WWE Battleground Kickoff Show
The Kickoff Show opens with the expert panel, consisting of The Miz, Titus O’Neil, Tensai and Josh Matthews breaking down tonight’s main matches.
After some match-breakdowns, we go to the lounge with Renee Young. Young runs down some interactive social media features as well as a poll on the best couple in WWE history.
Back to the panel, we get some more breakdowns of the rest of tonight’s WWE Battleground card.
We shoot to a live interview with Paul Heyman and Ryback. Heyman talks about how CM Punk is a bully and how his “big, bad, beautiful Ryback” will put an end to the bullying tonight.
From there we shoot inside the arena where we see some fans buying merchandise. Then we go to the announce booth where the PPV commentary team of JBL, Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler introduce us to tonight’s show. They reveal that the “Battleground Hardcore Rules” match for the World Heavyweight Championship between Alberto Del Rio and Rob Van Dam will open the PPV portion of tonight’s card.
Kickoff Show Match: Damien Sandow vs. Dolph Ziggler
Sandow cuts a promo, quoting Benjamin Franklin, on his way to the ring. Sandow carries his Money In The Bank briefcase to the ring and talks about how he’s going to “decimate” another former MITB briefcase winner, Dolph Ziggler. Sandow talks about cashing in his briefcase tonight after the “Battleground Hardcore Rules” match between Del Rio and Van Dam. “And for that …you’re welcome,” concludes Sandow.
Ziggler’s music hits and the fans in Buffalo rise to their feet and pop loud for his ring-walk. Ziggler makes his way to the ring as the announcers do some more work selling tonight’s pay-per-view. We have just a tad under 19 minutes left in the Kickoff Show as the Sandow-Ziggler match is about to get underway.
The two lock up as a “let’s go Sandow” chant breaks out among some hardcore fans at ringside. Sandow is controlling Ziggler early on. The PPV announce team continue to hype the fact that Sandow may cash in his briefcase tonight. Sandow knocks Ziggler down and bows at him, yelling his “you’re welcome” catchphrase at him to add insult to injury. A “Ziggler, Ziggler” chant breaks out as Ziggler hits a beautiful dropkick to turn the offensive tide in the match.
Ziggler continues to beat up Sandow and play to the crowd as the “Twitter scroll” begins running on the bottom of the screen, led by a Triple H tweet wishing WWE Hall Of Famer Bruno Sammartino a happy birthday. Meanwhile, Ziggler hits the “heart stopper” series of elbow drops on Sandow. The announce team remind us to vote in the poll for the best power couple in WWE history. Sandow throws Ziggler over the top and onto the floor as we head to a mid-match commercial.
We return from commercial and Ziggler is in the middle of rolling Sandow up for a pinfall attempt. He only gets two and Sandow is quick to return to his feet and clothesline Ziggler down, killing his offensive momentum and regaining control of the match. We have 14 minutes remaining in the Kickoff Show as Sandow suplexes Ziggler down for a nearfall. We get a super-slo-mo replay of Sandow clotheslining Ziggler. Pretty cool stuff. Ziggler with a backslide attempt, but he only gets two.
Ziggler and Sandow are trading punches now. Sandow hits a knee to the belly of Ziggler to slow him down. Sandow charges at Ziggler but Ziggler side-steps him and Sandow nearly crashes to the floor. Sandow catches himself and runs to the top rope. He comes down with a forearm attempt but Ziggler caught him coming down. Both guys are down now as the referee begins his double-count. Ziggler is back to his feet first. Sandow is up. Sandow runs at Ziggler but Ziggler avoids him and nails him with a huge running clothesline. Ziggler follows up with a splash in the corner and Ziggler is firmly in control of the offense. Neckbreaker by Ziggler as his fast-paced comeback is finally settling down. Sandow cuts Ziggler off with a neckbreaker for a nearfall. 11 minutes left in the Kickoff Show as the match continues.
Sandow kicks at the knee of Ziggler and hits a flipping neckbreaker for another nearfall. We’re told “#WWEBattleground” is trending worldwide right now. Lawler jokes that Cole blocks people a lot on Twitter. Ziggler hits the “Fameasser” on Sandow, but only manages to get a two when attempting to pin him. Ziggler runs at Sandow, going for a Zig-Zag but Sandow avoids it. Sandow is starting to get frustrated now, as he throws a bit of a temper tantrum after failing to get a three-count on Ziggler yet again. Sandow with a series of knees to the mid-section of Ziggler. Sandow is selling a knee injury out of nowhere. He pulls down the knee pad. Ziggler nails Sandow in the knee and hits him with the Zig-Zag. 1-2-3. Ziggler wins the Kickoff Show match.
Winner: Dolph Ziggler