7/23 Powell’s WWE Battleground Kickoff Show: Tye Dillinger vs. Aiden English

By Jason Powell

WWE Battleground 2017 Kickoff Show
Aired live on WWE Network and social media
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania at Wells Fargo Center

-Host Renee Young was joined by the panel of Jerry Lawler, Sam Roberts, and David Otunga at their usual desk on the main floor. Lawler talked about Philadelphia crowds being so tough that they once booed Santa Claus (true story)…

-Kayla Braxton checked in from the social media lounge. She will ask Mike and Maria Kanellis the worst of the questions that fans submit via social media…

-A video package aired on the John Cena vs. Rusev flag match…

-John Cena was interviewed backstage. Cena said you have to grab the flag and then plant it at the finish line. He said he can’t tell the fans that he is going to be the best without succeeding tonight…

-Lawler said Cena delivered a similar speech on Smackdown and he ended up lying on his back. He said Cena is putting too much pressure on himself. Lawler ended up predicting Cena to win, as did Roberts. Otunga said he wants Cena to win, but he picked Rusev to go over…

-Young set up the video package for the women’s five-way elimination match…

-Carmella took Otunga’s spot and sat in on the panel. She said she’s beaten all of the women in the elimination match twice (via her Money in the Bank wins). Carmella picked Natalya to win the elimination match. A group of fans chanted off camera. Carmella yelled at them for yelling for the wrong person (Charlotte) and said they should be yelling for her. In a comical moment, Carmella told Roberts not to look at her briefcase. “I’m up here,” she said. Roberts picked Charlotte to win, Lawler went with Natalya…

-Footage aired of AJ Styles throwing out the first pitch at the Philadelphia Phillies game earlier in the day. It was a strike. The Twins should sign him for middle relief. A video package aired on Styles vs. Kevin Owens for the U.S. Championship…

-AJ Styles was interviewed backstage and spoke about being the workhorse of WWE. They cut to Owens watching the promo in his locker room. Stalker Tom Phillips popped up in the room. Owens recalled Styles saying he’s not man enough to represent the United States. Owens said he’s more of a man than Styles ever will be. “I”m Canadian,” Owens said…

-The panel discussed the U.S. Title match. Lawler said he watched both interviews and he has to go with Owens. Otunga was back and I believe he picked Owens. Roberts pimped his podcast and picked Styles to win…

-A WWE Network commercial aired. It was a basic ad with nothing new in terms of previously unadvertised content…

-Kayla Braxton interviewed Mike and Maria Kanellis in the social media lounge. Mike and Maria were lovey dovey again. Maria was asked when she will be back in the ring. She said she is doing everything she can to help her man and that makes her a harder worker than most of the women in WWE. She spoke about the power of love. The next question was about Mike’s strategy for his match with Sami Zayn. Mike said it’s to punch Zayn in the head as hard as he can, which did the trick on Tuesday. The final bad question was how the fan could find love in his/her life. Maria said sometimes you just have to wait until the right person appears. Maria said it won’t happen for others because their love is one of a kind. Braxton wished Mike luck. He said he didn’t need luck because he has love…

-The hosts ran through the pay-per-view lineup. Lawler said the weight of the world is on the shoulders of John Cena in his flag match…

Aiden English stood in the ring and sang his own introduction, calling himself the Shakespeare of Song, the Mozart of Melody, and the Beethoven of Baritone. Tye Dillinger made his entrance afterward…

1. Aiden English vs. Tye Dillinger. The broadcast team was Tom Phillips, JBL, and “The Insider” Byron Saxton. English controlled the majority of the first few minutes of the match and then they cut to a break for a WWE Battleground commercial. English went to the ropes and leapt into a dropkick from Dillinger at 5:45. English rolled to ringside to avoid Dillinger’s finisher. Back inside the ring, Dillinger performed a spinebuster for a two count.

Dillinger went for a superplex, but English fought him off. English performed a cross body block. Dillinger rolled through for a two count. English came back and got a two count, then threw a fit when he didn’t get the win. English did a 10 bit of his own and set up for Dillinger’s finisher, but Dillinger avoided it. A short time later, English grabbed Dillinger in Full Nelson position and tossed him over before pinning him…

Aiden English pinned Tye Dillinger in 9:45.

Powell’s POV: Just another Kickoff Show match, but I’m happy to see English go over. He plays his gimmick well and it’s good for undercard to mid-card heat.

The panel discussed the match and then cut to a shot of Jinder Mahal and The Singh Brothers arriving earlier in the day. He was asked questions by a member of the Indian broadcast team… A video package set up the main event…

Join me for live coverage of WWE Battleground in a separate story on the main page.


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