Welcome to this week’s round up of all the action from WWE’s women’s divisions. Nothing much to say by way of intro today. There are no debuts, no surprises, no PPV to preview or review, just a normal week. Normal does not equate to boring though, there’s still plenty to talk about.
Paige def Sasha Banks
Asuka def Alicia Fox
We got another lengthy recap of the arrival of Absolution this week, ahead of the match between Sasha Banks and Paige. I understand the need to establish Paige’s return, and the characters of Rose and Deville, but I feel like those few minutes might have been better added to the match. Actually, the match got a decent amount of time, but it was still a lot of recap.
Paige vs Sasha Banks
Anyway, Alexa Bliss joined commentary for the match. Paige had Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville with her, Sasha Banks brought Mickie James and Bayley for back up. Booker T and Corey Graves were arguing, and Michael Cole seemed to be trying to wind up Alexa Bliss for most of the match. Sometimes, they even commented on the action.
It was good to see Paige back in the ring, she’s looking good. Hopefully she’s stays healthy. It was long match week on RAW this week by the looks of things, so they actually got time to develop it. I’d love to see a longer feud between these two, there’s a lot of potential chemistry there. It was a very enjoyable match.
Towards the end, Paige went for the RamPaige but Sasha Banks struggled out and got the Bank Statement on. Paige managed to drag Banks backwards until she could get her foot on the ropes to break it. Paige rolled out of the ring, where Absolution checked on her. That brought Bayley and Mickie James over as well, and when Sonya Deville went for Sasha Banks, as Banks was rolling Paige back into the ring, Bayley pounced on her and the outside brawl broke out.
Sasha Banks was distracted by watching her friends get beaten down by Rose and Deville. She turned her attention back to the ring too late, caught a kick in the head from Paige, followed up by a RamPaige, and was pinned.
Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville beat Banks up a little more after the match.
Asuka vs Alicia Fox
Foxy decided she was ready for Asuka this week. Her little promo video during her entrance said she’d seen what Asuka did to Dana Brooke, but she’s not Dana Brooke. She captained the Survivor Series team to victory, and she finally has a t-shirt, and she’s ready.
To be fair, she did ok for a while. She threw Asuka across the ring early on, and even landed a kick that sent Asuka sprawling on the canvas. That kick got her a two count. Then she made the mistake of slapping Asuka, not even hard, just to be annoying.
That was the last of her offence. Less than a minute later, she was taping to an armbar.
After the match Absolution came out like last week and surrounded the ring. Like last week, Asuka backed away and nothing happened. Unfortunately, she left Fox in the ring.
Paige told Fox to relax, and told the crowd Fox was the only one who liked her before her injury, and she loves her. But Sonya Deville and Mandy Rose don’t feel the same way. Paige stood back and didn’t participate in the beating Deville and Rose gave to Fox. She did make a point of stepping over Alicia Fox to raise the hands of her colleagues.
That was it for RAW, except for a small segment, between the matches, in which Nia Jax seemed to be flirting with Enzo Amore. Clearly the only acceptable way for this to end is with her beating him senseless in the centre of the ring.
Lots to like about this week’s RAW. There are actual storylines being built, non-title ones. It remains to be seen which, if any, go anywhere, but it’s a promising situation as we head towards the end of the year.
Charlotte Flair def Tamina
There was an off ice based segment with Daniel Bryan, Carmella, Lana and Tamina. They were arguing their case for getting a shot at Charlotte Flair’s title.
Carmella told Daniel Bryan she deserves a title shot for ridding the world of James Ellsworth. Lana said that Tamina deserves the shot (she called her ‘my Samoan soldier’, I’m not sure about that). Bryan said the title match was set between Charlotte Flair and Natalya, but suggested Carmella could be in it if she wanted to cash in. Apparently, the briefcase is called Frankie, and Carmella isn’t ready to part with him yet.
Ruby Riott appeared with Liv Morgan and Sarah Logan. Riott asked Bryan to explain why she isn’t in the title match when she pinned Charlotte Flair. She asked if it’s because her tattoos made him nervous, but Liv Morgan said it was because he was superficial, and Sarah Logan said he was prejudiced against people from the south. Then a full scale argument broke out with everyone talking at once.
Daniel Bryan voiced the thoughts of the WWE universe by screaming at the to shut up. Then he announced that Charlotte Flair versus Natalya at Clash of Champions will be a lumberjack match.
Later Natalya approached Lana, Tamina and Carmella to tell them she was excited about them being lumberjacks for the title match. She told Tamina she’d have her back for her match against Charlotte Flair tonight. Then she tried to make alliances for her Clash of Champions match. She suggested the three defend themselves from Flair if she leaves the ring and tries to attack them, but told them she needs to know they have her back if the Riott Squad tried to attack her. She reminded them that before there was a Riott Squad, there was a Welcoming Committee. The Riott Squad turned up, and Natalya tried to suck up to them. Not sure that’s going to work.
Tamina vs Charlotte Flair
This was a non-title match. Lana, Natalya and Carmella were at ringside. Does anyone else have a tendency to forget how long Tamina has been around, or is it just me? She debuted mid-2010, but it just never seems to have been her turn to get a push. I think having Lana as a manager works for her, gives her a bit more menace. She’s not the best in the ring, in my humble opinion, but she’s more than capable of pulling of the power based moveset required of her.
Short match, Flair won with the Figure Eight.
After the match Natalya grabbed a mic and told her that she should enjoy the title because she’s taking her title back at Clash of Champions. She was just talking Flair through a lumberjack match, when she was interrupted by the Riott Squad. Sadly, they appear to be turning Sarah Logan into colloquialism girl, which can only be awful.
Charlotte Flair got the hell out of there while Tamina went for Sarah Logan. They brawled until Lana and Carmella pulled her away, and Riott and Morgan grabbed Logan.
Sonya Deville def Ruby Riott
We have to assume this is probably the last match of the feud for these two, although I wouldn’t guarantee it. They’re on separate main roster brands now and, even though they’ve been doing NXT live events, their time on NXT must surely be ending. Let’s face it, there are plenty of women waiting to take their place. Above all that, a No Holds Barred match just says end of the feud.
It was a very good match, surprising in some ways though. Ruby Riott finally found a counter for Deville’s ankle lock, using the ropes, but Deville looked commanding for the majority of the match. I hadn’t expected that. I’ve been a big fan of Sonya Deville from the start, but Ruby Riott is more experienced, and way more established. I guess Deville needed this one more.
She used underhand tactics, like raking Riott’s eyes, and she took her fair share of punishment, including a suicide dive from Riott which sent her into the ramp. But this was a match to quieten those who said she’s too green for the main roster. She’s going to be fine.
After a tough looking match, and that suicide dive, Ruby Riott rolled Deville into the ring, and got caught in a leg triangle. Rather than tap, Riott passed out, handing the victory to Sonya Deville.
Ember Moon had an interview on this week’s NXT as well. It was interrupted by Billie Kay and Peyton Royce saying that as Moon didn’t pin Peyton Royce, she owed her a match. Ember Moon turned it round on them and asked which one of them she would be fighting next week. After a brief disagreement they decided it would be Peyton Royce, as long as she didn’t beat her up too badly, so Billie Kay can finish her off later. It felt like the possible first flirt with an iconic split, but that might be wishful thinking. I’m looking forward to that feud.
Main Event recapped the women’s division action from RAW this week, but didn’t have anything original.
I’ll be back next week with another round up of all the action from WWE’s women, including the preview and prediction for Clash of Champions. In the meantime, if there is anything you’d like me to cover, or anything you want to discuss, tweet me @manda_why.