In the end it came down to a¬†fresh face and a familiar¬†face; the RAW debuting Finn Balor and the-push-that-came-to-the-shove, Roman Reigns. To some fans, it seemed clear that the WWE brass were still going to be pushing Reigns in spite of fans perennial resistance. However, a surprise was in store.
In a solid match with plenty of high spots, close calls and near falls, it was the fresh face, Finn Balor who came up with the win. And he beat Reigns clean to boot, 1-2-3 in the center of the ring. Zero controversy.
After the match, Reigns stated that he hopes Balor beats Rollins at Summerslam¬†and that¬†he’d like another shot at him. Looking up at Balor he said, “I respect that dude.”
Even Reigns himself seemed a little less the enemy of the people last night. When he’s not being¬†forced down people’s throats, he may have a chance at winning the crowd yet.
And as for Balor, who¬†has actually been a well-known prospect¬†for fans of NXT, the people and the push are evidently¬†behind him full steam. And just to make assurance doubly sure on that point, Triple H tweeted this after Balor’s big win:
He's been called the future…
— Triple H (@TripleH) July 26, 2016