Tonight at WWE Extreme Rules: Seth Rollins looks to get back the WWE Intercontinental Championship from Dolph Ziggler in wrestling’s test of endurance, a 30-minute Iron Man main event! Plus, Roman Reigns takes on Bobby Lashley and WWE Champion AJ Styles puts his title on the line against Rusev. All that and more tonight at WWE Extreme Rules!
Pre-Show Results: Andrade “Cien” Almas defeated Sin Cara in a singles match and SAnitY defeated The New Day in a tables match.
We are LIVE from Pittsburgh, Pa. Michael Cole, Corey Graves, & “The Coach” Jonathan Coachman and Tom Phillips, Byron Saxton, & Corey Graves have the call for tonight.
Curtis Axel and Bob Dallas make up the B-Team.
WWE Raw Tag Team Championships: Matt Hardy & Bray Wyatt (c) vs. The B-Team
Bo Dallas starts with Matt Hardy and Hardy headbutts him down and drops him with an Irish whip in the corner. Leg drop gets a nearfall and Dallas rolls out to regroup with Curtis Axel. Bray Wyatt tags in as Dallas reenters and they stare each other down before Axel gets tagged in. Wyatt runs him back into the corner and stomps him down before landing a clothesline and ground and pound to the back of the head. Headbutt to the chest by Wyatt, but Axel turns the table in the corner. Wyatt with a clothesline out to bring Hardy in. Hardy bounces Axel’s head in the corner and lands clotheslines. Hardy with a second-rope elbow drop for a nearfall. Axel elbows out of the Side Effect and chokes Hardy on the second rope, with Dallas getting involved on the apron and working Hardy down. Hardy gets separation on Axel with a neckbreaker after being isolated and Wyatt in on a hot tag against Dallas. Uranage on Dallas after Axel is taken out and Hardy in. Dallas takes out Wyatt as he goes after Axel outside and Dallas drills Hardy with a hangman’s swinging neckbreaker.
Winners by pinfall and NEW WWE Raw Tag Team Champions: The B-Team
Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars
Crowd was hot for this and made it a decent little tag, with the fire from Wyatt on the hot tag against his brother being the highlight of the match and seeing the B-Team get the win being a good moment.
Post-match, Charly Caruso with The B-Team and Axel asks how a rainbow feels or how Stretch Armstrong felt when he landed on the moon. Dallas says the “B” in B-Team stands for “best.”
Renee Young with WWE Raw General Manager Kurt Angle and Angle says he recently reopened negotiations with Paul Heyman and WWE Universal Champion Brock Lesnar and Lesnar has refused all opponents. Angle gives Lesnar an ultimatum to come to Raw and negotiate his next title defense or be stripped of the title.
Finn Balor vs. “Constable” Baron Corbin
Balor with the go-behind on the lock-up and Corbin backs him to the corner for a back elbow. Corbin works Balor in the corners and works him down. Balor with a dropkick off a sunset flip from Corbin. Corbin comes back with corner clotheslines and a neck crank. Balor rolls him out to escape the submission, but Corbin slides in with a clothesline for a nearfall. Balor moves to the apron to avoid a clothesline and Corbin lands a right hand for a nearfall. Balor fights up from being worked down and lands a forearm. Balor up top and Corbin catches him in a choke for a chokebreaker that gets a nearfall. Corbin with corner forearms and clotheslines. Balor avoids Corbin sliding in and outside with a Sling Blade, but runs into a Deep Six for a Corbin nearfall. Corbin with elbows to the neck of Balor, but he misses a corner splash and Balor goes up top. Corbin crotches him and looks for End of Days, but Balor into an inside cradle.
Winner by pinfall: Finn Balor
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
Good dominant performance from Corbin throughout and Balor having to pick his spots for the win in a decent story for the match.
WWE SmackDown Tag Team Champions The Bludegon Brothers beat Team Hell No down backstage and they take a mallet to the door with Kane’s leg in it before WWE SmackDown General Manager Paige runs in with officials.
Video package for the rivalry between WWE SmackDown Women’s Champion Carmella and Asuka.
The ever-colourful Asuka.
WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship (w/James Ellsworth in a shark cage): Carmella (c) vs. Asuka
Asuka with kicks and knees to work Carmella down. Mella comes back with an inverted DDT and she calls for Ellsworth to drop something. Ellsworth drops a chain and Asuka steps on it before Mella can get to it. Asuka with a shining wizard for a nearfall and Mella kicks out of the corner to go back for the chain. The referee throws the chain away and Ellsworth throws a spray bottle down. Asuka blocks the spray and drops Carmella with kicks and a hip attack for a nearfall. Asuka Lock applied and Mella near the ropes to get her feet on the ropes. Mella rolls out and Ellsworth gets a key out and works on the lock up top. Asuka with a suplex on the floor and she sends Mella into the barricade. Ellsworth gets out and tries to step down, but gets stuck upside down by the bandanas on his feet. Asuka batters him with roundhouse kicks and strikes and the production crew lowers the cage to try and untie Ellsworth. Asuka shoves them out and kicks the leg. Mella gets behind Asuka in the corner and runs her into the shark cage face-first.
Winner by pinfall and STILL WWE SmackDown Women’s Champion: Carmella
Rating: 0.5 out of 5 stars
This wasn’t so much a match as it was a gimmick for Ellsworth to do all of his weapon drops and take some bumps from Asuka. Comedy wrestling isn’t so funny when it is entirely predictable though and that’s what you get here.
Post-match, Asuka beats Ellsworth down with German suplexes and the Asuka Lock after the production crew unties him.
WWE United States Championship: Jeff Hardy (c) vs. Shinsuke Nakamura
Shinsuke Nakamura is the new U.S. champion.
Nakamura with a low-blow as the referee is handing the timekeeper the title before the match and Hardy down. Hardy picks himself up in the corner and tells the referee to ring the bell to make the match official and he does. Kinshasa by Nakamura.
Winner by pinfall and NEW WWE United States Champion: Shinsuke Nakamura
Given the great matches Hardy has had in the US title open challenge run, this was one of the underrated matches going into tonight and they decided to go with another Nakamura low blow. Puzzled (but it’s WWE, so not really) as to why they’d do this on a pay-per-view, but there it is.
Post-match, Randy Orton comes out and Nakamura retreats to the top of the announce table with his title. Orton hits the ring and picks Hardy up, only to double-leg him and stomp him below the belt.
Video package recaps the rivalry between Kevin Owens and Braun Strowman.
Braun Strowman and Kevin Owens battle in the cage.
Steel Cage Match: Braun Strowman vs. Kevin Owens
Owens immediately climbs the cage and Strowman pulls him down. Owens kicks out of the corner and tries again and Strowman throws him around the ring. Strowman tells Owens to fight him and Owens with right hands before he gets shoved down. Strowman fights out of the corner and lands a big boot. Strowman charges Owens and runs into the cage. Owens with a superkick and corner cannonball. Frog splash from Owens only gets a one-count. Owens looks to escape by door and Strowman drags him back. Owens begs off and lands a right hand, so Strowman with a sledge to the chest. Strowman throws Owens into the cage walls over and over. Owens catches Strowman with a stunner and Owens looks for the door again, but Strowman steps on his foot and slams the door into Owens’ face. Corner splash by Strowman misses and Owens with superkicks. Owens handcuffs Strowman to the top rope and starts landing strikes, telling Strowman that’s what he gets. Owens gets too close and gets chokeslammed. Strowman pulls at the handcuffs and Owens gets up, telling Strowman to “suck it.” Owens makes his way to the top and Strowman breaks the handcuffs. Strowman meets Owens up top and gets him in a choke. Strowman chokeslams Owens off the top and through the announce table.
Winner by cage escape: Kevin Owens
Rating: 2.25 out of 5 stars
Braun Strowman tosses Kevin Owens off the top of the cage.
Fine gimmicky cage match bumped up by Owens taking the insane bump off the top of the cage.
The referees call for EMTs and Owens has to be stretchered out post-match.
Video package recaps the rivalry between WWE SmackDown Tag Team Champions The Bludgeon Brothers and Team Hell No.
The Bludgeon Brothers.
WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championships: The Bludgeon Brothers (c) vs. Team Hell No
Bryan is the only one out in Team Hell No to start. Bryan keeping away from Rowan to start and he lands roundhouse kicks in the corner. Rowan with knees to the body and a shoulder tackle. Harper in as Rowan stomps Bryan in the corner. Bryan comes back with Yes Kicks and a Frankensteiner on Harper. Rowan sent out and Bryan gets the Yes Lock in. Rowan pulls Bryan out to the outside and tags in. Bryan sent into the steps and Rowan slams Harper on Bryan for a nearfall inside. The Bludgeons work Bryan down inside until Bryan pulls the top rope down on Rowan and lands Yes Kicks on Harper. Bryan flips over Harper in the corner and looks for a suicide dive on Rowan. Rowan catches Bryan and Harper looks for a dive, but he hits Rowan as Bryan moves away and all are down outside.
Kane comes out in a walking boot and gets to the corner. Bryan struggles and kicks away from Harper. Kane in with right hands on Harper and a chokeslam on Rowan. Chokeslam on Harper and he calls for the Tombstone. Harper kicks the leg and Bryan tags in with a missile dropkick. Yes Kicks on a kneeling Harper. Rowan sneaks a tag and catches Bryan on a running knee attempt. Bryan sent into Kane in the corner and hit with a spinning wheel kick. Doomsday Device from the Bludegons.
Winners by pinfall and STILL WWE SmackDown Tag Team Champions: The Bludgeon Brothers
Rating: 2.75 out of 5 stars
Bryan doing it on his own was great and Kane limping out to try and make the save was played to well. The hottest the crowd has been all night made it one of the best of the night so far.
Roman Reigns preparing backstage and he runs into WWE Raw Tag Team Champions The B-Team and they tell him that if they can do it, he can do it. They say Reigns can be a part of the B-Team if he beats Bobby.
Video package recaps the rivalry between Roman Reigns and Bobby Lashley.
Roman Reigns vs. Bobby Lashley
Bobby Lashley spears Roman Reigns.
They fight for position on the ropes and in the corners. Lashley with the gutwrench takedown and a single-leg takedown. Lashley with another takedown and Reigns favors his leg. Lashley with a Northern Lights suplex out of a Reigns arm wrench and Reigns with a back elbow and an uppercut. Reigns works Lashley in the corners and on the second rope. Drive-By gets a nearfall on Lashley and Reigns works Lashley down before throwing him outside. Reigns runs Lashley into the barricade. Lashley jumps to the top of the steps as Reigns tries to send him in, but Reigns knocks him off and sends him into the steps on the opposite side. Reigns tries to hit Lashley with the steps, but Lashley wrestles them away and lands a clothesline. Lashley with a belly-to-belly throw and Reigns fights out of the corner with a clothesline. Lashley comes back with a powerslam for a nearfall. Reigns with forearms and Lashley catches him coming in with a crossbody. Lashley goes up top and lands a double axhandle. Reigns gets Lashley up for a Samoan Drop, but Lashley with the top rope and Reigns hits him with a Death Valley Driver out to the floor. Lashley gets back to the ring with a second to spare and Reigns with a guillotine leg drop fro a nearfall.
Reigns looks for a Superman Punch and gets hit with a spinebuster from Lashley to set up a delayed vertical suplex for a nearfall. Lashley looks for a Spear and Reigns counters it with a Superman Punch for a nearfall. Reigns looks for a Spear outside and Lashley with a belly-to-belly suplex onto the announce table that bounces Reigns to the floor. Lashley goes up top inside and Reigns hits him with a Superman Punch. Reigns charges Lashley and gets intercepted with a Spear.
Winner by pinfall: Bobby Lashley
Rating: 3.25 out of 5 stars
This started out pretty slow and the crowd tried to hijack the match early on, but they were won over near the end and Lashley with the surprise finish for the win got a big pop.
Ronda Rousey shown sitting in the crowd with her husband Travis Browne before the Raw women’s title match.
Video package recaps the rivalry between WWE Raw Women’s Champion Alexa Bliss, Nia Jax, and Ronda Rousey.
Rondy Rousey deals with Mickie James.
