Renee Young welcomed everyone to St. Louis and introduced her panel, WWE Hall of Famer Booker T, Corey Graves and Byron Saxton. Graves said St. Louis was "Suplex City" tonight.
After some banter, they went to Tom Phillips in the "Social Media Lounge" and announced Paul Heyman will be answering fan questions live later on the Kickoff Show. That should be fun.
Phillips then discussed the Ryback. Phillips said that there wasn't a lot of information on WWE.com but Ryback responded to fan queries on Twitter, which they then repeated.
Phillips then read a Tweet from Miz mocking Ryback.
The panel ran down the lineup for the PPV.
They aired a video feature on Kevin Owens vs. John Cena, followed by the panel giving their predictions. Byron called a Cena win while Graves said Owens would take it.
They aired a video on Roman Reigns vs. Bray Wyatt. The panel discussed whether Bray's mind games had gotten to Reigns.
Backstage, Eden interviewed R-Truth. She said King Barrett said that Truth is going to bow to the one true King. Truth got serious and said that everyone thinks he's lost his mind but Truth has busted his butt as hard as him to get to where he was. He said he's beaten Barrett before and can't wait to see his face when a guy with a plunger celebrates beating him. He said he's about fun and games but he can get it done.
The panel discussed the WWE Tag Team championship match. The New Day showed up and Xavier Woods promised the Prime Time Players were going down tonight. Corey Graves pointed out that the last time they fought, New Day lost and they mocked him for being a wedge-driver. The New Day were pretty damn funny here.
Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler and JBL, at ringside, discussed the battle for the crown.
R-Truth vs. King Barrett for the "Crown."
Truth performed his song coming out, then put his tin foil crown on. Truth did a quick promo playing to the crowd. They were into him.
They locked up and Barrett drilled Barrett in the ribs with a right hand. Truth fired back with a series of shots to the mid-section and hit a splash in the corner. He scored a one count after a snapmare and cinched in a front facelock.
Barrett escaped and drilled him with elbows. Truth came back with a forward roll for a two count. Barrett tried to nail him with an elbow but missed. He went to the outside but Truth nailed a slingshot pescado to the floor. Barrett rebounded with an elbow and snapped Truth's throat on the ropes for a two count.
Barrett worked over Truth as they faded out for a promo for tonight's PPV. Since they are airing the PPV Kickoff show online and not just the Network, I can forgive this, although it's annoying. When we returned, Truth was fighting out of a surfboard variation. They battled back and forth with Barrett getting the better of the exchange.
Truth came back with a clothesline and a missile dropkick for a two count. Truth went for a suplex but Barrett slipped out and caught him with the Winds of Change (Black Hole Slam) for a two count. Barrett went for the Bull Hammer but Truth escaped. Barrett nailed him with another and scored the pin.
Your winner, King Barrett!
Solid back and forth bout.
We go to Paul Heyman backstage with Tom Phillips in the "Social Media Lounge." They did fan questions.
Heyman was asked Brock's daily routine before a big match. Eat, Sleep, Conquer and then repeat.
How many suplexes will Brock use tonight? As many as Brock feels he needs to defeat Seth and make him serve his penance for crossing Lesnar.
What will happen if Brock loses? Heyman cut him off and said they don't deal with "Ifs" but deals in absolutes. He promised Brock will hurt Rollins and will win the WWE World Heavyweight championship tonight.
They showed the Divas division angle from this past Raw.
The panel said that Stephanie McMahon requested all nine Divas involved be present at Battleground.
WWE Battleground PPV
Sheamus vs. Randy Orton
Sheamus acted as if he was ready to fight, then went to the floor to avoid Orton. The fans were all over him chanting, "You look stupid." They locked up and Orton and Sheamus exchanged holds as they tried to attack the other's arm.
Orton got the better of Sheamus, who went to the floor. This time, Orton followed and sent Sheamus into the barricade and tossed him into the ring. Sheamus immediately rolled to the outside where Orton caught him with a clothesline.
Orton tossed Sheamus back into the ring and drilled him with kicks. Sheamus and Orton exchanged uppercuts. Sheamus cut off Orton and nailed several backbreakers. He worked over Orton and locked him in a side chinlock. Orton fought his way out but was sent into the corner. Sheamus charged but Orton avoided him. Sheamus drilled his shoulder into the ringpost.
They battled back and forth while on their knees and then returned to their feet. Orton caught him with several clotheslines. He went for the snap powerslam but Sheamus held onto the ropes to avoid it. Sheamus went for White Noise but Orton avoided it and clotheslined him over the top to the floor. Sheamus pulled Orton to the floor. They battled and Orton slammed him on the announce table.
They returned to the ring where Sheamus missed The Brogue Kick and was caught with the Powerslam for a two count. Sheamus came back with the rolling Senton for a two count. Sheamus and Orton avoided each other's finishers. Sheamus went for the Texas Cloverleaf but Orton escaped. Sheamus nailed White Noise for a two count.
Sheamus continued working him over with uppercuts but was cut off with several right hands and an exploder suplex. Orton stalked Sheamus, who was down in the corner, then beat him with right hands in the corner. Sheamus slipped out underneath and nailed Orton with Snake-Eyes. Sheamus went to the top but Orton caught him. They exchanged punches.
Orton went for a superplex and scored with it. JBL noted that was the move Orton's father used to put a lot of people away. Randy, however, did not, as Sheamus kicked out. JBL said Scott Irwin created the superplex.
Orton went for the hanging DDT off the ropes and scored it. Sheamus came back and locked in the Texas Cloverleaf. Orton fought his way to the ropes but Sheamus pulled him back. Orton finally escaped and then caught Sheamus out of nowhere with the RKO for the pin.
Your winner, Randy Orton!
Good, slow-building but hard fought opener. Solid stuff.
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