In a huge surprising moment, the WWE had a major title change hands on its house show on Friday night at Madison Square Garden. In the United States Championship match between Kevin Owens and AJ Styles, it was AJ Styles who shocked the entire crowd and won his first U.S. Championship title. The moment was shared with a video on Twitter as AJ Styles celebrated with his new title.
This is a huge move for the WWE, who rarely has a title change hands outside of television shows or pay-per-view events in today’s wrestling landscape. As a matter of fact, in the old days, titles could change hands on house shows but would return to the champion in a rematch on another house show and the WWE would never acknowledge it.
There were even world title reigns that have been ignored because they happened at house shows. “Nature Boy” Ric Flair has more than 16 world title reigns but the WWE considered those house show losses obsolete when adding up his title reigns.
With that said, the advent of social media has made this impossible. As soon as AJ Styles beat Kevin Owens for the United States title, numerous photos popped up on Twitter as well as the video embedded below. There is no way to hide title changes when everyone in the arena has a smartphone and a Twitter or Facebook account.
— Nick Buono (@thenickbuono) July 8, 2017
Once the AJ Styles victory over Kevin Owens for the United States Championship went live on Twitter, it wasn’t long before wrestling websites began to report it and the news spread fast. The WWE chose not to hide from the AJ Styles victory after it was shared on Twitter.
411mania reported that the WWE acknowledged the AJ Styles title win by sending out an alert through the WWE app. This let everyone with the app on their phones know that AJ Styles is the new United States champion.
While something like this AJ Styles United States title win is rare, the WWE did a similar move on the NXT brand. Samoa Joe won the NXT Championship from Finn Balor at a house show in Lowell, Massachusetts. This was hugely surprising because Balor was the longest-reigning NXT Champion of all time and he lost the show in a non-televised event.
It was also ironic because Samoa Joe also won the TNA Impact Wrestling world title at the same arena years before.
AJ Styles winning the United States Championship from Kevin Owens at Madison Square Garden does nothing to change the current storylines. AJ Styles had already won the rights to challenge for the title at Battleground, and the match against Kevin Owens is still likely to take place but with AJ Styles as the champion instead.
[Featured Image by WWE]