Welcome to this week’s round up of all the action from WWE’s women’s divisions. The big news of the week is, of course, the final of the Mae Young Classic, and what a final it was. However, RAW is still building up to No Mercy, NXT are getting ready to figure out how a new champion will be crowned, and SmackDown had a women’s championship match. There was plenty going on, so let’s begin.
Sasha Banks def Emma
A follow up to the tag match from last week. Emma stole the pin then, despite Nia Jax having done all the work. Alexa Bliss joined commentary for the match, so most of the actual match commentary was limited to noises. Apparently Bliss thinks the fatal four-way is unfair, and it’s all Sasha Banks fault. They stopped looking at the ring completely when Nia Jax came out, in street clothes, and headed to commentary.
The rest of the match was taken up with Bliss complaining about not having to be pinned to lose her title, and discussions of how the four-way could play out. They occasionally noted pin attempts, and the odd move, but largely Emma and Sasha Banks were ignored while they had a reasonable match.
Sasha Banks won with the Bank Statement.
During the show, WWE confirmed that Asuka will be joining the RAW roster. The transition is making a lot of people nervous, and rightly so. In the past year or so, many NXT to main roster transfers haven’t gone well – who would have thought a year ago that, a still babyface, Bayley would get booed. We can only hope that Asuka’s transition is nice and smooth, and main roster crowds appreciate her.
Immediately after the announcement Alexa Bliss and Nia Jax had a locker room segment. Bliss said Asuka was another woman coming to RAW to steal their thunder. RAW should be the Alexa and Nia show, then quickly changed it to Nia and Alexa Show. And No Mercy should be a one on one match between the two of them, just like Bliss has always wanted apparently.
After complaining that Banks got an automatic rematch, and Emma is being given a chance, Bliss suggested Kurt Angle just doesn’t appreciate that Jax and Bliss are best friends. When Jax said they weren’t Bliss apologised, first for slapping her, and second for not talking to Angle about giving Nia Jax an opportunity at the title. Then she asked if they could drop it all and go back to being best friends.
Nia Jax said maybe, but Bliss might not want to be her friend when she finds out what she did. Jax revealed she’d been to see Kurt Angle, and she and Bliss have a one on one match next week. It wasn’t specified whether it will be for the title, I assume not with No Mercy just a few days after.
Natalya def Naomi – SmackDown Women’s Championship match
Carmella joined the commentary team for the women’s title match, and she had James Ellsworth on a lead. Yep, you read that right, Ellsworth was wearing a collar and lead. I thought it was quite amusing, but I can’t help thinking about how big the outcry would have been if it had been the other way round. It also annoyed me that neither Naomi nor Natalya got televised entrances because they were advertising the Mae Young Classic final.
Anyway, the first part of the match was dominated by commentary talking about Carmella, the lead, and how dangerous to the women’s division being Miss Money in the Bank makes her. Meanwhile, Naomi was taking it to Natalya, until Natalya dumped her face first into the turnbuckle.
It was a very even match. They just seemed to have an answer for everything they threw at each other. Neither achieved any kind of dominance for more than a move or two. They could have gone on like that all night. Actually, the match could have been longer, it was very entertaining. They both went for a cross body at the same time and took each other out. Natalya got out of the way of Naomi’s split legged moonsault. Naomi counted Natalya’s sharpshooter by kicking her out of the ring.
Carmella got involved when Natalya was outside the ring. She got in her face with the briefcase and some trash talk. Natalya turned away just in time to see Naomi fly over the top rope, and ducked out of the flight path. Naomi crashed into Carmella and Ellsworth, and punched Ellsworth in the face as she got up because, well why not if the opportunity is there.
Unfortunately for Naomi, Natalya was waiting for her to stand and shoved her into the ringpost. Then she rolled, a dazed looking, Naomi back into the ring and locked in the Sharpshooter. Naomi tapped and Natalya retained.
Ruby Riot and Nikki Cross def Billie Kay and Peyton Royce
It looked like Ruby Riot had disobeyed a direct order from William Regal at the start of this match. She clearly hadn’t found a tag partner, as she came to the ring and began the match alone. Seconds into the match the cameras panned to Nikki Cross at ringside, but all she was doing was watching.
Meanwhile, Ruby Riot was getting beaten up. Royce and Kay had double teamed her from the start. Riot fought back, and managed to get back to her corner to regroup, when Cross tagged herself in. Ruby Riot looked as shocked as Royce and Kay as Nikki Cross decimated the iconic duo. She hit Billie Kay with a spinning neckbreaker, then tagged Riot back in, and wandered off smiling.
Ruby Riot landed a back senton on Billie Kay, who hadn’t moved since Cross’ neckbreaker, and got the pin. Royce and Kay looked stunned, Ruby Riot just looked confused. I love Nikki Cross.
Also on NXT this week, there was a fantastic video package for Asuka. Footage of her record breaking reign, and her farewell to NXT, interspersed with praise from a variety of people. WWE really do a great job of these packages.
No Women’s division action on Main Event this week.
Mae Young Classic
Kairi Sane def Shayna Baszler
The live final lasted just half an hour. If you haven’t seen it yet, it’s well worth watching. The match was fantastic. There is also a 20 minute ‘Road to the Final’ show, which includes a six-woman tag match, that’s also worth checking out. I wish they’d added it to the final to give it a bit more build. Half an hour seemed a bit rushed, but it was still good.
My full review of the final can be found here.
It’s been a fantastic tournament. Here’s hoping it becomes an annual event.
That it for this week. I’ll be back next week with all the usual action, plus the preview and predictions for No Mercy. In the meantime, if there is anything you’d like me to cover, or anything you’d like to discuss, tweet me @manda_why.