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Published On: Mon, May 7th, 2018

Bowen’s Botches and Bodyslams: WWE Backlash May 6 2018

WWE’s Backlash is live from Newark, New Jersey and the official beginning of the co-branded Pay-Per-Views going forward.

Backlash Kickoff Show

Miztourage and Miz Backstage

While the Miztourage are looking at their prospects for new coattails, The Miz shows up. He tries to butter them up and get the band back together. He wants the numbers in his favor tonight against Seth Rollins.

Bo Dallas stops Curtis Axel from going along and says they’re not his supporting cast anymore, walking out together and leaving Miz stunned.

BodyslamThe Miztourage was always going to break up, and bringing that to a clear end so Dallas and Axel can go on their own way is good to see.

Bayley and Sasha Backstage

Bayley tries to get Sasha to join her ringside against Ruby Riott, but sparks fly and after some back and forth, Shasha tells Bayley she is on her own against the Riott Squad.

BodyslamThese two have great chemistry, and that’s why everyone is anticipating the feud between them that WWE has been leading toward so long. This is the most heat we’ve seen between them on the mic up to this point, so this may come to a head sooner than later.

Ruby Riott twitter photo

Bayley vs. Ruby Riott

Bayley comes out alone, and Ruby comes out with the Riott Squad. Bayley starts strong,but after some solid chain wrestling, Ruby takes control. Ruby dominates Bayley and the Riott Squad makes their presence felt, while the camera occassionally cuts backstage to show Sasha watching worriedly. Bayley makes a comeback, but ultimately the numbers game won, and a distraction from Liv Morgan gives Ruby an upper hand to deliver a Riott Kick and the pin.

Winner – Ruby Riott

Bodyslam The Women’s Division continues to deliver no matter where they are on the card with another solid match here. The rift between Bayley and Sasha Banks grows, bringing us closer to the feud between them. Meanwhile Ruby Riott and her stable the Riott Squad continue to be the rising stars.

Backlash Pay-Per-View Main Card

Intercontinental Championship – Seth Rollins (c) vs The Miz

The crowd was excited for the entrance of both men, and stayed fired up the entire match. Both men were clearly drawing on the excitement, and did what they do best, the best it can be done. The match starts with some exchanges, but Seth starts dominating Miz early. Miz slithers out of the worst predicaments to stay in the match, including turning the tide dodging Seth’s Revolution Knee on the apron which drove into the ringpost. Miz takes advantage with a Figure 4, but Seth manages to escape. Miz mostly maintains control due to Seth’s injured knee, although Seth kicks out of Miz’ Skull Crushing Finale twice, and thwarts an attempt to deliver it from on the turnbuckle. They continue their back and forth, but Seth Rollins finally delivers the Curb Stomp and scores the pin.

Winner – Seth Rollins retains Intercontinental Chamionship

BodyslamEveryone loves to see the Miz get beat up, and everyone loves to see Seth Rollins beat somebody up. Both men showed all of their strengths and had the crowd hanging on their every move, and the crowd got everything they wanted out of this match. This was a great way to start the show.

RAW Women’s Championship – Nia Jax (c) vs. Alexa Bliss

Nia’s size advantage affords her early domination in the match, but Alexa’s craftiness opens up an opportuinty, and her ruthlessness uses it to take control. While always fighting against the size advantge and barely hanging on to control, Alexa delivers a DDT on the steel steps that shifted the odds in her favor, but couldn’t get her the win. Alexa continues to fight (dirty) for control of the match and scores some nearfalls. Eventually Nia was able to get a hold of Alexa and deliver a Samoan Drop and the pin.

Winner – Nia Jax retains RAW Women’s Championship

BodyslamNia Jax retains her title and gets redemption in another great match from the Women’s Division. Nia as champion opens up fresh possibilities for the RAW Women’s Divison title scene, and the change should do Alexa Bliss some good as well. 

Samoa Joe Interview

Joe continues to point out Roman’s recent failures and projects himself as Roman’s nightmare who will make him admit to his failures.

BodyslamJoe is great on the mic and shows it again here with a short and sweet promo.

