WWE Payback 2023 results and news: Seth Rollins vs. Shinsuke Nakamura

Originally published at WWE Payback 2023 results and news: Seth Rollins vs. Shinsuke Nakamura

  • WWE Payback 2023 — Saturday, September 3rd at the PGP Paints Arena, Pittsburgh, PA
  • On commentary: Michael Cole and Corey Graves

The steel cage began to lower as the kick-off show ended, signaling that Becky Lynch vs. Trish Stratus would open the show.

Michael Cole and Corey Graves welcomed viewers and stated that the PGP Paints Arena was sold out.

Steel Cage Match: Becky Lynch vs. Trish Stratus

The video package promoted the match as “Two generational talents settle the score.” Tiffany Stratton was shown in the crowd holding her NXT Women’s Championship as Trish Stratus entered the ring.

Lynch dominated the first few minutes, landing strikes and hitting the Bexploder suplex, before Stratus drove her opponent headfirst into the cage. This led to a prolonged period with Stratus in charge.

Lynch turned the tide and almost locked in the DisarmHer. Trish attempted to climb out of the cage but was caught by Lynch, who got a near-fall from a powerbomb.

Stratus then grabbed a near-fall from the Widow’s Peak. As the pace quickened, Lynch hit a Twist of Fate for a two-count, followed by taking the Stratusfaction, again for a near-fall.

At some point, Stratus appeared to take a hard knock to the forehead as a large bump developed.

The two wound up battling on top of the cage wall, with Lynch managing to deliver a Superplex from the top rope. This led to a huge near-fall for Becky.

As Lynch tried to climb out of the cage, Stratus headed for the door, where Zoey Stark was waiting to help pull her friend out. All of this allowed Stark into the cage, which Lynch seemed fine with, as it was she who slammed the door shut.

Becky delivered the Manhandle slam to Stark. She then hit another from the top rope to Stratus, allowing her to get the win.

#ThankYouZoey 😲@ZoeyStarkWWE has ended her alliance with @trishstratuscom at #WWEPayback! pic.twitter.com/qnymMJbQdO

— WWE (@WWE) September 3, 2023

After the match, Stark and Stratus argued. Trish hit Zoey and ordered her out of the cage. Stark then shut the cage door before hitting the Z360 on Stratus.

Winner: Becky Lynch via pinfall

John Cena Promo

Cena’s music played and he came to the ring, announced as the “greatest of all time.” He said that he had never been a host before. He wanted to make the show “special,” so announced that he would be the special guest referee for LA Knight vs. The Miz.

The host of #WWEPayback @JohnCena is HERE! pic.twitter.com/emZtxjp0sy

— WWE (@WWE) September 3, 2023

On hearing this, The Miz came to the ring to accuse Cena of pandering to the audience. He told Cena he sucked as a host. Cena asked The Miz for advice on being a better host. Miz told him to get more involved, reminding Cena that he had taken part in matches at WrestleMania when he was host.

Cena took this as an OK to be the special guest referee and donned the striped shirt as LA Knight’s music hit.

LA Knight vs. The Miz

There were chants of “LA Knight” and “Tiny balls” before the bell rang. The match began with The Miz reluctant to enter the ring. He then started making his way to the back. Knight went after him. Once they were back in the ring, they exchanged strikes.

Knight almost hit the Blunt Force Trauma but Miz escaped to the outside. There was no respite as Knight went after him, knocking his head into the announcers’ table. Miz managed to reverse this, though, tripping Knight headfirst into the desk.

Knight recovered and threw Miz into the timekeeper’s area, before the action returned to the ring. Cena began to assert his authority at this point, physically separating Knight and Miz after counting to five when things got physical against the ropes.

The back-and-forth that followed was rather basic, and the crowd went a little quiet until Knight rallied. Miz would then hit two DDTs in a row for a nearfall.

As Knight recovered, he managed to hit a twisting, draping DDT on The Miz, but only for a two-count.

