WWE Backlash: In Defense Of The Jinder Mahal, Randy Orton Championship Match [SPOILERS]

In defense of the Backlash 2017 WWE Championship match WWE

WWE pay-per-view Backlash was last night and featured a WWE Championship match between current champ Randy Orton and… Jinder Mahal? Many people questioned Jinder being able to have the match in the first place, seeing as how he hasn’t had any major wins in years. Before going into the results, it should be noted that Backlash spoilers are below, so read on at your own risk.

After taking one finisher, Jinder Mahal pinned Randy Orton and is the new WWE Champion. There really wasn’t even much interference from the Singh Brothers. That was unexpected, but also wasn’t. The reactions from fans online are also ranging from ironic joy to legitimate joy, to questioning everything and even outright hatred.

WWE Superstar Bray Wyatt even chimed in, tweeting out a single-word response to the Mahal win. Of all people, Wyatt has the most to be upset with, seeing as how he just lost the WWE belt to Orton in an unspectacular match at this year’s WrestleMania.

While I can understand the complaints that Mahal hasn’t earned a title shot or deserves to be a champion, it’s actually a brilliant move by WWE. The first reason, and one many will probably think of, is WWE’s push to attract viewers overseas. The market for pro wrestling in India is incredibly popular, so putting an Indian front and center as the champ could draw in massive viewers. It’s like when Iron Man 3 released in China with bonus scenes featuring a Chinese actor. And besides, just listen to how excited the Indian announce team was for Jinder’s win.

Ignoring any marketing decisions for a Jinder Mahal championship run, this decision was the right one for storytelling reasons as well. Say what you will about the match, the performers and everything else, but the results certainly are shocking. A shocking twist can be great in a story, so long as it’s followed up smartly. And with a twist of a new champion that few think deserve the belt, that will probably get more people to tune into SmackDown Live on Tuesday to see how the story continues.

As a personal note, I am also not a big fan of Randy Orton. I understand that he’s technically proficient and has a “great look,” but to me he is incredibly boring. For context, I’m a fairly new WWE follower, so feel free to point me to his older work that I may have missed. But in what I’ve seen over the past two or three years, Orton is boring and uninspired. It feels like he’s just coasting on “being Randy Orton.” Him dropping the WWE Championship to just about anyone is a welcomed change for me.

Now that Mahal is the WWE Champion, this also sets up some great possibilities for the future. If Rusev is getting his demands met, we’ll get a Rusev vs Jinder match at Money in the Bank in June. This could be a great opportunity to turn Rusev into a babyface and get him the championship belt at the same time. If not Rusev, then some other face champ could rise up to mix up the belt even more. Consider Sami Zayn just got a big win over Baron Corbin at Backlash maybe it’s time for the Underdog from the Underground to finally rise up.

So what do you think? Do you agree with me that a Jinder Mahal WWE Championship run is at least something new and interesting? Do you wish Orton retained at Backlash? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.

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