This year's Backlash was hardly a much-anticipated spectacle to most fans, and though there wasn't a single outright dud on the card, it was still a thoroughly mediocre and forgettable night for the most part.
There was only one must-see match, a ton of glorified TV bouts and couple of fights that just barely rose to "good" or "decent" status. The real embarrassment here, of course, is that NXT once again showed WWE how it's done, with their TakeOver: Chicago event decisively "winning" the weekend, all while the core product mostly floundered in mediocrity.
The main event at least has people talking, and it'll be interesting to see how WWE follows through with it moving forward, though expecting anything more than a bungled title run for Jinder Mahal is probably wishful thinking.
Result: Mahal kills Orton with the Cobra Clutch Slam to win the title (15:45).
Rating: A lot of fans were justifiably nervous about what shenanigans WWE might pull here, especially given the cynical reasons Mahal is even in the main event picture.
You just have to try and accept the match on its own terms, and hey, maybe Jinder might surprise us all, right? But he didn't. This was an incredibly bland "main event" for the most part, overloaded with rest holds and basically uninspired ring work from both men.
The only memorable moment was Orton's absolutely hellacious table suplex botch on one of the Singh brothers, and the hilarious face he pulled after. Mahal winning is naturally divisive but it just doesn't feel earned either by Mahal's performance tonight or his character work so far. There's room to do something with him, sure, but he really needs to prove himself ASAP.
Either way, the best thing about this match was the pained crowd reactions after Mahal won. Otherwise, a total non-event of a title match. 5/10