WWE’s new Intercontinental Champion Finn Balor ordinarily walks to the ring as we go to commercial.
We are back and Finn Balor has something to say (and Paul Heyman is no longer here). Balor says it’s been a while since he held one of these titles and boy does it feel good. He mentions growing up watching greats like WWE Hall of Famers Razor Ramon, Shawn Michaels and Ric Flair. He says it’s been a dream to hold this title and he’s proud to continue the legacy as our Intercontinental Champion. Balor says he plans on defending this title at… the music interrupts and out comes Rush.
Rush says Balor doesn’t deserve to be Intercontinental Champion, Lashley does. Lashley suddenly attacks Balor from behind in the ring. Lashley unloads on Balor and stomps away while he’s down. Rush enters the ring and helps beat down Balor in the corner again. They go on and Balor hits a big splash from the top. The music interrupts and out comes Ricochet to a big pop.
Ricochet runs down and Rush leaps out but misses. Ricochet nails Lashley from the apron and hits the moonsault to Rush on the floor. Ricochet goes back to Lashley. The ring is cleared and Ricochet stands tall with Balor in the ring, looking out at Rush and Lashley on the floor. We go to commercial.
Ricochet and Finn Balor vs. Bobby Lashley and Lio Rush
Ricochet and Rush start things off. Rush pushes Ricochet and Ricochet pushes back. Rush with a side head lock and Ricochet escapes. Ricochet with a side head lock. Rush avoids Ricochet and Rush with a head scissors but Ricochet lands on his feet. Rush is flipped over and avoids Ricochet. Ricochet with a handstand head scissors followed by a drop kick. Lashley tags in and Ricochet with a side head lock but he sends RIcochet to the mat.
Lashley with a wrist lock and he wrings the arm. Lashley with a hammer lock. Ricochet with foreamrs to Lashley but Lashley blocks an Irish whip and Irish whips Ricochet into the corner. Ricochet with a kick and then he hits a rolling drop kick that sends Lashley to the floor and Ricochet teases a dive to the floor and hits a Superhero Landing. Rush wants to tag in and Lashley lets him. Rush wants a piece of the new champion. Balor tags in and they lock up. Balor misses a punch in the corner. Rush tags Lashley back in.
Lashley with a kick and he sends Balor into the turnbuckles. Lashley with a suplex for a near fall. Lashley with a reverse chin lock and he adds more pressure to the hold. Lashley gets a near fall after a Flatliner. Rush tags in and he chokes Balor in the ropes. Rush punches Balor in the ribs and Rush with a sunset flip but Balor rolls through because you don’t sunset flip Finn Balor and Balor with a drop kick. Balor grabs the leg to keep Rush from making the tag. Balor pulls Rush into the mat and sends him into the turnbuckles. Balor with kicks and boots to Rush.
Balor with a chop in the corner. Balor with an Irish whip and chop into the corner. Balor with another Irish whip and chop. Balor with slingblade and a running drop kick into the turnbuckles. Balor goes up top and Lashley stops him and Balor with kick to Lashley. Rush clips Balor on the apron and Balor falls to the floor. Balor is sent into the ringside barrier. Lashley works on Balor’s back. Lashley gets a near fall. Lashley with a reverse chin lock.
Balor tries to make the tag but Lashley with a knee and he sends Balor to the apron. Balor with a shoulder to Lashley and a kick to Rush. Lashley blocks a sunset flip attempt and Lashley with a kick and slam for a near fall as we go to commercial.
We are back and Lashley with a cobra clutch on Balor. Balor tries to make the tag but Lashley stops him. Lashley with an Irish whip but Balor with a boot and then he punches Rush on the apron. Lashley runs Balor into the turnbuckles and punches Balor in the ribs. Rush tags in and he slaps Balor. Balor with an elevated elbow drop and both men are down. Rush stops Balor from making the tag. Rush with a Gator Roll and Lashley tags in. Lashley goes for a power bomb but Balor gets to his feet and he takes Lashley down and hits a double stomp. Ricochet tags in and so does Rush.
Ricochet with clotheslines and a neck breaker. Ricochet with a shoulder into the corner followed by a springboard drop kick to Rush and one to knock Lashley off the apron. Ricochet with a Fosbury Flop onto Rush and then Lashley chages Ricochet around the ring and Ricochet flips off the ringside barrier over Lashley and Balor with a drop kick to Lashley. Ricochet with a springboard drop kick and a 630 for the three count.
Winners: Ricochet and Finn Balor
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Finn Balor’s music plays and he makes his way to the ring.
