Roman Reigns returned to WWE programming on Sunday night at WWE Battleground 2016 after serving a 30-day suspension for violating the WWE’s Wellness Policy. As part of the build-up towards the Triple Threat Match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at Battleground, Seth Rollins regularly said that Reigns shouldn’t be allowed to compete in the match, and the live WWE audiences seemed to agree. Having struggled to get over as face as well as WWE had hoped, Battleground was the perfect chance for a Roman Reigns heel turn.
With no titles switching hands earlier in the show, a main event win by Roman Reigns or Seth Rollins would mean the Raw brand would be hosting four titles, while the SmackDown brand had only the WWE Intercontinental Championship. Luckily for Shane McMahon and Daniel Bryan, they selected The Lunatic Fringe as their No. 1 pick in the WWE Draft, so the company’s biggest prize remains on SmackDown Live. In other news, the Sami Zayn vs. Kevin Owens match completely stole the show, Bayley made her main roster debut as Sasha Banks’ tag team partner, and Mojo Rawley saved Zack Ryder, introducing the Hype Bros to the WWE Universe at WWE Battleground 2016.
The following contains the full results (spoilers) for every match from WWE Battleground on Sunday night, July 24, which aired exclusively on the WWE Network.
WWE Battleground 2016 Results
These results have been corroborated by WWE’s official Battleground 2016 page. The event took place live inside the Verizon Center in Washington, D.C. on July 24.
Dean Ambrose defeated Roman Reigns and Seth Rollins — WWE World Heavyweight Championship Triple Threat Match
Representing Monday Night Raw, Stephanie McMahon and Mick Foley were at ringside for the main event, as were SmackDown‘s Shane McMahon and Mick Foley. A huge emphasis was placed on just how important it was to either brand to be the home of the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. Roman’s reception was mostly negative as he was announced, and a very audible “Roman sucks!” chant could be heard as the match started. While some support could be heard for Reigns as he set up for the Superman Punch, considerably more support came from the WWE Universe when Rollins and Ambrose were teaming up against their former Shield partner. When Seth and Dean put Roman through a table with a double-powerbomb, the crowd loved it. While Roman Reigns never exhibited any explicitly heel tactics during or after the match, it was very clear that the crowd was more anti-Reigns than pro-Reigns. The crowd was electric when Ambrose hit Reigns with the Dirty Deeds and retained the title for WWE SmackDown Live.
The Miz vs. Darren Young: Double Disqualification — WWE Intercontinental Championship Match
Thanks to some ringside shenanigans from Maryse and Bob Backlund, Darren Young and The Miz were both disqualified before a true winner could be crowned. Young locked in the Crossface Chickenwing on The Miz outside the ring, after the champ shoved Backlund to the ground. Miz was apparently disqualified for shoving Darren’s manager, while Young was disqualified for refusing to let go of the submission hold. Given that Raw already has tag, women’s and U.S. titles, it’s no surprise that they didn’t also take home the IC strap.
Rusev defeated Zack Ryder — WWE United States Championship Match
While Zack Ryder was able to get off a few good spots, he lost in pretty short fashion to Rusev. This means that the WWE U.S. Title will remain on Monday Night Raw. As Rusev was administering a post-match beat-down on Ryder, Mojo Rawley made the save. The commentary team (and intro music) acknowledged the Hype Bros, who can now compete together on SmackDown Live.
John Cena, Enzo & Big Cass defeated The Club — 6-Man Tag Team Match
This match certainly gave Owens vs. Zayn a run for its money in terms of Battleground‘s best match. An emphasis was placed on The Club’s insistence that they aren’t breaking up, they’re just expanding (now that Karl Anderson and Luke Gallows are headed to Raw, while AJ Styles joins Cena on SmackDown Live). While this could be a hint that Finn Balor will come into the fold (since he was drafted from NXT to the Raw brand along with Gallows and Anderson), the former NXT Champion didn’t make an appearance at Battleground. Cena pinned Styles in the end after hitting an Attitude Adjustment from the second rope. Since Styles pinned Cena at Money in the Bank, the rubber match will likely be booked for WWE SummerSlam 2016.
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The Wyatt Family defeated The New Day — 6-Man Tag Team Match
Despite the fact that Braun Strowman was separated from the rest of the Wyatt Family in the WWE Draft, Bray Wyatt scored the pinfall for his team when Xavier Woods hesitated just long enough for the Eater of Worlds to connect with his patented Sister Abigail finisher. Prior to the match, Big E made a very obscure reference to the 2003 Bone Crusher song Never Scared (featuring T.I.), as seen below.
Sasha Banks and Bayley defeated Charlotte and Dana Brooke
It’s a good thing that Bayley was announced as the mystery partner for Sasha because an audible “We-Want-Bay-Ley” chant could be heard from the live audience before Banks made the news official. Charlotte tapped to the Bank Statement, prompting Sasha and Bayley to share a celebratory hug in the ring post-match. With the addition of Bayley from NXT, the Women’s Division on Monday Night Raw will be as stacked as ever.
The Highlight Reel: Chris Jericho Interviews Randy Orton
Randy Orton had two really well-placed insults during The Highlight Reel. The first came when Jericho asked him about his decision to face Brock Lesnar in his first match after a nine-month absence. He responded by saying he didn’t want to make his comeback by facing Fandango (which is what Chris Jericho did at WrestleMania 29). Then, when Jericho asked Orton if he was ready to visit Suplex City at SummerSlam, he said that it only takes one RKO to get to “Viperville,” and then added: “no enhancements needed.” It was an obvious dig at Lesnar’s recent doping/anti-estrogen scandal after his victory over Mark Hunt at UFC 200. Of course, the segment ended with Chris Jericho falling victim to Orton’s patented RKO Outta Nowhere.
Sami Zayn defeated Kevin Owens
After a botched spot midway through the match that seemed to put Zayn at serious risk of injury, the two longtime friends and foes put on the best match of the night. It took two consecutive Helluva Kicks to put Owens away. The risky move that almost re-injured Sami Zayn’s shoulder can be seen in the clip below.
Natalya defeated Becky Lynch
Separated from peers like Charlotte, Sasha Banks and Bayley who are on Monday Night Raw, Becky Lynch was expected by many to be the queen on the hill in terms of the Women’s Division on the SmackDown brand. This match served as a much-needed reminder that Natalya is a legitimate threat and can’t be ignored.
WWE Battleground Kick-Off Show: Breezango defeated The Usos
Despite being chosen 17 spots later in the WWE Draft than The Usos, Breezango got the win on the only Kick-Off Show match when Tyler Breeze reversed a top rope splash into a roll-up small package. The match followed a segment in which SmackDown General Manager Daniel Bryan and Raw GM Mick Foley answered Twitter questions from the WWE Universe. Filling time on the Kick-Off Show panel included Renee Young, Booker T, Jerry Lawler, and Cory Graves, with a guest appearance by Cesaro.
Where To Watch WWE Battleground
WWE Battleground 2016 originally aired live on the WWE Network on Sunday, July 24, at 8/7c. It is currently available to stream on-demand.
[Image via WWE]