Ronda Rousey Winning And 5 Smart Booking Decisions
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WWE is in the midst of a post-WrestleMania 38 lull, and WrestleMania Backlash isn’t going to change that.

This Sunday’s pay-per-view is a lot more of the same from WWE, with four rematches from WWE’s flagship event at a time when fans are tuning out in droves. Last week’s episode of Monday Night Raw couldn’t even crack 1.6 million viewers while SmackDown’s audience has dropped below two million viewers, a trend that could continue moving forward.

WWE is reportedly holding off on its biggest possible match, Roman Reigns vs. Drew McIntyre, for a larger event, making WrestleMania Backlash a stopgap show that is simply biding the time until a more opportune time. Other underwhelming bouts, like Charlotte Flair vs. Ronda Rousey and Omos vs. Bobby Lashley, have left WWE climbing an uphill battle in its efforts to make this a memorable show.

But will WWE do what it has often done in recent years and over-deliver? Well, that depends upon how this show is booked. Let’s examine five smart booking moves WWE must make at WrestleMania Backlash 2022.

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Edge Wins Cheaply

WWE is all in on Edge’s new heel character and his Judgment Day stable, which means he needs to beat AJ Styles in cheap fashion to further cement himself as one of Raw’s top heels. If you look at Raw’s roster, it’s incredibly top heavy, and WWE has made a massive financial investment in Edge, meaning that he needs to be pushed accordingly.

In order to keep Edge looking like the top villain that he should be, he needs to use underhanded tactics to defeat the beloved Styles. That way, this feud can progress toward next month’s Hell in a Cell pay-per-view, where Styles can finally topple Edge in a feud-ending match inside the Hell in a Cell structure.

Bobby Lashley Is Protected In Defeat

When it comes to Bobby Lashley vs. Omos, WWE finds itself between a rock and a hard place. On one hand, Lashley has been so great as a top star on Raw over the past two years that he shouldn’t be losing to someone who is as lackluster in the ring as Omos is. On the other hand, WWE clearly sees big things in Omos’ future, and another loss for the colossal superstar—after he suffered his first defeat at WrestleMania—would deliver a knockout blow to any chance of him being taken seriously.

Omos is an undeniable marvel and a true sight to behold, but that’s about where his appeal stops. Still, WWE needs to protect him at WrestleMania Backlash, or else it risks him eventually turning into the dancing version of The Great Khali. Thus, Omos should beat Lashley but with the help of his new manager MVP so that Lashley is protected.

Drew McIntyre Gets The Pin

As noted, WWE is simply delaying McIntyre vs. Reigns until a “bigger” event, so this rivalry is stuck in a holding pattern until WWE decides to commit to a marquee singles match between SmackDown’s top two male stars. By virtually all accounts, that isn’t going to happen until one of the company’s massive stadium shows a few months from now, with the idea being that this bout is one that can draw in fans to Peacock and the stadium itself.

There are already serious concerns about WWE’s ability—or inability—to extend this feud that long, and rightfully so. But if that is indeed the case, the outcome at WrestleMania Backlash should be straightforward: When McIntyre teams with RKBro to take on Reigns and The Usos, he should be the one who picks up the victory for his team, no matter who he ultimately pins.

Cody Rhodes Beats Seth Rollins Again

If there is a current WWE star who can lose another major pay-per-view match, it’s Seth Rollins. In a lot of ways, Rollins has been WWE’s MVP over the course of the past year, and though another PPV “L” at WrestleMania Backlash won’t sit well with fans of his, there is no other logical choice here.

Cody Rhodes is entering this event still riding an incredible wave of momentum from his improbable return at WrestleMania 38, and he’s made his intentions clear: He wants to become WWE Champion. Rhodes’ pursuit of the world title his father, the late great Dusty Rhodes, never won has the potential to be an incredible storyline if done right, and WWE would be silly not to book that angle eventually.

Until then, however, what WWE needs to focus on is booking Rhodes as the top star he never got to be during his first run with the company. That means that Rhodes needs to beat Rollins again on Sunday and solidify himself as a legitimate main eventer in WWE after crossing over from AEW.

Ronda Rousey Makes Charlotte Flair Quit

WWE tends to protect Charlotte Flair at all costs, even having her defeat Ronda Rousey—one of its biggest and most important investments—at WrestleMania 38. That was certainly a head-scratching booking move that halted Rousey’s momentum before it even got started, and since then, this rivalry that is supposed to be a blood feud between two of WWE’s top stars has been amazingly disappointing, if not downright boring.

Flair’s constant involvement in the women’s title picture has snowballed into a massive point of contention among fans, and though Rousey’s inability to connect as a babyface has also been disappointing, there is a lesser of two evils here: Rousey making Flair say “I quit.” After all, another loss here for Rousey would completely destroy any modicum of mystique that she has left while extending Flair’s subpar reign isn’t going to do any favors for the women’s division.

Rousey must get back on track, and the only way for her to do that is to put an end to the reign of Flair, who is one of the most hated stars in all of WWE.

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