Here I was expecting WWE to go the same special event route they did in 2020, yet they decided to go in a completely different direction instead.
But what makes this shocking change even more interesting is the fact that it’s bringing back a PPV schedule that Attitude and Ruthless Aggression Era fans know all too well. Backlash is once again taking the position of the first major WWE wrestling card to take place after WrestleMania this year. And the wildest part about that development is how both shows are getting mashed together to produce a “new” event altogether – WrestleMania Backlash. And as expected, fans will be treated to a bunch of ‘Mania 37 rematches (with some of them hopefully adopting new match types) and fresh matchups between the biggest winners from that same show.
So without further ado, let’s break down the announced matchups for the first-ever WrestleMania Backlash event.
Damian Priest vs. The Miz (Lumberjack Match)
Predictions & Winner: Damian Priest and his superstar tag team partner Bad Buddy got the ultimate W at WrestleMania 37 against The Miz and John Morrison. Now that BB has hit the road for an upcoming tour, Damien’s continued his war against the two most annoying individuals on the Raw roster. Damien has already beaten the breaks off of Morrison on multiple occasions, so now it’s The Miz’s turn.
It’s going to be quite the tall task for The Miz to overcome Damian since a whole bunch of angry dudes are going to be outside the ring looking to put hands on him, too. There are also going to be a few guys looking to do damage on Damien as well, but I get the feeling that he’ll have an easier time beating them back. My money’s on a Damien victory here that will push him ever so further up the card and set him up for a midcard championship opportunity in the near future.
The Dirty Dawgs (Dolph Ziggler & Robert Roode) (c) vs. Rey Mysterio & Dominik Mysterio (WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championship)
Predictions & Winners: This matchup comes as no surprise to anyone really. These two teams, the Alpha Academy, and The Street Profits have been at each other’s throats for God knows how long. Watching Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode strut around with the Blue Brand’s tag team straps does nothing for me since both men’s level of relevance died a long time ago.
But I’m still willing to see if they put on a good to great match with the Mysterio clan. I think the end result for this one is pretty easy to predict – as a way to give Dominik Mysterio his first-ever championship win in the company and elicit a feel-good moment in the process, I can totally see WWE allowing Rey Mysterio’s son to get the winning pin here to claim the tag team titles. The tears will flow here as the Mysterios bask in their championship glory post-match.
Rhea Ripley (c) vs. Asuka vs. Charlotte Flair (Triple Threat Match for the WWE Raw Women’s Championship)
Predictions & Winner: I figured this match was being penciled in for ‘Mania 37. You just know how much WWE loves inserting Charlotte Flair into big match situations that don’t really require her presence (the wrestling world would have been perfectly fine with a singles match between Ronda Rousey and Becky Lynch at ‘Mania 35). Thank the heavens that the powers that be decided to hold off on doing this match last month and allowing Rhea Ripley vs. Asuka to go down as planned. Now that Rhea has been crowned the new Raw Women’s Champion after prevailing on the big ‘Mania stage, she finally has a chance to get revenge on the woman that defeated her at last year’s event. All the while, Asuka also has a chance to reclaim her championship and get her hands on her former tag team championship partner.
This match has a high chance of being one of the best matches of the entire evening. Even though I lose all interest whenever Charlotte gets on the mic, I usually perk up whenever the bell rings and she’s a part of the in-ring equation. And with the equally proficient Rhea and Asuka across the ring with her, Charlotte has some amazing dance partners to work with during this triple threat encounter. I’m always a betting man, so I’m gonna go ahead and place all my chips on Rhea retaining her title. My guess is she’ll pin Asuka once again, which will give Charlotte an out and allow her to claim a rematch in the near future. Since I get the feeling Charlotte won’t be pinned here, she’ll have a good reason to get the next singles title shot. Rhea just claimed the Raw Women’s Championship, so it doesn’t make any sense for her to lose it so soon. So yeah, Rhea’s retaining here and possibly setting up a ‘Mania 35 rematch with Charlotte at the next PPV.
