What a distinction a 12 months makes. In July 2020, Excessive Guidelines was labeled a “Horror Present,” largely came about within the WWE Efficiency Heart with no followers and featured each an “eye for an eye fixed” match during which an opponent was meant to pluck their opponent’s eye out and a cinematic match in a swamp.
Fourteen months later, Excessive Guidelines is about to happen in entrance of a capability crowd at Nationwide Area in Columbus, Ohio. Exterior of an Excessive Guidelines match for the Common championship between Roman Reigns and Finn Balor, there are no stipulations to talk of. Becky Lynch is about to (in all probability) have her first televised match that goes past 26 seconds since returning, as she defends her SmackDown girls’s championship towards former champ Bianca Belair.
Two of probably the most prolific Uncooked girls’s champions in that title’s historical past sq. off as effectively, as Charlotte Flair appears to fend off Alexa Bliss. The US championship and SmackDown tag staff titles may also be on the road Sunday night time.
Comply with alongside all through the night time as we break down the motion, match by match.
Match in progress:
Smackdown girls’s championship: Becky Lynch (c) vs. Bianca Belair
Uncooked girls’s championship: Charlotte Flair (c) def. Alexa Bliss
Alexa Bliss has leaned into the supernatural during the last 12 months, following entanglements with “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt. However after her unsuccessful problem for Charlotte Aptitude’s Uncooked girls’s championship at Excessive Guidelines, and the aftermath, she appears prone to turn into fully unhinged.
Bliss fought valiantly in a robust effort, however her demonic doll Lily was in the end her downfall on Sunday. Aptitude plucked the doll from the nook, tossed it to Bliss and, within the confusion, related on an enormous boot that despatched Bliss flying. That led on to Aptitude connecting with a Pure Choice, adopted by a pinfall victory.
Bliss needed to scramble for each inch of benefit all through the match, and handle to frustrate Aptitude when she could not preserve the sting. A pair of headshots into the nook and a basement dropkick despatched Aptitude to the skin, however similar to most of Bliss’ different constructive moments on this match, it would not final lengthy. Aptitude turned a operating Headscissors try right into a Powerbomb place, after which drove Bliss head-first into the ring barrier.
A Aptitude high rope moonsault missed, however a standing moonsault shortly adopted. Aptitude’s first try at a Pure Choice noticed Bliss slip out, however after buying and selling roll-up makes an attempt, a one-armed Powerbomb from Aptitude earned a two-count.
One other missed moonsault despatched Aptitude right into a grounded Bliss’ boot. Bliss instantly positioned herself for a Code Purple Flipping Powerbomb, however that, too, was solely price a two-count.
A Twisted Bliss try from Bliss and a Determine Eight try from Aptitude went nowhere, however a Bliss DDT appeared as if it may tilt issues in her favor, till Aptitude’s foot on the ropes broke the referee’s depend.
Shortly thereafter, Aptitude grabbed Lily, and triggered Bliss’ downfall. Within the aftermath, Aptitude kicked Bliss out of the ring, after which grabbed Lily. She tore Lily’s arm off after which tore the remainder of the doll limb from limb, ripped the stuffing out, after which held each the title and the deflated doll aloft.
Bliss attacked Aptitude with chaotic urgency. Aptitude tossed Bliss over the commentary desk and into the Uncooked announce staff. As Aptitude stumbled away, Bliss pulled her personal hair out as she considered the wreckage of Lily and picked up the stuffing to attempt to put it again in. She collapsed into tears and screams as cradled the doll.
Profitable wasn’t sufficient for @MsCharlotteWWE…
— WWE (@WWE) September 27, 2021
What’s subsequent: The post-match fracas factors to a different chapter on this rivalry, and with how this match performed out, it would not appear to be a nasty thought for both girl. Uncooked and SmackDown’s girls’s rosters will look very in a different way over the following couple of weeks, however this looks like a battle that would simply carry via at the very least yet one more match.
The New Day def. Bobby Lashley, AJ Styles and Omos
The six-man tag staff match was added to the cardboard on the final minute, due to a handy backstage scuffle on the Kickoff Present. However the swiftly put collectively match delivered — each when it comes to the in-ring motion from bell-to-bell, and a stunning ending.
