Since the brand split, SmackDown has been touted as the “land of opportunity,” which is pretty much the theme of tonight’s show, as we’re going to see Jinder Mahal — a guy who has been used as enhancement talent ever since he came back to WWE last year — challenge Randy Orton for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. We’re also going to see the Fashion Police — Tyler Brezze and Fandango, who, like Jinder, are getting a push out of nowhere — challenge Jey and Jimmy Uso for the SmackDown Tag Team Titles.
Before you continue reading, it’s important to note that there are possible spoilers ahead, as the final betting odds for WWE’s pay-per-views tend to be pretty accurate. So, if you’re not interested in potential spoilers for tonight’s show, then please, stop right here. If not, feel free to continue reading.
The latest betting odds, courtesy of Five Dimes, suggest that we’ll see one title change, two titles be retained, and a huge debut win for Shinsuke Nakamura, who will make his in-ring debut on the main roster against Dolph Ziggler.
Surprisingly enough, the one title change that we might see at tonight’s show, according to the odds, will take place in the Randy Orton vs. Jinder Mahal match, as Jinder is currently listed as the favorite. On top of that, Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter has said that he wouldn’t be surprised if Jinder wins the title tonight.
“Randy Orton and Jinder [Mahal], you know the pressure is on both of them. I don’t wanna say that they’re gonna have a great match, because I don’t know that they will, but I think that they’re gonna have a good match. I know they’re gonna be motivated, and I think the crowd will be okay with them. Jinder may win the championship. I mean, it wouldn’t shock me. If you wanna go all the way, go all the way, right?”
Below is the full card for tonight’s Backlash show, and the latest odds for all of tonight’s matches.
- Tye Dillinger (-825) vs. Aiden English (+475)
- Luke Harper (-380) vs. Erick Rowan (+260)
- Baron Corbin (-260) vs. Sami Zayn (+180)
- Jimmy and Jey Uso (-455) vs. Tyler Breeze and Fandango (+315)
- Natalya, Carmella, and Tamina (-900) vs. Naomi, Charlotte, and Becky Lynch (+500)
- Kevin Owens (-260) vs. AJ Styles (+180)
- Shinsuke Nakamura (-2600) vs. Dolph Ziggler (+1200)
- Jinder Mahal (-150) vs. Randy Orton (+110)
It’s no secret that WWE wants to develop a main event-level Indian star, which is why Mahal is listed as the favorite to win the blue brand’s top prize at tonight’s show.
The longest odds of the night are in the Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Dolph Ziggler match, as Nakamura is a heavily favored to win. Off all the matches on tonight’s card, this is, by far, the most predictable one. Anything other than a Nakamura win would surely surprise and disappoint everyone.
The closest odds are in the Randy Orton vs. Jinder Mahal match, which indicates that the current favorite — Jinder — might not win the title tonight.
There’s a rumor going around which suggests that Jinder Mahal will win the WWE World Heavyweight Championship tonight and that he will go on to feud with John Cena this summer. Cena, who is currently busy with a ton of non-WWE projects, is scheduled to return to SmackDown on July 4, which, if the rumor is true, might be where his feud with Mahal will begin.
As of right now, we don’t know the match order. Typically, the WWE Championship match will go on last. However, many believe that either the Kevin Owens vs. AJ Styles or Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Dolph Ziggler match should close out this year’s Backlash. So, it’s not a guarantee that Jinder vs. Orton will be tonight’s main event.
[Featured Image by WWE]