WWE Backlash (2018) will be taking place at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey in just a few hours. The PPV will be much different from recent editions as it will now feature the WWE SmackDown and Raw rosters. It will be the first time since 2009 that the event features both rosters. There are nine matches for the event, including one for the kickoff show. Here is the match card and predictions for WWE Backlash (2018):
Bayley vs. Ruby Riott (Kickoff Show)
Bayley will face the leader of the Riott Squad at WWE Backlash. Ruby Riott is coming off a victory against Sasha Banks. There is no story behind this match but Ruby and her team recently moved to the WWE Raw roster, so this could mean the beginning of a feud. This match is currently the only one scheduled for the kickoff show.
Prediction: I think Ruby will get another victory with the help of her squad or some interference from Sasha Banks.
Braun Strowman and Bobby Lashley vs. Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens
The team of Braun Strowman and Bobby Lashley is 2 – 0 against Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens. The matches have been a 10-man and 6-man tag team but Strowman has dominated most of those opponents, especially Owens and Zayn, who he crashed into the barricade walls several times in their latest match.
Prediction: I think Strowman and Lashley will pick up another victory at WWE Backlash. Strowman is already a tough opponent by himself so a team with Lashley is just too good. Lashley and Strowman don’t appear to have much competition in the roster so I wouldn’t be surprised if something happens and they get mad at each other and start a feud. A match between them and Lesnar doesn’t sound bad either. Could you imagine if WWE decided to go a different route and make Lashley and Strowman a tag team?
Seth Rollins vs. The Miz
Seth Rollins will be putting his WWE IC title on the line against The Miz. Rollins won the title against Finn Balor and The Miz at WrestleMania 34. The following day, The Miz asked for his rematch at WWE Backlash. The Miz was later sent to WWE SmackDown but would compete in a ladder match for the title at the Greatest Royal Rumble. Rollins also won that match.
Prediction: The Miz is currently second for longest combined Intercontinental Championship reign but I think he’ll remain there for a while as I don’t see the title moving to WWE SmackDown. Finn Balor has made it clear that he wants to compete against Rollins, so I think that’s the next feud we will see for the IC title on WWE Raw.
Jeff Hardy vs. Randy Orton
Jeff Hardy won the WWE US Championship at Raw but was moved to SmackDown the following night. In his SmackDown debut, he interrupted Randy Orton, who was making his entrance to compete against Shelton Benjamin. Orton did the same on the following episode of WWE SmackDown. A few days ago, the two teamed up to face Shelton Benjamin and The Miz. They won that match but Orton surprised Hardy with an RKO after it was over.
Prediction: Very interesting match here since I can see Orton winning back the title to become a two time champion. I’m going to say Jeff Hardy wins though. I wouldn’t be surprised if there is some controversial finish that keeps this feud going.
AJ Styles vs. Shinsuke Nakamura
AJ Styles retained the WWE Championship at WrestleMania 34 but Nakamura was not happy with the result, hitting AJ with a low blow after the match. At the WWE Greatest Royal Rumble, AJ Styles retained the title after a double countout. Nakamura has continued hitting AJ with low blows and SmackDown General Manager Paige has announced that it will be a no DQ match.
Prediction: I predicted that Nakamura would win at the WWE Greatest Royal Rumble but I was wrong. I’m going to say that Nakamura wins it this time because it would be a bad look for him if he doesn’t. Two losses to Jinder Mahal when he was the WWE Champion and another loss to AJ would just make him the superstar that falls short time and time again. This whole no DQ thing could make things a lot more interesting than the two previous matches.
Daniel Bryan vs. Big Cass
Big Cass returned from injury and made his WWE SmackDown debut by attacking Daniel Bryan. Since then, Big Cass has made fun of Bryan’s height and eliminated him from the WWE Greatest Royal Rumble match.
Prediction: Big Cass is again feuding with a superstar that is much shorter than him. His feud with Enzo Amore was barely a feud as he easily won those matches. I think the story will be much different this time, with Bryan getting his second PPV win since announcing his return.
Nia Jax vs. Alexa Bliss
Alexa Bliss will get her rematch at WWE Backlash after losing the WWE Raw Women’s Championship at WrestleMania 34. It will be the first title match for Nia Jax since her huge victory last month.
Prediction: Nia Jax was nearly unstoppable in her victory against Alexa Bliss at WrestleMania 34. I see Mickie James getting involved during the match but Nia still leaving with the victory. It will be interesting to see who challenges Nia after this, if she keeps the title of course.
Roman Reigns vs. Samoa Joe
This is an interesting match, we have two superstars from different rosters that are not competing for a title. Before the superstar shakeup, Samoa Joe criticized Roman Reigns for losing to Brock Lesnar and challenged him to a match at the PPV. Samoa Joe was later moved to the WWE SmackDown roster but this should still be a good watch.
Prediction: Samoa Joe and Roman Reigns have faced each other a few times already but I guess this is a good break from the Reigns and Lesnar feud, which began before WrestleMania 34. I think Reigns will bounce back from the loss at the WWE Greatest Royal Rumble and win against Samoa Joe.
Carmella vs. Charlotte Flair
Charlotte Flair will get her rematch against Carmella at WWE Backlash. Charlotte retained the WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship at WrestleMania 34 but would later lose the title at SmackDown after Billie Kay and Peyton Royce made their main roster debut and attacker her. This gave Carmella an opportunity to cash in her Money in the Bank briefcase. Carmella won the title and a rematch was later scheduled for WWE Backlash.
Prediction: Charlotte Flair has dominated the WWE SmackDown women’s division for most of her time there but I think she will lose this match from an interference by Billie Kay and Peyton Royce.
WWE Backlash (2018) – Start Time
WWE Backlash will be featuring both the WWE SmackDown and Raw rosters for the first time in nine years. The event actually returned in 2016 but the last two editions have featured only the WWE SmackDown roster.
WWE Backlash (2018) will take place on Sunday, May 6, 2018. The event begins at 8 PM ET/ 5 PM PT. The Kickoff Show, which currently has just one match, begins an hour before.