WWE Backlash results: Cody Rhodes retains in front of frenzied French fans

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** Jackie Redmond hosted the Countdown to Backlash pre-show from the US alongside CM Punk and Big E. They began with a short history of the WWE’s history in France before previewing the card and introducing some backstage interviews.

** Michael Cole and Corey Graves were on English-language commentary at the LDLC Arena in Lyon-Décines, for the first-ever WWE premium live event to be held in France.

** Kevin Owens and Randy Orton opened the show, facing The Bloodline’s Solo Sikoa and Tama Tonga. French-Canadian Owens entered to the first of many raucous receptions before Randy Orton came out to the crowd singing his theme. SmackDown General Manager Nick Aldis made the match a street fight after the four brawled. Towards the end of the chaotic match, Tanga Loa made a surprise appearance, helping the Bloodline to victory.

** The WWE Women’s Championship triple-threat match was next. Champion Bayley, Tiffany Stratton and Naomi got off to a frenetic start with all three trading moves. Naomi was then temporarily taken out, leaving Stratton and Bayley to fight it out. An Alabama Slam by Stratton on Bayley led to a near-fall which was broken up by Naomi.

Bayley retained with a quick pin on Naomi. Stratton was booked very strongly and looked impressive throughout.

** Before the World Heavyweight Championship match, the expanded Bloodline briefly confronted Jey Uso backstage.

Jey entered through the crowd, who welcomed him by doing his arm wave with their phone flashlights switched on.

Jey baited the champion Damian Priest by “Yeeting” to the crowd, leading to Priest taking control and dominating the early part of the match.

As the tide turned, JD McDonagh appeared at ringside. However, he and Priest argued, allowing Jey to attack and get a big near-fall with the Uso Splash.

As Jey was getting the better of Priest, Finn Balor appeared and interfered, allowing Priest to deliver the South of Heaven chokeslam. This led to a huge kick-out at two.

Jey managed to deliver another Uso Splash but JD McDonagh placed Priest’s foot on the rope. Uso finally took out the other members of the Judgment Day, but this allowed Priest to deliver another South of Heaven to retain.

Dissent then ensued among the Judgment Day as Balor and McDonagh tried to beat down Jey after the match, with Priest stopping them.

** French commentator Philippe Chéreau took to the ring to announce (in French) that Backlash had accrued the largest gate of any arena show in WWE history.

** The only title change of the show came next as Bianca Belair & Jade Cargill unseated The Kabuki Warriors’ Asuka and Kairi Sane.

** The crowd hit a whole new gear for the main event. They sang every word of Cody Rhodes’ entrance theme, and then chanted and sang their way through the entire match.

Cody fended off the challenge from AJ Styles in the match of the event, with both men delivering main event level performances. Styles was depicted as taking Rhodes to the limit in the lengthy match but the fan favorite finally prevailed with the Cross Rhodes.

Full results

  • The Bloodline (Tama Tonga & Solo Sikoa) def. Kevin Owens & Randy Orton
  • WWE Women’s Championship: Bayley (c) def. Tiffany Stratton & Naomi
  • World Heavyweight Championship: Damian Priest (c) def. Jey Uso
  • WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships: Bianca Belair & Jade Cargill def. The Kabuki Warriors (Asuka & Kairi Sane) (c)
  • Undisputed WWE Universal Championship: Cody Rhodes (c) def. AJ Styles
About Neal Flanagan 847 Articles
Based in Northern Ireland, Neal Flanagan is a former newspaper journalist and copy editor. In addition to reporting for POST Wrestling, he co-hosts The Wellness Policy podcast with Wai Ting and Jordan Goodman.