Though Seth Rollins was able to retain the WWE World Heavyweight Championship, one of the two titles he had to defend at tonight’s Night of Champions PPV, he certainly didn’t look like a winner as the show drew to a close. Indeed, Rollins ended the night flat on his back, having been taken out by the big red demon Kane, who apparently has severed his ties with The Authority.
Kane’s destruction of Rollins came after Rollins’ two matches, good ones that followed an overall night of solid in-ring action.
His battle against Cena started off quick, with Rollins hitting a Blockbuster and then a double top rope stomp a few minutes later. A cocky Rollins nearly got pinned by a surprise rollup when he conducted the Houston crowd in a Wave. But he recovered quickly, and soon had Cena in jeopardy again. Cena tried a few of his patented Moves of Doom, but Rollins always had an answer for them. Some great moves exhibited here, including Cena reversing a running powerbomb attempt with a big hurancarana that sent Rollins hard into the corner, and Rollins scaling the ropes when Cena was up there, hitting Cena with a superplex, and floating it over to hit a standing suplex – that sequence looked great. Rollins tried to hit Cena with his own AA finisher, but Cena escaped. Ultimately, Cena hit a Super Rocker Dropper and then ended things with an AA to get the pin and the title. After the match, Rollins tried to leave and duck out of his next match against Sting, but Cena stopped him, hit him with an AA on the floor, then rolled Rollins into the ring.
Sting made his entrance while Rollins was still recovering from the beating at Cena’s hands. Sting hit a running Avalanche immediately after the bell, then tried to submit Rollins with a Scorpion Deathlock. Rollins tried to run away, but Sting grabbed him and threw him back into the ring. The action spilled to the floor, and Sting continued to punish the champ, running him coast-to-coast into the ringside barriers. Rollins pleaded with Sting for mercy, but received none. Sting was going to end things on the announcers’ table, but a desperate Rollins shoved Sting backwards and he crashed hard through the Spanish table. As Sting was being tended to, Rollins teased leaving, but saw a prone Sting and decided to attack instead, slamming him on the remnants of the table. With Sting hurt, Rollins rolled him into the ring and battered him with various high impact moves. Rollins tried to finish things with a springboard move, but Sting caught him and shoved him off the top rope and to the floor. A hurt Rollins tried to come back, but Sting took over, hitting him with a pair of Stinger Splashes, then taking to the sky – hitting a high cross body off the top turnbuckle onto Rollins who had gone to the floor. After that, Sting rolled Rollins back into the ring and hit a Scorpion Death Drop, but Rollins broke the pin by getting his foot on the rope. Sting went up top for some punches, but Rollins stopped him with a Bucklebomb. After that, it looked like Sting got injured, as he ducked a clothesline attempt by Rollins but then crumpled to the mat. After being checked by the ref and trainer, Sting got back into the fight. He reversed a Pedigree attempt and locked on the Scorpion Deathlock, but Rollins was able to get to the ropes. Sting locked it on again, but Rollins was able to reverse it and roll up Sting for the pin.
After the match, Sheamus ran to the ring, hit Rollins with a Brogue Kick and asked to cash in his Money in the Bank briefcase. Before the match could start, Kane’s music hit, and the masked demon came to the ring. He hit Rollins with a chokeslam, taking out the champ. Sheamus cheerleaded Kane to hit another, but instead Kane delivered one to him as well. Kane then Tombstoned Rollins, leaving the champion down and out to end the show.
WWE Night of Champions – Other Match Results:
Kickoff Show Match: The Ascension & Stardust vs. Neville & The Lucha Dragons
The Ascension used their power advantage to ground the Dragons. But the impressive quickness of the Dragons came through, with some scintillating moves by Kalisto in particular. There was a highlight reel moment with the Dragons doing stereo somersault planchas and Neville with a springboard moonsault, taking out all three opponents on the floor. Neville got the hot tag and things really picked up, with a flurry of moves from his team. When Neville was going up top to finish things, Stardust used his partner as an opponent, throwing him into the corner and knocking down Neville, who dazedly walked into the Queen’s Crossbow and got pinned.
Winners: Stardust & The Ascension
Match Rating: 8/10
Match One: Ryback (c) vs. Kevin Owens – Intercontinental Championship
Ryback used his power early on, at one point bench-pressing and throwing Owens out of the ring and to the floor. But Owens cooled the big man’s momentum by attacking Ryback’s left arm, ramming it into the ring post, and then punishing it for several minutes with submissions and smashes. After a good exchange of moves, Owens tried to end things with an armbar on Ryback’s injured arm, but the champ escaped. He got Owens up for Shellshock, but Owens raked his eyes and rolled him up to get the pinfall victory and his first WWE title.
Winner, and new Intercontinental Champion: Kevin Owens
Match Rating: 8/10
They announce that Brock Lesnar will face the Undertaker in the titular match at the Hell in a Cell PPV on October 25. This will be the culmination of the Brock Lesnar Goes to Hell tour, which will see him take on Big Show at Madison Square Garden on October 3, and be the guest on the Stone Cold Podcast on October 19, all of which can be seen on the WWE Network.
