The fifth annual WWE Battleground will be a SmackDown LIVE exclusive pay-per-view and it will come to you, live on the WWE Network, on July 23 from the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, PA. As announced on SmackDown LIVE, the WWE Championship will be defended inside the returning Punjabi Prison Match at the event. Plus, the SmackDown Tag Team Titles will be defended at the event. Here is the current card for Battleground:
- WWE Championship: Punjabi Prison Match: Jinder Mahal (c) vs. Randy Orton
- SmackDown Tag Team Championship: The Usos (c) vs. The New Day
The Punjabi Prison Match will see the ring surrounded by two structures made of steel-reinforced bamboo. The smaller of the two structures will be placed around the ring with a much larger structure placed around it. The inner structure will have four small doors (four foot by four foot in size) with a referee standing guard at each door. At any time during the match, a competitor can call for a door to be opened. The referee will then open the door for 60 seconds and, at the end of that 60 seconds, the door will be shut and padlocked for the remainder of the match. If all four doors are padlocked, then a competitor must escape the inner structure by climbing out over the top (the outer structure has no doors and must be climbed to escape). In between the inner structure and the other structure will be an assortment of weapons to use. The only way to win the match is by climbing out of both structures with both feet touching the floor. There will be no pinfalls, no submissions, no disqualifications, and no count-outs.
There have been only two previous Punjabi Prison Matches as the match debuted at the 2006 Great American Bash pay-per-view where The Great Khali (who is credited as the match’s creator) was originally scheduled to compete but elevated liver enzymes would necessitate Big Show facing The Undertaker in Khali’s place in what would become an ECW Title match. The last Punjabi Prison Match took place at No Mercy 2007 between Batista and The Great Khali for the World Heavyweight Championship, making the Punjabi Prison Match at Battleground the first Punjabi Prison Match in nearly 10 years (plus the first Punjabi Prison Match where the WWE Title will be on the line).
It’s worth noting that the last Punjabi Prison Match took place at the exact same event where Randy Orton won his very first WWE Championship (as well as his second). Due to John Cena going down with an injury prior to the event, Randy Orton was awarded the WWE Championship but would lose it moments later to Triple H. Triple H would then successfully defend the title against Umaga later that same night before Randy Orton won the WWE Title back in a Last Man Standing Match in the main event of No Mercy, marking the first time in WWE history that there was three WWE Title matches on one night and was also the first time that the title changed hands three times on the same night.
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