The thirteenth edition of WWE Backlash was a SmackDown LIVE exclusive pay-per-view and it came to you, live on the WWE Network, from the Allstate Arena in Chicago, IL. One of the major talking points of SmackDown LIVE over the past month has been the rise of Jinder Mahal. After coming over from RAW in the Superstar Shake-Up, “The Maharaja” was quick to make an impact on the blue brand as, with an assist from The Singh Brothers, Jinder would win a Six Pack Challenge to become the #1 Contender for the WWE Championship. With a fire lit under him, “The Maharaja” has seemingly had the number of WWE Champion Randy Orton as Jinder Mahal and The Singh Brothers have successfully beaten down “The Viper” on a number of occasions. Now all paths lead to Backlash where Jinder Mahal will get the biggest opportunity of his career as the confident “Maharaja” will challenge Randy Orton for the WWE Championship. Can Jinder Mahal complete his rise to the top of SmackDown LIVE by winning the prestigious WWE Championship or will the thirteen-time World Champion Randy Orton fell Jinder and walk out of Chicago as the champion? What role, if any, will The Singh Brothers play in the title match?
After arriving on SmackDown LIVE in the Superstar Shake-Up last month, United States Champion Kevin Owens has certainly made his presence felt as “The Face of America” was quick to beat his former best friend Chris Jericho to regain the United States Title before savagely assaulting “Y2J”, putting Jericho on the shelf for an undetermined amount of time. Amidst his heated rivalry with Chris Jericho, a new challenger for the United States Championship was decided as “The Phenomenal” AJ Styles earned the right to face Kevin Owens for the title at Backlash. Now AJ Styles will walk into Backlash to go one-on-one with “The Face of America” with the United States Championship on the line. Can “The Phenomenal One” walk out as the new United States Champion or will Kevin Owens continue his reign and do to AJ Styles what he did to Chris Jericho?
On the SmackDown LIVE after WrestleMania, Tuesday nights would never be the same with the arrival of the enigmatic, one-of-a-kind Superstar known as Shinsuke Nakamura. The former two-time NXT Champion would be welcomed with open arms to the main roster but one Superstar who took issue with “The Artist” was Dolph Ziggler as “The Show Off” accused Nakamura of being a Michael Jackson rip-off who hasn’t proven anything to anyone yet. This all leads to Backlash where Dolph Ziggler will find out what “The King of Strong Style” is all about when Shinsuke Nakamura makes his in-ring SmackDown LIVE debut against Dolph Ziggler!
Since Charlotte Flair arrived on SmackDown LIVE in the Superstar Shake-Up, a rift was formed in the SmackDown LIVE Women’s Division with Natalya, Carmella, & Tamina, along with James Ellsworth, would form “The Welcoming Committee” out of disdain and jealousy over Charlotte getting a shot at the SmackDown Women’s Title within two weeks of her SmackDown LIVE debut. However, “The Queen” would find allies in the form of SmackDown Women’s Champion Naomi and “The Irish Lass Kicker” Becky Lynch and these two factions would square off at Backlash as SmackDown Women’s Champion Naomi, Charlotte Flair, & Becky Lynch would face Natalya, Carmella, & Tamina in a 6-Woman Tag Match.
The SmackDown Tag Team Titles would also be on the line at Backlash as, after winning Tag Team Turmoil a few weeks ago to earn the opportunity, the fashion-obsessed duo known as Breezango would get their shot at the gold when they challenge The Usos for the SmackDown Tag Team Titles. Also at Backlash, after being attacked on Talking Smack a couple of weeks ago, Sami Zayn would be looking for revenge as “The Underdog from the Underground” would go one-on-one with “The Lone Wolf” Baron Corbin. Former Wyatt Family brothers would also go one-on-one at Backlash as the mysterious and dangerous Erick Rowan would collide with the equally mysterious and dangerous Luke Harper as these two big men would collide in Chicago.
- Kickoff Match: Tye Dillinger def. Aiden English by pin following the Tye Breaker.
- Shinsuke Nakamura def. Dolph Ziggler by pin following the Kinshasa.
- SmackDown Tag Team Championship: The Usos (c) def. Breezango by Jey Uso (c) pinning Fandango following a super kick to retain.
- Sami Zayn def. Baron Corbin by pin following the Helluva Kick.
- 6-Woman Tag: Natalya, Carmella, & Tamina (with James Ellsworth) def. Naomi, Charlotte Flair, & Becky Lynch by Becky Lynch tapping out to Natalya’s Sharpshooter.
- United States Championship: Kevin Owens (c) def. AJ Styles by count-out after AJ Styles gets trapped in the German announce table to retain.
- Luke Harper def. Erick Rowan by pin following the Discus Clothesline.
- WWE Championship: Jinder Mahal (with The Singh Brothers) def. Randy Orton (c) by pin following the Khallas to win the WWE Title.
See page 2 for detailed results.