James Ellsworth’s quest to win the WWE world championship ended in defeat tonight (Oct. 18, 2016) when he was unable to beat AJ Styles in the main event of SmackDown Live from Denver, Colorado. We can only hope this isn’t goodbye.
Earlier in the evening, he gave an emotional interview to Renee Young:
Dean Ambrose lobbied General Manager Daniel Bryan to be the special guest referee again this week but he ended up having to settle for being the ring announcer and bellman. He used that opportunity to get involved in the match in little ways, like distracting Styles by saying they needed to take a commercial break, or selling Ellsworth merchandise on the titantron.
At one point, Styles and Ambrose played a game of catch with Ellsworth, with Styles throwing him out saying “he doesn’t deserve to be in here” and Ambrose throwing him back in saying “he does deserve this match.” The crowd responded to it with an “Ells-worth” chant.
Styles went to the top rope to admonish fans and that led to Ellsworth knocking him off, then hitting NO CHIN MUSIC that almost got a three count.
Styles got vicious when he went back on offense. Ambrose taunted him, leading to AJ unleashing a series of punches until the referee called for the bell. That meant that, yes, Ellsworth had again defeated Styles but he did not win the WWE world championship.