Finn says he earned his opportunity to face Brock. Finn tells Vince that he knows Vince does not think Finn can beat Brock, but he knows that he can beat Brock and reclaim his title.
Braun says he knows he could have beaten Brock. Braun says he doesn’t know if Finn can win, but he better.
Finn thanks Braun for the support, but he tells Braun to stay out of his business because Finn says he will do something Braun hasn’t done and that is beat BRock.
Brock and Paul leave while Finn says that David stood in the shadow of the giant and they laughed in his face. Finn says that they didn’t know who David was and what he was made of. Goliath fell face down in the dirt. No one was laughing then. Vince says he has an idea. What if Brock takes a seat so we can see a real life David and Goliath thing with Braun Strowman versus Finn Balor. The match is on but first… We go to commercial.
Finn Balor vs. Braun Strowman
The match is joined in progress and Balor with a jaw breaker and drop kick. Strowman misses a splash into the corner and Balor with an enzuigiri from the apron. Braun focuses on Brock and Balor slaps Braun. Braun with a forearm to the back and he picks up Balor but Balor gets to his feet and bets his boots up. Balor goes for slingblade but Braun catches him and hits a forearm to the chest. Braun sends Balor to the floor with a hip strike.
Strowman with a running shoulder tackle on the floor. They return to the ring and Strowman with a splash but Balor escapes a slam. Strowman with a splash for a near fall. Braun works on the neck and connects with a head butt. Braun goes to the floor for another running shoulder tackle but Balor knows it is coming because Braun signaled for it and Balor with a slingblade. Balor avoids a splash and hits a running forearm. Balor with another running forearm and Braun grabs Balor and picks him up but Balor with a sleeper on Braun.
Braun backs Balor into the turnbuckles to escape. Balor returns to the sleeper and Braun falls to a knee. Braun powers out of the hold but Balor with elbows to the head and then Balor with a double stomp. Balor goes to the turnbuckles but Braun grabs Balor and throws him onto Lesnar. Lesnar catches Balor and hits an overhead belly-to-belly suplex. Brock gets on the apron and drops the belt in the ring. Balor drops Brock onto the apron and then drop kicks him into the ring post. Balor with a plancha onto Brock.
Balor with slingblade and then he hits a baseball slide on Lesnar. Balor drop kicks Brock into the ringside barrier. Branun pulls Balor onto the apron and back into the ring. Braun misses a splash and goes shoulder first into the post. Balor drop kicks Braun into the turnbuckles and then Balor goes up top for Coup de Grace and hits it but Brock picks up Balor and hits an F5 so the referee calls for the bell.
Winner: Finn Balor (by disqualification)
After the bell, fans boo Lesnar as he stands tall and takes the title from Heyman. Lesnar looks down as Balor and Strowman as his music hits. Lesnar makes his exit with Heyman.
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Even though there were many who didn’t believe in Finn Bálor, he always believed in himself, and it was that mindset that propelled the ultra-athletic Superstar past John Cena, Drew McIntyre and Baron Corbin in last week’s Fatal 4-Way Match main event to earn a Universal Championship Match against Brock Lesnar at WWE Royal Rumble.
Now that he has a chance to reclaim the title he never lost, Bálor is on a collision course with one of the most powerful competitors in WWE history. Can The Extraordinary Man succeed in defeating the nigh unbeatable Beast Incarnate? And what does Paul Heyman think of his client’s new challenger?
After Braun Strowman ripped the door off of Mr. McMahon’s limo during Raw, The Chairman stripped The Monster Among Men of his Universal Title bout against Brock Lesnar and made an impromptu Fatal 4-Way Match for later on Raw to determine The Anomaly’s new challenger. That thrilling free-for-all determined that The Beast will now face first-ever Universal Champion Finn Bálor in a highly-anticipated clash for the illustrious title.
The seismic change began in the opening moments of Monday Night Raw when Lesnar’s refusal to meet Strowman in the ring for the second week in a row sent The Monster Among Men storming into the backstage area in pursuit of his Royal Rumble opponent. When he approached what he thought was The Conqueror’s limo and ripped the door clean off the hinges, however, he found himself face-to-face with Mr. McMahon. The irate WWE Chairman wasted little time dispensing punishment, stripping Strowman of his Universal Title opportunity and fining him $100,000.
Before the WWE Universe could even catch its collective breath, Mr. McMahon announced that a Fatal 4-Way Match would be held in Raw’s main event to determine who would challenge Lesnar at the Rumble, as Bálor, 16-time World Champion John Cena, Drew McIntyre and Baron Corbin waged war in an unforgettable bout.
