Sunday night's Battleground pay-per-view was far from WWE's finest effort.
After months of presenting outstanding live extravaganzas, the company delivered a rather mediocre show full of good matches but very little worth going out of one's way to see. Save for the outstanding opener between The Usos and The Wyatt Family's Erick Rowan and Luke Harper, nothing stood out as better or more special than what fans would see on an episode of Raw.
Still, that does not mean the show did not have its share of memorable moments. Not only were there moments that will be associated with the show well into the future, but there were also moments that will be underrated by many in the coming days, weeks and months.
With SummerSlam on the horizon, those underrated moments may prove to be integral to the matches, feuds or stories that unfold on the August 17 event.
What are those moments? Who was involved, and what do they mean to the immediate future of WWE and its Superstars?
Take a look.
Double the Splash, Double the Win
The Usos put a tremendous exclamation point on their Best 2-out-of-3 Falls match with Luke Harper and Erick Rowan, executing a huge double splash off the top rope onto Harper for the win.
The finish was the perfect way to cap off a match that saw both teams escape pinfalls following signature and finishing moves from their opponents. Having watched as nothing else was able to put away the unstable Harper and Rowan, Jimmy and Jey worked together, delivering two double side kicks and the aforementioned double splash to put away the No. 1 contenders.
There is no way to tell where this leaves The Usos. They have defeated Harper and Rowan in two consecutive pay-per-view bouts and really have no reason to continue engaging them in a rivalry. With RybAxel as the only other heel team remaining on the roster, there appears to be little in the way of fresh matches awaiting them.
The War Wages On
Despite the fact that the advertised match between Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins did not occur, fans were still thrilled with a huge brawl that continued the intensely personal rivalry between the two. Fighting around ringside, in the backstage area and in the parking lot, the two made it clear that the feud is far from over.
With both featured heavily in the promo for SummerSlam, it appears more and more likely that Ambrose and Rollins will compete in some sort of gimmick match as they attempt to bring their story to an end.
The brawling was excellent, and the use of backstage agents to pull the competitors apart made it appear far more aggressive than usual. While it is unlikely to make up for the disappointment of not seeing them compete in the scheduled bout, what fans were exposed to made sense within the context of the story and, more importantly, was faithful to the characters.
Swagger's Patriot Lock
Jack Swagger had done such a tremendous job teasing the Patriot Lock early in his match with Rusev that when he finally locked the vaunted submission hold on tight, the crowd in Tampa responded with an impressive pop.
It was the most dramatic moment of a match that had built momentum to its conclusion. When Swagger pulled Rusev back toward the center of the ring, away from the ropes, the reaction grew louder than it had been all match.
While the Real American may have lost the match via count-out, it is clear that he has potential to be a threat as a midcard babyface if the company chooses to head in that direction with the former World Heavyweight champion.
Roman Reigns Supreme
While most of the attention will be on the fact that John Cena won yet another pay-per-view main event, Roman Reigns proved most impressive during Sunday's Battleground headliner.
Late in the bout, Reigns built considerable momentum for himself, tearing through Kane, Randy Orton and Cena en route to what looked like a certain WWE World Heavyweight Championship victory. His Superman Punch of Cena drew one of the loudest reactions of the evening, proving that he was able to maintain the considerable heat he had entering the event.
Unfortunately, a last-ditch RKO from Orton ended any shot the second-generation star had of capturing the top prize in the industry.
While his night may not have ended the way he would have liked, Reigns continued his monumental summer with another strong headline performance.
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