Seth Rollins vs. Cesaro
We go back to the ring and out comes Cesaro. The announcers talk about Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month and supporting Connor’s Cure. Back to commercial.
Back from the break and Kayla is backstage with Seth Rollins, asking why he requested this WrestleMania 37 rematch tonight. He says tonight is the perfect time for a new beginning. Rollins talks about WWE Hall of Famer Edge and how he keeps watching their SummerSlam match. Rollins figured out what he needed to do to win that match, and he will use this information tonight to defeat his rival Cesaro. Rollins makes his entrance tot he ring now as Cesaro looks on.
The bell rings and they go at it. Cesaro catches Rollins with a big tilt-a-whirl backbreaker to start. Rollins goes to the floor for a breather but Cesaro follows and nails a running uppercut against the barrier. Cesaro slams Rollins face-first into the barrier, then brings him in at the 7 count. Rollins breaks a headlock and then dropkicks Cesaro. Rollins looks to keep the momentum going but Cesaro dropkicks him.
Cesaro goes for the Cesaro Swing but Rollins avoids it by getting the ropes. Rollins misses an enziguri and gets sent into the ropes. Rollins plants Cesaro face-first into the mat for a close 2 count with Edge’s Impaler DDT. Rollins sits up on his knees and laughs as we go back to commercial.
Back from the break and Rollins looks to mount offense but Cesaro nails a big uppercut. Cesaro goes up for a superplex but Rollins slides down and launches Cesaro across the ring with a big Buckle Bomb. Cesaro kicks out at 2. Rollins continues smiling. Cesaro blocks a neckbreaker and delivers another uppercut. Rollins uses Edge’s Edge-O-Matic but Cesaro kicks out. They go on and Cesaro blocks a Stomp, then powerbombs Rollins for a close 2 count. Cesaro unloads with strikes now as fans cheer him on. Cesaro with a running uppercut in the corner, then a clothesline for a close 2 count.
Cesaro plays to the crowd for a big pop now as they rally for him. He calls for the Swing but Rollins counters and rolls him for a 2 count. Cesaro runs into a boot int he corner. Cesaro blocks a Slingblade and goes for the Swing now, hitting it in the middle of the ring as fans count along with him. Cesaro applies the Sharpshooter but Rollins breaks it by getting the bottom rope. Rollins goes into the ropes and kicks Cesaro with a cheap shot but Cesaro sends him over the top rope. Cesaro runs around the ring with another uppercut into the barrier but Rollins gets up a steel chair and Cesaro collides with it. The referee calls for the disqualification.
Winner by DQ: Cesaro
– After the bell, Rollins takes the chair and attacks Cesaro at ringside as fans boo. Rollins brings Cesaro back into the ring and now he has a second chair while seething. Rollins breaks the steel rod off the chair and uses it to apply the Crossface as Edge did, which Edge called The Glasgow Grin. Fans boo Rollins and he finally breaks the hold. Rollins yells at the crowd to shut up as the boos continue. Referees rush down to check on Cesaro but Rollins delivers a Stomp to put him down face-first into the mat. Rollins brings another chair in and looks to deliver a Con-Chair-To to Cesaro. The music interrupts and out comes Edge to a big pop. Rollins retreats to the floor and looks on, laughing and taunting Edge. Edge checks on Cesaro as his music starts back up.
– Michael Cole welcomes us to SmackDown. He’s joined at ringside by Pat McAfee. They announce that Roman Reigns will give a State of the Universal Title Address later tonight.
– We go right to the ring and out first comes SmackDown Women’s Champion Bianca Belair for our mixed tag team opener as Greg Hamilton does the introductions. We see stills from Belair’s Hell In a Cell win over Bayley. Belair takes the mic and talks about how we’re just weeks away from returning to crowds. Belair says she’s about to whoop up on Bayley again. Belair goes on about her Hell In a Cell win and while she will never forget all the pain Bayley put her through, she can’t stop smiling and celebrating because she walked out with the title, and she is so proud of herself. Belair goes on talking about bullies and then she raises the title. The music interrupts and out comes Seth Rollins, who is all smiles.
Rollins goes on about celebrating with Belair because he also won at Hell In a Cell. Rollins brags but fans keep booing him. He talks about dominating Cesaro at Hell In a Cell and says now he’s moving on up. He says Belair didn’t dominate Bayley like he did Cesaro, and some would say her win was a fluke, but win at all cost and tonight we’ve got a party. They have a few words until Bayley’s music hits and out she comes to interrupt. Belair talks some trash until Belair challenges her to come into the ring for a fight.
Bayley enters the ring and gets in Belair’s face. Bayley calls her a pathetic loser as Rollins keeps laughing. Belair drops Bayley out of nowhere for a big pop. Bayley uses Rollins’ interference to tackle Belair and unload on her. The music interrupts and out comes Cesaro. He hits the ring and ducks a microphone shot from Rollins. Cesaro knocks Rollins out of the ring as Bayley tosses Belair out of the ring. Cesaro and Bayley face off now. Bayley yells at Cesaro, saying he ruined her show. Belair comes in and Cesaro scoops her, using her to knock Bayley out of the ring. Belair’s music hits as she dances around while Cesaro looks on. Rollins watches from ringside as we go to commercial.
