They spent some time feeling each other out. Roode grabbed him in a side chinlock. Styles sent him into the ropes but was shoulderblocked down. Styles was limping a little. Roode grabbed him in a side headlock again. Styles powered him way out of it and reversed it. Roode tried to send Styles running out of it but Styles ground him down and held him in the move.
Styles brought Roode to the mat, still in the headlock. Roode turned it into headscissors around Styles' throat. Styles kicked out and he grabbed Roode and took him down with a side headlock takeover. Styles was sent into the ropes and drilled Roode with a series of shoulderblocks and a dropkick for a two count. Roode rolled out of the ring, trying to run the clock and slow Styles' momentum.
They locked up and they battled with chops in the corner. Styles backdropped Roode over. Styles was favoring the leg. Roode begged off but sent Styles out to the floor. On the outside, Roode tried to drilled him into the guard rail but Styles blocked it and nailed Roode into it.
Back in the ring, Styles used a jackrabbit rollup for a two count but Roode rolled through with one of his own. They did a nice series of near falls and traded arm drags. Styles used a head scissor to take over Roode. Styles charged Roode but was kicked off. He came back with a dropkick for a two count and locked in a rear chinlock.
Styles went for a side headlock again but Roode went for a back suplex. Styles landed on his feet but his knee went out. Roode took out Styles' legs with a chop block and covered him for a three count.
Roode, 1. Styles, 0.
Styles battled back but Roode raked his eyes. Roode drilled Styles with another running chop block to the front of Styles' knees. Roode drilled Styles' knees into the mat. Roode twisted Styles' leg and snapped it, scoring a two count. Styles fired back with chops but Styles drilled him. Roode kicked him and took him down with shots to the back.
Roode went for a suplex attempt but Styles floated over. Roode took his legs out and snapped Styles' legs. Styles grabbed at his knee and screamed. Styles tried to fire back with elbows and chops but was kicked in the legs, crumbling down to the mat. Roode locked in a single leg crab as 16 minutes were left.
Styles fought his way to the ropes and made it but Roode continued the beating and locked in a figure four leglock. Styles submitted.
Roode, 2. Styles, 0.
Roode went for the move again but Styles kicked him off into the corner and nailed the flying armbar. Styles locked in a crossface and Roode tapped.
Roode, 2. Styles, 1.
Roode cut off Styles and kept working on his leg, although Roode's shoulder was hurt. Styles worked over the arm and shoulder. Styles went for an armwringer but Roode nailed him. Roode clotheslined Styles, who was sent up and over as we hit the ten minute mark on the clock.
Out of nowhere, Styles cradled Roode, getting the pin.
Roode, 2. Styles, 2. We are tied.
They battled back and forth. Styles was kicked in the leg but punched Roode in his shoulder. Roode drilled Styles with a kick but AJ nailed an enziguiri. Roode caught him with a spinebuster for a two count. He went right back after Styles' knee, cranking it.
Roode began stomping on Styles with 7:35 left. He went to catapult Styles into the corner but Styles landed on the turnbuckles and nailed the inverted DDT. Styles nailed a springboard 450 splash and scored the pin.
Styles, 3. Roode, 2.
They battled in the corner with Styles getting the better of the exchange. Roode kicked away at him trying to break free from the assault but Styles snapmared him into an armbar. They battled near the apron. Styles sunset flipped him into the ring but Roode dropped down and held the ropes, scoring the pin.
Styles, 3. Roode, 3.
The crowd chanted "Bullsh**." over that.
With four minutes left, Styles chopped away at Roode. Styles positioned Roode on the top and tried to go for a superplex but was battled off. Styles used a top rope armdrag with Roode landing on the bad shoulder. Styles nailed a backdrop suplex for a two count with 2:40 left. Roode was bleeding from the nose.
Styles went for another suplex but Roode kicked his leg out from under him. Roode went for the Perfectplex but Styles reversed it into a cradle for a two count. Styles nailed the Pele Kick. With two minutes left, Styles went for the Styles Clash but his knee buckled out from under him and Styles collapsed.
With a minute, 20 seconds left, Roode rolled to the floor, trying to run the clock. Styles hit a flip dive to the outside. Both men were down and out with under a minute left.
With 31 seconds left, Styles crossed Roode back in. Roode rolled right back out as ten seconds were left. He ran away from Styles and ran down the clock They announced it as a 3-3 draw. The crowned chanted for five more minutes but Roode walked off and held the belt, saying he was still the champion of the world. Roode cut a promo into the camera, saying that no one can take the belt.
A hard fought match that told a good story. The finish was obviously to build to something bigger- maybe a one hour match? I wouldn't say it was a classic and in a way it closed the PPV on a flat note with no real winner but in terms of building a longer storyline, it was a good way of laying the foundation for that. I can see some fans being upset about the finish but you did get 30 minutes of good wrestling with no lame run-in at the end. The finish got over the idea that Roode was something of a thinking man's wrestler, using the stips to his advantage since he would retain.
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