WWE Backlash 2018 review: What we learned, takeaways, future projections

Photo credit: WWE.com
Photo credit: WWE.com /
8 of 8
Photo credit: WWE.com
Photo credit: WWE.com /

Roman Reigns vs. Samoa Joe

What we learned: We learned here that Roman Reigns can overcome anything, right? Oh wait, we already know that. We learned here that Roman Reigns is going to be the main event of the night no matter who else is on the card. Oh wait, we already knew that too, didn’t we? Listen, I like Roman Reigns and have often gone out of my way to defend him. But it’s coming increasingly more difficult for me to do that when we get things like this. No, this match should not have been the main event. No, I don’t think a clean win for Reigns was the way to go here.

Samoa Joe has been amazing since returning from injury. His mic work has never been stronger and his promo earlier in the evening was yet another example of that. His in-ring work is always going to be stellar, and watching him dismantle Roman before the match even started was great. He looks to be in great shape and he dominated this night … well, except for losing clean anyway.

This thing started hot with the pre-match antics. The crowd was into it and I really thought that my prediction of an all-out brawl would be correct. Then came a rest hold. And another. And another. The Newark crowd certainly didn’t appreciate it, and most of the WWE Universe didn’t either. Just take a look at social media. The match went flat and got really boring and the finish just became more and more predictable as the bout went on. Personally, I would have done the Styles/Nakamura finish here, leaving both looking strong. But I suppose after “losing” to Lesnar at Greatest Royal Rumble, Reigns needed a big win and he got it here.

What’s next: Roman is now back in position to once again challenge for the WWE Universal Championship … unless that spot goes to Strowman. Lesnar is scheduled to defend at Money in the Bank and with Reigns technically beating him in Saudi Arabia with the cage finish, it stands to reason that we’ll get that match one more time. I don’t think the majority of the WWE Universe would be too happy about it but that’s the way booking has been going lately.

As for Samoa Joe, I think he can recover quickly from this loss. He doesn’t have to be around Reigns on Monday nights and he can go right into the Money in the Bank qualifiers on SmackDown Live. The winner of the Money in the Bank briefcase often has a few problems or losses before getting that win and I think that’s what Joe was used for here. Reigns gets a big win and Joe moves on to win MITB next month in Chicago. Book it.

Next: 10 who deserve to be in the WWE Hall of Fame

What were your thoughts on WWE Backlash? Feel free to join in the conversation in the comments section below.