Bianca Belair and Cesaro vs. Seth Rollins and Bayley
Back from the break and Cesaro takes Seth Rollins down as the match begins. Bayley and SmackDown Women’s Champion Bianca Belair watch from their corners. Rollins fights back but Cesaro catches a second rope crossbody and drops him with a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker. Bayley and Belair tag in now. Belair gets the upperhand and taunts Bayley. Cesaro and Rollins are back in now. Rollins ends up dropping Cesaro face-first into the corner to turn it around.
Rollins with a Slingblade for a 2 count. Rollins drops a knee to the face now. More back and forth now but Rollins takes control and keeps Cesaro down. Bayley and Rollins celebrate some. Rollins with a knee to the gut, and another. Rollins goes for a suplex but it’s blocked, and again. Cesaro powers up but Rollins lands on his feet. More counters between the two now. Belair tags in so Bayley runs in. Belair with a dropkick, a kip-up and another dropkick, and another kip-up. Belair with more offense, then a backbreaker, and another. Belair with a standing moonsault for a close 2 count.
Bayley goes to the floor but Belair follows. Belair charges and Bayley drops her into the barrier to turn it around. Bayley then shoves her into the ring post at the steel steps. Belair goes down and sells an injury on the floor as Bayley returns to the ring. Back to commercial.
Back from the break and Bayley is in control, focusing on Belair’s injured arm. Bayley prevents a tag and slams Belair back to the mat for 2. Bayley goes right back to work on the arm. Cesaro finally tags in and knocks Rollins off the apron. Cesaro runs around the ring and delivers a big uppercut against the barrier. Cesaro with more offense at ringside. He brings it back in for a top rope crossbody for 2. Cesaro with the Cesaro Swing in the middle of the ring now for a pop. Rollins uses a distraction from Bayley to block the Sharpshooter and roll Cesaro for 2. Cesaro comes back with the corkscrew uppercut for a close 2 count.
Cesaro goes for the Neutralizer by Bayley flies in and he catches her. He uses her but this leads to Rollins dropping Cesaro for 2 count that Belair breaks up just in time. Belair taunts Rollins and he seethes now. Rollins unloads on Cesaro but Cesaro fights back with a right and an uppercut. Bayley tags in, as does Belair. Belair brings Bayley in from the apron. Belair sends Rollins off the apron into an uppercut from Cesaro at ringside. Bayley rolls Belair up for 2 but Belair comes back with a Spinebuster for 2.
Rollins and Cesaro brawl at ringside. Rollins rolls in to prevent Belair from hitting the KOD on Bayley. Belair loses her balance and Bayley takes her knee out. Bayley comes right back with the Rose Plant for the pin to win.
Winners: Bayley and Seth Rollins
– After the match, the music hits as Bayley joins Rollins on the ramp to celebrate. Cesaro and Belair regroup in the ring.
Cesaro vs. Seth Rollins
We go back to the ring and out comes Cesaro first. Seth Rollins suddenly attacks out of nowhere at the bottom of the ramp.
Cesaro fights back and they end up in the ring with the referee trying to restore order. We get the bell now. Rollins leaps but Cesaro catches him with a big powerslam. Cesaro with forearms on the mat. They get up and Rollins fights back. Cesaro with a big back-drop in the middle of the ring for a pop.
Cesaro knocks Rollins over the top rope with a big running boot. He follows but Rollins decks him. Cesaro sends Rollins face-first into the barrier. Cesaro with a big uppercut. Cesaro rolls Rollins back into the ring and goes to the top. Cesaro flies with a big double axe handle for another pop. Rollins kicks out at 1.
Cesaro beats Rollins while he’s down, then sends him face-first into the turnbuckle. Cesaro unloads in the opposite corner now. Rollins goes face-first into another turnbuckle now. Cesaro with more big uppercuts in the corner. Rollins kicks him and drops Cesaro face-first into the middle turnbuckle. Rollins grinds Cesaro’s face into the middle rope now. Rollins keeps control and drops Cesaro with a DDT. Cesaro kicks out at 2. Rollins beats Cesaro around the ring now, talking trash while he’s down.
Rollins with big knees to the ribs. Cesaro blocks a suplex attempt but Rollins works on the ribs. Cesaro overpowers with a big vertical suplex of his own for a pop. Rollins fights from the apron and back-drops Cesaro over the top rope to the floor. Rollins with a flying knee from the apron to the face on the floor. Rollins brings it back into the ring now. Rollins springboards up and nails the flying knee again. Cesaro kicks out just in time and Rollins shows some frustration.