Bianca Belair (c) vs. Bayley (WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship)
Predictions & Winner: Queen Belair certainly showed and proved in the main event slot for Night 1 of Wrestlemania 37. “The EST” arguably had the best match of the entire weekend with Sasha Banks and captured her first main roster championship in the process. Fresh off the heels of that epic encounter, Bianca Belair is gearing up to face an old rival of hers that has close ties to her ‘Mania 37 opponent. Bayley’s back for revenge and will certainly do everything in her power to cut Bianca’s reign extremely short. Both women have faced each other countless times on past episodes of SmackDown, so here’s hoping that they’ve developed enough chemistry with each other to deliver a PPV banger here.
I’m sure you guys all know the deal here – newly crowned champions that get the big win at ‘Mania usually run through their first set of opponents until they meet a more worthy challenger at SummerSlam. And that’s certainly going to be the case for the new SmackDown Women’s Champion here. Bayley’s obviously playing the part of the wily veteran that will take the loss here in order to add more credibility to Bianca’s fresh title reign. So yeah, Bianca’s walking into this show with the title and will most definitely leave with it still intact. And I’m guessing another easy victory will come Bianca’s way at the next PPV (Bianca vs. Natalya, perhaps?).
Roman Reigns (c) (with Paul Heyman and The Usos) vs. Cesaro (WWE Universal Championship)
Predictions & Winner: By way of his recent victory over Seth Rollins on a throwback edition of SmackDown, Cesaro has swung himself right into the #1 contenders position for the WWE Universal Championship. The “Swiss Superman” has gotten quite the renewed push lately and now it’s culminating in a major title match on PPV. This one’s been a long time coming for the beloved strongman – I’m overjoyed at the fact that he’s finally getting the push to the top of the card he so richly deserves. The only problem is the roadblock waiting for him on his road to championship glory – the current reigning “Tribal Chief” of the Blue Brand, Roman Reigns.
This match is going to be an absolute banger. Roman has battled Cesaro on multiple occasions and every one of their in-ring wars has been a definite highlight. In this particular situation, the odds are definitely stacked against Cesaro as Roman has the combined backup of The Usos at the ready. I think their presence will play a huge part in how this match unfolds. At some point, Cesaro will look to have Roman down for the count. But Jey and a conflicted Jimmy will run in to save their kin at the last minute and find some type of way to screw over his challenger in the process. The finish of this bout will allow Roman to escape with the title while also giving Cesaro a valid reason for requesting a rematch. This feud is just getting started if you ask me. So expect a great match that will end on a screwy finish that will boil over into next’s month’s Money in the Bank PPV.
Bobby Lashley (c) (with MVP) vs. Drew McIntyre vs. Braun Strowman (Triple Threat Match for the WWE Championship)
Predictions & Winner: Well, this is a nice change of pace. After WWE initially announced a WrestleMania 37 rematch between Bobby Lashley and Drew McIntyre a few weeks back, a third man got thrown into the fray to turn this WWE Championship affair into a total war. Drew and Braun have been dealing with the vicious tandem of MACE and T-BAR for a good while now. Those two towering distractions have caused them plenty of headaches lately, which leads me to believe that they’ve entered into some sort of partnership with MVP and his title-holding associate. Now that this Triple Threat Match has been made official, I get the feeling that Drew and Braun’s beef with MACE AND T-BAR will spring up once again in some manner at this PPV.
All three men are going to smash into each other like the human locomotives that they are. With so much power behind each man’s arsenal, I’m expecting some impressive feats of strength and jaw-dropping slams throughout the entirety of this bout. When things are looking especially dire for the champ, don’t be surprised to see MVP call out MACE and T-BAR to aid his man. Drew and Braun will do their best to fend off the two brutes, but one of them will eventually succumb to their overwhelming offense. I think that guy will be Braun, who’ll end up catching a severe beatdown on the outside. Inside the ring, Bobby will kip-up just in time to cut through Drew with a Spear and retain the title. Due to Braun not being pinned and being jumped out of the in-ring equation by outside forces, I can see him making a valid case for a one-on-one match with the champ at the next PPV. As for Drew, I think a move to SmackdDown would do him well – he’s done everything there is to possibly do on Mondy Nights at this point.