Extreme Rules for the WWE Raw Women’s Championship: Alexa Bliss (c) (w/Mickie James) vs. Nia Jax (w/Natalya)
Bliss slaps Jax and Jax chases her at ringside. Bliss with a kendo stick and Jax catches the second strike and snaps the stick. James keeps tossing weapons at Bliss and Jax keeps taking them away to toss them in the ring. Jax with a body block outside and she tosses Bliss around inside. Jax keeps taking weapons away from Bliss and headbutts her down. Military press drop onto the trashcan by Jax. Bliss rolls out and Jax brings her back in. Bliss with a trashcan lid and a trashcan to drop Jax. Chair wedged in the corner and Bliss with a dropkick for a nearfall. Jax with a right hand and she charges Bliss, running into the chair inside. Mickie James tries to get involved and Natalya pulls her down, but Bliss and James put the boots to Nattie at ringside. Ronda Rousey jumps the barricade and tosses James into the barricade repeatedly to hit a spinning Samoan Drop inside. Rousey runs Bliss down, but James drops her with a kendo stick. Jax catches Bliss inside and James with a chair shot to the back and Bliss and James work her with the chair until Bliss lands a DDT on the chair.
Winner by pinfall and STILL WWE Raw Women’s Champion: Alexa Bliss
Rating: 2 out of 5 stars
Overbooking seems to be a thing with the women’s division right now. This wasn’t too bad overall, but was mostly comprised on setting up weapons and interference.
Video package recaps the rivalry between WWE Champion AJ Styles and Rusev.
AJ Styles is still the champ.
WWE Championship: AJ Styles (c) vs. Rusev (w/Aiden English)
Styles with a leg kick and Rusev presses him into the corner. Styles reverses and attacks the legs with a dropkick to the left knee. Rusev with a judo throw and he catches a kick for a clothesline. Styles with leg kicks and chops to drop Rusev. Styles runs into a spinebuster that gets Rusev a one-count. Snap suplexes from Rusev and an elbow drop gets a nearfall. Elbow drop misses and Styles goes back to the legs. Rusev with a back bodydrop to put Styles down. Bear hug in on Styles and Rusev sets him up top. Superplex blocked and Styles kicks the leg out from Rusev to send him outside. Phenomenal Forearm from Styles lands outside and Rusev shoves Styles into the barricade to get back inside. Styles with a clothesline and sliding forearm inside. Styles unable to get Rusev up as he favors his back and lands a Scorpion Deathdrop for a nearfall. Rusev runs Styles into the corner on the Styles Clash attempt and Rusev hooks the top rope to stop the Calf Crusher. Style set up top and hit with a right hand. Suicide dive from Rusev blocked by a forearm from Styles. Springboard 450 sees Rusev move and Styles rolls through. Calf Crusher and Accolade attempts blocked and Styles with a kick to the leg. Sliding forearm from Styles blocked by an up-kick from Rusev that puts both down.
Rusev looks for the fallaway slam and Styles rolls into the Calf Crusher. Aiden English pushes the bottom rope to Rusev and Rusev gets the bottom rope. Styles chases English at ringside and runs into a belly-to-belly suplex from Rusev. Machka Kick from Rusev gets a nearfall inside. Styles with a Pele Kick and Rusev pops him up for a knee to the body. Head kick lands for a nearfall and Rusev looks for the Accolade, but Rusev unable to plant on the left leg. Half Accolade applied and Styles able to get the bottom rope. English takes the top turnbuckle cover off. Accolade applied, but Styles sends him into the exposed turnbuckle. Springboard 450 lands, but Rusev able to kick out. Styles with a baseball slide on English and he goes to the apron. Phenomenal Forearm connects on Rusev.
Winner by pinfall and STILL WWE Champion: AJ Styles
Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars
It started out underwhelming and the crowd was a little burned out going on the third hour with some pretty puzzling matches, but the story here was great with English continuing to bungle things for Rusev and Styles working on the legs to take out the bigger guy.
Charly Caruso with Seth Rollins backstage and she asks about Drew McIntyre. Rollins says he has three opponents tonight in Ziggler, McIntyre, and the clock, but he will leave it all out there to become the Intercontinental Champion and the only thing there’s left to do is burn it down.
Dolph Ziggler and Drew McIntyre.
30-Minute Iron Man Match for the WWE Intercontinental Championship: Dolph Ziggler (c) (w/Drew McIntyre) vs. Seth Rollins
Ziggler and Rollins exchange chain wrestling to start and they exchange nearfalls, with Rollins getting the advantage and Ziggler moving outside. Rollins does jumping jacks inside and Ziggler tries to sneak inside as McIntyre gets to the apron, but Rollins catches him with a back elbow and slam for nearfalls. Rollins springboards in from the apron and runs into a right hand from Ziggler. Buckle bomb counter from Rollins and a La Magistral cradle on Ziggler.
