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AJ Styles will challenge Seth Rollins for the WWE World Heavyweight title at Night of Champions

The tournament to crown WWE’s new World Heavyweight champion continued on the May 12 SmackDown. The show had three matches to determine who will challenge Seth Rollins, who emerged as a finalist after Raw’s three matches earlier this week.

AJ Styles, Edge & Rey Mysterio’s first round Triple Threat opened the episode. The three veterans had the Knoxville, Tennessee crowd eating out of the palm of their hands as they worked a number of three men spots into the match (of course there were a few stretches were one man was out of the action for a bit, but not as many as you’d think — especially since one of the 40-something legends would be wrestling again tonight).

That man turned out to be Styles, who survived an Edgecator when he made it to the ropes as Mysterio swung in with a 6-1-9. AJ recovered as Edge countered something from Rey off the top, hitting the lucha legend with a Phenomenal Forearm.

The Phenomenal One was barely done celebrating when Sheamus, Bobby Lashley & United States champion Austin Theory entered for their first round Triple Threat. In this one, the vets stomped Theory down after he tried to bail at the bell, setting the tone early for more frequent one-on-one stretches in this one. But that’s all right, because that basically meant mini-banger after mini-banger after mini-banger.

In the last of those, Lashley reemerged from having been thrown into the steps to spear Sheamus after he hit a White Noise off the top on Theory. A-Town threw Lashley into the post to try to steal the pin, busting him open in the process. The Celtic Warrior kicked out, and broke up The All Might’s Hurt Lock on Theory with a Brogue Kick. But Bob recovered to throw Sheamus out of the ring, covering Theory to advance.

The TNA legends then clashed in the main event. Styles was obviously outmatched in the power department, but picked his spots for using his speed & agility advantage. He used that to target Lashley’s leg, softening him up for the calf crusher and taking a few weapons out of the big man’s arsenal.

It ended up being another noggin-first trip into the ring post that did the All Mighty in (his still-bleeding head actually made a couple trips past the turnbuckles in this one). Evading a spear allowed AJ to pop up on the ropes for another Phenomenal Forearm, and punch his ticket for a date with Rollins in Jeddah.

Get complete SmackDown results and full coverage of this week’s show right here.

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