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The Miz vs. Dolph Ziggler: Winner and Reaction from WWE No Mercy 2016

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistOctober 10, 2016

Credit: WWE.com

Dolph Ziggler entered WWE No Mercy with his back against the wall Sunday night, and he came through in the clutch by defeating The Miz to save his career and win the Intercontinental Championship.

Ziggler not only had to fight off The Miz but also two of his former Spirit Squad cohorts after they interfered in the match. The Miz used that interference to hit a Skull-Crushing Finale and appeared to have the match won.

Ziggler kicked out, however, and the referee sent the Spirit Squad and Maryse back to the locker room. WWE Universe shared their reactions to the official's decision:

WWE Universe @WWEUniverse

The #SpiritSquad and @MaryseMizanin have been EJECTED from ringside! #WWENoMercy https://t.co/chDNlxlbdk

The Miz argued with the referee, which opened the door for Ziggler to hit a Superkick for the win. WWE shared a photo of Ziggler holding his newly won Intercontinental Championship:

WWE @WWE

HE'S DONE IT! @HEELZiggler remains on #SDLive as he comes a 5-TIME #ICChampion at #WWENoMercy! https://t.co/FwW65Ot0GE

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The Miz cut a more forlorn figure, courtesy of WWE Universe:

WWE Universe @WWEUniverse

"@mikethemiz is heartbroken..." - @JCLayfield #WWENoMercy https://t.co/APQGNYHDI8

Zack Ryder complimented the two wrestlers for their work in the ring:

Zack Ryder @ZackRyder

WHAT A MATCH! @HEELZiggler @mikethemiz #WWENoMercy

WrestlingInc.com thought the title was elevated as a result of the bout:

WrestlingINC.com @WrestlingInc

Kudos to both @HEELZiggler and @mikethemiz for a fantastic match. The IC Title now means more than it has in a long time. #WWENoMercy

Chris Mueller of Bleacher Report only wished the match had a different place on the card to give it the proper showcase:

Chris Mueller @BR_Doctor

Soooo, why wasn't Ziggler vs. Miz the main event? #NoMercy

The Miz and Ziggler had been at odds for several weeks leading up to No Mercy with the latter attempting to capture the IC Championship on multiple occasions to no avail.

Maryse interfered in their match at Backlash by spraying Ziggler in the eyes with perfume. While Ziggler was given a rematch, he was once again screwed out of an opportunity to win the belt when The Miz pulled the same trick as his wife.

That marked the continuation of a rough stretch for Ziggler, who was previously unsuccessful in challenging for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship when he lost to Dean Ambrose at SummerSlam.

With the defeats continuing to mount for the talented veteran, The Miz took some shots at his struggles and his career as a whole, according to WWE's official Twitter account:

WWE @WWE

'You were once good, maybe great ... but now you just lose ... and LOSE ... and LOSE!" - @MikeTheMiz to @HEELZiggler #SDLive https://t.co/ZVHFiPGgG3

The Miz was unwilling to grant Ziggler another rematch for the Intercontinental Championship, which led to a desperate move on the part of Ziggler.

In exchange for a title shot at No Mercy, Ziggler offered to put his career on the line.

The Hollywood A-Lister agreed to the stipulation and made it clear he fully intended to be the one responsible for Ziggler's WWE departure:

WWE @WWE

"If you're not willing to hang up your career ... I'LL hang it up FOR YOU!" - @MikeTheMiz to @HEELZiggler #WWENoMercy #SDLive https://t.co/Rb6qHlaj4S

While Ziggler had two brief cups of coffee as world champion, The Miz mocked his fellow Cleveland native for having an unfulfilled career highlighted by "what ifs."

The Miz bragged about defeating John Cena and retaining the WWE Championship in the main event of WrestleMania. He boasted about being a crossover who carved out a successful niche as an actor.

The Miz essentially claimed he was everything Ziggler could have been and wishes he would have become, which added even more heat to what was already a fierce rivalry.

Retirement stipulations are often scoffed at by fans since they're easy to book around, but The Miz's comments leading up to No Mercy added even more intrigue. He insisted that a loss by Ziggler wouldn't lead to him making the leap to Raw or NXT. A loss would mean Ziggler's definitive retirement from in-ring competition in WWE.

That seemingly pointed the arrow in favor of Ziggler coming out on top, but with Ziggler getting up there in age at 36, the possibility of him stepping away from the business wasn't outlandish, especially since he has enjoyed some outside success in stand-up comedy and as a Fox Business correspondent.

Despite that, Ziggler managed to come through when it mattered most. Although he finally got the better of his rival with everything hanging in the balance, however, their rivalry appears to be far from over.

The Miz and Ziggler have arguably been the most consistently entertaining part of WWE programming for the past several weeks, and with Ziggler winning and remaining in the fold, fans came out on the winning end as well since they will almost certainly get to see the continuation of their feud.

Listen to Ring Rust Radio for all of the hot wrestling topics. Catch the latest episode in the player below (warning: some language NSFW).

Follow @MikeChiari on Twitter.

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