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PHILADELPHIA — Mike Kanellis has felt the power — but not of love. Following an ill-gotten victory over Sami Zayn in his SmackDown LIVE debut, the love-struck Superstar felt the power of a kick to the face at WWE Battleground, suffering his first loss as a result.
The victory gives Zayn a much-needed measure of payback against Kanellis, while also proving that the lovebirds’ strategy — Maria Kanellis distracts; Mike capitalizes — is not without its weak points. Maria did, in fact, intervene in the match, saving her husband from a Sami tope and distracting Zayn long enough for Mike to clock him with a haymaker. The punch put Kanellis so firmly in the driver’s seat he was able to pause for a particularly gratuitous bit of PDA with his wife.
Sami, as is his proclivity, rallied, booting Mike in the sternum and finally executing the over-the-ropes dive that was disrupted earlier. The former NXT Champion encountered a brief roadblock when Maria used herself as a human shield for an exploder, but once the ref broke up the encounter, Zayn followed through on that move, too. The final heartbreak for Kanellis followed soon after as Zayn nailed him with a Helluva Kick for the win.
Maria & Mike may chalk it up as a loss for love itself, but in some ways, it’s fitting with what we’ve known for years about the power of love: It makes one man weep, and another man sing.