WWE Backlash 2018 results: AJ Styles holds on to WWE Championship, Roman Reigns scores win and boos | WWE

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WWE Backlash featured five championship matches but no new champions when it was all said and done.

AJ Styles retained the WWE Championship when both he and Shinsuke Nakamura could not answer the ten count following dual low blows. These two seem destined to meet again for the title but what will the stipulation be?

While that match ended without a true winner, there was no question as to who won the other championship matches with all of them ending in a decisive manner. 

The most perplexing decision of the night was putting Roman Reigns and Samoa Joe in the main event rather than closing out the show with the WWE Championship match. But the WWE is on an unrelenting quest to make Roman Reigns into its biggest star despite the crowd turning on him more and more every week. So it should come as no surprise that it was the “Big Dog” holding his hand high in victory to end the show.

MORE: Pressing questions from the week of WWE TV

WWE Backlash delivered with some good, hard-hitting action but left many fans shaking their heads following some shaky decisions by the time it was over.

WWE Backlash 2018 live updates

Roman Reigns defeats Samoa Joe

11:28 p.m. FINISH: Just like that, Reigns avoids Joe and connects with a huge spear to score the win. Solid match but the crowd hurt it as they could have cared less about Reigns. Unbelievable decision by WWE to put that on last. And the “Roman Reigns is THEE guy” push continues.

11:26 p.m.: Joe slaps on the Coquina Clutch and Reigns looks like he’s out but he’s still alive.

11:23 p.m.: Reigns hits a spear but Joe gets his foot on the ropes. This crowd is not happy.

11:20 p.m.: Reigns connects with a big boot and he goes on the offensive but not for long. Here comes Joe.

11:16 p.m.: Samoa Joe has wings.

11:13 p.m.: Reigns tries to mount some offense but Joe cuts him off and connects with a kick in the head. All Joe so far.

11:10 p.m.: The bell rings and the match officially begins with Reigns behind the 8-ball. I don’t think a lot of people are crying for him.

11:08 p.m.: Joe gets in a sucker punch before the bell rings and they fight outside the ring. Joe puts Reigns through the announcer’s table and then flings him over the other two. AND THE BELL HASN’T RUN YET! THIS MATCH HAS NOT BEGUN!

11:05 p.m.: Swag walk.

11:03 p.m.: This should be hard-hitting but I’m wondering why this is going on last. I get it — Roman Reigns goes on last but there better be something more than just that come the end of this match.

10:59 p.m.: After the match, Strowman powerslammed Owens as Zayn looked on and screamed. He tried to walk to the back but Strowman chased him down and gave him a powerslam in the ring for good measure. That backfired with the crowd who were not into it. Kind of a jerk move by Strowman but WWE thought the audience would eat it up.

Braun Strowman and Bobby Lashley beat Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn

10:56 p.m. FINISH: Zayn had enough and tried to walk out but Owens stopped him and said we stay and fight. Zayn threw him in the ring and then Owens did the same to him. The two argued, Zayn slapped KO and then left him to the wolves as Strowman and Lashley finished him off. That was … something.

10:52 p.m.: Owens and Zayn were in control with Lashley in the ring for a few minutes but he finally made the tag. Look out.

10:50 p.m.: Yes, the gigantic trophy that Strowman receiving from winning the Greatest Royal Rumble match is ringside. Why? No idea. 

10:46 p.m.: So much for this show only lasting three hours. We’re almost at that point and still have two matches to go. 

10:43 p.m.: This says it all.

AJ Styles beats Shinsuke Nakamura after neither can answer the 10-count to retain the WWE Championship

10:38 p.m. FINISH: Quite the finish as they each connect with kicks to the nether region at the same time. Both go down in a heap and neither can get to their feet by the count of ten and the referee calls the match. Very good match with yet another anti-climatic finish between these two.

10:35 p.m: Well, it took a while but Nakamura connects with a low blow. And Styles hits ones of his own. Quite the game of row-sham-bo. 

10:33 p.m.: Nakamura ges a chair and after the two exchage shots, he connects with a reverse exploder onto the chair but Styles kicks out. Nakamura went for the Kinshasa but Styles threw the chair into his knee and it ricochets back into his face and cuts open his cheek. Nasty.

10:29 p.m.: Back and forth action so far but mostly Nakamura who tried to score a pin twice more but Styles survives both times.

10:25 p.m.: The King of Strong Styles is in control and even went for the cocky pin. That didn’t work.

10:22 p.m.: And now it’s Nakamura on the offensive.

10:18 p.m.: This isn’t a wrestling match; this is a fight as Styles takes the right to the champion outside the ring, tossing him into the barricade and then back into the ring.

10:15 p.m.: For his sake, I hope AJ is wearing a cup.

10:13 p.m.: Has to be said how much better Nakamura has been since turning heel at WrestleMania. He’s always been great but he was lost in the shuffle before then and is showing a lot more personality now. And the remake of his music is really cool.

