Divas Debrief: Women's Wrestling This Week for 8/2/2014 | Smark Out Moment

Divas Debrief: Women's Wrestling This Week for 8/2/2014

Posted by J. B. Alexander Saturday, August 2, 2014
Every Saturday, Divas Debrief runs down the week in women's professional wrestling. From the TNA Knockouts to the WWE and NXT Divas, the Debrief keeps you up to date on all the women carrying on the legacy of lady grappling.

The ship has landed and we have come home. This week, for the first time in about a decade, a Diva-centered storyline closed Monday Night Raw.

Whether or not it lives up to previous successful eras in WWE's women's division, the face lift we've been painfully waiting on for many years is finally here. Join me again this week whilst in it we bask.

Cherish these moments, for they shall be fleeting.

WWE RAW


On the actual wrestling side of things, TV hasn't been that strong for the WWE Divas lately, and that's saying the least that I could possibly say. When matches do happen, they last for only a couple of minutes. That's okay, though, because usually those rushed encounters are such so that more room is available for the fleshing out of a particular scenario. The ideal way to work this situation is to let the women have proper televised matches as well as their story time, but this is a positive, healthy step forward.

Interest is being generated as evidenced by the audiences of late. Not all of them are into the Divas storylines, but it's become less frequent to hear crickets during matches and we've seen a few great reactions.

There was only one Divas match on Raw, which saw Naomi and Natalya defeat Cameron and Alicia Fox, and it lasted as long as anyone expected. However, this week is an atypical situation since, overall, Raw was a lackluster show with almost no serious matches. Most of the matches throughout the night were comedy spots or squash fests, with the only notable exceptions being John Cena versus Cesaro in the opener and Chris Jericho versus Seth Rollins toward the end of the show.

But every cloud has a silver lining. Actually, it doesn't, and don't let anyone fill your head with that nonsensical bullshit. But this week's cloud certainly shone bright. We were teased all night that Brie Bella would be making an appearance at the behest of Stephanie McMahon, but I never in my wildest imagination expected the segment to close the show.

That's right, the Divas closed. It wasn't Seth Rollins and Chris Jericho, and it wasn't John Cena and Cesaro. I'm sure there's a case to be made that it was wrong to not have the latter end the program for the sake of the banner fight for the second-biggest show of the year, but the build was already suffering when WWE made the questionable decision to repeat a mistake they made leading up to WrestleMania by rarely having the two people in one of the most-hyped matches for an upcoming pay-per-view actually interact face-to-face. That is the reason the Undertaker/Brock Lesnar program felt so uninspired.

But we're talking about the Divas here, and that's what we shall do. I don't know what the reason was and I don't care quite frankly, but Stephanie McMahon and Brie Bella ended Raw. Not only did they end the show, they were the biggest of all talking points throughout the night including the upcoming WWE World Heavyweight Championship match.

Bella Twins Divas Brie rehired Daniel Bryan SummerSlam
Then I'll see you in court.
It all started with the opening promo at the top of the first hour. At 8:00 PM sharp (eastern) we get a dramatic look back at Stephanie's problems with Brie last week including the big arrest which went down. We were reminded all night that Brie was on her way to the arena for her meeting with Steph and Nikki even had an encounter with the boss, finally showing some signs of standing up to her which was desperately needed for Nikki's sake as a character. The girl had gotten nothing to work with lately with her one-dimensional sad bullied girl shtick.

It became clear in the final half-hour of Raw that this segment was being saved for last. I was genuinely confused. There's no way WWE was about to end a show with just Stephanie and Brie. Was Daniel Bryan on the show this week? Was John Cena going to somehow get involved in defense of his girlfriend's sister? One way or another, a male Superstar was going to take this storyline and make it all about himself.

That didn't happen, though. It was just Stephanie McMahon, in all her five-star heel glory, crying and begging Brie to drop the assault charges against her so that her daughters wouldn't need to wonder why Mommy went to jail. Brie agreed as long as some terms were met. Those terms included Steph's default offer to give Nikki a raise and to stop torturing her at work, but also a couple of extras Brie tacked on herself.

Brie requested to be re-hired and to receive a match with Stephanie at SummerSlam. The request was reluctantly granted, and Stephanie, lamenting about how she hasn't competed in a wrestling ring in over ten years, fell apart. Kind of. At least until she revealed the tears to be a facade when she slapped the holy PETA out of Brie.

Brie leather Bella Twins Divas Stephanie McMahon jeans
A preview of SummerSlam.
The Bella Twin quickly jumped back into the ring and tackled Stephanie. They brawled for a brief moment in a preview of things to come, and it brought a lot of memories flooding back. Memories of how good of a fighter Stephanie McMahon can manage to portray herself as. She's always been great at the scrappy style of wrestling, which is perfectly fine. There seems to be a myth these days that pro wrestling is all about chain grappling and how many flips you can do consecutively. That style is amazing, but it's merely a small portion of the genre.