Cesaro blocks a running kick and nails an uppercut but Rollins comes right back. They trade shots as fans rally for Cesaro. Cesaro with uppercuts and body blows into the corner. Cesaro keeps control and dumps Rollins on the mat. Cesaro stomps away while Rollins is down. Cesaro pulls Rollins’ glove off and shoves it in his mouth, then delivers a clothesline for a 2 count.
Cesaro grabs Rollins’ glove now and kicks it into the ThunderDome crowd. Cesaro begins an uppercut train now but Rollins tries to cut him off. Cesaro catches Rollins in mid-air with a big powerslam for a 2 count. Rollins blocks the Neutralizer and sends Cesaro to the apron. They tangle and Cesaro goes to the top. Rollins runs up to the top for a superplex but Cesaro resists, sending Rollins to the mat. Cesaro with a crossbody but Rollins rolls through and holds it for a close 2 count. Cesaro leaps with an uppercut but Rollins side-steps. Rollins ends up hitting an enziguri and a right hand.
Rollins with a stiff strike to the back of the neck now, dropping Cesaro in the middle of the ring. Cesaro kicks out just in time. Rollins starts ranting as fans boo him. He holds Cesaro down by his throat and yells, then man-handles him some as the referee warns him. Rollins applies an arm submission now. Cesaro struggles but Rollins drops him with a Falcon Arrow for a close 2 count. Rollins with another shot to the back of the neck for 2. Rollins is frustrated now.
Fans rally for Cesaro as they trade moves and counters. Cesaro levels Rollins with a big clothesline but they both go down in the middle of the ring. Cesaro slams Rollins and delivers the Cesaro Swing to a big pop. Cesaro then goes for the Sharpshooter and he gets it locked in. Cesaro turns it into a Crossface but Rollins rolls over. Cesaro has the Crossface locked in. It’s broken but he goes for the Sharpshooter again, locking it in.
Rollins reaches for the bottom rope but Cesaro pulls him back. The hold is broken but Cesaro stomps on Rollins’ limbs now. Rollins catches what looks like another Sharpshooter attempt and rolls Cesaro up out of nowhere for the pin to win
Winner: Seth Rollins
– After the match, Rollins heads to the floor as his music hits. A disappointed Cesaro sits up in the ring and looks on as Rollins regroups at ringside. We go to replays. Rollins limps around and makes his exit as Cesaro looks on from the ring. Rollins laughs from the stage now.
We go back to the ThunderDome and out comes WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns, Jey Uso and Paul Heyman. Reigns stops on the stage and raises the title in the air as pyro goes off. They head to the ring as Greg Hamilton does the introduction. Reigns enters the ring and raises the title to more pyro as we go back to commercial.
Back from the break and Kevin Owens is backstage. He cuts a promo on the main event and goes on about how he plans on living up to the “Prizefighter” nickname tonight. Owens says when it’s all said and done, he plans on being a three-time Intercontinental Champion. We go back to the ring and Reigns has a mic. Cole leads us to a Progressive-sponsored replay from WrestleMania Backlash, showing how Reigns retained over Cesaro in the main event, plus what happened after the match with Cesaro and Seth Rollins. Fans chant “Roman sucks!” now amid the boos. Reigns sees himself as a humble man, and teaches his sons about humility. He doesn’t like to brag on live TV, so he’s going to take this chance to allow his Special Counsel to celebrate him. Fans boo louder.
Heyman takes the mic and says this is a unique surprise as he has a moment here to honor our Tribal Chief. Heyman goes on praising Reigns for being undefeated and conquering some of the opponents since returning to WWE, including “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt and Braun Strowman, among others. He touts the stacked pin on WWE Hall of Famer Edge and Daniel Bryan at WrestleMania 37, and how Reigns sent Bryan into a Bella retirement. Heyman goes on with the praise and says Reigns’ wish is his command, then asks what else can he do for his Tribal Chief? Reigns orders Heyman to bring him his cousin. Heyman yells at the timekeeper to hit Jimmy Uso’s music. Cesaro’s music starts up instead.
Cesaro comes to the stage in a suit, wearing a sling on his arm. Reigns says to cut this bum’s music. Cesaro is in a bad mood tonight. He says he was in the back and all he heard was this annoying yapping in his ear. Reigns asks Cesaro what he’s going to do, and says he can break Cesaro’s other arm. Cesaro says that’s just a flesh wound and he’d fight Reigns with no arms. Cesaro proposes a match with Reigns at Hell In a Cell. Reigns asks if he really wants to do this again. Rollins suddenly runs down and attacks Cesaro, sending him into the barrier and then the steel ring steps.
