For the first time in more than three months, a “SmackDown Live” pay-per-view is on the schedule. WWE Backlash 2017 is set for Sunday night in Rosemont, Illinois at the Allstate Arena with a few new faces set to compete in some of the card’s biggest matches.
Below are WWE Backlash predictions for every match on the card. Eight matches are scheduled, and three championships will be on the line.
WWE Champion Randy Orton vs. Jinder Mahal
It was pretty surprising when Mahal became the No.1 contender for the top belt on “SmackDown Live,” and it would be even more shocking to see him win the title. WWE has done their best to build him up as a legitimate threat, having him defeat Sami Zayn and AJ Styles in consecutive weeks. But Mahal had done close to nothing before WrestleMania 33, and his time in the main-event scene probably won’t last very long.
Prediction: Randy Orton
SmackDown Tag Team Champions The Usos vs. Breezango
The Usos are probably going to hold onto the titles until Kofi Kingston is healthy and The New Day are on “SmackDown Live” and ready to challenge them. Fandango and Tyler Breeze probably won’t win Sunday night, but they’ve taken advantage of their opportunity and have been one of the most entertaining parts of the last few Tuesday nights.
Prediction: The Usos
United States Champion Kevin Owens vs. AJ Styles
The WWE Championship holds more prestige than the U.S. Title, but this is the most anticipated match on the card. The best heel on “SmackDown Live” takes on the No.1 babyface in a feud that should continue beyond Sunday. Styles will probably find his way back into the WWE Title picture at some point this summer, meaning Owens has the better chance to get the win.
Prediction: Kevin Owens
SmackDown Women’s Champion Naomi, Charlotte Flair & Becky Lynch vs. Natalya, Carmella & Tamina
The Welcoming Committee has gotten the upper hand time and time again, and it continued Tuesday night when Carmella pinned the champ. The babyfaces need a win at Backlash, and they should get it.
Prediction: Naomi, Charlotte Flair & Becky Lynch
Shunsuke Nakamura vs. Dolph Ziggler
WWE is hoping Nakamura can become one of the top babyfaces on “SmackDown Live,” and that starts by giving him a victory in his first PPV match on the main roster. Ziggler has become known for making other WWE superstars look good in the ring, and he was probably pegged as Nakamura’s first opponent for the sole purpose of getting the Japanese wrestler over.
Prediction: Shinsuke Nakamura
Sami Zayn vs. Baron Corbin
Zayn has been used much like Ziggler, putting on good matches and getting other wrestlers over. That’s what should happen Sunday against Corbin, who has a future as one of WWE’s top heels. After losing to Orton in Tuesday’s main event, Corbin should bounce back with a victory at Backlash.
Prediction: Baron Corbin
Luke Harper vs. Erick Rowan
There isn’t much on the line in this match between the two former Wyatt Family members. Rowan has already beaten Harper on “SmackDown Live,” so Harper will probably get his retribution Sunday.
Prediction: Luke Harper
Tye Dillinger vs. Aiden English (Kickoff Match)
It’s Dillinger’s first singles match on a WWE PPV, and English hasn’t won a match since The Vaudevillains broke up. There’s little chance Dillinger loses this one.
Prediction: Tye Dillinger