From the WWE Rumor Mill: Finish of big Battleground match changed mid match?
What's the story?
According to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, AJ Styles was never supposed to lose the match at Battleground against Kevin Owens and drop the US Championship to the "Prize Fighter". The finish was changed mid match, during the show.
In case you didn't know...
The report is primarily about Chris Jericho, who returned to WWE to film some episodes of Southpaw Regional Wrestling.
Jericho was in a triple threat match for the US Championship against Styles and Owens and the finish of the match saw Jericho lay down for AJ Styles, who regained the US Championship, the night after he lost it.
The reason for the hot-potato program that the title has been booked in, was cleared through this article.
The heart of the matter
Jericho made a routine visit to the SmackDown Live at Richmond, Virginia, not to appear on screen, but film an episode of Southpaw Regional Wrestling. He also wanted to record an interview with Breezango for Talk is Jericho.
Suddenly, he was in the main event match of the show, supporting Wrestling Observer's assumption that the finish of the Battleground match was changed. When the referee went down during the match, the finish went off the rails, according to this report by Wrestling Observer.
Jericho came to pop a rating and help the audience get to see AJ Styles win the championship on TV the night after, on SmackDown Live. The match that transpired was thankfully a very good one.
United States Champion AJ Styles defends his championship against Kevin Owens at SummerSlam, with SmackDown Live Commissioner Shane McMahon officiating the said contest, as a special guest referee.
As for Jericho, it is unclear when he will come back to SmackDown Live again.
I think this is mere speculation and nothing more. I believe that the two men have been booked in a program with weak finishes so that McMahon can step in and become the special guest referee.
The theory that has been outlined in this article is quite far fetched.