Fans boo as Rollins unloads on Cesaro, stomping away and beating him up at ringside. Officials run down and order Rollins to the back. He goes up the ramp while referees help Cesaro up at ringside. Rollins runs back down the ramp and attacks Cesaro. Rollins grabs the hurt arm and slams Cesaro down to the floor by it. Rollins delivers a big Stomp at the bottom of the ramp. Cesaro clutches his arm as referee Charles Robinson checks on him. The other officials back Rollins away through the timekeeper’s area. Rollins jumps over the barrier, runs back over to the bottom of the ramp and this time delivers a Stomp to Cesaro on the steel. Fans boo him some more while Cesaro is laid out face-down. Rollins watches with a crazed look in his eyes. Medics bring a stretcher down the ramp for Cesaro as we go to commercial.
– Cole and McAfee send us to a video package for tonight’s main event.
WWE Universal Title Match: Cesaro vs. Roman Reigns
We go back to the ring for tonight’s main event as Cesaro makes his way out to a pop. We see WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns in the Gorilla Position with Jey Uso and Paul Heyman now. Jey is hyping Reigns up but Reigns interrupts and questions his loyalty. Jey says he’s always riding with Reigns. Reigns says Jey sounds like his brother Jimmy Uso now, so maybe Jey should go find his brother. The music hits and Reigns heads out to the ring with just Heyman. Reigns stops on the stage and raises the title as the pyro goes off. Cesaro looks on from the ring.
Reigns enters the ring and raises the title to more pyro as Cesaro stares him down. We get formal ring introductions from Hamilton. The bell rings and they lock up. They tangle into the corner and break but there’s some tension. They lock up again and Reigns applies a headlock. Reigns takes Cesaro down to the mat now. Cesaro fights up but Reigns drops him with a shoulder. Reigns with another headlock. They run the ropes and Cesaro drops Reigns with a shoulder for a 1 count.
They trade quick pin attempts on the mat. Reigns rolls to the floor to regroup as fans boo him. Heyman talks with Reigns as the referee counts. Reigns returns to the apron and takes his time coming back in. Cesaro ducks an attempt and grabs Reigns from behind. Reigns takes him to the corner with shoulder thrusts, then a shot to the face. Reigns slams Cesaro in the turnbuckles. Cesaro hits a big springboard uppercut for a pop.
Cesaro slams Reigns and goes for the Cesaro Swing but Reigns gets away. Reigns kicks Cesaro away. Reigns tosses Cesaro over the top rope to the floor. Cesaro clutches his right arm as the referee counts. Cesaro comes back in and they trade big strikes. Reigns drops Cesaro with a strike, then sends him shoulder-first into the ring post. Cesaro falls to the floor and continues selling the right arm injury as the referee counts.
Reigns follows and slams Cesaro into the announce table a few times. Reigns brings it back in for a 1 count, then grounds Cesaro on the mat. Cesaro fights up and goes for a suplex but can’t get Reigns over. Reigns nails a suplex of his own for a quick pin attempt. Reigns talks some trash and then rocks Cesaro into the corner. Reigns with more big right hands and kicks in the corner as the referee backs him off. Cesaro fights back with punches of his own from the corner. Reigns levels him with a big punch to the mouth. Reigns wrestles Cesaro back to the mat as Heyman looks on and fans try to rally
Reigns comes right back and drops Cesaro for another quick 1 count. Reigns can’t believe Cesaro kicked out with ease. Reigns with big strikes while Cesaro is on the mat, then a headlock to ground him again. Cesaro fights up and out but Reigns catches him with a Samoan Drop for a 2 count. Reigns calls for the Superman Punch now as fans boo. Cesaro ducks it and nails the Pop-Up Uppercut for a big pop. Reigns is down but Cesaro fails to make a pin. Reigns struggles to get up. Cesaro with a running uppercut in the corner, and another in the opposite corner. Cesaro with another running uppercut and a running big boot for a close 2 count.
Cesaro goes for the Sharpshooter now but stops and kicks away at the leg and knee. Cesaro drops elbows on Reigns’ knee now. Cesaro applies the Sharpshooter in the middle of the ring but Reigns quickly gets to the bottom rope to break the hold. Reigns goes to the floor for a breather. Cesaro runs the ropes and nails a big corkscrew plancha. Cesaro is fired up now as fans cheer him on. Cesaro brings it in but Reigns rolls right back to the floor. Cesaro follows again and levels him with a running shot. Cesaro brings it back in and goes to the top. Cesaro nails a crossbody from the top but Reigns kicks out at 2. Cesaro shows some frustration now.
Cesaro goes for the superplex from the apron but Reigns fights him off. Reigns ends up leveling Cesaro with a big boot, then using the ropes to inflict more damage to the hurt arm. Reigns follows to the floor and nails the Drive By into the ring post. Reigns brings it back in for a close 2 count. Reigns smiles and laughs now, taunting Cesaro. Cesaro sees this and rocks Reigns fighting up from the mat. Reigns fights back and starts yanking the hurt arm around. Reigns laughs while yanking the arm around, taunting Daniel Bryan in the camera.
