In a match that lasted less than one minute in length, Shinsuke Nakamura has become the WWE United States Champion at Extreme Rules.
Rumors Jeff Hardy has been suffering from injuries have been prevalent over the past few weeks and Nakamura, after a series of matches with AJ Styles, was unable to capture the WWE Championship. The combination of potentially needing to give Hardy a break and put a title on Nakamura to keep him relevant created the perfect storm and Nakamura is the new champ heading into SummerSlam.
The entrances were as expected with Hardy all done up in his signature face paint and Nakamura entering to his iconic theme, but the introductions lasted longer than the contest itself as "The King of Strong Style" low-blowed Hardy before the bell rang. After being checked on by the referee, Hardy insisted the match be started and the bell rung, only to find himself on the receiving end of a Nakamura-delivered Kinshasa. A quick cover gave the challenger the championship.
This marks the first title for Nakamura on the main roster in WWE but he couldn't celebrate for long. Upon the completion of the match, Randy Orton made a surprise return to WWE and slowly walked down to the ring, shocking everyone in the WWE Universe, including Nakamura who assumed Orton was targeting the new champion.
Nakamura fled from the ring, stood atop the announce table and Orton entered slowly staring down the new champion. But in a surprise twist, The Viper turned his attention toward a defenseless Hardy whom Orton kicked in the groin for good measure.
What this means for Orton is uncertain and whether he's turned heel is unknown but it appears Orton and Nakamura will be involved in a storyline leading up to SummerSlam.