Daniel Bryan defeated John Cena to become the new WWE Champion in the heavily-anticipated main event of WWE SummerSlam, but a shocking turn of events led to Randy Orton leaving the event with the title belt.
WWE icon Triple H served as the trouble-shooting referee for the clash, which concluded with Bryan scoring a pin on Cena with a running kick.
Cena showed sportsmanship by shaking Bryan's hand, but the new champion's celebration was interrupted by Randy Orton. Orton announced that he would cash in his 'Money in the Bank' title match immediately.
Special referee Triple H then shocked the Los Angeles crowd by attacking Bryan and helping his long-time rival Orton secure a win for the second WWE Title change of the evening.
Orton's surprise appearance and title win led to a storm of reaction on social media, and among the live audience in attendance at WWE SummerSlam.
Bryan told Digital Spy going into WWE SummerSlam that he truly believed he could defeat Cena for the WWE Championship.
"Judging by the reaction... [this is] the match fans wanted to see," he said of the anticipation for the bout. "We've only clashed a couple of times in our career, and never on pay-per-view. In his mind it's a good, unique WWE Championship match for SummerSlam."
Bryan also received the backing of legendary WWE announcer Jim Ross in the lead-up to the event.
WWE SummerSlam was held this year at the Staples Centre in Los Angeles, CA.