- Randy Orton made his return to WWE television at last night’s Battleground pay-per-view in The Highlight Reel segment with Chris Jericho. The appearance, used to officially begin his SummerSlam program with Brock Lesnar, featured Orton taking a shot at Lesnar’s drug test failures. Orton, while talking about an RKO to Lesnar, stated, “No enhancement needed.” Jericho told Orton he believes he will pay for making that comment. Let's not brush past Orton's Wellness troubles, which are well-documented.
- So there you have it. Randy Orton vs. Brock Lesnar at SummerSlam is a go despite Lesnar failing two drug tests for clomiphene. One collected on June 28, 2016 and the second collected the day of his fight at UFC 200 against Mark Hunt on July 9, 2016. UFC won't fine Lesnar but he faces sanctions from the Nevada Athletic Commission. Clomiphene is banned under the WWE Wellness Policy but they will not suspend him, despite the positive drug tests.
- WWE Battleground was by the book. Dean Ambrose retained the WWE Championship (taking it to Smackdown), Bayley was revealed as the mystery partner of Sasha Banks and Mojo Rawley appeared. We spoiled the show completely on Sunday afternoon, missing only on The Miz vs. Darren Young ending in no contest. Complete Battleground results are online at this link and Zack’s exclusive reaction at this link.
- 15,109 was the announced attendance for last night’s WWE Battleground pay-per-view from the Verizon Center in Washington, D.C.
- Moving past Battleground, WWE announced the first ever WWE SummerSlam Concert on Thursday, August 18, 2016 at 7 PM ET at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. Official details are available at this link.
- WWE Raw tonight will emanate from the Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh, PA. There are some Smackdown names such as John Cena and AJ Styles but all of the points from dot com’s official Raw preview focus on Raw talent. It’s being promoted that it’s a new era for Raw, with there being anticipation about Finn Balor and Nia Jax making their debuts. We’re also expecting the continuation of Seth Rollins vs. Roman Reigns as WWE looks to introduce a second world title. Make plans to join our WWE Raw “Open Thread” starting at 8 PM ET for streaming live results and your discussion right here at WrestlingNewsWorld.com.
- The rosters are now split and we’ll see Raw, Smackdown and NXT develop their own respective identities. Here’s the top talent for each respective brand - Raw: Roman Reigns, Brock Lesnar, Seth Rollins, Finn Balor, Kevin Owens and Charlotte. Smackdown: John Cena, Dean Ambrose, Randy Orton, AJ Styles, Bray Wyatt and Becky Lynch. NXT: Shinsuke Nakamura, Samoa Joe, Bayley, Asuka, Austin Aries and Andrade “Cien” Almas.
- You probably noticed Bayley listed as part of NXT after working WWE Battleground. For now, her appearance on the main roster is being treated as “one and done." She’ll be up soon but will at least finish up her program with Asuka for the WWE NXT Women’s Championship. The same is true for Samoa Joe, the current WWE NXT Champion, who is in the middle of a big program with Shinsuke Nakamura.
- Curtis Axel continues to express frustration with his spot in WWE. He tweeted this on Sunday, ”Was just informed I was last pick for Raw during the draft... Hmmm, OK... @WWE” We criticize WWE a lot for not giving talent a chance but Axel had his chance and it just didn’t work out. I preached patience until it became obvious that he just didn’t have it to be a top star. Axel is a good dude and a hard working guy but he’s just not a main event talent.
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