Extreme Rules 2018 United States Championship Match: Jeff Hardy vs Shinsuke Nakamura winners, video highlights and analysis
- The match was everything unexpected and even featured a huge return at the end
Jeff Hardy and Shinsuke Nakamura had been scheduled to face each other for a while, but a dog biting Nakamura saw the match postponed to a later date. The two finally faced off against each other at the WWE Extreme Rules 2018 pay-per-view.
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Jeff Hardy made his entrance to a piping hot crowd, with the last match seeing Carmella beat Asuka again due to shenanigans and distractions from James Ellsworth. He danced his way to the ring with his face painted black and white.
Shinsuke Nakamura's theme song and antics on the way to the ring drew cheers from the crowd who were reluctant to applaud a heel.
Nakamura opened the bout with a low blow before the bell even rung when the referee had his back turned.
Hardy called for the bell despite struggling to stand up and told the referee that he was ready to take on Nakamura.
He was nowhere as ready as he needed to be, with Shinsuke Nakamura running at Hardy and hitting him with a quick Kinshasa. That was all that he needed to get the win over Hardy with a pinfall and became the new United States Champion.
Nakamura's celebrations were cut short when Randy Orton came out to a massive ovation from the crowd.
He looked at Nakamura who stood on the commentary table. He then turned to Hardy who was still prone in the ring and hit him with another kick to the crotch. Hardy writhed in pain and Nakamura stared in shock, while Orton then made his way out off the ring and to the back to stunned silence from the audience.
The bout shocked everyone from the beginning to end, and the match was short possibly due to Hardy's rumoured injuries. Orton's return and subsequent assault on Hardy took everyone by shock.