Rasslin’ Roundtable for WWE Backlash 2017

Tonight is WWE Backlash 2017! Here is the Pulse Wrestling crew’s full match by match preview with predictions:

WWE Championship
Randy Orton (c) vs. Jinder Mahal (with The Singh Brothers)

Spain: I have to admire the guts of WWE: putting Jinder in the main event is a ridiculously out-of-left-field move. That being said, I think that’s where it stops. I can’t imagine Mahal actually becoming Champion. Best case scenario: this is a dirty-as-hell match where Orton only just manages to hold onto the title following ridiculous amounts of interference and nut shots.
Winner (and still WWE Champion): Randy Orton

JZ – Apparently Orton’s title isn’t going anywhere, but a friend of mine predicted Mahal would win by countout or DQ, and I could see that happening. Or, Orton hits an RKO and wins.
Winner: Randy Orton

Michael – I don’t know if I have been this uninterested in the World title in forever. Unfortunately, the best scenario of this match would be Orton winning with an RKO Outta Nowhere five seconds in.
Winner: The Boring Randy Orton

Sam Keola – Although there are precedents for an Orton squash here I’m holding out hope that a surge in India’s market will garner a win and good title run for Jinder Mahal
Winner – Jinder Mahal with major interference.

Schuerman – They’re going to do it, aren’t they? They’re going to put the title on Mahal just to troll us. Give someone new a chance, but possibly give that chance to someone who is passably over.
Winner – Mahal

Widro – The sudden push of Jinder Mahal has been a mixed bag, but a quick title change doesn’t seem to be in the cards.
Winner: Orton

WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championship
The Usos (Jimmy Uso and Jey Uso) (c) vs. Breezango (Tyler Breeze and Fandango)

Spain: If I could have a choice in the results of any of these matches, it would be this one, and I’d put the straps on Breezango in a damn heartbeat. It would be a wonderful world, but I can’t see it happening. The New Day is coming, and a match against the Usos is going to be way more high profile.
Winners (and still WWE SmackDown Tag Team Champions): The Usos

JZ – I LOVE Breezango, and they can thank me for their push later. That being said, they just started treating them as a real tag team, so I don’t think it’s time to put the belts on them just yet.
Winners: The Usos

Michael – Have the Usos even defended those tag titles yet? I know some people are high on Breezango, but me, not so much. The Usos should win this one strong.
Winner: The Usos

Sam Keola – This is a tough call. The Usos are the best they’ve ever been, but I think they’re better chasing the gold than wearing it. Breezango could be fire right now if WWE pulls the trigger. Not to mention there’s a lot of marketing that could be done for Breezango. Could they be the next Rockers? Only if they start winning.
Winner – Breezango

Schuerman – This is a match that will most likely include some perfectly passable wrestling, although the finish is not in doubt. The fashion police are simply place-holder challengers on a B PPV.
Winners – The Usos

Widro – Both the World and Tag Team Titles are up against relative jobber contenders, hard to see title changes here either.
Winner: The Usos

WWE United States Championship
Kevin Owens (c) vs. AJ Styles

Spain: This seems like a rivalry which could do both men huge favours, so the most obvious solution seems like letting Owens cheat to keep the belt. That way the Championship doesn’t get constantly swapped around and we get a reason to have Styles and Owens have a programme that can ramp up in its intensity.
Winner (and still WWE United States Champion): Kevin Owens

JZ – This should be match of the night, and probably the weekend. I’m expecting Randy Orton v AJ Styles to be a thing in the not too distant future, and I don’t see Styles picking up the U.S. Title along the way.
Winner: Kevin Owens

Michael – If this isn’t match of the night, then I give up. Picking a winner here is tough, but SmackDown needs Styles to be strong. And, since Randy Orton is a face for some reason, and since there are very few heels on the roster, I think Owens goes after the World title next.
Winner: AJ Styles (new champ)

Sam Keola – I think there’s a lot of fuel for this feud to cut it short with an AJ win already. I’d hold off on a title switch until next ppv or Summer Slam personally.
Winner – Owens retains or AJ by DQ.

Schuerman – This has “show-stealer” written ALL over it. This is the only thing that could rival the UK Title Match from TakeOver. The logic says that this or Shinsuke closes the show, and I hope it’s this match.
Winner – AJ Styles

Widro – On paper this should be the match of the night. Styles should be headed back to the World Title sooner than later so I don’t think he wins the US title here.
Winner: Owens

Naomi, Charlotte Flair, and Becky Lynch vs. The Welcoming Committee (Natalya, Carmella, and Tamina) (with James Ellsworth)

Spain: So far, Naomi, Charlotte and Becky have been having the boots put to them by the Welcoming Committee week in week out. They need a win, and the PPV seems like the best place to do it.
Winners: Naomi, Charlotte Flair and Becky Lynch

JZ – The heels picking up a win here would help build to Charlotte v Naomi, and that seems to be the direction they’re headed.
Winners: The Welcoming Committee

Michael – Oh, for the love of… We are back to the female gang wars and no one cares. Ellsworth takes a big bump and Natalya does most of the work for the heels, but Becky wins it for her team.
Winner: Naomi, Charlotte, and Becky

Sam Keola – I have only vaguely caught what’s happening with this “feud”. Is this going to be used to set up a match between Charlotte and Naomi down the road?
Winner – T.W.C.

