Backlash Review

Photo credit via WWE

Last night history was made for the SmackDown brand because it was the first pay per view of the new era. Backlash many quality matches I will provide my thoughts, analysis, and the results of the top 3 matches.

1) New Champions

The show was filled with his historic moments crowning three new champions for the SmackDown brand. I was surprised that the women’s match started off the show it should have been kept towards the middle of the pay per view. The rules of the Six-Pack Challenge were simple six women would battle each other and the last women standing would be crowned the first ever SmackDown Women’s Champion.

It was complete chaos as every woman fought for themselves Naomi pinned Alexa Bliss, Natalya made Naomi tapped out to the Sharpshooter and then Nikki Bella eliminated Natalya. It was down to three woman once again during the match there was no love lost between Nikki and Carmella due to their interactions leading up to the match. Carmella shocked the world when she eliminated Nikki Bella via a roll up pin. It was down to the two women Becky and Carmella; Becky Lynch unleashed multiple suplexes that were followed by her finisher the Dis-arm-her. Carmella had no choice but to tap out and Becky Lynch was crowned the first ever SmackDown Women’s champion.

SmackDown Tag Team Champions

Heath Slater journey to a SmackDown contract has been very exciting. At the WWE draft that took place two months ago, Heath Slater was not drafted to the RAW or SmackDown brand. Heath Slater was put in weekly matches but always he came up short. At Backlash, Slater had a chance to change his fortune if he along with his tag team partner Rhyno defeated the Usos to gain a SmackDown contract in addition to being crowned the first ever SmackDown tag team Champions along with Rhyno.

Jimmy and Jey Uso made quick work of The Hype Bros in a second chance challenge earlier in the night. Even though The Uso had more tag experience than the unlikely duo of Slater and Rhyno. However, Slater and Rhyno have seemed to have found magic as a team. All it took was a Gore to change Heath Slater life forever. After the match, Slater was very emotional as expected and promised his Beulah a double-wide trailer which was very comical.

Main event

It was the main event that everybody was waiting for it was AJ Styles against Dean Ambrose for the WWE World Championship. The outcome of the match had serious ramifications for the future of SmackDown.

These two heavyweights had an instant classic and this is not a difficult task when AJ Styles in the ring. AJ Styles used questionable methods to get the win Dean Ambrose attempted the Dirty Deeds DDT. However, when the referee was not looking AJ Styles delivered a low blow with his leg followed by a Styles Clash for the win and he became the new WWE World Championship. This win AJ Styles has now cemented his legacy because he has now held the WWE World Champion, IWGP Heavyweight Champion, TNA Heavyweight Champion and NWA Heavyweight Champion.

2) Showing off

I thought that if it was not for the main event this would be the best match of the entire night. For weeks leading up to this pay-per-view confrontation, the outspoken Miz complained that SmackDown LIVE wasn’t showing him the respect he deserved as champion. The Miz showdown on Taking Smack one on one encounter with Daniel Bryan. Once again The Miz showcased his brilliance before the match asking for a raise because he is putting SmackDown on the map.

The match really showed off both the Miz and Dolph Ziggler skills in the ring both wrestlers were beating the living hell out of each other. The Miz pulled out all the stops to pick up the win and retain his intercontinental championship. The Miz got assistance from his wife Maryse when she sprayed something in The Showoff’s face, which was followed by the Skull-Crushing Finale to steal a win over Dolph Ziggler.

3) New direction

Last night The Usos made their debut since they turned heels on American Alpha this past SmackDown. The Uso have always been entertaining as a tag team throughout their career winning the WWE Tag Team Champions twice in the past. However, the transition to bad guys for the Usos feels very nature fans can tell with their current change in altitude they are 100 perfect invested. I love the fact that they have done away with old traditions including their colourful attire, face paint, flying moves, and pyro. In exchange, they now wear all black attire with hoodie zipper jackets which I love.

Overall I enjoyed this pay per view but I felt like it was another episode of SmackDown. In addition having Kane take on, Bray Wyatt was pointless because Orton suffered an undisclosed injury. I ran a poll on Twitter and this pay per view got mixed reviews. I would give Backlash an 8/10 because it was entertaining due to all the new champions that were crowned.