Pinfall: Seth Rollins, 1-0 Rollins
Ziggler with a back elbow and he tries a right hand, but a back suplex by Rollins. Ziggler moves outside and Rollins with a slingshot crossbody. Rollins works Ziggler outside and Ziggler catches him with ground and pound as he comes in. Neckbreaker nearfall and an elbow drop from Ziggler. Rollins comes back with clotheslines and back elbows. Ziggler with a dropkick to the knee. Rollins tries another buckle bomb and Ziggler with a sunset flip, but Rollins rolls through to get the Stomp.
Pinfall: Seth Rollins, 2-0 Rollins
McIntyre runs in as Rollins looks for a superkick and drops Rollins.
Disqualification: Seth Rollins, 3-0 Rollins
McIntyre runs Rollins into the barricade over and over and gets ejected by the referee. McIntyre with a Claymore on the way out. Ziggler rolls over for the cover.
Pinfall: Dolph Ziggler, 3-1 Rollins
Ziggler with a superkick as Rollins gets back up.
Pinfall: Dolph Ziggler, 3-2 Rollins
Ziggler goes for another superkick and Rollins rolls him up for a nearfall. Ziggler with an uppercut and he runs Rollins into the corner. Zig Zag connects.
Pinfall: Dolph Ziggler, 3-3
Ziggler controls until Rollins lands a Sling Blade. Ziggler moves out and Rollins tries a suicide dive, but Ziggler with a palm strike and he covers with his feet on the ropes.
Pinfall: Dolph Ziggler, 4-3 Ziggler
Ziggler with a headlock. Rollins fights out and Ziggler gets a sleeper. The crowd has officially given up on the match, doing ten-second countdown chants multiple times in a minute. Rollins drives Ziggler into the top turnbuckle and hits suicide dives outside. Rollins with a springboard forearm back inside for a nearfall. Rollins kicks out of the corner with a blockbuster for a nearfall. Rollins up top and Ziggler drops him to the floor with a dropkick. Rollins barely beats the count and shakes a Ziggler DDT inside. Ripcord knee from Rollins gets a nearfall. Rollins up top and Ziggler crotches him. Rollins knocks him away with a headbutt and a frog splash lands for a nearfall. Ziggler holds onto the bottom rope and Rollins sends him out with a baseball slide. Ziggler set up top and he punches Rollins down. Rollins back up for a superplex and the Falcon Arrow to follow for a nearfall. Rollins with a thrust kick to the body and a Stomp misses. Ziggler cradles for a nearfall and Rollins slingshots Ziggler into the ring post and rolls him up.
Pinfall: Seth Rollins, 4-4
Rollins applies a Sharpshooter and turns it into a crossface. Rollins with a Stomp, but Ziggler rolls outside and into the crowd. Rollins rolls him in and Ziggler catches him with a Famouser for a nearfall. Ziggler looks for a superkick, but Rollins gets it and he hits the Stomp. Rollins crawls over and gets the cover with the time expiring.
STILL WWE Intercontinental Champion: Dolph Ziggler
WWE Raw General Manger Kurt Angle comes out and says nothing is settled and the WWE Universe doesn’t want to see a tie. Angle says they are going to sudden death overtime.
McIntyre runs out to the apron and Rollins looks for a knee. Ziggler charges in and hits the Zig Zag.
Winner by pinfall and STILL WWE Intercontinental Champion: Dolph Ziggler
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
This was a borderline great match in the ring, but it goes to show how WWE loses control of their shows at this point when the fans spent the final 15 minutes or so of the match doing Royal Rumble-like ten second countdown chants…when the clock wasn’t even striking the end of a minute at some points. When you lose the crowd that badly of the course of the match and a show, it becomes secondary.
Summary: Overall, this might have been the worst offering of the year from WWE. Matches at their best were not that much better than whatever you can catch on TV, and even then the crowd was not having it during those matches. Add to that some really sloppy and lazy booking and you get an event that will contend for worst of the year.
Seth Rollins stomps Dolph Ziggler in the main event on Sunday night at Extreme Rules. Photos by Joe Hrycych.