Welcome to my weekly wrap up of women’s wrestling. I missed a week last week so there’s a lot to catch up on. Especially after WarGames.
Raw started it’s night with a match between Raw Women’s Champion Asuka and one half Women’s Tag Team Champions Shayna Baszler. Believe it or not, this was the first ever one-on-one match between Asuka and Baszler on Raw. I was excited for this match because I expected it to be more focused on well…wrestling. Of course this wasn’t the case. The two were not alone, Baszler being accompanied by Nia Jax and Asuka being accompanied by Lana.
The actual match turned out to be a little sloppy. Clearly the scheduled match was not the focus, as attention shifted to Jax attacking Lana. Lana FINALLY did something, slamming Jax through the announce table (well kind of, let me have this one). The commotion was enough to distract Bazsler, who lost the match to Asuka. I was not left disappointed, they’re actually starting to do something with Lana!
I cannot say the same for the match that took place later that night. Raw gave us an extremely disappointing mixed tag team match, Slapjack and Reckoning (who I’ll be calling by her previous in ring name Mia Yim) vs. Ricochet and Dana Brooke. Last week was Yim’s first ever match on Raw, also against Brooke. This was probably one of the most disappointing debuts of the year. The match lasted around 2 minutes and ended with Ali accosting Yim in the ring. I haven’t got to give my opinion on RETRIBUTION yet since I try to keep this strictly about women’s wrestling, but it’s just not great. I feel for every member of RETRIBUTION, especially Reckoning. This week was just a repeat of last week. Which is disappointing considering Mia’s track record in NXT.
Did the excitement of last week’s episode of Dynamite Winter is Coming make you kind of forget everything that was going on on Dynamite? I was so excited to see Kenny Omega and Sting speak about last week’s events that I completely forgot about Shaq. Seriously, he showed up in a promo with Brandi and I had to think about why he was there. He was there to tell Brandi he was to be at her and Jade Cargill’s upcoming match. Later that night Abadon defeated Tesha Price in our second one minute women’s match of the week. It was not over after the bell rang though, as Abadon continued to attack Price until Shida came out with a kendo stick and proceeded to break it over Abadon’s head. The buildup for the match between these two has been exciting and I can’t wait for it to get booked.
NXT was full of promos this week to address the fallout of WarGames. Candice Larae, the leader of the winning team of the women’s WarGame’s match, was gifted a trophy complete with Shotzi Blackheart’s head.
An earlier promo featuring Toni Storm turned violent after both Io Sharia and Ember Moon ambushed her, looking for payback from the previous weeks. Moon was back later that night for her match with Raquel Gonzalez. Moon was really holding her own considering how impressive Gonzalez’s performance has been recently. Though, Gonzalez still spent a good amount of time literally throwing Moon around the ring. Which might have been to her downfall since Moon gained a lot of steam mid match, and was climbing the rafters at one point before being pulled down by Gonzalez. This was another really entertaining women’s main event match from NXT and I was actually really disappointed when Gonzalez ended up defeating Moon. That left Moon open for Toni Storm to enter the ring and try to take payback for Moon’s earlier attack. Though the plan was thwarted by the timely appearance of Rhea Ripley. The show ended with a standoff between Ripley and Gonzalez and I’m really excited to see what happens next week.
SmackDown started the show off with a contract signing for the TLC match between Sasha Banks and Carmella for the SmackDown Women’s Championship. After some arguing between the two, they decide to have the match that night as the main event. Carmella promising a champagne toast after her win. As we waited for that match we came to discover that Billie Kay is still looking for a new gig after the IIconics split. Kay teamed up with Natalya this week for a tag team match against the Riott Squad. This match was really nothing to write home about. Overall it felt pretty formulaic with some noticeable botches, it really paled in comparison to some of the other matches this week. It’s great to see Kay being used though.
Later that night in the main event it was Sasha Banks vs. Carmella for the SmackDown Women’s Championship. Carmella absolutely dominated this match. She really was trying to show her worth, and succeeded in doing so. There were moments where I truly believed Banks might turn it around. Particularly after Banks had Carmella in the corner and “officially lost it” when the two started trading pinning attempts. Carmella was ultimately deemed the winner via disqualification. As she had promised earlier in the evening, Carmella had her champagne toast, and kicked it off by breaking a bottle over Banks back and spraying champagne everywhere.
This is going to really put a fire under Sasha for their match at TLC. I never would have expected to see Carmella become the SmackDown Women’s Champion but after this week it’s definitely a possibility.
Raw really didn’t start the week off well, but NXT really got the momentum going for WWE. Dynamite is definitely setting up some big things and so is SmackDown. Almost every show this week, excluding Raw, has left me wanting more. I’m wondering what is next for women’s wrestling in 2021, and honestly the future is looking bright. It is 2020 after all.
Like what we do here at AIPT? Consider supporting us and independent comics journalism by becoming a patron today! In addition to our sincere thanks, you can browse AIPT ad-free, gain access to our vibrant Discord community of patrons and staff members, get trade paperbacks sent to your house every month, and a lot more. Click the button below to get started!