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Backlash Preview

Image result for WWE backlash 2016 official poster

This Sunday marks the first pay-per-view Backlash in the new era of the WWE and the SmackDown brand. It will be difficult for Backlash live up or surpass this past Summerslam I will provide my thoughts, analysis for this overall card.

Intercontinental Championship

Dolph Ziggler vs. The Miz w/Maryse

This match will feature two of the most underrated workers in the WWE as The Miz looks to defend his Intercontinental Championship against Dolph Ziggler. Fans can criticize The Miz all they want, but he has the ability to elevate the Intercontinental Championship and he draws significant hate. This Sunday at Backlash will mark the 160 days as a champion for the A-Lister. The Miz’s star power has never been this high throughout his career ever since that very memorable shoot on Daniel Bryan last month.

Dolph Ziggler will look to rebound after he failed to capture the WWE World Championship against Dean Ambrose at SummerSlam. On this past episode of Talking Smack Dolph Ziggler made an appearance, he stated he will once again showcase why he is the best in the ring. These two have had quite a history in the past with a series of great matches. I envision Dolph Ziggler pulling out the win however The Miz will retain his Intercontinental Championship with the help of Maryse.

SmackDown Women’s Champion

Six-Pack Challenge

At Backlash history will be made when SmackDown will crown the first SmackDown Women’s Champion. It will be a Six-Pack challenge featuring Becky Lynch, Nikki Bella, Natalya, Naomi, Alexa Bliss and Carmella. The SmackDown Live General Manager, Daniel Bryan explained that it will be an elimination match, therefore, the last women standing will be crowned champion.

SmackDown has done an excellent job at developing a deep Women’s division. Now five women in this match are established but the one woman that blew me away with her development is Carmella. Carmella needed to turn heel and be different to stay out of Enzo and big Cass shadow. Carmella has made quite an easy transition as a heel and I love the fact that she attacked Nikki Bella on Taking Smack. This attack gave her credibility in addition she be picked her biggest win in her young career making Nikki Bella tap out in a six women match this past SmackDown.

This is an extremely difficult match to predict because you can make a case for each woman to win. The obvious choice is the longest reigning Divas Champion Nikki Bella but giving her the does no good in the long run. To be honest, I can’t see Natalya, Naomi or Bliss winning the SmackDown Women’s Champion.

The perfect scenario in this situation is that Becky Lynch needs the SmackDown Women’s Championship, in order to finally her the momentum she truly deserves. However, I would not be surprised if the WWE gives the SmackDown Women’s Championship to Carmella.

Bray Wyatt vs. Randy Orton

I do not know to expect between Bray Wyatt and the Apex predator Randy Orton. This match developed when Bray Wyatt sent an open challenge to Orton and he accepted Bray challenge. The master of the mind games Bray Wyatt sent Orton one of his cryptic messages. He stated that Orton is a just a normal man that can feel pain and suffering just like everybody else. This is another toss up and the match can, either way, however, a win for Orton does him no and Bray is in a desperate need for a win.

Smackdown Tag Team Championship tournament

Another momentum for the new era of SmackDown Daniel Bryan and Shane McMahon announced that there would be new WWE tag titles, in an eight-team tournament, there were weekly matches on SmackDown. The finals would take place at Backlash.

The real story of this tournament is that Heath Slater has been entertaining showcasing his comical skills. Heath Slater was battling week after week on both RAW and RAW. After weeks of being unsuccessful Slater was given an opportunity by Commissioner Shane McMahon and General Manager Daniel Bryan to take part in the tag team tournament, provided he could find a partner. Slater was successful and he formed unlikely tag team convincing Rhyno to team with him. However in order to get a SmackDown Live contract only if he and Rhyno were to pull off a miracle and win the entire tournament.

Against all odds, The One Man Band Heath Slater and The Man Beast Rhyno made it to the final round. They destroyed their competition The Headbangers in round 1 and The Hype Bros in round 2. It looked like American Alpha was destined for the finals of the tournament. American Alpha made quick work of Breezango to nobody surprise this set up an intriguing match which involved   The Usos in the semi-finals of the tournament. After American Alpha shocked the world once they defeated the Usos in record time. Jimmy and Jey Uso snapped and they brutally attacked Chad Gable, injuring him and preventing American Alpha from competing at Backlash.

