John Cena headlined the last four WWE Backlash events, competing in matches for the WWE Championship or World Heavyweight Championship every year from 2006 to 2009. As Backlash returns to WWE programming in 2016, John Cena wasn’t headlining the event — in fact, John Cena didn’t compete at all. Instead, the event was headlined by Dean Ambrose and AJ Styles, as The Lunatic Fringe defended the WWE World Heavyweight Championship against The Phenomenal One. Styles won the title after using a low-blow when the referee wasn’t looking.
Before Styles and Ambrose battled for the chance to be the top man on the SmackDown Live roster, six of the women from the blue brand fought to be named the first-ever SmackDown Women’s Champion. Since making her surprise return at WWE SummerSlam 2016, Nikki Bella has repeatedly run into trouble with recent NXT call-up Carmella. The same was true at Backlash. But in the end, it was Becky Lynch who earned the right to be the new champ.
Backlash was also the place that the first-ever SmackDown Tag Team Champions were crowned. After defeating The Hype Bros, The Usos advanced to take on Heath Slater and Rhyno. In the end, it was “Beauty and the Man-Beast” that took home the brand new SmackDown tag titles. In addition to those matches, The Miz defended the WWE Intercontinental Championship against Dolph Ziggler, while Randy Orton was replaced by Kane to take on Bray Wyatt.
WWE Backlash 2016 Results
The following includes the results of all the matches and segments from WWE Backlash 2016 on September 11. The return of the Backlash event will air live from The Coliseum in Richmond. As the first brand-exclusive PPV since the recent WWE Draft and brand extension, the crew from WWE SmackDown Live will set the tone for such events, as the Monday Night Raw brand will host Clash of Champions in two weeks.
Backlash 2016 Kick-Off On The WWE Network
The hour-long pre-show was hosted by Renee Young, who was joined by Lita, Booker T and Jerry Lawler. In a backstage segment, SmackDown General Manager Daniel Bryan was talking to Apollo Crews about being more “loose” in the ring. Their conversation was interrupted by Baron Corbin, who was complaining that he didn’t have a match on Backlash or even on SmackDown Live last week. They scheduled Baron Corbin vs. Apollo Crews for later in the pre-show.
Heath Slater and Rhyno were interviewed in the Social Media Lounge by Tom Phillips as he asked questions raised by the WWE Universe on Twitter. The soon-to-be SmackDown Tag Team Champions continued their trailer park shtick. Alexa Bliss joined the panel later in the pre-show, and Jerry Lawler predictably agreed with everything she said.
Baron Corbin Defeated Apollo Crews
With about ten minutes left in the Backlash Kickoff Show, the unannounced match between two up-and-comers concluded. In a bout with several near-falls, Baron Corbin got the pinfall victory after connecting with his patented End of Days finisher. Look for Apollo Crews to continue to tweak his character until he loses his Cena-esque positivity.
Before the Kickoff Show ended, Renee Young aired an interview she had with Jagger Eaton, a Nickelodeon star who will apparently be making an appearance at Backlash.
Becky Lynch Wins SmackDown Women’s Championship
Alexa Bliss was the first woman eliminated, after Naomi and Natalya teamed up with a top rope powerbomb. They didn’t stay friends long, however, as Natalya eliminated Naomi next when she tapped out to the Sharpshooter. Like rapid-fire, Nikki Bella eliminated Natalya, and was then eliminated by Carmella with a roll-up pin. With Carmella and Becky Lynch as the final two competitors, the self-proclaimed Princess of Staten Island got caught in the Disarmer. Becky Lynch goes down as the first-ever SmackDown Women’s Champion. Aside from the Irish Lass-Kicker’s emotional speech, there were no post-match shenanigans.
The Miz Was Insulted By Jagger Eaton — Bray Wyatt Attacked Randy Orton Backstage
As The Miz was talking to Nickelodeon star Jagger Eaton, he suggested that the WWE Intercontinental Champion come on his show. That is, if John Cena can’t do it. As that segment ended, the camera cut immediately to another backstage area, where Bray Wyatt was attacking Randy Orton. While Randy Orton would later be removed from his match against Wyatt, it didn’t stop him from interfering in Bray’s match against Orton’s replacement.
The Usos Defeated The Hype Bros
Jimmy and Jey Uso continue to embrace their new role as heels, advancing to the finals to face fan-favorites Heath Slater and Rhyno for the SmackDown Tag Team Championship. This match only took place because Chad Gable of American Alpha was kayfabe injured by The Usos last week on SmackDown Live.
The Miz Defeated Dolph Ziggler
After a hard-fought match, Maryse sprayed Ziggler in the face with an unidentified substance, giving The Miz the chance he needed to connect with the Skull-Crushing Finale. Look for The Showoff to go through something of a gimmick change in the very near future.
Bray Wyatt “Defeated” Randy Orton — Then Lost To Kane
Because of the beating he received at the hands of Bray Wyatt backstage, it was announced that Randy Orton had not been cleared to wrestle. Wyatt demanded the referee issue an official ten-count before declaring him the winner by forfeit. As he was celebrating his victory, it was announced that he had a No Holds Barred Match against Kane. In the middle of that match, Randy Orton limped to the ring and hit Wyatt with the RKO. Kane followed that up with a chokeslam, leading to his victory.
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Heath Slater And Rhyno Defeated The Usos
While Rhyno is clearly being booked as the stronger half of the tag team, Heath Slater is more over with the WWE Universe than he has ever been. Not only is Heath Slater now one half of the SmackDown Tag Team Champions, but he has also earned a contract for a permanent job on WWE SmackDown Live.
AJ Styles Defeated Dean Ambrose
The end of this very solid match came as AJ Styles hit Dean Ambrose with a low-blow (unseen by the referee) leading to a Styles Clash. AJ Styles leaves WWE Backlash 2016 as the new WWE World Heavyweight Champion.
The above WWE Backlash 2016 results will be corroborated by WWE’s official Backlash page.
Where To Watch WWE Backlash 2016
WWE Backlash 2016 airs live, exclusively on the WWE Network, beginning at 8/7c. The WWE Backlash 2016 Kick-Off begins at 7/6c. Both programs will be available to stream immediately on-demand via the WWE Network.
[Image via WWE]