WWE’s first big pay-per-view after WrestleMania 39, Backlash is all set to take place at Puerto Rico this Sunday (May 7). And the biggest showdown is going to happen between The Beast Incarnate Brock Lesnar and The American Nightmare Cody Rhodes.
Apart from this, Austin Theory will also defend his United States Championship against Bobby Lashley and Bronson Reed. Seth Rollins will also face Omos in a singles match.
The event also sets the precedent for the Night of Champions pay-per-view, which will occur at Saudi Arabia’s Jeddah on May 27, 2023. The results of WWE Backlash will have an impact on all the major matches on the grand event in Jeddah.
Here are the predictions of all the big matches at Backlash:
1. Brock Lesnar vs Cody Rhodes: These two are the top contenders for the newly introduced WWE World Heavyweight Championship which will be crowned at the Night of Champions. But before that, the two will also have to settle their scores before heading for a big event.
If WWE decides to put Lesnar over Rhodes, it would be a big blow to Rhodes’ momentum. He was expected to win the WWE Undisputed Universal Championship at WrestleMania 39 but the change of plans by WWE gave a big shock to his fans.
Similarly, if Lesnar loses, it would be a blow for his character growth. Also, as he is freshly drafted to RAW, Brock’s character would certainly be a big draw at Night of Champions.
So who wins the match? Though a main event of a pay-per-view ends with a result , in this match card, there is a high possibility that the fight would end in a tie. Maybe an entry of a third character into the match might lead to a disqualification.
This will be a win-win situation for both Lesnar and Rhodes.
Prediction: No result (Tie)
2. Sami Zayn, Kevin Owens, Matt Riddles vs The Usos and Solo Sikoa: This might be the final clash between the two sides as they have been drafted to separate brands. And in all probability, Sami Zayn, Kevin Owens and Matt Riddles are going to win the bout against the Bloodline members.
Bloodline might also witness a crack at Backlash with most probably Jey Uso turning a babyface. This storyline might further continue at SmackDown with Jey clashing against either Solo Sikoa or Jimmy Uso.
Prediction: Sami Zayn, Kevin Owens and Matt Riddle win
3. SmackDown women’s championship -- Rhea Ripley (Champion) vs Zelin Vega: Ripley is currently the hottest women wrestler in the company right now and at Backlash she is all expected to retain the title against Zelin Vega. Being part of the Judgement Day, Rhea Ripley has only seen her rise in the past few months and is a big draw for the company. She will certainly retain her championship against Zelin Vega.
Prediction: Rhea Ripley wins
4. RAW women’s championship: Bianca Blair (c) vs IYO SKY: Bianca has been a great asset to the WWE and she has been putting up good performances in the past few years. WWE might also be thinking of getting a new women’s champion and giving rest to Bianca for a while. And Backlash can be an event that sets things for IYO SKY as the future champion. But, Bianca is expected to retain the championship on Sunday and the title change might happen at the Night of Champions at later this month.
Winner: Bianca Blair
5. Seth Rollins vs Omos: 'The Nigerian Giant' is doing fine as a heel and after losing the match to Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania 39, the company got him to work with Seth Rollins.
Now as Seth is drafted to RAW, he is expected to be given a major push as he also qualifies for the title shot at the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. The company would certainly give me more push after getting him over Logan Paul at WrestleMania. By getting over Omos, Rollins strengthens his character to contest for the big title shot at the Night of Champions.
Winner prediction: Seth Rollins
6. United States Championship: Austin Theory (c) Bobby Lashley vs Bronson Reed: Austin Theory was put over John Cena by the company at WrestleMania 39. And Lashley went without a match at the grand event as Bray Wyatt was reportedly injured.
At Backlash, there is a high chance that the title exchanges hands and Bobby Lashley gets to hold it for a while as Theory is given rest for a while. Lashley is also getting decent crowd support and is at the prime of his career, perhaps in the best shape, he could ever be. Bronson Reed might put up a good match with the two, he is not in the line for the US championship as of now.
Winner prediction: Bobby Lashley
7. Bad Bunny vs Damien Priest (Judgement Day): From Logan Paul to Snoop Dog and now Bad Bunny, WWE derives its own pleasure by getting celebs test their strengths inside the ring. At Backlash, Bad Bunny, who is also hosting the Backlash, is expected to win the bout against Damien Priest (Judgement Day) but with outside help from Rey Mysterio.
The match could also see a show of LWO, Rey Mysterio and other Judgment Day wrestlers clash with Bad Bunny winning the fall ultimately. This also sets the momentum for further storyline buildup between Rey Mysterio and LWO against The Judgement Day which can lead to a match up between the two sides at Night of the Champions.
The event will broadcast Live in India on SonyLIV at 5:30 am on Sunday morning (May 7).