Cena would again become involved as he argued with The Miz and both competitors almost collided with him.

Finally, Knight got the elbow drop and Blunt Force Trauma for the win.

After the match, Cena raised Knight’s hand.


Special Guest Referee @JohnCena gives a show of respect to @RealLAKnight at #WWEPayback! pic.twitter.com/mwwegvjosS

— WWE (@WWE) September 3, 2023

Winner: LA Knight via pinfall

United States Championship: Rey Mysterio (c) vs. Austin Theory

Rey Mysterio came out accompanied by the LWO, who were wearing “Pittsburgh World Order” T-shirts. The match was sponsored by Cinnamon Toast Crunch, which was promoted on the Titan Tron and the ringside screens throughout. Even when the product logo was not visible on the screens, it appeared as a chyron.

As the match picked up pace after the early going, Theory teased the mask removal. Rey would escape and hit some of his trademark offense. He missed a 619 attempt though, which would lead to a clean-looking sit-out powerbomb.

#USChampion @reymysterio has one tough task in defending against former champion @_Theory1 at #WWEPayback! pic.twitter.com/q4Pe81gCL3

— WWE (@WWE) September 3, 2023

After Rey finally hitting the 619, Theory got his knees up to counter, but Mysterio escaped the A-Town Down attempt and counter into a pinfall to retain his title.

Winner: Rey Mysterio via pinfall

Tiffany’s Tittle Tattle

As Becky Lynch was being interviewed backstage, she was interrupted by NXT Women’s Champion Tiffany Stratton. Stratton apologized for having “mistakenly” referred to Lynch as a former NXT Women’s Champion. Lynch told her to concentrate on her upcoming match and added, “Maybe I’ll see you soon.”

#WWENXT Women's Champion @tiffstrattonwwe just couldn't resist paying @BeckyLynchWWE a visit at #WWEPayback! pic.twitter.com/ccRcKny0ZU

— WWE (@WWE) September 3, 2023

Undisputed WWE Tag Team Championships (Steel City Street Fight): Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn (c) vs. The Judgment Day (Damian Priest & Finn Balor)

The action began in the ring but soon spilled outside. As the competitors search for plunder beneath the ring, Finn Balor grabbed a Pittsburgh Steelers ‘Terrible Towel’ and stomped it underfoot, much to the crowd’s displeasure.

Sami and Kevin soon took charge, with KO removing his T-shirt to reveal and Terry Funk tank top. The pair draped a trash can on Finn Balor and whacked him with kendo sticks.

Another big crowd reaction would follow as Owens and Zayn set up a table by the ring.

Led by the power of Damian Priest, the Judgment Day grabbed back the momentum with the use of another trash can and some steel chairs. As Balor pounded Zayn, Priest chucked chair after chair into the ring.

The upper hand swung from one team to the other as chair shots rained down.

The action would then spill out of the ring once more, and out came Dominik Mysterio to assist, helping to throw Zayn and Owens over a barrier.

As the Judgment Day celebrated prematurely, Sami and a bloodied Kevin Owens re-emerged wearing Pittsburgh Penguins jerseys and wielding hockey sticks.

A big near-fall soon followed as Sami Zayn delivered a Blue Thunder Bomb to Balor on a stack of folded steel chairs.

Damian Priest came to the rescue, slamming Zayn onto chairs that had been set up earlier. Owens broke up the pin attempt by throwing yet another chair at Priest.

Priest and Balor then double-teamed Owens deep into the crowd. Zayn would soon appear and helped to take out the Judgment Day with the help of the kick-off show desk.

At this point, Dominik Mysterio reappeared but was taken care of by Owens, who got him onto a table and then hit a Swanton from arena railings above. The “holy shit” chants that followed felt well-earned.

