Backlash 2016

WWE World Championship
Dean Ambrose (c) vs. AJ Styles
Ambrose has been a bit of a jerk as champion since the brand split, which is fine because strong heel champions are great, but the feeling is inevitable that AJ is the crown prince of SmackDown and was specifically drafted here to be The Man. Either he wins here, or there’s a screwy finish and he wins a rematch. Those are the only two scenarios I can see. Styles is one of the best wrestlers of his generation and fully deserves this spot. He’s proved this with virtually every performance over the past eight months. Ambrose used to shop lift tapes from Blockbuster. My support here is solidly behind AJ. The audience lean the same way, even if a win for AJ would mean more at a more important show. Also it feels like he should be the babyface in the match and Styles very deliberately runs his mouth throughout in order to ensure no one forgets he’s the heel. The bulk of the match doesn’t feel all that special, thanks to Dean’s style and AJ not wanting to force the pace. It’s an unfortunate turn of events and one of the main reasons why Ambrose is not cutting the mustard as champion. He’s been fine on promos but in the ring he’s not been delivering. Across the ring is one of the best in-ring talents under WWE contract and a guy capable of getting strong matches out of anyone, Ambrose included. AJ wrestles circles around Dean throughout and the champ has to fight to stay in the match. Instead of attempting to win, he’s attempting to survive. The match gets fiery toward the end as both guys start to pull out the stops. Like Ambrose running across the announce tables to dive into the crowd or AJ flinging himself into a crazy slingshot 450 Splash. The ref gets bumped allowing AJ to kick Dean in the nuts and hit Styles Clash for the WWE title. So, AJ Styles is the WWE Champion. Let that sink in for a minute.
Final Rating: ****


I repeat: AJ Styles is the WWE World Champion. Do not adjust your eyes.


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