Wrestling Review: WWE Wrestlemania Backlash (2022)

After a stupendous two night Wrestlemania event, a handful of anticipated rematches, a gigantic grudge match, and a devastating title match have been scheduled for Wrestlemania Backlash. In the main event, arguably bigger than all of those match is a 6-Man Tag Team contest with huge championship ramifications. The Undisputed WWE Universal Champion, Roman Reigns, will lead his cousins, the longest reigning SmackDown Tag Team Champions in history, Jimmy and Jey Uso into battle, as The Bloodline is reformed for the first time in recent history against the unprecedented team of the Raw Tag Team Champions, Randy Orton and Riddle, and their partner the Scottish Terminator, Drew McIntyre. At Wrestlemania, by hook or by crook Charlotte Flair came out of Night 1 still holding the Smackdown Women’s Championship when she defeated Ronda Rousey. Tonight however, the only way for one woman to leave with the gold is to make her opponent scream the words “I quit”. Tonight there will also b no element of surprise for Cody Rhodes, as he and Seth “Freakin'” Rollins run back their classic from just over one month ago. With time to prepare, what tricks will the revolutionary Rollins have up his sleeve? From atop his Mountain of Omnipotence, Edge and Damien Priest have promised that Judgement Day is coming for AJ Styles. But by virtue of a Styles victory over Priest, Edge’s acolyte Damien Priest will be barred from ringside during this Wrestlemania rematch. Rounding out the card, Madcap Moss finally gets his hands on his former friend Happy Corbin, and Bobby Lashley takes out his frustration on Omos, the latter of who now has MVP in his corner.

+ The Bloodline (Roman Reigns, Jey Uso & Jimmy Uso) vs Drew McIntyre & Rated RK-Bro (Randy Orton & Riddle): it was incredibly bold to put this match on last, especially considering how good they knew Ronda/Flair was going to be before it, but it turned out all right. The Usos are a fantastic team, Orton will never not get a huge reaction for anything he does, and Reigns, Riddle and McIntyre are very clearly some of the most popular people in the company. I do wish the stakes were higher, and frankly this did not go the way I was expecting it to go, but it was a good match
+ Charlotte Flair (c) vs Ronda Rousey (“I Quit” Match for the SmackDown Women’s Championship): this was great, and very easily the best thing on the show. These two just beat the holy hell out of each other from the opening bell, and it really made for an exciting, high octane ‘fight’. It should be so surprise that Ronda is better in ‘fights’ than she is ‘matches’. I do talk down about Charlotte sometimes, but every now and then she has a match like this and I remember why she is easily one of the top two best woman in the WWE right now (especially after Becky’s recent decline, but counting Asuka’s return)
+ Edge vs AJ Styles (Damien Priest is banned from ringside): overall this was really good, with an expected but still satisfying finish which does have to have one huge asterisk next to to it. Styles is very easily one of the best American wrestlers of all tie, with nobody being able to argue that. Edge is a WWE Hall of Famer, with whatever weight you place on that statement, but his longevity, and the fact he is even back from his neck injury at all must give him some kudos
+ Cody Rhodes vs Seth “Freakin'” Rollins: with the caveat that I think their Wrestlemania match was better, this was a good match. Not that I can say his name, since Wrestlemania was intended to be a surprise, I said that Cody/Rollins was ‘going to be a big money feud one day’ all the way back in 2014, and I am somewhat vindicated that I was on the right track. The various counters to each others big moves was a highlight for me, but I hate that these counters only ever happy once because that just doesn’t make sense

Madcap Moss vs Happy Corbin: this was disappointingly bad. I really did expect something a bit more for Madcap Moss’ first big singles match as a good guy, but this was the same standard stuff you’d see on any Smackdown show. It was not a bad match, but it was just a nothing match
Bobby Lashley vs Omos (w/ MVP): this was not good by any means, but it probably accomplished what it was meant to accomplish. Omos is a big guy, Lashley is a ridiculously ripped guy, MVP is acting all sleazy; we’ve seen this before a million times

> There sure were a lot of people missing from this card, including Bianca Belair (Raw Women’s Champion), Ricochet (Intercontinental Champion), Theory (United States Champion), and Sasha/Naomi (Women’s Tag Team Champions). Not to mention Becky Lynch, Kevin Owens, Sami Zayn, Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods, Sheamus, Ridge Holland and Butch, The Miz and Rey Mysterio, all of whom had big Wrestlemania matches, or the recently returned Asuka. And surely someone like Veer could have used a five minute destruction match on a bigger stage

Should you watch this event: This was a perfectly acceptable, very low stakes event from WWE. You can probably guess the outcome to every match, and the ones that you might be debating with yourself are the ones that truly don’t matter. Seek out the four positives above, if you care, but otherwise there will most definitely be rematches of those matches coming sooner rather than later.

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