Wrestling fans continued to be treated to a weekend of returns after Brock Lesnar and Becky Lynch both made WWE comebacks at SummerSlam.
It has been a summer for seeing familiar faces step back into the squared circle, not least with CM Punk’s remarkable comeback with All Elite Wrestling on Friday night.
His comeback came after an eight-year absence from wrestling following a bitter and controversial departure from WWE.
Vince McMahon’s company, who had already welcomed back Goldberg, John Cena and Edge in 2021, saw Lesnar and Lynch add their names to the list with memorable cameos in Las Vegas.
Brock Lesnar appeared at the end of the night to confront Roman Reigns, the Universal Champion.
Reigns had just beaten Cena in a thrilling main event but was left retreating after Lesnar stepped into the RING to look him dead in the eye. The beast then hurled Cena around the ring for good measure after the show went off the air.
The Beast always turns heads when he performs in WWE, so his comeback is timely to say the least as the company looks for fresh storylines.
Lynch’s appearance almost shook the building to its foundations as a 50,000 strong crowd roared in approval – though they were left shocked as The Man swiftly defeated Bianca Belair for the SmackDown Women’s Championship.
It marked an unceremonious end to Belair’s successful reign, but there must be little doubt that even with Lynch’s arrival, her time will come again, and soon enough.
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There was an air of mystery around the Irish star’s victory due to the absence of Sasha Banks – who had been due to meet Belair in the night’s planned title match.
Rumours online had been swirling as to her status for the show, but WWE continued to promote the Belair/Banks match to the fullest – right up to the moment The Boss had been due to appear.
At that point they simply announced she wouldn’t be there – with Carmella oddly brought out as a decoy opponent of sorts for Belair before Lynch stepped into the fray.
A report from Fightful stated that: “Sasha Banks' absence from Smackdown was not planned as a part of the story.”
It added: “Those we've heard from say they haven't seen Sasha Banks backstage at all today [Saturday], though that is hardly a confirmation of her not being in the building.”
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It proved to be a wild night of action, with Edge also defeating Seth Rollins in one of the matches of the night.
The Hall of Famer went back to his roots with an entrance inspired by The Brood – part of one of his earliest WWE characters.
Among the other bouts, WWE Champion Bobby Lashley defeated Goldberg, while Randy Orton and Riddle became Raw tag team champions after beating AJ Styles and Omos.
Charlotte Flair also won gold, becoming Raw Women’s Champion after defeating Nikki A.S.H. and Rhea Ripley.
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