WWE: AJ Styles Wins Intercontinental Championship Tournament


WWE’s women’s tag team division has seen a bit of an expansion in recent weeks, especially after new Women’s Tag Team champions were crowned last week. Universal champion Braun Strowman has continued menacing his Backlash opponents, The Miz and John Morrison, and a rivalry put pen to paper ahead of their match at Backlash.

Sheamus and Jeff Hardy sign Backlash contract

A video package recapped last week’s encounter between Hardy and Sheamus as the former explained his side of the car accident two weeks ago. Renee Young hosted the contract signing.


The Celtic Warrior brought a doctor and a presentation board to the ring. Hardy, who was cleared of wrongdoing in the accident, claimed Sheamus “tried to ruin his life.” 

Sheamus told Hardy he spoke with WWE management in order to get assurance ahead of their match, and informed his foe that he must take a “urine test.” Hardy introduced himself like he was in an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting and said he was going to be a beacon of light for others who struggle with addiction and alcoholism. 


Hardy and the doctor carried out the urine test inside a black fold-out room within the ring. Once finished, the two walked out and Sheamus taunted Hardy. Hardy grabbed the filled cup and told Sheamus “it’s better to be pissed off, than to be pissed on.” They tossed the cup into Sheamus’s face, leaving him disgusted and panting inside the ring.

Backstage, Sheamus rinsed his mouth and the doctor entered with Hardy’s results: negative. 

The New Day vs. Cesaro and Shinsuke Nakamura

These two teams were a part of the six-man tag match last week with Chad Gable and Mojo Rawley. Cesaro and Kofi Kingston began the match.


Cesaro hit a tilt-a-whirl to Kingston after catching him running from the ropes. Kingston regained himself with a double-stomp and pin attempt to Nakamura. The four fought each other outside the near side of the ring, and Nakamura and Cesaro emerged on their feet as Cesaro uppercut Big E.

Kingston hot tagged, clotheslined, and kicked Nakamura. He hit a boom-drop and SOS before Cesaro broke up the pin. Nakamura was able to counter Kingston’s splash with a roll-up to win the match.

AJ Styles vs. Daniel Bryan

Intercontinental Championship match

The Intercontinental Championship Tournament concluded with two of WWE’s marquee superstars who took different paths to the final round. Bryan opted to fight Sheamus in the semi-finals after defeating Drew Gulak, while Styles defeated Nakamura and took a bye.

Bryan twisted Styles’ left arm as he held him against the mat, then Styles drop-kicked his opponent after Bryan raced from rope to rope. Styles targeted Bryan’s left shoulder and threw him to the mat, and Bryan tried a surfboard maneuver but did not execute. He kicked the chest of a cornered Styles, then the two traded flipping pin attempts. 

The two exited the ring and Bryan pushed Styles into the ringpost after putting him into a waist lock. Upon re-entering the ring Bryan continued manipulating Styles’s left arm with holds behind his opponent’s back. Styles jumped from the corner and allowed Bryan to crash into the turnbuckle. 

With newfound momentum, Styles twisted Bryan’s left knee against the ropes and kicked him while he was stuck. Bryan stood up and the two climbed atop the turnbuckle where Bryan threw Styles with his legs. 

Bryan tossed Styles outside the ring and looked to suicide dive, but Styles halted him with a kick. Bryan slammed Styles to the mat and put him in an armbar to which Styles rolled into a Calf Crusher. The two returned to the top of a turnbuckle and a back-suplex connected. 

Bryan reversed a Styles Clash into an Ankle Lock, then hit a German suplex. Bryan executed a Yes! Lock and Styles pulled a rope break. He ran toward Styles for a Running Knee but Styles caught him and hit a Styles Clash. Styles jumped from the top rope and connected with a right hand, then pinned Bryan to win the Intercontinental Championship. 

Bayley and Sasha Banks celebrate Women’s Tag Team titles

Bayley’s friend finally earned some gold of her own to form a friendship of champions. Sasha Banks and SmackDown Women’s Champion Bayley had balloons and a celebration for themselves in the ring. 

As the crowd chanted “you suck!” to the duo, Bayley said she was “lonely” being at the “top of her game.” Banks said the two were only going to get stronger, and the former champions entered the arena just before Bayley was going to read a poem.

The IIconics appeared on the titantron as the two teams argued in the ring. Alexa Bliss and Nikki Cross cleared the ring after Kay warned the champions to not leave their backs turned.

Braun Strowman and Heavy Machinery vs. The Miz, John Morrison and Dolph Ziggler

Miz and Morrison tried playing their new music video, but Strowman interrupted with his entrance. Otis and Ziggler started for their teams. 

Miz quickly entered the match and was on the receiving end of a body slam from Mr. Money in the Bank. Otis and Tucker grabbed one of Strowman’s hands after the big man cleared the opposing corner and threw him into Ziggler, who stood in the opposite corner.

As Tucker held one of his opponents over his shoulder, King Corbin appeared on the titantron. Corbin approached Mandy Rose and asked if it was her idea for Otis to wear his crown last week. He then said she was fantasizing about being with a guy who has status and pointed he fit that description. Otis left the arena and attacked Corbin backstage. 

Inside the ring, Miz distracted the referee and allowed Ziggler to steal momentum by pulling Tucker’s hair. Strowman tried to hot-tag but Miz and Morrison double-teamed the Universal Champion when he entered the ring.

Otis returned to the arena with Rose, and Tucker tagged him into the match. He shoulder tackled Ziggler and tossed Morrison to the mat and out of the ring. Strowman exited his corner and charged all three of his opponents outside the ring, tossing Morrison into the audience screen and the same with Ziggler.

Strowman rolled Ziggler back into the ring where Otis hit a Caterpillar to secure his team the victory. The three victors, alongside Rose, stood in the center of the ring with their arms held high as the show closed.


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