Backstage, Rusev refused to answer any questions, while Summer Rae wore the earrings that Dolph Ziggler gave her on Smackdown. The soap opera continues.
Match Two: Dolph Ziggler vs. Rusev w/ Summer Rae
The announcers point out Dolph’s black tights, changing it up from his normal colourful trunks – wonder if this means anything. Nice move where Ziggler tries to take Rusev down with a drop toe hold, but Rusev blocks it and uses his strength to clamp on a hold. He presses the advantage with his powerful moves in the ring and on the floor. He gets distracted when the crowd chants for Lana, allowing Dolph to recover. He hit Rusev with a few high impact moves, but couldn’t hold Rusev down. Nice spot where Dolph was climbing to the top, Rusev knocked him down, but Ziggler flipped and landed on his feet – only to get kicked right in the mush. Ziggler tried to win with a huge DDT but Rusev kicked out. After a few more teased three-counts from both men, Summer Rae tried to interfere. The ref saw her, and told her to get to the back. She threw a tantrum, and threw her shoe, apparently at the ref. The ref ducked, Rusev took the brunt of the shoe, stunning him and leaving him prone to a ZigZag.
Winner: Dolph Ziggler
Match Rating: 7/10
Match Three: The New Day (c) vs. The Dudley Boyz – Tag Team Championship
Good match, though some of the most entertaining stuff may have been the banter between Xavier Woods on the floor and whichever New Day member was on the apron at the time. Woods’ distraction helped give Kofi and Big E the advantage after they had been getting schooled by the veteran Dudley Boyz. A really ugly Big E splash to Bubba on the apron gave the New Day the edge, with Woods tromboning away at every opportunity. The Dudleyz fought back, though, but just as it looked like they were going to get the win after a 3-D on Kofi, Woods ran in and broke up the pin, earning the New Day a disqualification in the process, but allowing them to retain the belts. After the match, the Dudleyz got some revenge by putting Woods through a table.
Winners: The Dudley Boyz by disqualification (so not new champions)
Match Rating: 7/10
Match Four: Charlotte w/ Paige & Becky Lynch vs. Nikki Bella w/ Brie Bella & Alicia Fox – Divas Championship
Title can change hands on disqualification or count-out
Early on, Charlotte was knocked off the apron and she tweaked her knee. Which became the story of the match, as Nikki targeted it like a bullseye. As good as Charlotte’s offence is, she also should be credited for her amazing facial expressions when she’s being beaten up- in that way, she may be the absolute best in the company regardless of gender. At one point, Brie and Alicia tried to help, but Nikki told them to stop, lest she get DQd and lose her title because of their shenanigans. After a several minute beatdown, Charlotte caught Nikki coming off the top and speared her. She immediately locked on the Figure-8 and Nikki quickly tapped out. Charlotte’s dad, a teary-eyed “Nature Boy” Ric Flair came out to celebrate her title win.
Winner and new Divas Champion: Charlotte
Match Rating: 8/10
Backstage, Kevin Owens celebrated his title win by mocking Ryback’s well-documented use of self-help books to inspire his life. Meanwhile, Ric Flair celebrated with his daughter and her PCB teammates.
Match Five: The Wyatt Family vs. Roman Reigns, Dean Ambrose, and Chris Jericho
In a funny moment, some scrawny fan dressed up in a Shield-type vest jumped into the ring to stand with Ambrose and Reigns – as he was immediately dragged away by security, Bray Wyatt laughed and said “Is that your guy?”. It was not. Rather, Y2J made his return to PPV to stand against Wyatt, his one-time foe. Jericho looked a bit thicker than he has in the past, but still was able to deliver in the ring. Strowman dominated early, sending Ambrose and Reigns down and out to the floor, then pressing and throwing Jericho onto them. Lots of hard-hitting moves on all sides, with Reigns taking the brunt of it both inside and on the floor – including an ugly senton splash by Wyatt on the floor. Finally, Ambrose made a desperate save, which allowed Reigns to make the tag. A pair of Superman punches and a flying Ambrose crossbody took Strowman down. Reigns was going to end it, but then Jericho tagged himself in, presumably to get the win himself. But he was no match for Strowman’s size, and a Codebreaker attempt got reversed into a Strowman slam. Strowman then locked Jericho into his bearhug (proposed name: The Tree of Good and Evil), and Y2J passed out. After the match, a ticked off Jericho stormed his way past his partners and left without them.
Winners: The Wyatt Family
Match Rating: 9/10
Backstage, the Authority wished Seth Rollins luck in his upcoming two matches. As he left for the ring, Sheamus showed up, teasing a potential cashing in of his Money in the Bank briefacase.
Match Six: Seth Rollins (c) vs. John Cena – US Championship
Winner and new US Champion: John Cena
Match Rating: 9/10
Match Seven: Seth Rollins (c) vs. Sting – WWE World Heavyweight Championship
Winner and still WWE World Heavyweight Champion: Seth Rollins
Match Rating: 8/10
Overall show rating: 8/10