Huge E scored one other pinfall victory over Bobby Lashley, albeit within the midst of some confusion, and forged at the very least somewhat little bit of doubt as as to whether or not Lashley will discover his option to a rematch for the WWE championship because the upcoming WWE draft looms.
With 4 world champions within the combine, in addition to some robust staff dynamics throughout, there was not often a boring second. Followers bought notably loud early on when Kinds and Huge E lined up reverse each other, teasing an fascinating potential future match that would carry one thing particular.
After Xavier Woods needed to scramble out of an early Calf Crusher try, New Day took management early, till Kingston bought blindsided by Lashley and turned the tide. Neither facet gave the impression to be particularly peril till Woods bought caught spinning in mid-air and Lashley turned it right into a powerslam.
Woods ultimately fought out of the nook and tagged Huge E in. He confirmed off great energy in what may’ve been a harmful miss within the nook, after which basically deadlifted Kinds with one arm for a Uranage.
Kinds prevented Huge E’s patented spear via the ropes, Kingston blind tagged himself in and the New Day related on a mix double stomp and Huge E powerbomb. Lashley interrupted, broke up the pinfall after which dragged Kinds by one arm again to his nook to tag again in.
A Lashley Dominator on Kingston earned his staff a two-count, however Lashley then missed a spear and spilled to the skin. Kingston tossed Kinds excessive rope, too, however as Huge E launched Kofi excessive to assault each Kinds and Lashley, Omos interrupted that thought with an enormous slap to Kingston’s chest.
Lashley’s flatliner to Huge E whereas the opposite members of New Day had been incapacitated appeared to spell doom, however as Lashley lined up a spear, Kinds blind tagged in. As Kinds seemed for Phenomenal Forearm, Lashley blind tagged himself again in, and within the chaos, Lashley unintentionally speared Kinds. Huge E hit the Huge Ending on Lashley, and that was all she wrote.
What’s subsequent: This match was seemingly a pit cease on the way in which to a Huge E-Lashley rematch for the WWE championship, and with Lashley requesting that match for Monday’s version of Uncooked later within the night time on Excessive Guidelines, it appears the remaining runway for this story appears brief. Huge E has already pinned Lashley twice, and until there’s an surprising title change, with the draft forthcoming, it may very well be an opportunity for each males to shortly transfer on to one thing else.
Triple menace match for the USA championship: Damian Priest (c) def. Jeff Hardy and Sheamus
It may be onerous for followers to get enthusiastic about a few of the WWE’s secondary titles at occasions, as a result of they’ll usually fade into the background throughout lengthy weekly broadcasts, in the event that they function in any respect.
However Damian Priest, Sheamus and Jeff Hardy threw their all into an intensely bodily triple menace match, and by the top they’d completed themselves proud, judging by the gang’s response. Priest efficiently retained the title with a roll-up in the long run, nevertheless it didn’t really feel low cost by any means.
Triple menace matches can usually really feel contrived as sure strikes require particular positioning, however the tempo and the strikes had been executed effectively all through. After a Damaged Arrow from Priest to Hardy, Sheamus broke it up. However Hardy was up shortly, and ultimately related on a Whisper within the Wind to each Sheamus and Priest.
The one-on-one sequences match seamlessly as effectively. With Priest out of the image, Sheamus locked in a Cloverleaf to Hardy in the midst of the ring, and even after they bought into the ropes, the dearth of a disqualification in a triple menace match allowed for an additional buildup of drama.
Sheamus’ protecting masks got here off at one level, and Priest went proper after the beforehand damaged nostril. That led straight into Sheamus stepping up and touchdown White Noise to Priest, just for Hardy to interrupt up a pinfall try.
Hardy related on Twists of Destiny to each of his opponents, however as he went for a Swanton Bomb, Sheamus pushed him off the highest rope. A flying knee was adopted by a missed Brogue Kick, and as Priest chokeslammed Sheamus off the highest rope to the bottom, it felt like he had all the pieces locked up.
— WWE (@WWE) September 27, 2021
However Hardy broke the depend with a Swanton Bomb to each males — touchdown on Priest’s again to interrupt up a pinfall. After attempting to arrange Hardy, Priest flew off the center rope and blindly fell right into a Brogue Kick. Hardy pushed Sheamus out of the ring, however was solely capable of declare a two-count.