On Talking Smack, Bryan and Shane McMahon announced that The Usos will take on The Hype Bros. The winners would face off at Backlash Slater and Rhyno later on in the finals. I see The Usos getting past The Hype Bros very easy and booking their ticket the finals of the tournament. I envision that Jason Jordan one-half of American Alpha will screw the Usos out of the WWE Tag Team Championship as revenge for taking out his tag team partner in Chad Gable.  Heath Slater and Rhyno will make history and become the first ever SmackDown Tag Team Champions. In addition, it sets up a feud between American Alpha and The Usos once Chad Gable returns from his injury.

Main Event
WWE Championship
AJ Styles vs. Dean Ambrose

This will be a compelling main event as AJ Styles has all the momentum in the world right now AJ Styles is 2-0 against John Cena he shifts his focus on the WWE World Champion Dean Ambrose.The Phenomenal One fought off Dolph Ziggler and defeated him last month on SmackDown to ensure that the title match would remain a one-on-one contest. AJ Styles have made a quite an impact without The Club on SmackDown and he has earned a new trademark the face that runs the place.

Dean Ambrose on the other side has been a competitive champion defending his championship against anyone. Ambrose latest title defense was against “The Showoff” Dolph Ziggler at Summerslam he survived. However, at Backlash he faces his toughest challenge in AJ Styles. Ambrose will do whatever it takes to retain his championship and he will be successful.

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The KO Show

Photo credit courtesy via WWE

There was an overwhelming feeling of disappointment when Finn Balor suffered a shoulder injury at this past SummerSlam this past Sunday night. It’s unfortunate because he won the first ever WWE Universal Champion, but the next day on RAW he had to give up the championship due to the injury.

The common saying in wrestling is that regardless, of what happens the show must go on. This gave four men an opportunity to change their fate and the landscape of the WWE and providing with an opportunity to be crowned the new WWE Champion. It was a fatal 4-way elimination match involving Big Cass, Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins and Kevin Owens the last man still standing would be crowned the new Universal Champion. I thought that this match really saved RAW because it the rest of the show was very lackluster.

I was surprised that Big Cass was involved in this match because he is still very green in his overall young career. However, he put an impressive showing he looked like he belonged in the ring. Kevin Owens was able to score the first elimination of the match by connecting with a Frog Splash off the tope rope for the three count on Big Cass. We were down to three men Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins and Kevin Owens. All three pulled out all the stops in order to eliminate each other. There were multiple near finishes, with each wrestler connecting with their signatures and finishers moves which enhanced the level of excitement.

Triple H made his presence through the crowd and ambush attacked on Roman Reigns with a Pedigree. Triple H finally got his revenge on Roman Reigns since he lost the WWE Championship at Wrestlemania 32 back in April. Rollins picked up the pieces and he got the three count on Reigns to eliminate him from the match. Kevin Owens was out and he was able to rest for a significant part of the match. Triple H threw Owens back into the ring and it looked like Rollins had the championship in his sights.

However, Triple H had different plans and he decided to backstab The Authority guy in Rollins as Triple H delivered another Pedigree to Rollins. This literally shocked everybody in attendance and the millions watching at home. Kevin Owens was on his game and he acted quickly to get the win and he became the new WWE Universal Champion.

I predicted that Kevin Owens would win, so I wasn’t surprised at all with the outcome. For the first time in a very long time, the WWE listened to their fans because often when fans are behind a wrestler, the WWE doesn’t pull the trigger to give them a push or put the championship on that wrestler. I loved Kevin Owens facial expressions after he won the Universal Championship because it was in the heat of the moment.

Ever since his WWE debut back in 2014; Kevin Owens has bullied his way to the top in NXT he brutally assaulted, his former friend Sami Zayn and he won the NXT Championship within two months. When Kevin Owens made his debut on the main roster on RAW he made an instant impact when he defeated the face of the WWE John Cena on his very first night. Owens moved on to capture the Intercontinental Championship on two separate occasions.

Kevin Owens has quite a unique personality, he reminds me of a mix between Stone Cold Steve Austin and The Rock. Due to the fact that Owens always stays authentic and everything that he says, the fans believe him. On the other hand, he relates to The Rock because Owens is very entertaining and hilarious on the mic.I am looking forward to seeing how Kevin Owens performs as WWE Universal Champion. It should come to nobody’s surprise that Owens has become very successful in the WWE and Triple H has always been very high on him from the beginning.