Damien Barling: Backlash Review

This is one of the more interesting match lineups in recent WWE PPV history. Two title contenders went from undercard jobber status, to challenging for titles and a major WWE event. To add to the fun, the show is in Chicago. Chicago crowds are very smart and very vocal. Here we go…

DOLPH ZIGGLER VS SHINSUKE NAKUMARA

I know a lot of people are going to love this as a “wrestling match”. It was fine. I didn’t like the story. At all. Ziggler throws everything he can at Nakamura and Nakumara survives to get the win. I don’t think this should’ve been a squash match but I also don’t think Ziggler should’ve hit 3 different finishers. This match should’ve been more of a showcase of Nakumara. Again, the match worked. I didn’t like the story. Nakamura can main event Wrestlemania tomorrow against anybody. I don’t think he should’ve “survived” Ziggler. I get it, I’m being picky, but I have very high expectations for The King of Strong Style.

THE FASHION POLICE CHALLENGE THE USOS FOR THE SMACKDOWN TAG TEAM TITLES

Sorry. I couldn’t take this match seriously. Fandango and Tyler Breeze are very good wrestlers but this was nothing more then a glorified comedy sketch. The Usos are a badass tag team that I’m digging right now. Between the janitor, the mustache, and the dress, I just wanted this match to end.

SAMI ZAYN VS BARON CORBIN

Here’s what I got from this match, Sami Zayn got a much needed win. He got the absolute crap kicked out off him by Corbin. He kept fighting and fighting and fighting before getting the win. That was effective storytelling that one can only hope leads to something much bigger for Sami. He’s an A player.

The other thing is Baron Corbin’s hairline. What the hell?!?!?!?! I don’t know if he put gel in it, I don’t know what it was, but his bad hairline had never been so glaring.

BECKY LYNCH, CHARLOTTE, NAOMI VS CARMELLA, NATALYA, TAMINA

Natalya made Becky tap with the Sharpshooter. I assume that was done to build Natty as a contender to Naomi’s title. Otherwise, I have no idea what this match was for.

AJ STYLES CHALLENGES KEVIN OWENS FOR THE UNITED STATES (OF AMERICA) CHAMPIONSHIP

We all knew this match would steal the show and it absolutely did. The psychology of these two is unmatched in the company, regardless of brand. The only other guy who can work such a well crafted story is John Cena. The storyline was very clear. AJ Styles right knee was bad and Kevin Owens was gonna do everything to exploit that. While other wrestlers may have the urge to do all their big moves while selling an injury, AJ did not. He tried. His knee failed him. That all played into the finish were Styles goes to execute a Styles Clash, his right leg falls through the table, the match ends in a count out win for Owens, both are left protected, and another stellar match is clearly on the way.

LUKE HARPER VS ERIK ROWAN

I really like Luke Harper. When the Wyatt Family started, I found Luke Harper to be a legitimately scary human being. I like him better then Jinder Mahal, Baron Carbon, and some of the other top guys. I understand Harper is a babyface though I’m not sure why. Either way, I like him. This match was fine despite the fact Rowan was a little out of place for Harpers finish.

JINDER MAHAL CHALLENGES RANDY ORTON FOR THE WWE CHAMPIONSHIP

On April 11th, Jinder Mahal was pinned by Mojo Rowley.

On May 21, Jinder Mahal pinned Randy Orton to become WWE Champion.

I got nothing!

JINDER MAHAL BY THE NUMBERS 

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