United States Championship – Jeff Hardy (c) vs. Randy Orton

The match starts with some great back and forth from both men, with neither gaining control for long. Then Orton counters Jeff with a beautiful dropkick while he’s trying to springboard into the ring. Orton works him over outside the ring, dropping him repeatedly on his back over the barricade. He takes the action back into the ring and continues to assert control. Hardy manages a comeback, but Orton was the wily veteran able to avoid Jeff Hardy’s high risk offense. Just as it seemed Orton was about to deliver his RKO, Hardy lands a Twist of Fate followed by a Swanton Bomb and the pin.

Winner – Jeff Hardy retains United States Championship

Bodyslam Another quality match and a great ending for what appears to be a singles push for Jeff Hardy.

Elias Performance

Elias evokes the name of Bruce Springsteen while he insults the New Jersey crowd. As he starts to quit his performance in anger, the crowd cheers. Elias then goes to sit back down and the crowd starts to boo. He walks, they cheer, he sits, they boo. Back and forth, until the New Day’s music hits. They come with musical instruments, and Elias asks if they are here for autographs. New Day is looking to jam out together and “WALK WITH ELIAS!” but Elias is a solo act. New Day starts banging out as the crowd chants”NEW.. DAY ROCKS”. Elias tells them to get out of here so he can continue and tries to start his performance again. As the lights go back down we hear the voice of Aiden English, who delivers a vocal performance slamming New Day, praising Elias, and introducing RUSEV DAAYYYYYYYYYYY. Rusev points out his superiority to both as he has his own day, and the roar of the crowd seems to agree. Elias once again tries to shut them up and start his performance again. As the lights go out the music of No Way Jose hits, and he comes down the ramp with a conga line that includes Fandango and Tyler Breeze as well as Titus O’Neil. Elias gets even more angry and tries to start one more time. The lights go down once again, and Bobby Roode’s GLORIOUS music hits, and as the lights come up this time, Bobby Roode is hitting the ring and performs a Glorious DDT on Elias. No Way Jose’s music comes back up, and he leads the conga line back up the ramp, which New Day and Bobby Roode have now joined.

BotchThis was a fun and entertaining segment that gave WWE an opportuinty to put some of their wildly popular superstars on the show since they couldn’t fit them into matches. It also gave Bobby Roode revenge in his burgeoning feud with Elias. But this segment ran too long, and had a lot of silliness in one segment.

Daniel Brian vs. Big Cass

The crowd pops huge for Daniel Bryan and these two get into a classic David and Goliath match. Big Cass eventually wins control, and delivers punishing chops to Bryan that ring out through the arena. Bryan continues fighting back and thwarts Cass as his assaults draw toward an end or kicking out of his pin attempts. The action goes out of the ring and back, and the two are really brutalizing each other. Bryan’s heart shines through and he gets Cass into a Yeslock. Cass tries to fight out and Bryan hits him with some stiff shots, locks it in and makes Cass tap. Daniel Bryan celebrates his victory and Big Cass attacks him from behind. Cass beats down Bryan for a few minutes while the crowd mocks him in their chants.

Winner – Daniel Bryan

BodyslamDaniel Bryan is always hottest when he is fighting insurmountable odds, and a feud with Big Cass puts him right there. The win keeps Bryan’s return hot and the fans happy, and the post-match attack from Cass keeps this feud going. It’s a great spot for Cass to be in coming back from an injury, in a program with the most popular babyface in the business.

Smackdown Women’s Championship – Carmella (c) vs. Charlotte Flair

The crowd loves both of these women on their entrance. Carmella starts mocking Charlotte early, then she pays for it and tries to run from the match. Charlotte stops her, but gets caught while chasing down a cowardly Carmella. Carmella keeps trash talking while beating Charlotte down. Charlotte mounts a comeback and gets to strut, but eventually Carmella gains control again. After surviving another barrage from Carmella, Charlotte find an opportunity for a Moonsault, but she misses and “buckles her knee”, allowing Carmella to roll Charlotte up for the pin. Carmella leaves with her belt while Charlotte looks crushed in the ring.

Winner – Carmella retains Smackdown Women’s Championship

BodyslamCarmella looked great in this match, and just like on RAW, a clear new direction in the Women’s title scene will bring fresh matches. This doesn’t tarnish Charlotte’s luster at all, and she’ll have a belt around her waist again soon enough.

