point it looked bad. Crowd chanted "one more time." Then Strowman took the chair around Kane's neck and rammed it into the steps, just like Kane did to Strowman last week. Kane gasped for air. Then Strowman did it again. Crowd just watched on restlessly and Kane struggled for air around ringside. This went on way too long as Kane left through the crowd.