Schuerman – Here’s hoping to Charlotte, Natalya, and Becky do the heavy lifting in this one. I think this is just an experiment to see if Flair can function as a face, and I think it will fail. Should be an interesting sociology experiment though.
Winners – Team “Snatch Bald”

Widro – I’m holding out hope that the Charlotte turn is temporary.
Winner: The Welcoming Committee (Natalya, Carmella, and Tamina)

Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Dolph Ziggler

Spain: I can actually imagine Ziggler beating Nakamura, because WWE. But short of your sudden attack of WWE insanity, Nakamura is going to beat Dolph in what will hopefully be a hell of a match.
Winner: Shinsuke Nakamura

JZ – Duh.
Winner: Shinsuke Nakamura

Michael – Ziggler has been soooooooo devalued, if he wins, Nakamura should just retire. This is the intro match to make Nakamura look like a million bucks, so hopefully Ziggler can sell having his face kicked in properly.
Winner: Shinsuke Nakamura

Sam Keola – The freight train of Nakamura cannot be stopped so soon.
Winner – Everyone. But Dolph.

Schuerman – This should be a great matchup. Nakamura has all the striking skills in the world, and all Dolph knows how to do is sell. Another match where the finish is not in doubt, but it should be really fun to watch at least.
Winner – Nakamura

Widro – Great to see WWE making Nakamura something special with the booking so far.
Winner: Nakamura

Sami Zayn vs. Baron Corbin

Spain: Whilst Baron Corbin is dominant as hell, Zayn really needs a win here. With what we’ve seen him do with the even bigger Strowman, it’s not inconceivable that Sami could take the match with a well-timed Helluva Kick out of nowhere.
Winner: Sami Zayn

JZ – This is a tough one, because both guys really do need the win. On the other hand, WWE doesn’t care about Sami Zayn, so.
Winner: Baron Corbin

Michael – Can Zayn pull a great match out of Corbin? I think so. Corbin has shown he can hold his own against superior talent, and with the right opponent guiding him can turn in a good performance. In fact, I think the WWE wants to keep Corbin strong for a potential title chase, so…
Winner: Baron Corbin

Sam Keola – This should be a nice little match. Somewhat filler. More to keep Corbin relevant.
Winner – Corbin

Schuerman – Conventional logic says that Corbin goes over strong here to set himself up as the next big heel on SmackDown, but where is Vince and what the hell is conventional logic?! I love Zayn, and I think he gets the surprising duke here.
Winner – Zayn

Widro – It’s clear they do not like Sami Zayn for some reason, he almost never wins big matches.
Winner: Corbin

Luke Harper vs. Erick Rowan

Spain: Rowan has a win; Harper needs to even the score. Seems academic.
Winner: Luke Harper

JZ – Rowan seems to have settled on a character, and Harper has bupkis.
Winner: Erick Rowan

Michael – I don’t know about Rowan’s new gimmick and I just don’t see him as a star. Harper, meanwhile, has shown he can go and has proven to be able to connect with the crowd. They better reverse that awful finish between these two from a few weeks ago or people may riot.
Winner: Luke Harper

Sam Keola – I have no clue. Harper has always been fairly over but poorly used. Rowan has shown some umph as of late. Will they use this to push one or both or neither? They’ve pushed neither for years now.
Winner – Double Count Out

Schuerman – Just put the Wyatt’s back together please. Neither of these guys can make it on their own.
WInner – Harper

Widro – Hard to see that WWE had plans for either guy when the moved Bray to Raw.
Winner: Harper

Pre-Show
Tye Dillinger vs. Aiden English

Spain: I’ve seen some pretty good articles stating how it would actually make sense for English to win here. And I’d like to think that SmackDown could do with less ridiculous jobbers. Still, I reckon Tye’s going to be the victor.
Winner: Tye Dillinger

JZ – The only question is if they’ll continue the Aiden English cries gimmick after he loses.
Winner: Tye Dillinger

Michael – I’ll be honest, I don’t dig Dillinger nearly as much as others do. I do like English though and think he has been seriously underused. That will continue here.
Winner: Tye Dillinger

Sam Keola – I’d really like to see English getting a push, but they’re more recently invested in Dillinger…
Winner – Dillinger

Schuerman – Dillinger really has nothing going for himself other than the “10” thing, but he’s the hot new guy, so he goes over the much more entertaining English.
Winner – Dillinger

Widro – Imagine being in the Vaudevillains then being told you get a gimmick change to a guy who cries.
Winner: Dillinger

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