Fresh off of his trip to Japan where he conquered all three members of The New Day with relative ease on the Beast in the East special on the WWE Network, RAW kicks off with the #1 Contender for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at Battleground as “The Beast” Brock Lesnar makes his way to the ring with his advocate Paul Heyman in tow. Speaking on behalf of his client, Paul Heyman says that Seth Rollins will learn that Brock Lesnar is not a “god of love” or a “god of forgiveness”, he is the “god of violent retribution” and that retribution will come at the expense of Seth Rollins and anyone who associates themselves with Rollins. Heyman then says that Brock Lesnar “conquers things”, saying that, when Lesnar wanted to conquer the streak of The Undertaker or when he wanted to beat John Cena, he didn’t “respect” either Superstar, but he didn’t “disrespect” them either. Heyman continues, saying that “thou shall not intentionally provoke” Brock Lesnar, saying that Rollins has “intentionally provoked” Lesnar on three different occasions. Heyman then says that Lesnar is “salivating for revenge” against Seth Rollins before saying that Lesnar will take the WWE World Heavyweight Championship back from Seth Rollins at Battleground. Heyman then says that the title match may take place at Battleground, but the “beatings and the suplexes begin tonight”! Heyman then proclaims that, tonight, the Allstate Arena is the “altar of The Beast” and the “City Hall of Suplex City” before saying that they are aware that Seth Rollins will be in the arena tonight. Heyman then says that, since the WWE World Heavyweight Champion is supposed to be in the building, “The Beast” is not going anywhere as “The Beast of Battleground” is waiting for Seth Rollins!
Thirteen nights before he defends the Intercontinental Championship in a Triple Threat Match against Big Show and The Miz at Battleground, Intercontinental Champion Ryback would go one-on-one with “The World’s Largest Athlete” Big Show in a non-title match on RAW with The Miz seated at ringside with a live microphone in hand. Throughout the match, The Miz would repeatedly antagonize his Battleground opponents, getting on the apron and taunting both Ryback and Big Show. At the end of the match, Big Show would hit a big elbow drop off of the second rope on Ryback, but both big men would be left laid out. This is when The Miz would pick his spot, attacking both Ryback and Big Show, but the plan would backfire once Ryback and Big Show would get to their feet and The Miz would find himself between “The Big Guy” and Big Show. The Miz would plead with both men, trying to reason with Ryback and Big Show to no avail as Ryback hits The Miz with Shell Shocked and Big Show follows it up with a chokeslam to The Miz! Ryback then blasts Big Show with the Meat Hook Clothesline, sending Big Show into retreat as the Intercontinental Champion is left standing tall in the ring.
In her continuing crusade against Team Bella, Paige would go one-on-one with Brie Bella, with Divas Champion Nikki Bella and Alicia Fox in her corner. During the match, Brie Bella would go for a running knee on Paige and Paige would move out of the way, causing Brie to inadvertently hit Nikki Bella and Alicia Fox. Later on in the match, Nikki Bella would get on the ring apron and Paige would toss Brie into the Divas Champion before Paige kicks Alicia Fox off of the apron. However, despite Paige’s best efforts, the numbers game would be too much for “The Diva of Tomorrow” as Brie Bella takes advantage of the distraction, hitting the Bella Buster and pinning Paige for the win. After the match, Team Bella would set their sights on destruction as Alicia Fox hits Paige with a Scissors Kick before Nikki Bella levels Paige with the Rack Attack. The Divas Champion then stands tall with Brie Bella and Alicia Fox as Team Bella remains dominant.
With a one-on-one match against Bray Wyatt in less than two weeks at Battleground, Roman Reigns was in action on RAW as “The Big Dog” went one-on-one with “Mr. Money-in-the-Bank” Sheamus. During the match, Roman Reigns was set to finish Sheamus with the Spear, but that is when the lights would go out and Bray Wyatt would make his entrance. However, Roman would not wait for “The New Face of Fear” to get to him as Reigns would exit the ring, blasting Bray with a Superman Punch in the entranceway, but when Roman goes to pick up Wyatt by his hair, the hair comes off as the Bray was apparently an imposter! Bray Wyatt then appears on the Tron, laughing at Roman before telling Reigns “anyone but you”. The lights then come back on as the bell rings and Sheamus is named the winner of the match by count-out. However, Sheamus’ night was not over as Randy Orton returns to RAW with his sights set on “Mr. Money-in-the-Bank”. Orton would take it to Sheamus on the outside before Sheamus sends Orton face-first into the steel ring post. Sheamus then rolls Orton back into the ring before “The Viper” strikes with the RKO, leaving Sheamus lying face down in the middle of the ring!