Cesaro breaks free with a headbutt but Reigns comes right back with a huge clothesline for a 2 count. Reigns shakes his head at Cesaro. Reigns with more trash talking and right hands. Cesaro gets up but the punches and knees keep coming from Reigns. Reigns knocks him into the corner and delivers more knees as the referee backs him off. Cesaro is dazed from the knees, leaning against the corner. Reigns levels Cesaro with a big boot. Reigns kneels back down to Cesaro and keeps taunting him. Reigns headbutts Cesaro back into the corner and unloads with kicks as the referee backs him off again. Reigns yells at the referee and they have words. Cesaro with a big elbow from the corner, then an uppercut, and a kick. Reigns keeps coming but Cesaro clotheslines him and they both go down.
The referee checks on both competitors as Cesaro sells the hurt arm. They trade big strikes from their knees now. Cesaro with a big uppercut into the corner, then a running uppercut. Cesaro beats Reigns down in the corner and unloads as the referee warns him. Cesaro with the big second rope superplex from the apron for a pop. Cesaro covers for a close 2 count. Cesaro with a headbutt and stomp to the thigh. Cesaro with a big double stomp to the chest. Cesaro goes for the Neutralizer but Reigns counters after the bad arm goes out. Reigns takes Cesaro down into an armbar on the hurt arm.
Cesaro struggles and rolls Reigns over for a 2 count. Cesaro ducks a clothesline and goes for the springboard corkscrew uppercut but Reigns meets him in mid-air with a Superman Punch. Cesaro still kicks out at 2. Both Superstars are down now. Fans cheer as both try to get to their feet. Reigns starts smiling and talking to himself. They slowly get up and Reigns calls for the finish. He charges with a Spear but Cesaro meets him with an uppercut. Cesaro’s arm goes out when he tries the Pop-Up Uppercut. Reigns takes him down into the Guillotine submission. Cesaro powers up and slams Reigns to break the hold. Cesaro barely has strength to get the Sharpshooter applied. He stops and unloads with strikes to keep Reigns down.
The Sharpshooter is locked in now but barely as his arm slips. Reigns reaches for the ropes but Cesaro pulls him back into a Crossface submission. Reigns starts to power out of the hold. He mounts Cesaro and unloads with strikes now as fans boo. Reigns with a sitdown powerbomb in the middle of the ring but Cesaro kicks out just in time. Reigns is frustrated now as he mounts Cesaro with more big strikes. Cesaro blocks and tries to power up from the mat. He sends Reigns to the mat but Reigns comes right back and stays on him.
Reigns goes back to the Guillotine submission. Cesaro powers up but Reigns pulls him back to the mat. The hold is broken but Reigns rocks him a few times, then locks the Guillotine back in. Cesaro tries to break Reigns’ grip but Reigns wraps his legs tighter. Cesaro starts fading in the hold and the referee calls the match.
Winner: Roman Reigns
– After the match, Reigns sits up as the music hits. Heyman hands him the WWE Universal Title. Cesaro also comes back to and he’s shocked at the finish. Reigns stands tall in the middle of the ring now, raising the title. Jey Uso runs down and hits the ring, carrying a lei. Jey places it around Reigns’ beck and Reigns nods at him. Jey stares at Cesaro and Reign tells Jey to go get him. Cesaro slowly gets up but Jey drops him with a big superkick, then mounts him with strikes as fans boo. Jey goes to the top to deliver a big Uso Splash but Seth Rollins’ music interrupts.
Rollins comes marching to the ring as Uso and Reigns look on confused. Rollins enters the ring and stares Reigns down. Rollins starts laughing, then leaps onto Cesaro and beats him up while he’s down on the mat. Rollins brings Cesaro to the floor and sends him into the steel steps, then slams his hurt arm into the steps. Rollins launches Cesaro over the announce table and then slams the hurt arm into the table. Rollins grabs a steel chair and talks trash while keeping Cesaro down with chair shots as the boos continue. Rollins wraps the chair around Cesaro’s hurt arm, twisting it around and holding him against the ring post. Rollins yells in Cesaro’s face that he’s Seth f’n Rollins and nobody makes a mockery of him. Rollins then slams the chair around Cesar’s arm into the ring post. Cesaro goes down but Rollins follows up with the Stomp into the floor. Rollins stands tall in the middle of the ring ass a referee checks on Cesaro at ringside. Reigns and Uso have already moved on from the ring. Fans chant “you suck!” while Rollins stands tall in the ring as WrestleMania Backlash goes off the air.
Cesaro will finally get an opportunity to swing Universal Champion Roman Reigns out of his spot at the head of the table when The Swiss Superman challenges The Big Dog at WrestleMania Backlash.
The freakishly strong Cesaro has arguably never looked better. Not only has he scored several high-profile victories on SmackDown in recent months, including a huge win over Daniel Bryan, but he put the exclamation point on his ascension with a victory over Seth Rollins at WrestleMania.
Despite Cesaro’s achievements, Universal Champion Roman Reigns hasn’t acknowledged him with any level of respect and flat out refused to give him a title match. Bryan saw the injustice in the titleholder’s actions and publicly championed for Cesaro, a move that led Reigns to defeat The Leader of the “Yes!” Movement in a title match to bar him from SmackDown forever.
