It’s been a terrible, horrible, no-good, very bad summer for Kevin Owens, but it appears the former Universal Champion’s woes may be over. Not because he made good on his promise to leave Toronto with a title, mind you, but because KO’s fiercely contested bid for the Intercontinental Championship ended in a loss that left him so demoralized he up and quit on the spot.
The match came about in the first place because Seth Rollins had reinstituted his Intercontinental Title Open Challenge policy when it became clear former champion Dolph Ziggler was otherwise occupied. That brought out Owens, who was hungry for redemption after a Raw return that has not gone quite as he’d hoped. He gave a great fight, too, brutalizing The Architect’s arm and forcing him to fly on a clipped wing. When an agonizing submission and surprise Stunner failed to get the job done, however, KO got desperate with a last-ditch moonsault. Rollins dodged, hit the Stomp, and that was that.
Rather than accept his outstanding performance as a moral victory — to say nothing of Rollins’ post-match nod of respect and a “Kevin Owens” chant from the audience — Owens opted for a knee-jerk reaction of the highest order: After stewing in the ring for the entire commercial break, KO grabbed hold of a microphone and declared, “I quit.”