Backstage, WWE COO Triple H asks J&J Security to leave he and WWE World Heavyweight Champion Seth Rollins to talk in private. The champion asks that, with Kane on vacation in Hawaii and with Jamie Noble still injured from a couple of weeks ago, does the COO have any “advice”? Triple H tells Rollins that his advice is to walk out of Battleground as the WWE World Heavyweight Champion, but Rollins says that he’s got Battleground “in the bag” and he needs advice for tonight. The COO tells the champion that he needs to do something “unconventional”, bringing up what Paul Heyman said earlier in the night about not “intentionally provoking” Brock Lesnar. Rollins says that he has to call out Brock Lesnar while he is so emotional that he cannot stand it and do what they did to Lesnar two weeks ago. Triple H continues to fire the champion up, telling Rollins to “show them”.
After a confrontation that sparked a brawl between Lana and Summer Rae last week, Rusev & Summer Rae would make an appearance on RAW. Rusev says that he came out there to “apologize” for putting himself as “low” as Dolph Ziggler, saying that Dolph is not on his “level”. Rusev continues, saying he is “better looking and more passionate” than Dolph Ziggler. Rusev then kisses the hand of Summer Rae before Dolph Ziggler & Lana interrupt the moment, making their way to the bring. Dolph says that everything that Rusev has accomplished in WWE is because of Lana, saying that Rusev lost the “best thing” that ever happened to him. Ziggler then says that Lana is “gone” from Rusev’s life and he “found her”, planting a kiss on Lana. This leads to another confrontation between Lana and Summer Rae which is broken up by Dolph and Rusev, but when Dolph’s back is turned, Rusev strikes with his crutch, breaking the crutch over Dolph’s body! Apparently having made a full recovery, Rusev blasts Dolph in the face with a vicious kick with his protective cast! Rusev then rips his cast off before Summer Rae tosses Lana out of the ring and Rusev continues to hammer on “The Showoff” before picking up his other crutch and, despite Dolph trying to fight back, “The Bulgarian Brute” would jam the crutch right into the throat of Dolph Ziggler! Referees then rush into the ring to try and keep Rusev back, but as EMT’s come out to tend to Dolph, Rusev picks the crutch back up, repeatedly striking Ziggler with the crutch. Rusev then holds the crutch above his head and EMT’s and referees tend to Dolph Ziggler, putting Dolph onto a stretcher as Ziggler is rolled out of the arena with Lana at his side.
Dean Ambrose was in action on RAW as “The Lunatic Fringe” went one-on-one with Bo Dallas. In the end, it was Dean Ambrose spiking Bo Dallas with Dirty Deeds, pinning Dallas for the win.
In his continuing crusade to stop the self-proclaimed “King What’s Up”, 2015 King of the Ring winner King Barrett would go one-on-one with R-Truth on RAW. In the end, it was King Barrett catching R-Truth in mid-air with the Royal Bull Hammer, pinning “King What’s Up” for the win.
After vowing to call out his Battleground opponent Brock Lesnar, WWE World Heavyweight Champion Seth Rollins would make his way to the ring with J&J Security rolling into the arena in their brand new Cadillac CTS as Rollins, Noble, & Mercury all wield wooden axe handles on their way to the ring. The champion says that Brock Lesnar was picked as his opponent at Battleground because he is the “man” and he is the undisputed “future of WWE” and he has proven that time and time again. Rollins then says that he “conquered the conqueror” two weeks ago and, at Battleground, he is going to burn Suplex City “to the ground”, saying that Lesnar cannot hang with a “thinking man’s champion”. The champion continues, saying that there is “no one else” that can beat Brock Lesnar, saying that he is going to walk out as the WWE World Heavyweight Champion at Battleground. Rollins then asks if Brock Lesnar is the “beast” that everyone says he is or if Brock is just “Paul Heyman’s bitch”!
This brings out “The Beast” Brock Lesnar and his advocate Paul Heyman as Seth Rollins and J&J Security await “The Beast” with axe handles in hand. However, Brock Lesnar would think better of the situation, backing up the entranceway before Lesnar signals to Paul Heyman, who rolls an anvil case out to the stage. Heyman opens up the anvil case that contains a fire protection kit of axes and fire extinguishers. With a smile on his face, Brock Lesnar picks up both large axes, but instead of heading to the ring with the axes, “The Beast” sets his sights on J&J Security’s brand new Cadillac CTS, using an axe to penetrate the driver’s door of the $50,000 gift! Lesnar then uses the other axe to smash the windows of the car, looking right at Rollins and J&J Security as he repeatedly smashes the trunk of the car. “The Beast” then takes the rear driver’s door and rips it right off of its hinges, smashing the door on the concrete and tossing it to the side!