During a Throwback episode of the blue brand the following week, visiting General Manager Theodore Long made it clear that if Cesaro could defeat Seth Rollins again, he would finally earn his Universal Title Match at WrestleMania Backlash. After a returning Jimmy Uso hit Rollins with a Superkick, Cesaro hit the Neutralizer and made his title match official at the May 16 pay-per-view.
Like him or hate him, there is no denying that Reigns stands at the top of his game, ruling over SmackDown with an iron fist as well as an earth-shattering Spear that will so often follow. Can Cesaro finally overcome the incomparable Head of the Table? Find out at WrestleMania Backlash, Sunday, May 16, beginning at 7 ET/4 PT, exclusively on Peacock in the United States and WWE Network everywhere else.
– The WrestleMania Backlash go-home edition of WWE SmackDown on FOX opens up with the usual intro video. We’re live from the WWE ThunderDome at the Yuengling Center in Tampa, Florida as Michael Cole welcomes us. He’s joined at ringside by Pat McAfee. We go right to the ring.
– We’re live in the ring with Jey Uso as fans start booing him when the music stops. Jey says his brother Jimmy Uso disrespected the head of the table last week, their cousin WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns, so this week he leaves them no choice but to handle some family business. Jey then introduces Reigns, calling him the man who will handle Cesaro at WrestleMania Backlash on Sunday. The boos get louder as Reigns makes his entrance with Paul Heyman.
Reigns marches to the ring as we get a video package on last week’s show, including Cesaro earning his title shot and Jimmy’s return with the issues in the family. Reigns raises the title in the ring now as more pyro goes off while his music plays. The music stops and the “you suck!” chant gets louder. Reigns turns to Jey and says it’s clear they have some problems, one being Jimmy. We will get to him in a minute but Reigns has to address Cesaro first.
Reigns says he likes Cesaro. Like a lot of the boys in the back, he respects Cesaro as he’s a top tier talent. Reigns says we could say Cesaro is one of the best wrestlers in the world. Heyman agrees. Reigns says he is so much more than a wrestler, he’s The Tribal Chief. Heyman hypes him up. Reigns says with everything he does, there’s no way Cesaro could fulfill those roles. Reigns goes on about how there’s no way WWE and FOX want Cesaro replacing him. Reigns goes on about how their resumes don’t compare. He changes his tune to Jimmy now.
Reigns says it was simple, Jimmy got to see how it all works last week. The music immediately interrupts and out comes Jimmy to a pop. Jimmy is all smiles as he heads to the ring. Reigns, Jey and Heyman stare him down. Jimmy’s shirt says “Nobody’s Bitch” on the front. Jey’s says “Right Hand Man” on the front. Jimmy says all he hears is Reigns running his mouth while his brother stands next to him, acting like his bitch. Fans pop. Jimmy asks if Jey likes his shirt, and says he’s got one for him when he’s ready to hop on the team. Jimmy says now is the time because he’s not sure if Reigns will make it past Cesaro this Sunday.
Jey speaks up and says Reigns is their cousin, asking Jimmy to please show respect to the family. Jimmy yells back and says he’s all about the family. Reigns says that must mean Jimmy is all about him because of all he’s done for the family. Jimmy says Reigns is part of the family but not all of it. Reigns asks Jimmy if he thinks Reigns can beat Cesaro. Jimmy isn’t trying to make this a thing but since Reigns is asking, no. Reigns asks Jimmy if he thinks he can fill Reigns’ shoes and beat Cesaro. Jimmy says he and Jey can. He asks if The Usos won the SmackDown Tag Team Titles and Reigns lost his title, would they be The Head of The Table? Reigns says that’s not how this works. He gets upset now and goes on about how he puts the food on the table, carries the burden of the company and is the face.
Reigns laughs at the idea of Jimmy thinking he can be the man around here. He taunts Jimmy, telling him to do what he does, show everyone you’re the man, show the whole world you can beat Cesaro. Reigns and Jimmy stare each other down. Reigns asks Jimmy if he can beat Cesaro. Jimmy turns to the stage and calls Cesaro out for a match, saying he’s been off for a year but he wants this match. The music hits and out comes Cesaro in a suit. Fans pop. Cesaro says the challenge is accepted. He tells Reigns he’s going to beat his cousin Jimmy tonight and then Sunday, he’s going to beat Reigns for the Universal Title. Cesaro’s music starts back up as Cesaro looks on from the stage and Reigns taunts him with the title from the ring. The Usos also look on..
– Megan Morant is backstage with Cesaro. He’s very confident about beating Roman Reigns on Sunday and doesn’t think he can win the WWE Universal Title, he knows he can.
