United States Championship Match: Apollo Crews (c) vs. Bobby Lashley
An all-out brawl quickly leads to the floor, where Apollo does a moonsault off the apron to take his opponent down. The Hurt Business surrounded the champ, allowing Lashley to blindside him. The big man takes it back to the ring and hits a big suplex, taking Apollo to the mat, controlling him with knees and clubbing blows.
Lashley starts throwing shoulders in the corner and hits an early Dominator, but only gets two. Crews fights back with quick kicks and comes off the second rope with a crossbody, giving himself a second to recover. He takes the fight to the corner with shoulder thrusts and wild right hands. Spin kick. Back suplex. Standing moonsault!
Apollo ducks a clothesline and hits not one, but two huge German suplexes. He heads to the top and connects with a Frog Splash, but it’s not enough. Close. Lashley suddenly explodes out of the corner, planting the champ with a monstrous chokeslam! The Full Nelson is locked in (which he calls the Full Lashley)… and Crews taps out!
Winner & New Champion: Bobby Lashley
Match Review: 3/5. Decent Match with a predictable end. Congratulations Bobby Lashley.
JBL approached Keith Lee in his dressing room and gave him a pseudo-motivational speech about how he’ll become a major breakout star if he defeats THE Randy Orton tonight, but should he lose, there’s really nothing to feel bad about because he lost to one of the greatest wrestlers of all time. Somehow I don’t think Lee sees it that way…
Big E vs. Sheamus
The two lock up and Big E takes his opponent to the corner, but Sheamus complains to the ref and gets it broken up. They lock up again and jockey for position. E is able to toss Sheamus across the ring, talking a little trash to get under his skin.
Big E hits the ropes, leapfrogs, ducks a clothesline and takes out Sheamus with a running forearm. Sheamus fights back with clubbing blows into the ropes, hitting Ten Beats of the Bodhran. E fights back with forearms but crashes and burns trying for a splash on the edge of the apron.
Sheamus slows things down quite a bit, alternating between holds on the mat and dropping huge knees all over the body. He locks in a Half Crab and sits down on the submission, but E is able to power out of the hold, backing into the corner. Sheamus rushes, but is surprised with a urinage slam! Two-count.
E fires up and thinks about trying for his patented freight train spear through the ropes, but Sheamus blasts him with a few knee strikes. E comes back with heavy forearms and a belly-to-belly slam. Starting to feel it, the New Day member does a little hip gyrating, and Sheamus immediately attacks from behind and hits an Alabama Slam.
Red goes back to work on the knee, locking in a modified version of a Cloverleaf to do some serious damage. They eventually roll into the ropes, and E is able to hip toss his opponent to the apron. He hits the ropes – SPEAR TO THE OUTSIDE!
Big E fires up and rolls Sheamus back inside, doing the New Day claps as he calls for the Big Ending. But in telegraphing the move, Sheamus counters with an absolutely sick knee strike! 1… 2… not quite yet. Brogue Kick coming, but E scoops him into a huge powerbomb! BIG ENDING! 1… 2… 3!
Winner: Big E
Match Review: 2.5/5. Good Match. I feel good for Big E. I wish to see him main event super soon.
King Baron Corbin vs. Matt Riddle
Corbin attacks before the bell, trapping Riddle in his shirt and mobbing him with body blows. Corbin takes him to the corner and drills him with a dozen stiff knees, blasting his head into the turnbuckle over and over again. He slaps on a side headlock, but breaks it to keep throwing knees and heavy strikes.
Riddle fires up out of nowhere with a flurry of strikes and body kicks. He ducks a clothesline and locks in a sleeper hold, and the “King” begins to fade, before falling backwards to break it up. Riddle shakes it off and goes right back to the sleeper, but Corbin slowly pushes to his feet and hurls his opponent across the ring.
Corbin stomps on Riddle and applies a chicken wing, slowing things way down for a few minutes. Bro rallies back and they roll outside, trading shots. Riddle hits two running clotheslines in the corner. Running Broton, and a Penalty Kick gets him a two-count.
Riddle signals for the B2S, but runs right into Deep Six. Another close two-count. Corbin rains down (reigns down?) with nasty elbow strikes, and Riddle catches him with an arm triangle. He breaks the hold and instead hits the Bro 2 Sleep, and wastes no time climbing to the top rope. FLOWING BRO! 1… 2… 3.
Winner: Matt Riddle
Match Review: 2/5. Matt Riddle is money. Bro 2 Sleep impresses me.
