Welcome one and all to the live recap of WWE Backlash. The Backlash review from John Canton will be posted on Monday morning with his full play by play and analysis. For tonight, I’ll be providing all results and general thoughts on the show and matches as they happen.
Kickoff Show Match: Baron Corbin vs. Apollo Crews
This match was announced early in the kickoff show. Crowd is mainly filled in already at this point. Good reaction for Crews. It’s a shame neither of these guys could find a storyline on the main card with only six matches, but I know Corbin got hosed due to Kalisto’s injury. They went to a break early in the match after Corbin stopped a springboard attempt by Crews with a big right hand. A pretty back and forth match coming back from the break. Good offense shown by both guys. Crowd solidly behind Crews, so at least they’re into this cold match. Corbin gave Crews a lariat that folded him in half. Crews got a near fall with a standing moonsault. Crews busted out an Olympic/Angle Slam that also got a near fall. Corbin follwed up with a Deep Six that Crews barely kicked out of. Corbin picked up a really nice win after escaping the 10 punches in the corner and getting Crews to run into an End of Days. This was a much better match than it had any right to be.
Winner: Baron Corbin by Pinfall
Quick Plug: If you haven’t checked it out yet, make sure you check out my debut episode of The Match Beyond podcast here at TJRWrestling. I interview Lamont Williams from VIP Wrestling and we have a great conversation about putting on an indy show these days. Tomorrow, episode two will drop with my guests Hank and Mark McAllen. They are fellow writers here at TJR and we discuss CM Punk’s experiment in UFC, The CWC, & Lucha Underground. You’ll enjoy this conversation.
A nice scrolling message remembering 9/11 started the show. Shane McMahon narrarated the opening video so monotone that it would’ve been more entertaining just to actually see him reading off the prompter.
Shane O Mac starts out the show, along with Daniel Bryan. From as far as I can tell, this looks like a really good/full crowd so at least they bought into the concept of a Smackdown only PPV. I just say that because of how their TV Tapings typically draw. Shane let us know we were at Backlash, just in case we were confused this was a Tuesday night based on opening with a promo. They run down the card and lead us directly into our first match.
Six Pack Elimination Challenge Match to Crown a New Smackdown Women’s Champion: Becky Lynch vs. Natalya vs. Nikki Bella vs. Alexa Bliss vs. Naomi vs. Carmella
I THINK Alexa Bliss is going for a Harley Quinn look, but it is not good. Nikki in new blue gear, way to be loyal to the brand. All six women battle to start the match. Becky and Naomi end up being the last two in the ring and have a really nice exchange until Naomi gets dumped to the outside. It does not look like any tags will be necessary in this match. It started out a little clunky but found its footing quickly. Really good near fall early where Nikki reversed Carmella’s finisher into the Alabama Slamma. Mini tower of doom spot with Natalya powerbombing Nikki while superplexing Carmella. “This is Awesome” chants after that. These women are going all out. Naomi hit a springboard cross body to the floor to take out her five opponents. Alexa Bliss ended up being the first one eliminated after Natalya had her in a powerbomb and Naomi came off the top rope with a Blockbuster. Really cool spot. Alexa had a good showing before her elimination.
Naomi was then next to get eliminated as she went for a springboard move again, but Nikki caught her with her big forearm shiver. Natalya then capitalized and made Naomi tap out. Natalya was quickly eliminated thereafter as Nikki laid her out with her TKO finisher. Right after that though, Carmella caught Nikki off guard and ROLLUP OF DEATH! We’re now down to Becky and Carmella. Becky hit a trio of Bex-Plex but Carmella managed to cut her off before a pin. Carmella got cocky at the end though and ended up getting caught in the Disarmer and we’ve got our first Smackdown Women’s Champion.
Winner: And new Smackdown Women’s Champion, Becky Lynch
Big ovation for Becky post match as she is interviewed in-ring to talk about her feelings after winning the match. She thanks the fans and says we did it. This was a really good match and everyone looked better afterwards than they did going in.
After a Miz segment with some kid from a Nickelodeon show, we see Bray Wyatt attacking Randy Orton backstage. He is slamming a locker room door into Orton’s ankle repeatedly. I guess that’s one way to do it.
Winners go to the Tag Title Finals: The Usos vs. The Hype Bros
Completely new look for The Usos. No paint, no color in their attire. Just all black gear and white zip up hoodies. Their titontron setup still shows the paint though, so need to get the media team to fix that. All Hype Bros early in the match. The Usos manage to isolate Ryder eventully and work him over. Dueling chants for The Usos, so I guess not everyone is convinced by their heel turn. Mojo finally got the hot tag after Ryder dumped both Usos to the outside. The Hype Bros set up Jey for the Hype Ryder but Jimmy blocked it from happening. Ryder hit a top rope Hurricanrana but Jimmy broke up the pin. Ryder was down two to one after Jimmy took out Mojo on the outside. They then attacked Ryder’s knee just like they did Chad Gable’s and Jimmy locked in the Lasso from El Paso submission for the victory. The Hype Bros looked good in defeat.
Winners and Advancing in the Tag Titles Tournament: The Usos
Heath Slater and Rhyno are backstage with Renee Young and the crowd goes nuts for them. Really funny promo where Heath Slater doesn’t realize they’re live and admits to having “digestive issues” tonight due to being nervous.
Intercontinential Title Match: The Miz (c) vs. Dolph Ziggler
Before The Miz comes out, he is backstage with Daniel Bryan and says that Smackdown needs his title, thus they need him so he wants to renegotiate his contract and be paid like the A-Lister he is. Daniel refuses to answer so once Miz’s music hits, he tells Daniel that renegotiations will be a lot harder after the match, so enjoy seeing Miz do what he can’t anymore. Since I know everyone is wondering, yes Maryse looks amazing tonight.
