Jay's Ways - WWE Backlash 2018 Preview
Submitted by Justin Watry on 05/05/2018 at 12:59 AM

“I have been reading your stuff on 411mania and for the longest time now and I have never felt inclined to email in. The general consensus of you not being most popular is harsh at times but also can be well-founded too. But I still read your stuff because I do enjoy your articles and find your perspective interesting most of the time.

That said, your article about your friend Megan and trip to Wrestlemania was the greatest thing you have ever wrote. Forget about the predictions you brag about getting right. This is your crowning piece. Maybe it is because I can relate as going to Wrestlemania is my ultimate dream and it will be happening next year. But I genuinely loved your article.

Thank you for the great stuff.”

- Jay's Ways reader

New columns on 411mania right now from yours truly. I wrote quite a bit in the last few days, so be sure to check it out!

WWE Backlash 2018

Daniel Bryan vs. Big Cass

No explanation needed.

WINNER: Daniel Bryan

Samoa Joe vs. Roman Reigns

Looking at this without the internet darling googles on, both guys need this victory. Roman Reign is poised to be the man on Monday nights, and Samoa Joe is poised to be the man on Tuesday nights. One man gets the loudest boos on the roster, and the other gets the loudest cheers (insert punchline here). Both are surely headed for gold in the near future and are likely going to be in the main event this summer. What makes it difficult is they are on separate brands and obviously headed in opposite directions. Very tough decision with so many similarities...and differences. While I am very well aware this PPV ends with Roman Reigns being The Big Dog and getting his arm raised, the actual WWE story lines being presented point towards a Samoa Joe victory.

WINNER: Samoa Joe

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

I like where Bobby Lashley is right now. It may not be a mega-showdown with Brock Lesnar, but did anybody really believe that was going to happen? Almost felt like an internet creation more than anything. Lashley has never been up to Lesnar's level in the professional wrestling business and is light years away from him on the mainstream scale as well. Being linked to Strowman is about as good as he could realistically ask for upon return. Ditto for Strowman. Dude is in a good spot, even if I was totally wrong about him needing to move to Smackdown LIVE in the 2018 Superstar Shakeup. Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn? Eh, not so sure about them currently. Zayn is still the lovable loser but now on the heel side, Owens, who nixed a Smackdown LIVE move in 2016 and begrudgingly went in 2017, is back to where he wants to be, so he should be happy. I just think he would be even MORE thrilled with a better role than The Miztourage 2.0 and getting crushed each week. We'll see what happens after Backlash.

WINNER:Bobby Lashley/Braun Strowman

US Title Match: Champion Jeff Hardy vs. Randy Orton

Jeff Hardy to Smackdown LIVE is my favorite move of the 2018 Superstar Shakeup and something I had predicted. He is officially out of the WOKEN disaster and on his own again, where he will shine. Just like 2008 and 2009, this is going to end up being a wonderful move. Putting the United States Championship on him and instantly getting in the mix with Jinder Mahal, Shelton Benjamin, and Randy Orton is great. Those will be entertaining matches and make sure Jeff Hardy comes out of it as the star that he is. Not clue what Mr. RKO does from here...but this isn't about him.

WINNER: Jeff Hardy

SmackDown Women’s Championship Match: Charlotte Flair vs. Champion Carmella

Ugh. I wrote last month (on another website) that co-branded pay-per-view events are going to be a HUGE problem for WWE and its' stacked talent roster. Just look at Backlash. No Natalya. No Ronda Rousey (fine by that). No Becky Lynch (per usual). No Asuka. No Ember Moon (or on Raw). No Brock Lesnar (fine by that). No John Cena. No Triple H. No Kurt Angle. No Finn Balor. No tag divisions to speak of. Yet, we are being granted Carmella and Nia Jax defending their titles. Oh boy, these shows better sort out this mess and quick. They have six weeks until Money In The Bank. With so many stars under contract, these cards have to be better. I will be cheering on Charlotte at Backlash, hoping she gets her title back. At the same time, I know more often that not new champions retain in their first big match.

WINNER: Carmella

RAW Women’s Championship Match: Alexa Bliss vs. Champion Nia Jax

Same as the Smackdown LIVE women's division. Don't have a whole lot of interest in this and will secretly be rooting for a shocking Alexa Bliss win over Nia Jax. Because there is nothing to write about with these two, I will focus on the real star of Raw: Ronda Rousey. WWE deserves some credit in how she has been handled thus far. She is there every week. She is working with two veterans in Mickie James and Nattie. Plus, she is NOT being over exposed and shoved down our throats. The woman is doing her thing and gearing up for what should be two fun story lines. First is the inevitable match against Mickie James. Maybe at MITB in June? Chicago is ideal for that, coincidentally right when UFC has a PPV in the area too. Then an eventual friends/foe feud with Natalya come Summerslam. That brings us to the Fall season and where we will finally get a good grasp on her talents and if WWE should be gearing her up for a bigger role come early 2019 and WrestleMania 35 season.


WWE Intercontinental Championship Match: The Miz vs. Champion Seth Rollins

Does Daniel Bryan interfere and cost The Miz the IC Title? I kinda hope so but also know that Seth Rollins does not need the help to retain. He is Monday Night Rollins and has slowly become one of the most popular acts in all of wrestling. That crowd reaction in Montreal on Monday was wild. I do not feel like wasting a lot of time on this bout when there is no real feud or intrigue to the finish. Miz is on Smackdown LIVE. Rollins is on Raw. The blue brand already has the US Title. The red brand gets the IC Title.

WINNER: Seth Rollins

WWE Championship NO DQ Match: Champion AJ Styles vs. Shinsuke Nakamura

Is this the main event? A NoDQ(.com) match between Styles and Nakamura more than earns that right. With Reigns/Joe being non-title and no stakes involved, I can not imagine anything else closing out the evening. The plus side is I could legitimately see both results. There are too many variables to call it predictable. Will Joe run out? Does Bryan get in the main event scene sooner rather than later? Will The Mizz and Bis Cass be sneaking around? Remember there are no rules, so everything is legal. Low blows too! Nakamura feels like he should be given a run with the WWE Title. Do not forget he does have clean victories over Randy Orton and John Cena and did just win that Royal Rumble thingy in January. The WrestleMania heel turn felt like a means to an end...but what is the end? Another loss to Styles? Time will tell which way this goes. I know I am going to enjoy the ride and be satisfied either way. Nakamura or Styles - flip a coin!



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