After a short break, Riddle is shown walking through Gorilla to the backstage area. Corbin comes through the curtain and blindsides him, throwing punches until officials are able to separate them.
WWE Women’s Tag Team Championship Match: Bayley (c) & Sasha Banks (c) vs. Nia Jax & Shayna Baszler
The challengers argue about who gets to start. Shayna tags herself in and completely dominantes Sasha Banks, grabbing a wrist hold and transitioning from submission to submission. The Boss quickly tags in Bayley and runs for the hills. She doesn’t fair much better as Shayna quickly takes her to the mat.
On the floor, Banks trips Nia off the apron and she falls hard on one of her knees. Bayley takes advantage and backs Baszler to the corner, tagging in Banks to double team her. Good booking here for Shayna so far. Jax recovers though and takes the Boss to the floor, slingshotting her into the barricade over and over!
Nia tags in but Bayley goes after the knee. Banks is slow to recover but eventually they’re able to chip away at Nia with quick tags, targeting the knee the whole time. Jax fires back with big punches and drops a leg on Bayley – but the champ sidesteps and applies an ankle lock!
Nia just stands up out of the submission and drags her opponent across the ring to tag in Shayna. The “Queen of Spades” fires off with hard elbow strikes to both champions, a flying elbow strike in one corner, a dropkick in the other. Side suplex to Banks. Saito suplex to Bayley. In comes Nia and the challengers are FINALLY on the same page!
Nia splashes both women and goes for a powerbomb, but Banks reverses into a sit-down facebuster! Bayley gets the “hot” tag and delivers a diving elbow drop. Frog Splash by Banks, but Nia kicks out at two-and-a-half! This is actually pretty great!
Sasha hits her with knee strikes. They try to double suplex her, but can’t make it happen. Baszler made the blind tag and flapjacked Banks, trapping her in the Muta Lock. Bayley charges but is trapped in the rear naked choke at the same time! THEY TAP! THEY TAP!
Winners & New WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions: Nia Jax & Shayna Baszler
Match Review: 2.5/5.
Keith Lee vs. Randy Orton
Orton hits the ropes for a shoulder tackle, but Lee doesn’t budge an inch. He hits the ropes again, but Lee leapfrogs him, drops down and squashes him with a surprise crossbody.
Orton is pissed off, and screams “I am a Legend Killer and I demand your respect!” He begins to chop the big man as hard as he can, and Lee just stands there and absorbs each one, getting a more and more… I don’t even know what to call his “fire up” spot, he just kind of RADIATES raw energy. It’s wild.
Lee looks like he’s going to snap, but Orton takes a cheap shot and immediately takes things to the mat, slapping on a headlock. He works the hold for a beat, breaks it to drop a big knee to the side of the head, and goes right back to the hold. Lee shakes him off and they brawl to the floor – BIG suplex from Orton slamming him on top of the announce table!
Lee shakes it off and the two continue to brawl. He throws Orton into the side of the ring, then returns the favor with a big slam into the table. They roll back into the ring, but “The Viper” catches Lee in the ropes and hits a Hangman’s DDT. He starts “hearing voices”, or whatever’s going on in there, but telegraphs the RKO and Lee scoops him up for the Spirit Bomb! 1… 2… 3!
Winner: Keith Lee
Match Review: 2/5. WOW. Orton jobbed to Keith and I am not complaining.
Dominik & Rey Mysterio vs. Seth Rollins & Murphy
Rollins starts things out thinking he’s going to bully Dominik, but instead gets whipped to the outside by a snap headscissors takedown, and begins to furiously shake the announce table. Punked.
Murphy tags in and Dominik hits an armdrag, a tilt-a-whirl armdrag and a big uppercut in the ropes. Rey tags in and goes to work with a flurry of kicks and both Mysterios start lighting him up. Rey screams at Seth and demands he gets in the ring. “Fight me you punk ass bitch!”
Seth tries to trash talk so Rey kicks him in the head and goes crazy with wild rights and lefts. Pops is NOT playing around tonight. He rolls into a pin but Murphy makes the blind tag and drills him from behind with a nasty running knee.
Things slow down as Rollins and Murphy continue to pick apart Rey, alternating every few minutes. Dominik eventually makes the hot tag, but runs right into a boot from Rollins. They put him on the top rope and he connects with a superplex, rolling into a Falcon Arrow! 1… 2… Dom kicks out.