10:10 p.m.: In the biggest surprise of the night, the show will not close out with the WWE Championship match. That will go to — you guessed it — Roman Reigns in the main event against Samoa Joe. Maybe there will be a big angle to justify it but right now that feels like a strange decision.

Carmella beats Charlotte Flair to remain “SmackDown” Women’s Championship

10:06 p.m. FINISH: Charlotte went for a moonsault off the top rope but instead landed on the mat but her left knee buckled. Carmella immediately capitalized and kicked her in the back of the knee and rolled up Flair for the clean pin. Not a surprise that Carmella won but a pretty big surprise how she won. 

10:04 p.m.: Carmella was in control and starting gloating before Charlotte connected with a spear. Then the champ turned it into her Code of Silence submission hold before Flair got out of it. A little more action and going longer than I thought. 

10:00 p.m.: Well, it’s not going to be all Charlotte. In fact, Carmella is now in control with a rear chinlock after hitting this:

9:57 p.m.: After a quick minute, Charlotte drops the champ with a big boot. But we did get Carmella showing off her moves first.

9:54 p.m.: Watching Charlotte look like a trained athlete getting serious for action and Carmella prancing around before the match, I get the feeling Charlotte could beat her in about five seconds.

9:50 p.m.: Not to brag but I’m perfect on my predictions so far. Well, at least for the main card. (The kickoff show doesn’t really count, right?)

9:45 p.m.: Apparently, Big Cass is a sore lose. He attacked Bryan from behind after the match and left him laying with a big boot to the face as the crowd lets him have it. Even Corey Graves called him a “seven-foot pompous fool”.

Daniel Bryan defeats Big Cass

9:43 p.m FINISH: The bigger you are, the harder you fall. Bryan catches Cass with a kick to the head, gets him down on the mat and slaps on the YES! Lock to get the submission win. 

9:41 p.m.: Bryan with furious action but Cass cuts him off with a big, power move. Here comes Bryan again with a series of moves and Cass turns him inside out with a big clothesline.

9:39 p.m.: Cass is so dark he looks like an old piece of leather. I wonder how many cans of spray tan he had to use to get that color.

9:37 p.m.: Daniel Bryan had this to say about Cass earlier today on Twitter:

9:35 p.m.: Big opportunity for Big Cass to show what he can do as a singles performer. Plus, it’s his first match back for him following his injury.

9:30 p.m.: It wasn’t over as Bobby Roode came from out of no where to hit Elias with a Glorious DDT and then danced to the back. I’m not sure what just happened.

9:27 p.m.: This is not going well for Elias as No Way Jose comes out with Titus Worldwide and Breezango in the conga line. And The New Day joins in.

9:24 p.m.: Elias tells them he’s a solo act and now Aiden English comes out as he introduces Rusev. Didn’t you know it’s Rusev Day?! Rusev just called Elias a “bootleg Bob Dylan” and referred to The New Day as the “booty boys”. Gold. 

9:20 p.m.: Elias dedicated this one to New Jersey’s own Bruce Springsteen who he claims calls him “The Boss”. He’s having some fun with the crowd by teasing he’s going to leave but before he can perform, here comes The New Day. And with pancakes. They want a special jam session with Elias. 

9:15 p.m.: A special treat as Elias is here to sing us a song!

Jeff Hardy defeats Randy Orton to keep the United States Championship

9:13 p.m. FINISH: After being down for most of the match, Hardy comes back with a Twist of Fate and immediately lands a Swanton Bomb to score the win. Solid match.

9:08 p.m.: And we’ve hit the chinlock portion of this match.

9:04 p.m.: Orton is acting a bit heelish pounding on Hardy who connects with a flying boot to the face outside the ring.

8:59 p.m.: And we’re on to our next match. These two had a killer match at the 2008 Royal Rumble. Let’s see what they can do a decade later.

8:55 p.m.: Before the next match, Samoa Joe did a backstage interview saying that he was going to turn the “Big Dog” into a wimpering puppy. Joe rules.

8:52 p.m.: After the match, Nia Jax gave a somewhat awkward speech about bullies and said everyone should “be a star”. It just so happens that WWE has an anti-bullying campaign called “Be a Star”. What a coincidence.

Nia Jax beats Alexa Bliss to remain the “RAW” Women’s Championship

8:50 p.m. FINISH: Bliss went for Twisted Bliss but Nia caught her like a sack of potatoes and dropped her with a Samoan drop for the win. Really nice match with some good back-and-forth action. 

8:46 p.m.: Wicked fall off the top rope and out of the ring for Nia Jax.

8:43 p.m.: Sassy.

8:41 p.m.: Keeping it to the basics so far with Bliss going for the knee but Nia powering her way back and throwing Bliss around. 

8:35 p.m.: The first of two women’s championship matches tonight. And they have a tough act to follow.

8:33 p.m.: Wow, that was a great way to kick things off. If anything else lives up to that, this will be a fantastic show. Give both Rollins and Miz credit but only one person can win.

Seth Rollins beats The Miz to retain the Intercontinental Championship

8:29 p.m. FINISH: Rollins goes for the stomp off the top rope but misses and the two exchange rollups before he finally connects with the stomp to get the pin. Awesome match to kick things off.

