At a recent WWE event, Randy Orton defended his championship against No. 1 contender Jinder Mahal in a match ahead of WWE Backlash 2017. Not only was Jinder Mahal in the match, but former WWE World Champion AJ Styles participated, making it a Triple Threat for the title. In addition, there was a Shinsuke Nakamura appearance in a wrestling match ahead of the pay-per-view. The latest bout was part of WWE’s ongoing overseas tour which featured the stars of the Raw and SmackDown Live rosters putting on shows for the United Kingdom.
The professional wrestling show was held in Cardiff, Wales, as reported by ProWrestling, and featured the members of the SmackDown Live brand in action. Among the latest match results were several WWE championship defenses including the SmackDown Women’s title and tag team titles, as well as Orton’s World Championship. Also, since it was being held in Wales, it was only appropriate that this show featured the WWE’s UK Championship being defended.
The opening bout featured the arrival of one of the WWE’s biggest new stars, Shinsuke Nakamura. The former two-time NXT Champion took part in a match against the same guy he’ll be facing in about two weeks at WWE Backlash, Dolph Ziggler. It was reported that there were dueling chants for both of the superstars during the match, but Ziggler got heat transferred to himself eventually. As most fans are expecting to happen later this month, Nakamura defeated Dolph at this live WWE event after hitting the Kinshasa. However, it was reported that “both men held something back” during this contest which is good as this was merely a warm up for their match at the network pay-per-view.
For the tag team championship, The Usos were able to successfully retain their title belts in a Triple Threat match. It also involved Primo and Epico Colon as well as former champions American Alpha. The two heel teams joined up to isolate Chad Gable for a good part of the match but he eventually was able to escape and get his partner Jason Jordan in. The finish of this one saw the champs get a surprise rollup pinfall to keep a hold of their titles.
After his interesting new gimmick this past week on SmackDown, Aiden English was in action for this event. He teamed up with The Ascension to take on Sin Cara, Tyler Breeze, and Fandango. The face team got the victory and that sent English into a rage following the loss as he kept screaming “No” which helped draw out the “Yes” chant from the crowd. He demanded more competition and Mojo Rawley came to the ring, then defeated him in under 30 seconds.
The WWE’s UK division got a chance to shine on this live event card as well. That included current UK Champion Tyler Bates teaming up with Trent Severn and Mark Andrews as they took on Pete Dunne, Joseph Conners, and James Drake. Reports indicated that it took some time but eventually the crowd was invested more into the match and got a pleasing finish to it. Ultimately, Mark Andrews hit a Shooting Star Press onto James Drake to collect the win for the babyface team.
The WWE United States and SmackDown Women’s titles were both on the line at the overseas event. In the U.S. title bout, Kevin Owens once again defended against his longtime rival Sami Zayn. Owens used his stall technique in the match similar to what he tried to do against Goldberg by leaving the ring at the start. Eventually, Zayn got his hands on the champion and had a near fall at one point, but Owens hit a Pop-Up Powerbomb for the win to retain his title.
In terms of the women’s title, that was on the line as five women competed for the title. Basically, the match included just about every woman on the SmackDown roster except for Tamina, Lana, and Nikki Bella. The match saw the heel team working together quite a bit until Charlotte tried to trick Carmella and get a pinfall behind her back. Naomi eventually got the big win by pinning the “Staten Island Princess” to leave with her championship.
In the main event, a sort of preview was given for the Jinder Mahal vs. Randy Orton title match that’s coming later this month at WWE Backlash. However, it wasn’t just Jinder challenging for Orton’s title, but also “The Phenomenal” AJ Styles in a Triple Threat match. It was reported that Jinder gave another promo ahead of Styles and Orton’s entrances by berating the Wales crowd for being just like the Americans and disrespecting him for looking different.
Once the match got started, AJ stood back and watched as Orton went right after Jinder due to the recent attack at Payback last weekend. Each of the competitors was said to look good in this match and the finish came down to Orton hitting an RKO on Jinder Mahal for the win. That could very well be the same thing fans see in about two weeks at Backlash. There wasn’t any mention of the Singh Brothers getting involved, but they could play a part in the finish at the pay-per-view as well.
As recently reported by Montgomery Advertiser, WWE Backlash is scheduled for May 21, Sunday, from the Allstate Arena in Rosemont, Illinois. Not only will Orton defend his WWE Championship against Jinder Mahal for the main event of the match card, but Kevin Owens will also defend the United States title against AJ Styles. Also, The Usos will put the tag team titles on the line against Breezeango, while Shinsuke Nakamura battles Dolph Ziggler. More matches are likely to come including bouts from the women’s division in addition to a few other random matches such as a pre-show bout.
[Featured Image by WWE]