😲😲😲😲😲😲@FightOwensFight delivers the HITZ at #WWEPayback!!!@penguins pic.twitter.com/dhQ2S0SnTN

— WWE (@WWE) September 3, 2023

Back in the ring, Zayn was about to hit Balor with the Helluva Kick but was intercepted by Priest with a trash can. Zayn recovered enough to deliver an exploder suplex to Priest and knock Balor through the ringside table.

Just as it looked like Zayn and Owens were set to wrap things up, out came JD McDonagh to help the Judgment Day.

Owens took care of him, but then Rhea Ripley speared Owens through the barricade.

Back inside the ropes, Balor missed the Coup de Grâce on Zayn, who went for the Helluva Kick. At this point, Dominik Mysterio blasted Zayn in the head with the Money in the Bank briefcase, allowing Balor to roll Sami up for the pin.

ALL CHAMPIONS RISE in The Judgment Day!@RheaRipley_WWE @ArcherofInfamy @FinnBalor @DomMysterio35#WWEPayback pic.twitter.com/fkY0wJ7QQq

— WWE (@WWE) September 3, 2023

Winners: Judgment Day via pinfall.

The Grayson Waller Effect with Cody Rhodes

Waller interrupted Cody as he was about to deliver the “What do you want to talk about?” Waller added that he had heard that Rhodes had a big announcement and had “begged” to be on his show. He referred to Cody as “kid.”

Cody called him a graduate from “hip-toss class” and added that he knew what these segments were like. Waller said he would not fight.

Cody said he had seen a wrong that he wanted righted and used all the power he had to correct it. He then introduced Jey Uso as the newest member of the Raw roster.

Waller said it was a huge scoop as Cody made his way to the back. The Aussie then ran down Jey but got floored by a superkick mid-sentence.

"Main Event" Jey Uso gives @GraysonWWE a viral moment at #WWEPayback!

Thanks, @CodyRhodes!! pic.twitter.com/TmOD5DsbXc

— WWE (@WWE) September 3, 2023

Women’s World Championship: Rhea Ripley (c) vs. Raquel Rodriguez

The match began in competitive fashion, with Ripley unable to outpower Rodriguez. After several minutes, Rodriguez managed to knock Ripley onto her back.

Ripley hit Rodriguez with a running dropkick but did not even attempt the pin, instead continuing the punishment with kicks and clubbing blows.

Even as things looked grim for Rodriguez, she kicked out of a pinning attempt at one, and powered out of a submission attempt, managing to throw Ripley across the ring.

Another running dropkick from Rhea followed, followed by more strikes. Rodriguez rallied with a series of kicks, blows, and a fall-away slam. She also managed a delayed vertical suplex on Ripley. A spinning corkscrew elbow would only yield a two-count, though.

When the action spilled outside the ring, Rodriguez got the upper hand, throwing Ripley into the barricade and then the ring post.

When the competitors were back inside the ropes, Dominik Mysterio arrived and tried to pull Rhea out of the ring. Rodriguez was able to deal with Dom but the distraction was enough for Ripley to hit the Riptide for the pin to retain her title.

It's @DomMysterio35!!!#WWEPayback pic.twitter.com/saSqMDIBmT

— WWE (@WWE) September 3, 2023

Winner: Rhea Ripley via pinfall

Cena can see The Judgment Day

John Cena, channeling Lance Catamaran, interviewed Finn Balor and Damian Priest, who told him that brothers sometimes fight but now they were on the same page.

While paying homage to his hero Lance Catamaran, @JohnCena interviews the NEW Undisputed WWE Tag Team Champions @FinnBalor & @ArcherofInfamy at #WWEPayback! pic.twitter.com/kH4pkyr9Wg

— WWE (@WWE) September 3, 2023

World Heavyweight Championship: Seth Rollins (c) vs. Shinsuke Nakamura

After Rollins entered and got his now-customary hero’s welcome with the crowd singing his entrance theme, a terrific anime-style promo for Nakamura aired.

