AJ Styles and Kevin Owens have been putting on great matches for a little while now. These two made towns all over with this feud and they know each other well. So why was the match at Battleground so strange?
It was going well enough until the referee took a bump and things got awkward. Kevin Owens countered a move from AJ Styles and rolled him up for a pinfall. The ref seemed to hesitate before counting to three and people were scratching their heads all over the world.
The initial reports were the finish of the match was changed in the middle of the bout. But new reports seem to conflict that story. Dave Meltzer reports in The Observer Newsletter AJ Styles might have just botched the final spot.
It is reported conflicting stories are coming from people backstage who are usually in the know. Some are still sticking with the idea Vince McMahon changed the finish to the match in the midst of battle. But it was also reported the reaction backstage was the spot was botched and AJ Styles wasn’t happy about the way the match ended.
Some say the reason the referee hesitated is because he told KO and AJ about the match finish and it was up to them how Owens was going to win. But then the title switch on the next show might be a telling clue AJ was supposed to kick out of the roll-up but it didn’t happen.
Regardless of how it was supposed to go down, this might be the reason why WWE booked KO vs AJ’s feud going into SummerSlam the way they did. Kevin obviously got his shoulder up during their rematch up but a dazed referee made the count for AJ anyway. This is why Shane McMahon is getting a payday at the Biggest Party Of The Summer as a guest referee.
But all in all. the story of the match made more sense with Chris Jericho’s insertion into the US Title picture (if only for one night) as he returned to challenge for KO’s title instead of AJ’s.