The Real Winners and Losers from 2022 WWE WrestleMania Backlash

Kevin Berge@TheBerge_Featured ColumnistMay 9, 2022

The Real Winners and Losers from 2022 WWE WrestleMania Backlash

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    While it shared a name with The Most Stupendous Two-Night Event in WrestleMania History, WrestleMania Backlash did not feel as special as last month's show. With just six matches on this card, it was up to a small section of the WWE roster to deliver.

    Cody Rhodes continued his hot streak in WWEΒ by defeating Seth Rollins again, and Omos put on the best performance of his career to date against Bobby Lashley.Β Rhea Ripley got involved to help Edge, adding herself to one of Raw's hottest angles.

    Many names got a major boost from this show, but the short card left many forgotten on the night.

    WWE Backlash has always been a moment to set a new path post-WrestleMania, and this show gave many a chance to be true winners or losers going into the summer and beyond.

Winner: Cody Rhodes

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    Cody Rhodes is right where he needs to be, and it shows in just how much he has delivered since returning to WWE.

    His style suits the company's fast-cutting pace as well as the signature-move-focused action inside the ring, and it is leading to some showstoppers.

    Rhodes and Seth Rollins had the match of the night and one of the bouts of the year in the opener. With more story behind the action, they outshined their WrestleMania clash and set the stage for a third contest soon.

    WWE has few stars who feel like true main eventers, but The American Nightmare is already there. He could believably defeat Roman Reigns, which is not true of almost anyone else in the company.

    This is thanks to presentation and booking. He has been unstoppable since returning, and every time he comes out, the whole crowd is behind him.

    The American Nightmare has been established as an uncrowned champion, the kind of star who will elevate the gold when he wins it.

Winner: Omos

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    Omos lost his first singles match at WrestleMania 38, but thanks to MVP, he avenged that loss Sunday.

    This was a much stronger contest and showed that The Nigerian Giant could compete at Bobby Lashley's level.

    It was messy in moments, which showed what Omos still has to learn before getting a serious push. However, gaining enough trust from WWE to defeat The All Mighty was a big first step.

    Lashley is a two-time WWE champion. He could compete with Roman Reigns and Drew McIntyre tomorrow without anyone blinking an eye. Defeating him means something more than squashing jobbers, as the giant has previously.

    Omos and MVP look to be a dangerous force together in WWE. This was just the first major win they will pick up together.

    Omos just has to keep learning.

Winner: Rhea Ripley

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    Edge was not allowed to get help from Damian Priest in his back-and-forth clash with AJ Styles, but he had another trick up his sleeve.

    A hooded Rhea Ripley knocked The Phenomenal One off the top rope to set up the Judgment Day leader to win.

    The Nightmare has been slowly building a legacy in WWE, but she hasn't quite been able to stand tall in a major angle yet. That changed at WrestleMania Backlash.

    She will now be working alongside two of the top heels on Raw. WWE stables rarely include female wrestlers, but Ripley is the third member of a group that should be dominating every week.

    It is a shame that the first match between Ripley and Liv Morgan could not happen before this reveal, but that feud is certain to gain a welcome boost after the events of Sunday night.

Losers: The Major Stars Left off This Card for No Reason

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    On a night when most of the talent on the card shined, many of WWE's best stars were missing.

    Champions such as Bianca Belair, Theory and Ricochet were all sidelined while Omos, Happy Corbin and Madcap Moss got a spot.

    Becky Lynch called out The EST of WWE for not having a spot on the card, but this is hardly her fault. She built a story with Sonya Deville that played out on Raw and missed this PPV entirely.

    Sasha Banks and Naomi have been traveling around with the WWE Women's Tag Team Championships, adding to the spotlight on the women's titles. However, they are not defending the titles until Friday's SmackDown.

    Kevin Owens main-evented Night 1 of WrestleMania with "Stone Cold" Steve Austin, but his story with Ezekiel was left off this card entirely. Intercontinental champion Ricochet has not been either of the last two PPVs.

    There is no real explanation for this. The main event was a six-man tag team match including four champions, yet no gold was on the line.

    At the very least, there was space to highlight underused talent, but the six-match schedule didn't accomplish that, either.