If WWE’s SummerSlam pay-per-view at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn could have been graded on two or three of the top-billed matches, it would have been an instant classic. But the company somehow failed to deliver in the clutch on Sunday night, and that may have seriously hurt the event's overall reception.

Charlotte beats Sasha Banks to regain WWE Women’s title in surprise win

All along, fans were generally expecting Sasha Banks to retain the WWE Women’s Championship at SummerSlam, But it wasn’t to be for “The Boss,” as she would lose the title after Charlotte countered the Bank Statement into a quick roll-up.

It was a thrilling match with a lot of high-flying and/or dangerous offense from both women, but many had wondered why Banks, right after losing the Women’s title, was pulled from all WWE Live events for the coming month. This was an especially big concern due to a recent wave of suspensions that saw Alberto Del Rio, Paige, and Eva Marie all incurring their first Wellness Policy violations.

According to reports, Banks will be resting for the next month or so due to “nagging injuries,” which should definitely allay concerns of a potential suspension, but leave Charlotte with no plausible challenger for the belt in the coming weeks.

Cena vs. Styles, Balor vs. Rollins were also big SummerSlam highlights

The match for the inaugural WWE Universal Championship was another very strong encounter, this time pitting hot newcomer Finn Balor against “The Architect,” Seth Rollins. All in all, itwas a great main roster pay-per-view debut for the Irishman, who focused on Rollins’ recently rehabbed knee, but had to fight long and hard to overcome his opponent’s onslaughts.

Balor would become the first Universal title holder when he hit the Coup de Grace on Rollins in the nineteenth minute, following several failed attempts earlier in the match.

Most people, however, saw John Cena and AJ Styles’ rematch to be the match of the night, as both men fought tooth-and-nail and brought their A-game to the ring. Despite multiple attempts to end the match with their respective finishers, it ended up withkick-out after kick-out after kick-out. Styles even ended up dropping Cena with his own take on the latter's AA finisher.

All those finishers were to no avail, until Styles landed the Phenomenal Forearm on Cena in the 23rd minute to win the match, and lead their feud 2-0

What was up with the non-finishes?

Despite a strong build-up on SmackDown Live, Dean Ambrose’s defense of the WWE World Championship against Dolph Ziggler turned out flat, with the crowd at the Barclays Center mostly lukewarm for the match. While not a bad match per se, fans just weren’t into a battle of two babyface characters, including one (Ziggler) who had seemingly been fading to irrelevance before stepping up so quickly, perhaps too quickly, as Ambrose’ challenger for the belt.

That match, however, didn’t come close to having the negative reaction to the cancellation of the United States title match between champion Rusev and challenger Roman Reigns, and the Brock Lesnar vs. Randy Orton main event. The former match didn’t get underway as Reigns had so seriously injured Rusev with a steel chair when the two men brawled outside the ring. This clearly means their feud is far from over, though it was a questionable booking decision to have the pay-per-view match effectively cancelled days after the same match was given away for free on WWE television.

At this point, everyone seems to have an opinion on Lesnar’s savage beatdown on Orton; was he playing by the script, or was he “going into business for himself” by deviating from it, as they say in Wrestling parlance? Regardless what you may think, the match ended sooner than expected, with referees declaring a TKO win for Lesnardue to Orton excessively bleeding. And lots of fans weren’t happy with the result, which provided no satisfying conclusion to what should have been an epic bout between two talented, veteran competitors.

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