Finn Balor Beats Bray Wyatt at WWE SummerSlam 2017

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistAugust 21, 2017

Credit: WWE.com

The heated rivalry between Finn Balor and Bray Wyatt came to a head Sunday at SummerSlam, resulting in demon Balor leaving Brooklyn, New York, victorious.

The addition of Balor's demon persona added a welcome addition to a match that most felt met expectations:

B/R's WWE Twitter account already has an idea for Balor's WrestleMania 34 opponent:

Balor has struggled to gain his footing and become a consistent force on Raw since his return from injury the night after WrestleMania, but he has been back in the spotlight since Wyatt decided to target him.

Although The Eater of Worlds sent a warning shot in Balor's direction a few months ago, it wasn't until recently that he officially went after the first-ever universal champion.

During a No Disqualification match against Elias, Balor was attacked by Wyatt, which cost him the win and set the wheels in motion for their rivalry.

Both Wyatt and Balor are known for their mind games, and they were on full display throughout the build toward SummerSlam.

At one point, Balor interrupted Wyatt during an in-ring promo and turned his back to The New Face of Fear. Even so, he laid Wyatt out with a Pele Kick and got some measure of retribution.

That cat-and-mouse game continued in subsequent weeks with Balor and Wyatt utilizing their ability to control the lights in an effort to confuse the other.

Among the most intriguing storylines contained within the feud, however, was the idea that it could potentially lead to the return of Balor's demon persona.

That became a reality on the go-home episode of Raw when Wyatt beat Balor in a match and then poured a blood-like liquid on him. Balor then declared that the demon was making its return at SummerSlam.

Balor became the demon for pay-per-view matches during his successful run in NXT, but the character has largely been absent on the main roster.

Aside from debuting it on an episode of Raw roughly one year ago, its only other appearance came at SummerSlam 2016 when Balor defeated Seth Rollins to win the Universal Championship.

An injury suffered in that match landed Balor on the shelf for several months, and although he has yet to fully return to that level, a rivalry with Wyatt may be the stepping stone he needs to become a title contender again in the near future.

It had been a while since Balor picked up a meaningful win, but now that he has a victory against Wyatt under his belt, he may finally have the momentum required to move back up the card.

      

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