An enraged Sheamus hit one other Brogue Kick, this time to Hardy, however as Hardy fell out of the ring, Priest snuck up and snatched the victory in a flash.
What’s subsequent: For a crowd that appeared solely considerably on this match on the outset, the efficiency of all three males introduced the power ranges method up by the top. The cheering for Hardy particularly within the closing phases of the match was loud, and the respectful change afterwards whereas Sheamus fumed may simply result in a one-on-one Hardy-Priest match on Uncooked.
Sheamus may not but be completed with Priest, both. However with regards to secondary titles throughout WWE Draft season, something’s attainable.
SmackDown tag staff championships: The Usos (c) def. The Street Profits
The Avenue Income have been doing robust work since shifting over to SmackDown as tag staff champions, however their quest to regain these titles as soon as once more fell brief towards The Usos.
After a match on SmackDown that solely went the fallacious method due to Roman Reigns interjecting himself, The Usos received this matchup truthful and sq., regardless of the most effective efforts of The Avenue Income in a match that actually picked up within the closing minutes.
Angelo Dawkins began to drive that power up with a mix Suplerplex from the highest rope that he was a twisting double-underhook neckbreaker to Jimmy Uso. Montez Ford adopted that up with a Blockbuster from the highest rope, however as Ford began to indicate indicators of a rib harm suffered by the hands of Reigns and The Usos, the momentum slowed.
The Avenue Income did get the primary shut name, although, as Ford blind tagged himself in, as Dawkins landed his signature anointment to Jey Uso. However an try at a frog splash from Ford was countered as Jey bought his knees up.
Dawkins discovered himself in hassle after consuming a Superkick from Jey and a high rope splash from Jimmy, however kicked out at two. The Usos missed a blind tag as they dragged Dawkins out of the ring, and seemed up simply in time to note Ford get a operating begin and launch himself over the turnbuckles and straight onto their heads.
Ford shortly tossed Jey again into the ring and related on his frog splash, however the injury to his personal torso makes him sluggish to cowl, permitting Jimmy simply sufficient time to interrupt up the depend.
Dawkins saved Ford by shoving him out of the way in which and absorbing a double Superkick, however after a roll-up by Ford solely drew a two-count, all the pieces spiraled. A kick to Ford’s torso was adopted by a double Superkick and a stereo high rope Uso Splash. Jimmy coated Ford for the three-count, and The Usos retained.
— WWE (@WWE) September 27, 2021
What’s subsequent: The Avenue Income want a contemporary begin, and Uncooked desperately wants tag groups. The answer with the draft arising subsequent week is straightforward. The Usos will probably play an enormous half at Roman Reigns’ facet as he turns towards Brock Lesnar in October, so they could not instantly have new challengers.
Liv Morgan def. Carmella
— WWE (@WWE) September 26, 2021
Liv Morgan debuted on SmackDown in November 2017, alongside Riott Squad compatriots Ruby Riott and Sarah Logan. The group carried momentum and appreciable fan assist, each initially and when Riott and Morgan rejoined forces just a few years later, however they had been by no means capable of break via. As a singles performer, Morgan has languished with out a lot in the way in which of alternative, however the longtime fan favourite may lastly be getting her probability to shine.
In simply her second profession 1-on-1 match on a pay-per-view occasion, Morgan began the motion at Excessive Guidelines with a victory over Carmella. All through the match, Morgan showcased an more and more deep reservoir of strikes to drag from, together with a step-up Enzuigiri, a nook double foot stomp and inventive variations of facebreakers and backbreakers. Within the closing moments, Morgan grabbed each of Carmella’s arms from behind her, fell to the bottom along with her boot in Carmella’s again and drove that foot ahead, sending Carmella face-first into the commentary desk.
They rolled again into the ring, and along with her center rope suspended Flatliner, Morgan picked up the victory.
What’s subsequent: Even with the draft arising subsequent week, Morgan’s lastly beginning to get her toes beneath her on SmackDown. There’s prone to be some lingering pressure with Carmella and Zelina Vega to be cleaned up, or she may face a contemporary face at the moment on the Uncooked roster.
Nonetheless to return:
WWE Common championship match: Roman Reigns (c) vs. Finn Balor