I think Stephanie McMahon and Brie Bella will tell an exciting story. Athletes come in all varieties, but in wrestling the stuff you remember most is how many times you nearly pissed yourself during a near three-count.

In other Raw news, the Paige and AJ Lee saga was furthered when Paige came out to apologize for the assault she unleashed on the Divas Champion last week, chalking it up to youthful mood swings. AJ joined her to proclaim that she doesn't play little girl games and if she has something to say, she'll say it to Paige's face. Paige then told AJ that if AJ didn't believe her apology was sincere, then she must be crazy.

Crazy.

WWE Divas Raw Paige belly AJ Lee CM Punk
Oops?
AJ lost it upon hearing the C-word and attacked Paige, but the former Champ got away before any real damage was done.

It was reassuring to see that WWE is showing continuity by keeping up the Cray-J Lee stuff. Continuity is not something wrestling is known for, so I'm thankful they're sticking with this since they really need it in order to keep a babyface AJ from getting too cheesy.

I'm really pulling for a lengthy Title match between these two at SummerSlam. It needs to happen and it needs to be really, really good. The girls need at the very least twelve to fifteen minutes of solid full-throttle action, bell-to-bell, with little to no rest holds. The WWE Divas have a lot to prove and these are the two to do the proving.

WWE NXT


While WWE still struggles to fit even mediocre women's matches into their main television programming, they're still doing a marvelous job with the NXT women. The NXT Women's Champion Charlotte is going to be the true standard in mainstream women's wrestling for the next decade, if I should be so bold as to make that prediction.

Charlotte is solid. She's grounded and moves with precision. As stern as her moves and strikes are, she floats around the ring effortlessly. She makes the intricate art of wrestling look easy and could hang with any woman in the industry. Hell, this woman needs to be breaking glass ceilings and wrestling for World Championships. Yes, I just said that, and I firmly mean every word.

She's an A-plus wrestler, and she's only just now in her training.

WWE Divas Charlotte Ric Flair's daughter Becky Lynch
To be the woman, you've got to beat the woman.
The Women's Champion had a non-title match with Becky Lynch this week on NXT. Becky debuted a new gimmick which seems a far cry from that offensive, career-killing Irish jig crap she was forced into a few weeks back. Now she comes out to some pretty intense music and savagely headbangs her way to the ring. It's all very Lita-esque and thankfully something different than the usual bubbly personalities the Divas tend to get stuck with. We seem to be mostly moving away from that.

Charlotte and Becky had a great match with lots of actual wrestling. I can't underscore how nice it felt. Charlotte controlled the majority of the match by working on Becky's legs, which inevitably drew lots of WOO's from the crowd. And speaking of the crowd, they were much more respectful for this match than they were for the Title match last week between Charlotte and Summer Rae. In all honesty, though, this was a much more stellar contest.

Becky started making a comeback toward the end, but Charlotte ultimately picked up the win with Bow Down to the Queen.

TNA IMPACT


The only thing to say about Impact this week is that there really isn't anything to say about it. Angelina Love and Velvet Sky were interviewed backstage and Angelina promised she'd have an announcement next week worthy of Destination X.

That's it, TNA?

There's no excuse for not having a proper Knockouts segment on the weekly program. Not enough Knockouts? Get more. Working on a storyline? Use filler, or work on it faster. In what may be a first for TNA since the Knockouts Title was established, they were severely shown up by WWE in the women's wrestling department. The saddest part is that WWE barely had any women's matches this week aside from the one match on NXT and they still managed to utterly destroy TNA as it relates to Divas and Knockouts.

Come on, TNA. You have a standard. A bar that you yourself raised as a company. Now is not the time to fail.

Seriously. Now is not the time.

WWE SMACKDOWN


AJ Lee defeated Rosa Mendes in about ten seconds flat on Smackdown. Ironically, this turns out to actually work. Now in the long run any short match isn't going to be beneficial to the division as a whole; Rosa was pretty much just set up to fail for life as an in-ring Diva. But the announcers made use of the opportunity to really play AJ Lee up as the best Divas Champion in history. They really made a big deal out of the whole thing.

WWE Divas Champion Smackdown push stage
Syke!
And then, as the Champion was celebrating, Paige came out of nowhere and shoved her off the stage. I almost expected a train to come by on her way down.

Too dark?

What followed was perhaps Paige's greatest acting performance since coming to WWE. She screamed to AJ that she still loves her, and then as she sat on the stage, watching the medics attend to AJ and proclaiming "She's okay, you're overreacting," I was feeling pure bliss.

Paige has come alive.

SummerSlam is seriously going to rock.

SHIMMER WRESTLING


In a quick note, SHIMMER Volume 60 has begun shipping on DVD! You can get it on the SHIMMER website HERE!

Thanks for reading and if you would be so kind, please FOLLOW ME on Twitter!

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THIS POST WAS WRITTEN BY A GUEST WRITER

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