8:27 p.m.: Rollins with a superplex and a roll through for another suplex but his knee gives out. Skull Crushing Finale – but it’s not over! Rollins kicks out again! The Miz is losing it.

8:25 p.m.: The two exchange shots and then Miz connects with the Skull Crushing Finale but Rollins kicks out.

8:22 p.m.: Rollins misses with a flying knee and hits the post and The Miz slaps on the Figure Four. But Rollins hangs out and reverses it. Crowd getting into it now.

8:20 p.m.: Nice sequence as The Miz dives off the top rope but Rollins catches him slams him down and follows it up with an amazing frog splash and almost get the three count.

8:15 p.m.: It’s been mostly The Miz is control so far and he tries to win the I-C title for a record 9th time. Nine times? Yeah, nine times. 

8:11 p.m.: Rollins has been a roll lately and back to where he was a few years ago before his major knee injury. I think he’s up there with AJ Styles and Daniel Bryan as the all-around talent in WWE right now. Wait, add Samoa Joe to that. The Miz just caught Rollins with a nasty kick to the face and knocking him out of the ring.

8:05 p.m.: Imagine having the confidence to dress like this and pulling it off.

8:00 p.m.: Here we go with the main card for Backlash. Both brands on the same show — and we’ll start it off with Seth Rollins versus The Miz for the Intercontinental Championship which should be one of the best matches of the night.

Ruby Riott defeats Bayley

7:57 p.m. FINISH: Bayley had the upperhand after connecting with an elbow off the top rope but Liv Morgan distracted her, allowing Ruby to recover and connect with the Riott Kick for the win. A bit clunky with both of them a bit off.

7:50 p.m.: A bit sloppy early on between the women but Riott just hit a big slam after her gal-pals distracted Bayley. 

7:47 p.m.: In case you were wondering, the other two members of the Riott Squad — Liv Morgan and Sarah Logan — are ringside supporting Ruby. 

7:45 p.m.: ET: Here we go with the first match of the night. And Bayley has her wacky, inflatable tube whatchamacallits back!

7:43 p.m.: Kurt Angle still has his comedy chops.

7:40 p.m.: As we get set for the first action of the night, check out my Backlash predictions at the bottom of the page. There are five championship matches but I don’t expect many to change hands. In fact, I only predicted one — Nakamura beating Styles for the WWE Championship.

7:23 p.m.: The Miz just revealed that his match with Seth Rollins for the Intercontinental Championship will open the show. And he tried to get The Miztourage back together but Curtis Axel and Bo Dallas rebuffed him. My heart is broken but we did have this moment.

7:20 p.m.: Daniel Bryan is having his first one-on-one PPV match in over two years tonight. This comes after he lasted more than 70 minutes in the Greatest Royal Rumble match. He came back at WrestleMania and hasn’t missed a beat – pretty amazing.

7:10 p.m.: The panel is arguing over who will win the Samoa Joe – Roman Reigns match. That is possibly the most intriguing match of the night. I’m not down on Reigns like some are but I predicted Joe will win. Maybe that’s wishful thinking but he’s been on roll lately.

7:00 p.m.: Here we go with the Backlash kickoff show. Let’s see who is at the announcer table … it’s Renee Young! Booker T, Peter Rosenberg and David Otunga are there too. 

6:45 p.m.: Welcome to SN’s live coverage of WWE Backlash. We still have a few minutes before the kickoff show so before then, check out Kevin Eck’s latest post and my weekly news update including a preview for tonight’s show.

WWE Backlash 2018 lineup

— AJ Styles vs. Shinsuke Nakamura in a no disqualification match for the WWE Championship

— Seth Rollins vs. The Miz for the Intercontinental Championship

— Jeff Hardy vs. Randy Orton for the United States Championship

— Nia Jax vs. Alexa Bliss for the “RAW” Women’s Championship

— Carmella vs. Charlotte Flair for the “SmackDown” Women’s Championship

— Roman Reigns vs. Samoa Joe

— Daniel Bryan vs. Big Cass

— Braun Strowman and Bobby Lashley vs. Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn

— Bayley vs. Ruby Riott on the kickoff show

WWE Backlash 2018 predictions

— Nakamura takes advantage of the “no DQ” stipulation and defeats Styles for the WWE Championship

— Rollins bests The Miz to retain the Intercontinental Championship

— Jeff Hardy scores a win over Randy Orton to keep the United States Championship

— Nia Jax overpowers her former BFF Alexa Bliss in defending the “RAW” Women’s Championship

— Carmella finds a way to remain the “SmackDown” Women’s Championship

— Samoa Joe backs up his talk and scores a win over Roman Reigns

— Daniel Bryan outwrestles the larger Big Cass in victory

— Braun Strowman and Bobby Lashley prove to be too much for Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn

— Bayley returns the favor and beat Ruby Riott

Brian Fritz can be reached at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @BrianFritz and listen to his Between The Ropes podcast on iTunes.


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