Jimmy Uso is backstage with Kayla now, asking about his first match in over a year. Jimmy says this wasn’t his idea and he saw his first match back being with his brother because they’re the hottest tag team in WWE, but now he’s not even sure of that. He goes on about Jey Uso being with Roman Reigns and says Jey doesn’t need him. Jimmy wonders what’s wrong with he and Jey being SmackDown Tag Team Champions while Reigns is the Universal Champion. He goes on and says if Reigns wants to see what he can do with Cesaro, let’s get it. Jimmy walks off.
Jimmy Uso vs. Cesaro
We go back to the ring and out comes Jimmy Uso for tonight’s main event. The announcers hype Cesaro vs. WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns for WrestleMania Backlash, plus the rest of the card.
Back from the break and Cesaro is in the ring. They face off and go at it as the bell hits. They tangle and Cesaro nails a dropkick. Cesaro talks some trash while Jimmy is down, welcoming him back. They go at it again and Cesaro catches Jimmy in a powerslam.
Jimmy blocks a shot in the counter and seems to land bad on his hurt leg, but he just suckers Cesaro in and superkicks him to the mat. Cesaro kicks out at 2. Jimmy unloads on Cesaro with strikes, grounding him with a headlock. Cesaro fights up and overpowers Jimmy with a big suplex in the middle of the ring.
Jimmy comes back and drops Cesaro with an enziguri for a 2 count. Uso with more offense and another 2 count. Jimmy ends up sending Cesaro out to the floor after he hits the ring post. Uso runs the ropes again and nails a big suicide dive. They both hit hard and go down at ringside. Back to commercial.
Back from the break and Cesaro is unloading with uppercuts and body shots in the corner. Cesaro nails a clothesline for another 2 count. Cesaro goes for the Neutralizer but it’s blocked with a back body drop. Uso drops Cesaro with a big kick to the chin for a 2 count. Uso goes to the top but Cesaro leaps up with a big uppercut and dazes him on the top turnbuckle. Cesaro climbs up for the superplex and he nails it for a pop.
Cesaro covers for another close 2 count. Uso rolls to the floor to re-group. Cesaro runs the apron and nails a big cannonball to the floor. Cesaro gets hyped up at ringside as fans cheer him on. Cesaro runs with a big uppercut against the barrier. He brings Jimmy back in the ring and goes to follow but WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns attacks him from behind at the apron. The referee calls for the bell.
Winner by DQ: Cesaro
– After the bell, Jimmy starts yelling at Reigns from the ring, about how he had the match under control. Jimmy storms off and Reigns follows. They argue on the ramp as Jey Uso watches from the ring. Jimmy says Reigns thinks it’s always about himself but now it’s not. Cesaro attacks Jey in the ring and beats him up but Reigns makes the save, taking Cesaro out. Reigns tells Jimmy to get his ass in here and help. Cesaro unloads on Reigns with uppercuts and goes for the Neutralizer but Jey makes the save and beats Cesaro down. Jey yells at his brother to get in the ring and help. Cesaro uppercuts Jey and goes to work on him but Reigns capitalizes, retreating to the floor to get out of harm’s way. Jimmy was also knocked off the apron by Cesaro.
Cesaro grabs Jey and points up at Reigns on the ramp, who is standing with Paul Heyman. Cesaro points at Reigns and drops Jey with a Neutralizer. Cesaro looks up at Reigns, talks some trash and drops Jey with another Neutralizer to send a message as Reigns stares at him from the ramp. Cesaro’s music hits and he taunts Reigns as Reigns raises the title on the ramp, talking trash back at Cesaro in the ring. The WrestleMania Backlash go-home edition of SmackDown goes off the air with Reigns and Cesaro yelling at each other.
Cesaro vs. Seth Rollins
We go back to the ring and out comes Seth Rollins. He hits the ring and pyro goes off. We get videos showing what led to this match. Cesaro is out next to pyro and another big pop.
Cesaro immediately charges with a big uppercut. He goes for an early Cesaro Swing but can’t get it. Cesaro with more offense but Rollins blocks another Swing attempt. Cesaro hits a big corkscrew springboard uppercut for a pop. Rollins tries to get a breather on the floor but Cesaro stops him and rocks him with a knee. More back and forth now. Rollins with a big Buckle Bomb for a 2 count.
Cesaro fights up with strikes in the middle of the ring. Rollins sends him to the apron but Cesaro rocks him. Cesaro goes to the top but Rollins runs up and nails a big superplex. Rollins holds it and goes right into Falcon Arrow for a close 2 count.
They trade more stiff offense now. Cesaro unloads with uppercuts in the corner as fans cheer him on and the referee warns him. Cesaro backs off and plays to the crowd for a pop. Cesaro with a big running uppercut into the opposite corner, and again. Cesaro levels Rollins with a clothesline for a 2 count. Cesaro plays to the crowd for another pop. They want to see Rollins swing. Rollins blocks the Swing and rolls him for a 2 count. Cesaro tries again but Rollins gets the bottom rope. Rollins counters a move and lands on his feet, dropping Cesaro with an enziguri.