AJ Styles photo/wikimedia commons

No Disqualification Match for the WWE Championship – AJ Styles vs Shinsuke Nakamura

These two start right where they left off as this feud continues. Styles gains early control, and it doesn’t take long for the match to end up outside of the ring. Nakamura gains control when he throws Styles into the steps. Nakamura takes it back into the ring and the crowd starts competing chants of “AJ Styles” – “Nakamura”. Shinsuke maintains the advantage and thwarts AJ Styles every time he tries to mount a comeback, lncluding kicking his leg out from under him as Styles went for a Phenomenal Forearm from the barricade. Nakamura scores a couple of close nearfalls, then brings a chair in the ring with a smile. Styles stops him, but ends up taking a Reverse Exploder Suplex onto the chair. Failing to score the pin, Nakamura goes for his Kinshasa Knee Strike, but Styles throws the chair at him and hurts Nakamura’s knee. The chair also bounced back at AJ and split his face open. Styles locks in the Calf Crusher submission, but Nakamura reverses it to a triangle. A back and forth ensues, and Styles gets an opportunity to hit Nakamura with a low blow and takes for sweet revenge. As they both fight through exhastion, they hit each other with low blow kicks at the same time. Neither man is able to answer a count of 10, and the referee calls the match a Double Countout.

Winner – None, AJ Styles retains WWE Championship

BotchTheir last match at the Greatest Royal Rumble ended in a double countout. This match ended in a double countout. This is their third PPV match in a row, and two out of three are double countout endings. These two are delivering great matches, but these endings are a cheap way of extending this feud.

Braun Strowman and Bobby Lashley vs. Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn

Bobby Lashley and Sami Zayn start the match, with Lashley taking control early and showing off his athleticism. Kevin and Sami eventually take over with classic tag team wrestling, keeping Lashley from tagging in Strowman. When Strowman is finally tagged in, he shows why he is the Monster Among Men, plowing through both men, even running through Owens at ringside again as we have seen every show since Sami and Kevin have returned to RAW. Sami wants to leave and gets into a fight with Kevin, and ultimately they fall apart, take turns getting beat up by Strowman, and Braun ultimately hits a Running Powerslam and pins Kevin. After the match Sami gets those hands a Running Power Slam.

Winners – Braun Strowman and Bobby Lashley

Bodyslam Bobby Lashley is getting put right into the top of the card on his return, but is there in the shadow of Braun Strowman. The crowd still can’t get enough of Braun Strowman, and giving him multiple people to fight seems to always work out well. This may have also been the beginning of the end of the latest iteration of Kevin and Sami’s friendship, and that can only mean we’re that much closer to another feud between them where they are always at their best.

photo/ DoD Photo by Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Dominique A. Pineiro

Roman Reigns vs Samoa Joe

They start with trash talk and go to swinging at each other which quickly ends up outside of the ring. Samoa Joe gives Roman a Uranage through one announce table and tries on the two others without breaking them. Once Joe puts Roman back in the ring, they can now officially start the match. Joe has his way with Roman, talking trash and beating him down, but unable to score a pinfall or submission. The offense is pretty much all Joe, and he even hits Roman with a Suicide Dive/ Shoulder Tackle that looks better than a lot of the high flyers. Joe continues to control Roman with submission grappling, and escapes from the ring as soon as Roman tries to mount a comeback. Roman manages to land some offense, but Joe keeps fighting the shift in momentum, landing a surprise Coquina Clutch that Roman escapes. Roman starts to take control and scores a couple of nearfalls, but can’t finish him, with Joe just able to get his foot on the rope after a Reigns Spear. The two exchange momentum until Joe locks in a Coquina Clutch that seemed to be the end with Roman now barely reaching the ropes to escape. The two men continue fighting, but Roman lands a Spear on a weakened Samoa Joe and gets the pin.

Winner – Roman Reigns

BodyslamThis was great match to showcase how incredible Samoa Joe is in the ring. Roman took a beating throughout the match, which gives his haters what they want to see, but also got the win which keeps him from losing any chance at being the top guy WWE wants him to be.

About the Author

- Greg Bowen is a writer, musician, DJ, political activist, and wrestling mark who still has Macho Madness to this day.

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  1. Alexander Snitker says:

    Great analysis

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