At the beginning of WWE Backlash 2016, Shane McMahon was in a vignette to hype up the show. His first words were “Every action has a reaction”. By the end of the night Backlash elicited numerous reactions whether it was surprise, shock, excited, or even just pleased.
Backlash saw plenty of surprises. While Becky Lynch captured the SmackDown Women’s Championship, Alexa Bliss had an impressive showing before her elimination. The Usos would be outsmarted by the team of Heath Slater and Rhyno to win the WWE Smackdown Tag Team Championships. To cap of the night, AJ Styles would take advantage of Dean Ambrose and captured the WWE World Championship.
Slater and Rhyno was a surprise winner, and has to further elevate Slater as a potential player on the Smackdown roster. The team was sleepers throughout the tournament, as they were the underdogs going in. The crowd has been fully behind the former free agent during this period. His struggle to get signed is over, and now time will tell where he and Rhyno will go. My hope is that WWE continues to give Slater the attention he deserves. Slater excels in any role he was given over the last several years and this storyline was no exception.
Styles’ WWE Championship win shocked me. At first I didn’t think Styles would win the WWE World Championship. But now that he has, it does make sense. Styles has come off his victorious feud against John Cena and thus it was only right that he has now tasted WWE gold. Styles has had an incredible year in the WWE, and not many fans could have predicted what an excellent run he has had since his debut. While Ambrose did put up a great fight, truth is, is that Styles was prepared and was fully ready to back up his “the face that runs the place” title. He had Ambrose’s number, and that played a factor in this match.
Lynch captured the Smackdown Women’s Championship and it was the right choice. This was the first match and all six women put on a show to start Backlash off hot. Bliss and Naomi had great showings while Carmella and Nikki Bella kept their feud going. This is Lynch’s first WWE Championship and it was well deserved after coming up short both in NXT and her past Championship matches. Lynch is known to fight the good fight and now with a Championship in tow that will continue on. Lynch’s passion kept her going throughout her match and will continue as she is now in a position to defend the Championship.
While Backlash only had six matches on the card, every one of them had delivered with ample time. Smackdown continues to up the ante in this brand extension. The blue brand is taking chances and trying new things which have since fared well in their favor. From Talking Smack to the risks fans saw at Backlash, Raw has a lot of work to do to keep up with Smackdown’s direction. The best part is, is that this is just only the beginning.
WWE: Attitude Era Unreleased Volume 3
WWE: Living on a Razor’s Edge: The Scott Hall Story (BD) [Blu-ray]
Grab discounted WWE DVDs, merchandise, t -shirts, figures, and more from the WWE Shop on Amazon.com