Stephanie McMahon def. Brie Bella

LOS ANGELES — They’re sisters, they’re reality television co-stars and, until SummerSlam, they were the best of friends. However, inside the sold-out STAPLES Center, the closer-than-close relationship between The Bella Twins proved to be the most stunning casualty in the brutal war between Brie Bella and Stephanie McMahon.

View photos of Nikki’s betrayal |  Full SummerSlam 2014 coverage

Before Nikki’s actions would ultimately change the complexion of both the Divas division and her own family, Stephanie strode to the ring with complete confidence, sporting ring gear that was more reminiscent of a power-hungry comic book supervillainess than WWE’s Chief Brand Officer. It was the Authority matriarch’s first match in more than a decade, with the utter humiliation of Brie Bella taking precedence over a mere in-ring victory. Dragging her smaller foe around the ring by her hair and stunning Brie with a wince-inducing DDT, Stephanie showed no signs of ring rust in the early goings of this intensely emotional confrontation.

Brie was, in time, able to capitalize on Stephanie’s overconfidence when she connected with a missile dropkick from the middle rope, a maneuver that brought the capacity crowd to its feet in a booming ovation. However, those cheers soon transformed to jeers when Triple H marched intently down the entrance ramp. The Authority would win the night, one way or another.

Stephanie McMahon def. Brie Bella

When Stephanie attempted to seal the win with a Pedigree — a move she had delivered to both Bella Twins two weeks earlier — Brie was able to reverse the maneuver into the “Yes!” Lock. The Billionaire Baroness seemed ready to tap out to the signature move made famous by Brie’s husband, Daniel Bryan. In an act of desperation, however, The Game yanked the referee under the bottom rope to the floor. Following this blatant interference, Brie scored a small victory for both herself and her husband when she knocked Triple H to the arena floor with a dropkick, standing over the prone COO with a defiant “Yes!” chant.

Meanwhile, in the ring, a reeling Stephanie McMahon found herself face-to-face with Nikki Bella, a Diva that has faced Authority-mandated punishments and unfair stipulations ever since Brie quit WWE in June. When Brie joined her sister in the ring for what appeared to be a two-on-one retaliation against Stephanie, Nikki shockingly assaulted her own twin. This jaw-dropping betrayal left Brie vulnerable to a Pedigree, which sealed the victory for Stephanie. 

Stephanie McMahon def. Brie Bella

Born out of Daniel Bryan’s year-long battle against The Authority, the rivalry between Stephanie and Brie escalated during the July 21, 2014, edition of Raw. That night, as Brie sat in the crowd at ringside to support Nikki, Stephanie antagonized and slapped Brie, prompting the “Total Divas” star to press charges and have The Billionaire Baroness arrested. Brie later agreed to drop the charges under two conditions: That she be reinstated as a WWE competitor, and that Stephanie face her at SummerSlam.

Six days before SummerSlam, Stephanie made what appeared to be a startling revelation about Brie Bella’s personal life. She introduced the WWE Universe to Megan Miller, Daniel Bryan’s physical therapist with whom he allegedly had an affair. Miller’s apparent admission prompted Brie to slap her and, just as Brie had Stephanie arrested, Miller pressed assault charges against the Bella Twin. Just days after Stephanie engineered her incarceration, Brie would have the chance for retribution against her real enemy in one of SummerSlam’s most hotly anticipated encounters. Unfortunately, one of Brie’s nemeses was closer than anyone could possibly believe.

Why would Nikki betray her own sister and align with The Authority? This is the question that plagued the WWE Universe as Stephanie and Triple H celebrated their conquest at The Biggest Party of the Summer with a prolonged kiss over Brie’s barely conscious form. Hollywood might be known for happy endings, but The Authority were the only ones smiling when this one was over.  

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Stephanie McMahon def. Brie Bella

LOS ANGELES — They’re sisters, they’re reality television co-stars and, until SummerSlam, they were the best of friends. However, inside the sold-out STAPLES Center, the closer-than-close relationship between The Bella Twins proved to be the most stunning casualty in the brutal war between Brie Bella and Stephanie McMahon.

View photos of Nikki’s betrayal |  Full SummerSlam 2014 coverage

Before Nikki’s actions would ultimately change the complexion of both the Divas division and her own family, Stephanie strode to the ring with complete confidence, sporting ring gear that was more reminiscent of a power-hungry comic book supervillainess than WWE’s Chief Brand Officer. It was the Authority matriarch’s first match in more than a decade, with the utter humiliation of Brie Bella taking precedence over a mere in-ring victory. Dragging her smaller foe around the ring by her hair and stunning Brie with a wince-inducing DDT, Stephanie showed no signs of ring rust in the early goings of this intensely emotional confrontation.

Brie was, in time, able to capitalize on Stephanie’s overconfidence when she connected with a missile dropkick from the middle rope, a maneuver that brought the capacity crowd to its feet in a booming ovation. However, those cheers soon transformed to jeers when Triple H marched intently down the entrance ramp. The Authority would win the night, one way or another.

Stephanie McMahon def. Brie Bella

When Stephanie attempted to seal the win with a Pedigree — a move she had delivered to both Bella Twins two weeks earlier — Brie was able to reverse the maneuver into the “Yes!” Lock. The Billionaire Baroness seemed ready to tap out to the signature move made famous by Brie’s husband, Daniel Bryan. In an act of desperation, however, The Game yanked the referee under the bottom rope to the floor. Following this blatant interference, Brie scored a small victory for both herself and her husband when she knocked Triple H to the arena floor with a dropkick, standing over the prone COO with a defiant “Yes!” chant.

Meanwhile, in the ring, a reeling Stephanie McMahon found herself face-to-face with Nikki Bella, a Diva that has faced Authority-mandated punishments and unfair stipulations ever since Brie quit WWE in June. When Brie joined her sister in the ring for what appeared to be a two-on-one retaliation against Stephanie, Nikki shockingly assaulted her own twin. This jaw-dropping betrayal left Brie vulnerable to a Pedigree, which sealed the victory for Stephanie. 

Stephanie McMahon def. Brie Bella

Born out of Daniel Bryan’s year-long battle against The Authority, the rivalry between Stephanie and Brie escalated during the July 21, 2014, edition of Raw. That night, as Brie sat in the crowd at ringside to support Nikki, Stephanie antagonized and slapped Brie, prompting the “Total Divas” star to press charges and have The Billionaire Baroness arrested. Brie later agreed to drop the charges under two conditions: That she be reinstated as a WWE competitor, and that Stephanie face her at SummerSlam.

Six days before SummerSlam, Stephanie made what appeared to be a startling revelation about Brie Bella’s personal life. She introduced the WWE Universe to Megan Miller, Daniel Bryan’s physical therapist with whom he allegedly had an affair. Miller’s apparent admission prompted Brie to slap her and, just as Brie had Stephanie arrested, Miller pressed assault charges against the Bella Twin. Just days after Stephanie engineered her incarceration, Brie would have the chance for retribution against her real enemy in one of SummerSlam’s most hotly anticipated encounters. Unfortunately, one of Brie’s nemeses was closer than anyone could possibly believe.

Why would Nikki betray her own sister and align with The Authority? This is the question that plagued the WWE Universe as Stephanie and Triple H celebrated their conquest at The Biggest Party of the Summer with a prolonged kiss over Brie’s barely conscious form. Hollywood might be known for happy endings, but The Authority were the only ones smiling when this one was over.