Livid over Lesnar’s destruction of their car, J&J Security makes a beeline for “The Beast” and, while Jamie Noble would get a shot in on Lesnar, Brock would grab Noble and lock in the Kimura Lock, wrenching Noble’s arm into an awkward position, potentially snapping Noble’s arm! “The Beast” then tosses Joey Mercury on the hood of the car before Lesnar picks Mercury up and delivers a belly-to-belly suplex to Mercury onto the hood of the car, breaking the windshield in the process! With J&J Security out of commission, Brock Lesnar would set his sights on Seth Rollins, but as soon as “The Beast” enters the ring, Rollins throws his axe handle at Lesnar before fleeing from the ring! Lesnar chases the champion into the crowd, but Rollins is able to escape through the crowd as “The Beast” enters the ring, holding the WWE World Heavyweight Title belt high. Brock then exits the ring, standing on the hood of the destroyed Cadillac CTS with a smile on his face, clearly ready to reclaim his throne come Battleground.
With WWE Tag Team Champions The Prime Time Players guests on commentary, their Battleground opponents were in action on RAW as The New Day’s Big E & Kofi Kingston, with Xavier Woods in their corner, would face The Lucha Dragons. In the end, it was Big E & Kofi Kingston hitting the Double Team Big Ending with Big E pinning Sin Cara to pick up the win for The New Day.
Thirteen nights before he defends the United States Championship against Kevin Owens at Battleground, United States Champion John Cena would be on RAW for the U.S. Open Challenge. After bringing up that Kevin Owens is no longer the NXT Champion, Cena proclaims that “the champ is here” before saying that, whoever decides to accept his challenge, they better bring their “A game”. However, before Cena can declare the start of the U.S. Open Challenge, and impatient Kevin Owens comes out, saying that the worst part of RAW is when Cena comes out and recite the “same garbage” over and over again. Owens then says that it ends tonight, saying that he no longer just “wants” the United States Title, he “needs” it. Owens continues, saying that he was fine with waiting until Battleground to get his title match, but that was before he lost the NXT Championship, saying that he wants to take the title from Cena tonight! However, before the match can get underway, Cesaro interrupts, saying that no one wants to hear Owens “whine” about losing the NXT Championship. Cesaro says that he had John Cena beat for the United States Title last week and he would be the champion if it was not for Kevin Owens, saying that he was going to do what Owens cannot do and that is beat Cena for the United States Championship! “The Swiss Superman” then tells Owens that, if he does not get out of the ring, he will not only have a problem with John Cena, he will have a problem with Cesaro! Kevin Owens then leaves the ring, heading to the back as Cena and Cesaro get ready to square off in a rematch from last week.
In a rematch from last week’s classic match for the United States Championship that was ultimately ruined by Kevin Owens, Cesaro would take John Cena up on the U.S. Open Challenge as “The Swiss Superman” would challenge Cena for the United States Title. During an incredible rematch for the United States Championship, Cesaro would bring John Cena to the outside, tossing the champion into the ringside barricade with a Fallaway Slam before Cena fights back, sending Cesaro over the barricade into the timekeeper’s area. Back in the ring, Cena would score with his signature leg drop off of the top rope, but Cesaro would kick out. Cesaro would fight out of the Attitude Adjustment before Cesaro hits a big pop-up uppercut on Cena, but the champion kicks out. Cesaro then sets his sights on the Cesaro Swing, but Cena counters, hitting the Attitude Adjustment, but “The Swiss Superman” kicks out again!
Shortly after this, Cesaro spins Cena with the Cesaro Swing right into the Sharphooter before Cesaro transitions into the Crossface! Cena manages to break out of the Crossface before locking in the STF on Cesaro, but Cesaro would pull off an incredible counter, managing to counter the STF into a suplex! Cena would then go for the Attitude Adjustment, but Cesaro would counter again, hitting the Neutralizer on the champion, but Cena kicks out again! “The Swiss Superman” then slams Cena face-first into the mat, locking in the Crossface again, but the champion gets to the ropes, forcing the break. Cena would then battle back, hitting a sit-down powerbomb on Cesaro, but the lack of a solid cover would allow Cesaro to kick out. Having exhausted all his other options, Cena would go for the Attitude Adjustment off of the top rope, but Cesaro would counter, nearly hitting the Neutralizer from the second rope. However, the champion would fight out and a battle would ensue on the corner before Cena is able to get Cesaro on his shoulders and deliver the Attitude Adjustment off of the top rope, finally keeping Cesaro down for the three count to successfully retain the United States Title in what was easily a strong candidate for the Match of the Year! After the match, Kevin Owens would rush the ring to try and capitalize on a weakened John Cena, but the United States Champion would thwart the attack, hitting the Attitude Adjustment on Kevin Owens, forcing Owens into retreat! John Cena then stands tall in the middle of the ring, holding the United States Title high as the fans give a standing ovation for one of the best United States Title matches of all-time.
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