Prior to the matchup, however, former WWE Champion Jinder Mahal attempted to work his way into the mix, only to be bested by Bálor in a one-on-one showdown to determine which Superstar would compete in the Fatal 4-Way Match. Then, in his second matchup of the night, Bálor triumphed over Cena, McIntyre and Corbin to earn his opportunity to finally reclaim what was once his.
The newly established showdown between Lesnar and Bálor is a classic matchup pitting the unyielding strength of the titleholder against the quickness and agility of his determined challenger. Although The Beast Incarnate is the personification of sheer dominance, one only must look back to his clash against WWE Champion “The New” Daniel Bryan at Survivor Series to see the chink in the armor, as The Beard nearly overcame Lesnar with his quickness, technical prowess and resilience. Bálor possesses similar qualities; will it be enough to slay The Beast and claim the Universal Title?
Don’t miss the explosive Universal Championship Match at Royal Rumble, Sunday, Jan. 27, streaming live at 7 ET/4 PT on the award-winning WWE Network!
Finn Balor comes out and he says he has to be honest. He is a little tired of being left out of these conversations. You three can make claims to a lot of things, but Finn is the only one who has ever been Universal Champion. Vince says maybe one day you will again, but there is a lot of beef in there. Vince says you’ve got it all, but against Brock Lesnar and all of this beef… you are a great competitor, but I don’t know.
Finn says you never believed in him, but the people do. Finn says that he knows that Vince is stubborn and nothing he says will change his mind. Why doesn’t he show him. Balor drops Corbin. Drew drops Cena. Balor turns around to a Claymore Kick from Drew, who is the last one standing. Cena gets up and Drew floors him with a Claymore. Vince is happy now, he says he likes all this. Vince says let’s find out who will face Lesnar with a Fatal 4 Way tonight. Fans pop. Vince says that’s what we will do. Vince’s music hits as Drew looks down at the others laid out in the ring. Vince also looks at them and nods at Drew in approval. Drew leaves first.
Finn Balor walks in the back and we see Lacey Evans talking to Mickie James and Dana Brooke.
Jinder Mahal vs. Finn Balor
We go to the ring and out comes Jinder Mahal by himself. The winner of this will make it to the Fatal 4 Way main event later tonight. We go to commercial as Jinder does his entrance.
We are back and Mahal attacks before the bell when Samir distracts Balor. Mahal Irish whips Balor into the ringside barrier. Mahal sends Balor into the apron and then back into the ring. The referee checks on Balor to see if he can go.
The match starts and Balor runs into a thrust kick and Mahal gets a near fall. Mahal with crossfaces to Balor. Mahal with a reverse chin lock. Mahal goes for a sunset flip but Balor rolls through and hits a drop kick. Balor blocks an attempt for a belly-to-back suplex on the apron and Balor kicks Mahal. Balor goes for a running kick but Mahal blocks it and sends Balor face first into the apron.
We go to commercial.
We are back and Mahal with knee drops and he chokes Balor. Mahal with a hard Irish whip. Mahal with an elbow to the bridge of the nose and then he applies a rear chin lock. Mahal goes for a belly-to-back suplex but Balor counters with a lateral press and he gets a near fall. Mahal with a reverse chin lock. Balor with a jawbreaker and punches. Mahal with an elbow but Balor with a Pele Kick.
Balor with boots to Mahal followed by a running forearm. Balor with another running forearm and a double leg take down followed by a double stomp. Balor goes for Slingblade but Mahal blocks it. Balor kicks Samir off the apron and then back drops Mahal over the top rope. Balor with a plancha onto Mahal and Singh. Balor sets for Slingblade and hits it. Balor with a drop kick to send Mahal into the turnbuckles. Balor goes up top and hits Coup de Grace for the three count.
Winner: Finn Balor
Devlin comes out, Banks tries to attack Devlin with a suicide dive through the ropes, but Devlin retaliates and attacks Banks’ knee even more, stomping away at it on the steel steps. Johnny Saint comes out and explains how there is no way for Banks to compete, therefore, Saint has another opponent for Jordan Devlin to face. Finn Balor’s music plays!
Finn Balor vs. Jordan Devlin
Devlin and Balor meet face-to-face in the center of the ring and Devlin slaps Balor’s face. Balor retaliates with punches, a kick to Devlin’s abdomen, and a running dropkick. Balor with a sling blade and he climbs to the top rope but Devlin rolls out. Balor comes to the outside and tosses Devlin back inside the ring. Devlin rolls out once again, and Balor comes around the corner with a running forearm on Devlin’s head. Balor tosses Devlin back in, and as Balor climbs back inside, Devlin with a hard kick to the ropes that caused Balor to fall out of the ring.