Good back and forth match to start. Ziggler with a lot of early pin attempts but Miz was able to keep cutting him off. Ziggler favoring his shoulder after taking a fall to the outside due to a Miz Catapult over the top rope. The crowd honestly sounds to be more into Miz than they do Ziggler. He really needs to turn heel ASAP. Miz started taunting Daniel Bryan by hitting a trio of the running dropkicks in the corner that Daniel would do. Then he did a mock YES! chant. Daniel was not at ringside during that, just so there’s no confusion. Ziggler finally made his comeback but there was just no reaction to it. Dolph had a couple good near falls with the Fameasser and his jumping DDT. The Miz hooked the Figure Four on Ziggler in the middle of the ring after working his knee prior in the match, but Ziggler managed to make the ropes. Ziggler hit a superkick out of desperation but Miz got his foot on the rope in the nick of time. Dolph was trying to finish off The Miz, but when the ref wasn’t looking, Maryse pulled out what was either a hairspray or purfume bottle and sprayed it right into Ziggler’s eyes, which led right into the Skull Crushing Finale.
Winner: Still Intercontinential Champion, The Miz
Bray Wyatt vs. Randy Orton was scheduled to happen next, but Greg Hamilton announced that due to injury, Randy Orton could not be cleared to compete tonight. For some reason, Charles Robinson still had to count to 10 to confirm Bray’s victory by forfeit. Before Bray can leave though, Hamilton then announces that Bray still has to compete tonight in a No Holds Barred match against…..
No Holds Barred Match: Bray Wyatt vs. Demon Kane
Yeah, sorry guys. I wanted it to be Luke Harper too. The crowd was into it just because they don’t lose out on a match altogether now. Typical plunder match that you would see at any live event. Chair shots aplenty. Bray avoids getting chokeslammed on the announce table and then drops him with a lariat. Bray mocks Orton’s pose before running from one announce table to the other and laying out Kane with a senton splash through the table. Bray goes for Sister Abigail in the ring, but Kane reverses it into a Chokeslam. Bray kickz out. Kane goes for a Tombstone on a chair but Bray turns it into a urinagi on the chair instead. Kane kicks out and now Randy Orton comes limping out in his ring gear. Crowd pops big for Orton. Kane sits up in the ring, which distracts Bray enough for Orton to slide in the ring and hit an RKO Outta Nowhere. Orton limps away and Kane follows up with a Chokeslam for the win. Don’t feel bad guys, technically Bray DID win a match tonight.
Winner: Kane by Pinfall
AJ Styles is walking backstage and runs into a couple enhancement talent guys and talks about how he’s been where they are and he can tell they’re destined for failure. It’s ok though, cause they can tell everyone they met AJ Styles, the face that runs the place.
Tag Team Title Finals: The Usos vs. Heath Slater and Rhyno
Massive “Let’s Go Slater” chant as the match starts. Slater and Rhyno start strong but The Usos get Heath in their corner and end up suplexing him into the ringpost on the outside to get the advantage. The Usos worked over Heath for a good while and Rhyno finally got the hot tag. Jimmy blocked a Gore attempt but Heath tagged himself back in. Heath cleans house and hits a Impaler DDT on Jimmy but Jey pulls Heath to the floor to break it up. Jimmy hits Heath with a Superkick but now Rhyno comes from behind and drops Jimmy with a Gore! Heath crawls over for the pin… Heath wins!! The crowd goes wild, it’s time to party BAYBAYYYYY!
Winner: And new Smackdown Tag Team Champions, Heath Slater and Rhyno
The new champs are interviewed in ring after the match. The crowd chants “You Deserve It” to Heath. Heath thanks Shane and Daniel for the chance to get into the tournament. Heath says this is one of the greatest nights of his life, besides when “a couple” of his kids were born. Big laugh there. He tells his wife Beulah, they’re getting a Doublewide! Great stuff.
WWE World Title Match: Dean Ambrose (c) vs. AJ Styles
Big reaction for AJ as he comes out first. Dean got a solid reaction but not nearly as loud. AJ had full advantage early in the match. He worked over the neck of Ambrose. Very slow and methodical match from these two. First big spot was Dean hitting a back suplex on AJ from the top rope where AJ ended up doing a full rotation and landing on his stomach. There is a good portion of the crowd that is booing any of Dean’s offense. AJ is definitely the favorite here. Dean hits his top rope standing elbow drop on AJ on the outside. Styles went for the Calf Crusher but Ambrose reversed it into a suplex. AJ blocked that attempt though and ended up suplexing Ambrose into the turnbuckles. AJ then went to work on the knee of Ambrose. AJ finally got the Calf Crusher hooked on but Ambrose eventually got to the ropes, which brought out even more boos. They ended up on the apron, where AJ wanted to give a Styles Clash onto the floor on Dean. Dean reversed it into a catapult though and AJ was sent hard into the ringpost. AJ hit the Springboard 450 but Ambrose kicked out. Ambrose ends up diving on AJ through the U.S. announce team and then they end up in the crowd as Dean leaps out onto AJ from the announce table. “This is Awesome!” chants start up. Ambrose went for Dirty Deeds but AJ sent him into the ref. The ref ends up not seeing an AJ low blow to Ambrose, which leads into a Styles Clash, new champion!!
Winner: New WWE World Champion, AJ Styles
Thanks for joining me tonight! John will be back with full analysis tomorrow. Don’t forget to check out The Match Beyond podcast as well, Good night!