Cesaro blocks the Stomp and this time he nails the Cesaro Swing for a big pop as fans count along. Cesaro’s arm is bothering him. Fans chant “one more time!” now. Cesaro goes for the Neutralizer in the middle of the ring but it’s blocked. Cesaro hits the turnbuckle with the running uppercut. Rollins springboards in with a knee to the face. Rollins with a Slingblade. Rollins goes on and hits a big corkscrew splash for a close 2 count.
Cesaro blocks the Ripcord and nails the Neutralizer in the middle of the ring for a close 2 count. Cesaro shows some frustration now. Cesaro with big strikes now. Rollins blocks another Neutralizer attempt and drops Cesaro with The Pedigree for another close pin attempt.
Rollins wastes some time, showing off and bragging. Cesaro tries to capitalize but Rollins goes on. Rollins ends up dropping Cesaro with a kick to the back of the neck but Cesaro hangs on. Rollins waits in the corner for Cesaro to get up. He charges for the big Stomp but Cesaro turns it into a big uppercut. Cesaro with Rollins on his shoulders now, spinning him around for his UFO move, with no arms. Cesaro dumps Rollins to the mat and then stands tall for another pop.
Cesaro with another big Swing in the middle of the ring now as fans count along. Cesaro breaks his own record with the number of swings, then nails the Neutralizer in the middle of the ring for the pin to win.
– After the match, an emotional Cesaro recovers and stands tall as the crowd gives him a standing ovation. Graves says you can bet the locker room is doing the same thing. Cesaro gets up and plays to the crowd to celebrate. We go to replays. Cesaro continues his celebration as the announcers play up how big the moment is.
When Seth Rollins finally came back to SmackDown, his return was unwelcome in the eyes of many fellow blue brand Superstars, but perhaps no one objected more than Cesaro.
Rollins’ frustration that night prompted an all-out assault on The Swiss Cyborg, leading to a dizzying response from Cesaro two weeks later in the form of an incredible Cesaro Swing: a clear message that he would not be embracing any of Rollins’ visions.
The fast-intensifying rivalry has seen Cesaro score an impressive win over Murphy, a former disciple of Rollins, and SmackDown’s Savior answering back with a win against Cesaro’s former Tag Team Championship partner, Shinsuke Nakamura, at WWE Fastlane. But when Rollins attempted to shatter Cesaro’s career with a Stomp and a steel chair on SmackDown, the bad blood reached a dangerous new level.
Now, the bitter animosity can only be settled on The Grandest Stage of Them All, where Rollins has shined many times, while Cesaro aims to earn one of the biggest victories of his WWE career where it matters most.
Don’t miss WrestleMania on Saturday, April 10, and Sunday, April 11, streaming live at 8 ET/5 PT exclusively on Peacock in the U.S. and on WWE Network everywhere else.
– We go back to the ring and out comes Seth Rollins as the pyro goes off. Rollins marches down the ramp as flames shoot up on each side. Back to commercial.
Back from the break and Rollins talks about the complaint he sent WWE management last week. He goes on about how it got a great response and trended on social media. He’s quickly interrupted by the music of Cesaro. Cesaro marches to the ring and looks ready to fight. Rollins starts pleading and talks about how they go back a long way together.
Rollins says what previously happened wasn’t his fault and won’t happen again. Rollins says last week he didn’t call Cesaro a loser, Twitter just blew what he said way out of proportion. Rollins asks for a chance to make it right. Rollins goes on about how Cesaro is a star. Just look at you. Who says Cesaro can’t grab that brass ring and crack that glass ceiling. He goes on about Cesaro’s strength and skills. Rollins says Cesaro has it all so why is it that he always seems to come up short? Fans boo Rollins’ question. Rollins asks what is it that Cesaro is missing? Rollins will tell him what it is because Rollins has it. It’s called killer instinct. Rollins has it and he can give it to Cesaro.
Rollins came back to lead SmackDown into the future and he will start by leading Cesaro, if he will let him. Rollins has grabbed the brass ring and shattered the glass ceiling, he’s done everything Cesaro has only dreamed of, but he wants to give that to Cesaro. Rollins tells him to imagine them working together on SmackDown. They would be unstoppable. Rollins goes on and says if Cesaro would’ve listened two weeks ago he would’ve ended up winning the Elimination Chamber and would be Universal Champion now. Rollins mentions a second chance and tells Cesaro to embrace the vision, let him lead. Fans boo. Rollins tells Cesaro he doesn’t have to answer now, take a week or two weeks, think it over and come back.
Rollins says he will be waiting, he is ready. Cesaro tackles Rollins and positions him for the Cesaro Swing. Rollins yells for Cesaro to put him down. Cesaro starts swinging Rollins, and again. Cesaro finally lets go and Rollins gets up stumbling around, dazed. Cesaro levels Rollins with a big uppercut. Cesaro exits the ring as his music hits while fans cheer him on.