Women of the WWE – weekly round-up – w/b March 26

Credit: WWE.com
Amanda Why

Amanda Why

Amanda covers NXT and WWE's Women's Division for Kayfabe Today.
Amanda Why

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Welcome and Happy WrestleMania week. All the shows were hyping for their big events this week, so don’t expect any new angles or storylines to show up. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t plenty to talk about, starting with some exciting news.

On Saturday, before NXT TakeOver Orlando, WWE announced that the long rumoured women’s tournament will take place this summer. 32 women will compete, presumably in a format similar to last year’s Cruiserweight Classic. I’ll bring you more information as it’s released, and we’ll look at the competitors as they’re announced.



Bayley and Sasha Banks def Charlotte Flair and Nia Jax

Bayley came out to address the crowd for the opening segment. She talked about her love of WrestleMania and how she used to club together with her friends to buy it, but this year she’s in it. She started to talk about the match but didn’t get more than a few words in before Charlotte Flair interrupted.

Flair called her a paper champion, then said Sasha Banks had made Bayley her pawn. The reasoning being Banks being beaten at roadblock took her out of the title picture, and she used helping Bayley retain the title to get back in.

Sasha Banks was out next. She said that she and Bayley were mature enough to separate business from friendship. They were still friends even though she beat Bayley to get into the match and they will be after she beats her at WrestleMania.

Nia Jax had to come and complete the party. She complained about the three of them being the only ones she’d heard about since she got to RAW (and let’s face it, she not the first to point that out), then said she would eliminate them all at WrestleMania.

Flair said the only reason Jax was in the match was because Banks stopped pretending to care about Bayley. Banks leapt on Flair, it all broke down, and we came back from the ad break to a tag team match.

Bayley and Sasha Banks vs Nia Jax and Charlotte Flair

Nice match, but it’s tough to know what to say about it really. It was no different to all the other variations of these four we’ve seen week in and week out. It was none the worse for it, it was just a bit functional. Commentary talked throughout about the WrestleMania match. The RAW women’s division needs some new blood desperately.

Bayley pinned Charlotte Flair off the Bayley to belly.

She was celebrating with Banks, when Nia Jax wiped them both out then turned on Flair and took her out too. Jax held the title belt for a few moment, then walked away leaving her competitors laid out in the ring.



Carmella and Alexa Bliss def Becky Lynch and Mickie James

Becky Lynch vs Carmella

This was supposed to be a match, but that was never going to be allowed to happen with a free for all match coming up on Sunday. They brawled in the ring for a few moments while Mickie James and Alexa Bliss bickered on commentary. Then Bliss and James brawled their way into the ring and chaos ensued. Becky Lynch and Mickie James were the last two in the ring, with James pointing at the WrestleMania sign to close out the segment. By the time we came back from the break, it had become a tag team match.

Becky Lynch and Mickie James vs Alexa Bliss and Carmella

This wasn’t bad at all. Mickie James looked in top form, Carmella seems to have found another gear, and Lynch and Bliss were looking WrestleMania ready as well. It was a little, everyone take a turn, but decent with it. Unfortunately, it didn’t get a dignified finish.

With the action in the ring going strong, Natalya’s music hit and she started to make her way down the ramp to join commentary. So we got to listen to Natalya saying the same stuff she’s been saying for ages while commentary ignored what was going on in the ring. Then she tried to get into the ring.

Becky Lynch went to deal with Natalya and knocked her down to the apron. While the ref was attending to Natalya, James Ellsworth tripped Becky Lynch and Carmella covered her for the three count. A brawl ensued, until Naomi’s music hit.

Naomi ran down the ramp, pausing only to give Natalya a hurricanrana on the ramp, and laid out Carmella and Bliss. Naomi took to the mic and declared that she was cleared to wrestle, and officially entering the title match at WrestleMania.

On Talking Smack Naomi discussed the frustration of being injured, and how pleased she is to be back.

There was another Miz and Maryse Total Bellas parody segment. Go watch it if you want to. Cena and Bella came down to the ring after it and rebuffed all the accusations Miz and Maryse have made over the course of the feud. That bit was funny. I’d recommend that.

There was going to be a huge rant in here about the SmackDown women’s title match being on pre-show instead of the main card, but something wonderful happened. When the pre-show placement was announced, social media got angry. Twitter is my platform of choice, and you couldn’t avoid the subject if you tried. Many well-reasoned arguments were put forward, pointing out that if, as WWE keep saying, the women’s division and female superstars have equal billing with the men, then their title matches should also have similar billing. WWE agreed, or so it would seem, and the SmackDown women were moved to the main card.