.@ShinsukeN vows to take the World Heavyweight Title from @WWERollins TONIGHT at #WWEPaybackpic.twitter.com/4MfaMGwfoa

— WWE (@WWE) September 2, 2023

As Nakamura made his entrance, the camera showed Keiji Muto (The Great Muta) sitting in the front row.

Graves noted that Rollins was wearing pinstriped tights as a subtle nod to Windham Rotunda’s ‘Fiend’ gear.

The match began with some very smooth catch-style wrestling. This escalated into the two beginning to use more of their trademark high-paced maneuvers.

Soon, the action would spill outside the ring, marking the start of Nakamura punishing Rollins’ back. Shinsuke threw Seth into the announcers’ desk and then the barricade. Back in the ring, he locked on a Boston Crab, further targeting Seth’s back.

Seth kicked out of several pinning attempts, but this phase of the match was marked by Nakamura systematically breaking down Seth’s back.

Rollins rallied and got Nakamura onto the ropes. However, selling the weakened back, instead of a superplex, he hit a hurricanrana.

Soon after, Seth hit a frog splash for a two-count, while selling the back. He then started yelling and slapping himself to get an adrenaline rush, as Corey Graves would explain.

However, Rollins’ attempt at The Stomp would fail, leading to another period with Nakamura targeting the back.

An attempt at the Kinshasa knee strike from Nakamura would be intercepted with a superkick by Rollins.

A triangle submission was applied by Nakamura, with Seth escaping through a sit-out powerbomb. He had no energy to attempt the pin, however.

The exhausted pair then began exchanging strikes. Rollins hit an enziguri but it left both men lying on the mat.

Is @ShinsukeN's plan paying off in this #WorldTitle match at #WWEPayback? pic.twitter.com/GDJ4xjOe63

— WWE (@WWE) September 3, 2023

As Rollins gained some energy, he made for the corner ropes. Nakamura caught him and delivered an avalanche slam from the second rope. However, he only got a two-count.

Straight afterward, Nakamura headed for the opposite corner to deliver a Kinshasa but Rollins collapsed. Shinsuke went over and delivered a series of kicks to the back.

Rollins managed to escape and deliver a Pedigree. It was not enough, but he soon managed a Stomp for the pin to retain his title.

Winner: Seth Rollins via pinfall

Full Results:

  • Steel Cage Match: Becky Lynch def. Trish Stratus
  • LA Knight def. The Miz
  • United States Championship: Rey Mysterio (c) def. Austin Theory
  • Undisputed WWE Tag Team Championships (Steel City Street Fight): The Judgment Day def. Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn (c)
  • Women’s World Championship: Rhea Ripley (c) def. Raquel Rodriguez
  • World Heavyweight Championship: Seth Rollins (c) def. Shinsuke Nakamura

Think I’m the only one who watched this, but here goes… Best episode of Raw I’ve seen in years.

Some really good matches, but never felt like I was watching anything important, even when they flipped the tag belt.

They got me for a second at the end with how long the camera lingered on Rollins unable to stand up after his match. Thought there was a cash-in coming (I even stayed through the video package just in case). Whether it was intentional or not, turns out Rollins is just a pro who remembers to keep selling after the bell rings.

1 Like

Really wanted Nakamura to take this…

That match was all Seth thought. Nakamura isn’t the same as his NJPW run

Nakamura: “Finally, I’m in the main event and it’s against Rollins. Time to bring back New Japan Shinsuke.”

WWE: “It’s a one-and-done on an under-promoted B show.”

Nakamura: “Oh… nevermind. Is there any good surfing in Pittsburgh?”


Looks like I may have been wrong about the “one-and-done” part. This also explains the Rollins selling that I mentioned above.

1 Like

I really enjoyed the cage match and the tag match. Main event was good, but there was zero belief in my mind that the title was going to flip, so I never got into any of the near falls or finishes. Very good show in ring, but if you missed it you didnt miss anything special.