Devlin goes on to the attack on the outside, hitting Balor with punches to the abdomen and ramming him against the ring apron. Devlin tosses Balor back inside the ring and hits a standing double stomp on Balor. Devlin taunts Balor with his own pose and then chokes Balor on the ropes. Balor comes off the ropes with a sunset flip, turned in to a dropkick to Devlin’s face. Devlin comes running after Balor in the corner but he’s hit with a kick to the head. Balor goes for the coupe de grace but Devlin dropkicks him off the top rope before h ever has the opportunity.
The ref gets to a 9 count but gets back inside the ring. Devlin stomps away and mounts Balor with punches. Devlin has Balor in the corner and hits him with abdomen punches and some loud chops. Balor swaps places with Devlin and hits even some super loud chops of his own. Devlin slaps Balor in the face, hits a urunage, and a standing moonsault for a 2 count. Devlin puts Balor in an abdominal stretch but Balor throws Devlin over with a hip toss to escape. Balor puts Devlin in to an abdominal stretch of his own but uses various shots to inflict damage on Devlin’s abdomen. Balor chops at Devlin and delivers a pele kick as they both fall to the mat.
Devlin charges Balor in the corner but he hits him with both boots, a clothesline, and a double stomp on Devlin’s chest. Balor uses his 1916 for a 2 count. Balor comes charging in from the corner but Devlin counters with a a back suplex that drops Balor on his head for the 2 count. Devlin goes on the offense with soccer punts to the abdomen of Balor. Devlin walks around the ring and poses, but as he goes in for another punt, Balor catches his foot and drops him. Balor with vicious stomps on a downed Devlin. Devlin escapes to the outside but Balor goes to the apron and delivers his signature running kick to Devlin’s face. Balor goes for the coupe de grace again, but Devlin pulls him down and uses the ropes for leverage as he pins him. Balor escapes at 2, Devlin performs a moonsault off the top rope but Balor gets his knees up on him.
Balor with a brainbuster DDT, a running dropkick that bounces Devlin off the turnbuckles, and he finally makes it off the top rope to deliver the coup de grace and get the 1-2-3!
Winner: Finn Balor
Balor poses inside the ring and celebrates with the crowd.
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Bayley and Finn Bálor vs. Mickie James and Bobby Lashley
The women start things off and lock up. Mickie with a wrist lock but Bayley with a reversal. Bayley with an arm wringer but Mickie with an Irish whip. Mickie misses a charge but Mickie with a rana. Bayley avoids a drop kick and gets a near fall with a rollup. Bayley with another rollup for a near fall. Mickie holds on to the ropes on an O’Connor Roll attempt and Lashley tags in. Lashley poses for the people of Manchester and then he poses for Balor. Lashley continues to pose and Balor does not appear impressed. Finn goes to the turnbuckles to pose and Lashley pulls Finn off the turnbuckles.
Lashley with forrearms to the back and he poses. Lashley chokes Balor in the ropes. Balor with a drop kick and Balor poses. Lashley is sent to the floor by Balor and then Rush is sent to the floor. Balor is tripped by MIckie and Lashley hits Balor from behind. Lashley with boots to the back. Lashley starts to work on the back. Lashley with a nerve hold. Lashley with a knee to the midsection followed by an Irish whip. Bayley distracts Lashley long enough to allow Balor to get his boots up. Lashley catches Balor when he tries for the tag and Lashley runs Balor into the turnbuckles. Balor moves when Lashley goes for a splash.
Bayley tags in and connects with clotheslines. Mickie sends Bayley into the turnbuckles and Bayley with a hot shot. Bayley with a shoulder into the turnbuckles and then she hits a running knee into the corner. Bayley sends Mickie to the apron for a cutter in the ropes. Bayley runs into a super kick from Mickie and Balor breaks up the cover. Balor with a forearm to Lashley but Lashley gets Balor up for a slam and Balor escapes. Balor with slingblade and then he sends Lashley into the ring post.
Rush gets in the ring and Balor chases after Rush and after a few laps, Rush goes into the ring and then he hits the turnbuckles when Balor moves. Balor goes up top and Lashley pushes Balor off the turnbuckles before Balor can hit Coup de Grace on Rush. Bayley gives Rush a belly-to-belly suplex. Mickie with a thrust kick and she hits the MickDT for the three count.
Winners: Bobby Lashley and Mickie James
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