There was no women’s match on NXT this week, just a contract signing for Ember Moon vs Asuka at TakeOver Orlando. It was all very civilised, no violence. Ember Moon told Asuka she’d let success go to her head. Asuka said Moon wasn’t ready to take her on. Moon said she’d been ready for a long time. All very polite.


Main Event

Dana Brooke def Alicia Fox

An actual women’s match on Main Event. Brooke is trying to establish herself now she’s separated from Charlotte Flair, and Alicia Fox has been woefully underused in the ring. Sadly, a lot of the commentary was focused on Fox’ ‘girlfriend’ role for Noam Dar. Meanwhile, the match was pretty good. Brooke has the strength and conditioning on her side, Fox has the experience. Ok, the finish looked awkward and a little messy, but let’s not dwell. Dana Brooke pinned Alicia Fox for the win.



NXT TakeOver Orlando Review

Asuka (C) def Ember Moon

This was one of my favourite matches on the TakeOver card. After months of both women running through their opposition with ease, they found some competition in each other. After the initial feeling out process they really went for it, and the result was very entertaining.

Asuka retained, which surprised me. I was fully expecting her to go up to the main roster next week. It does, potentially, mean we will see them fight again, which would be a great thing. The other option is that Asuka debuts on the main roster, and relinquishes the NXT title undefeated. It’s a possibility I guess, but seems unlikely.



WrestleMania 33 Preview

Bayley (C) vs Sasha Banks vs Charlotte Flair vs Nia Jax RAW Women’s Championship -Fatal Four Way Elimination Match

SmackDown Women’s Championship match

John Cena and Nikki Bella vs Miz and Maryse

It’s finally here. WrestleMania 33 is tonight. And thanks to a bit of fan power (see above), we have two women’s title matches on the main card. Well, two and a bit. I debated whether to mention the mixed tag, because I honestly don’t expect much impact from the women, but decided to include it for completeness. Might as well start there I guess.

John Cena and Nikki Bella vs Miz and Maryse.

The build to this one has been personal, vicious and uncomfortable. Miz and Maryse have even gone as far as to create parody segments of Cena and Nikki Bella’s Total Bellas tv show, to show how fake and manufactured they consider their relationship. Nikki Bella’s reaction has been to comment on how insecure Maryse must be to have to run down other women, and John Cena has called Miz out for being at his best when he’s pretending to be someone else. It all ends at WrestleMania.

With Cena due to take more time off sooner rather than later, and Nikki Bella reportedly cutting back her workload, it needs to be left with no loose ends. I don’t think the women will pay a huge part in the match, although their contribution may be decisive. Maryse hasn’t been in a competitive match for a very long time, and I do wonder how she’ll fare, but she used to be good so we’ll see. There are also, apparently, bookies taking many bets on Cena proposing to Nikki Bella after the match, which sounds kind of tacky, but may be a sweet moment if it happens. Cena and Bella have come across as the wronged party throughout the build up, so I can’t see anything other than a win for them tonight.

Prediction: John Cena and Nikki Bella

SmackDown Women’s Championship match – Alexa Bliss (C) vs all women on the SmackDown roster who are available to compete

Alexa Bliss will defend her title against all available women on the SmackDown roster at WrestleMania 33. Naomi declared herself fit this week on SmackDown, and there is speculation that there may be additional surprise entrants into the match.

The nature of the match hasn’t been talked about. It seems like it’s a simple, first to pin or submit someone wins the title. There’s a lot of tension between individuals on the roster, but I don’t particularly expect those feuds to play out much in this match. It’s likely to be chaos, and anything could happen. My prediction is based purely on what I’d like to see, as a nice WrestleMania moment.

Prediction: Naomi

Bayley (C) vs Sasha Banks vs Charlotte Flair vs Nia Jax RAW Women’s Championship -Fatal Four Way Elimination Match

I’m a little annoyed that neither of the women’s championship matches were one on one, but I don’t suppose it matters. My only expectation is, that by the end of the match Sasha Banks heel turn will be either complete or at least confirmed. As far as picking a winner, I don’t have a clue. I don’t think it will be Charlotte Flair. I see a potential step away from the title picture for her while she deals with Dana Brooke. I can’t see Bayley leaving with the title either, although I’d quite like to. I think Banks will be responsible for taking her out of the match. I’m predicting on what I think should happen, rather than what I think will happen. It’s time for a fresh pair of hands on the RAW women’s championship. The division is stale at the moment. It’s time to shake it up.

Prediction: Nia Jax


Right, all done for another week. Happy WrestleMania viewing. I’ll be back next week to round up the fallout from the big event. In the mean time, if there’s anything you think I should cover, or anything you’d like to discuss, drop me a tweet @manda_why.

Amanda Why
About Amanda Why 48 Articles
Amanda covers NXT and WWE's Women's Division for Kayfabe Today.
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