The beatdown goes on for several minutes, with Dominik trying to fight back against a constant 2-on-1 current of offense. He eventually manages to tackle Murphy through the ropes with his whole body, then throws him hard into the plexiglass. Hot tag made to dad!
Rey comes in like a bat out of hell, taking down Rollins with a flurry of kicks and a springboard bulldog. He swings and misses with the 619, Rollins tries for a powerbomb but Mysterio rolls through into a dropkick. Murphy runs in but Dominik makes the save with a tornado DDT. Slingblade from Rollins. Tilt-a-whirl backbreaker from Rey. Everybody’s down.
Rey slowly climbs to the top rope, but Rollins catches him in the air with a pair of knees to the gut. He sets up for the Stomp, Mysterio sidesteps, hits the ropes, but gets faceplanted into the mat hard. Dominik saves his dad and chases after Murphy, but Rollins blindsides him and the heels stomp the hell out of him on the floor.
Seth goes after Rey and tosses him into the barricade. He starts screaming “Where’s your son now, Rey?” and “where’s your family?” while stomping him in the head. He instructs Murphy to set up for a Buckle Bomb/Head Kick combo, but Mysterio slips out of it and Murphy accidentally blasts his mentor instead!
Dominik gets the hot tag! He throws his dad like a bowling ball out of the ring, right into a sunset flip powerbomb sending Rollins into the barricade. Dominik gets a drop toe hold sending Murphy into the ropes. 619 connects! Frog Splash follows! It’s over!
Winner: Dominik & Rey Mysterio
Match Review: 4/5. Dominik continues to impress. I feel so emotional watching Rey and his son teaming up together. It’s a dream come to true for any son to be in the same ring as his dad. I’m amazed at how well Rey continues to perform at 45 years old and many knee surgeries. He looks like a talented ambitious kid out there. Speaking of his kid, Dominik seems so experienced because he’s in the right spot at the right time, he has cool looking moves and sells brilliant. Bless them both. Murphy and Rollins were amazing as well with Rollins showing a lot of cockiness that ended up backfiring on him in the end.
WWE Universal Championship No Holds Barred Match: The Fiend (c) vs. Braun Strowman vs. Roman Reigns
Braun Strowman attacks The Fiend from behind during his entrance and for some reason, despite Roman Reigns not being out there yet, the referee rings the bell. The two beat the absolute hell out of each other, smashing into the barricades, the ring steps, before The Fiend drives Strowman through the announce table with a huge urianage slam.
Fiend goes under the ring and grabs his ridiculous, giant cartoon hammer. He hoists it up, but Strowman tackles him into the barricade. Still no Roman Reigns, and literally only one reference to him not being there to this point. The Fiend hits a Sister Abigail on the outside, then swings for the fences, catching the big man right in the gut.
We’re not done yet. Alexa Bliss is shown watching the match backstage, twirling her dreadlock. Back in the ring, Strowman shoves The Fiend into the steps, then tackles him through them. They fight up to the stage, and Strowman delivers a running powerslam OFF THE STAGE, crashing through a panel on the floor.
The challenger is slow to recover, and drags The Fiend back to the ring. This is not a Falls Count Anywhere match, after all. The champion will not stay down and the two trade punches while climbing the ropes. Strowman tries to fight back, but Fiend gets him over for a monstrous superplex – AND THE RING IMPLODES! Yep. They rigged an imploding ring for this one.
And here… comes… Roman Reigns…
The Big Dog wanders down to the ring with Paul Heyman, jumps in the broken ring and covers Strowman, but he kicks out at two. Reigns covers The Fiend, but the same thing happens. He grabs a steel chair and goes insane with it, hitting both men at least a half dozen times each. Reigns lines up for the spear, but the champion catches him with the Mandible Claw!
Reigns starts to fade, but quickly kicks The Fiend in the balls. Apparently psycho demon monsters still have a weak spot. He once again lines up for a spear, and this time connects on Strowman. 1… 2… 3.
Winner & New WWE Universal Champion: Roman Reigns
Match Review: 2/5. The Roman Reigns is back as the new Universal Champion. I didn’t enjoy the booking with Fiend and Braun beating each other up for ten minutes and then Reigns coming outta nowhere and winning. I am happy to see Roman Reigns returning to the ring.
I am looking forward to see Paul Heyman and Roman Reigns in front of an live audience. Hope COVID goes away soon.
WWE Payback 2020 Rating: 8/10
Three stars of the show
- Rey and Dominik Mysterio
- Keith Lee
- Seth Rollins and Buddy Murphy