This week, there is the crowning of a new Divas Champion, an unexpected kiss and a match that falls below everybody's expectations – and that was just Survivor Series.
Two Divas matches were on the card for the Thanksgiving tradition that is Survivor Series. The first of these was a traditional elimination matches featuring eight of the divas that were not required for the title match later in the night. The main "feud" fueling this bout was the broken friendship of Paige and Alicia Fox which had led to a number of singles matches in recent weeks. On the Brit's team were Summer Rae, Layla and Cameron, whilst Fox was supported by Natalya, Naomi and Emma.
With very little attention or build placed on this encounter, it was no surprise that the few fans that stayed to watch it were not exactly enthralled. The wrestling was actually good for the most part, but in what is becoming a typical element of the women's division, there was little behind the action to excite the crowd. No significant feuds, rivalries, and the most over person involved was standing at ringside, Tyson Kidd.
Naomi was the surprise package in this match in terms of individuals, her athleticism and acrobatics securing two eliminations for her team. But, even more unexpected (and not in a good way) was that Fox's team carried out a clean sweep, with Paige the final to fall. Considering how heavily Paige has been pushed this year, she should have gotten at least one elimination, perhaps two. So, in the end this match didn't help anybody, as nobody will recall the comfortable result, and the only thing it possibly did was damage Paige's reputation.
But, as despairing as this was, the Divas Championship match took the benchmark they set and surpassed it in terms of disappointment. I was really looking forward to how this match would go. AJ Lee is one of the greatest women's wrestlers in recent memory, and Nikki Bella had improved exponentially in recent months. It was a great heel vs. face encounter, mixing speed and submission against power and charisma. However, what we were presented with was a lesbian kiss and a match lasting less than a minute.
As soon as the bell rung, Brie Bella stood on the apron with the title belt. AJ went to retrieve it, and was left on the receiving end of a liplock by Brie. Nikki took advantage of the confusion to knock AJ down, before lifting her in the Rack Attack to become champion for a second time in her career.
Surely this could have been given more time to tell a story that was wasted on the Bunny? The finish could have remained the same, but could have had an actual match, with Brie looking conflicted on the outside. After some back and forth action, AJ could have been setting up for a Black Widow, only to be distracted and kissed by Brie. That would have at least shown some of their talent instead of wasting it for some shock value for the teenage boys in the audience.
RAW was a continuation of the abomination of a Divas Championship match at Survivor Series, as the Kissing Bandit Brie Bella took on former champion AJ Lee. Brie seemingly having turned full heel and aligning with her sister Nikki for little to no reason after her subjugation, AJ makes her way to the ring, staring down the twins with a mic in hand. AJ mentions how the title looks a wonderful accessory for Nikki, whilst calling Brie an even bigger skank than her sister.
With the always hilarious and highly original 'CM Punk' chants echoing around the arena, AJ Lee and Brie unload on each other using their fists rather than their mouths. Brie is kicked to the outside, where AJ takes a chance to knock down Nikki, but that leaves her open to a clothesline from Brie. Brie focuses her attack on the arm of AJ, the pair showing more chemistry and aggression then in their previous bouts.
AJ fights back with a Shining Wizard and a sloppy elbow from the ring ropes, but Nikki pulls the injured arm with the referee turned away. Brie capitalizes on this to unsurprisingly roll-up AJ for the victory. As the Bellas celebrate, their relationship fully repaired, an extremely frustrated AJ grabs the microphone once more. She says she is sick of the interferences, and that she is twice the woman either twin is. AJ then references their partners Daniel Bryan and John Cena, informing the Bellas that talent is not sexually transmitted.
On Main Event this week, the focus shifted onto the continuing rivalry of Total Divas cast-mates Natalya and Summer Rae. In a backstage segment, Summer and her gal-pal Layla mock Natalya, which is found hilarious to her husband Tyson Kidd. When Nattie turns to try and get her man's support, she is then hit in the face with a pumpkin pie and whipped cream for a nice Thanksgiving treat.
With Layla waiting in the ring, Natalya storms down still wiping remnants of the pie from her face, and wastes little time going after the Brit. When Layla claws at the ropes, Natalya ducks out to ringside to attack Summer for a while, before returning to takedown her scheduled opponent. When the referee attempts to calm the irate Natalya, Layla catches her with a stinging kick to the face, as she assumes control of the match. Layla places Natalya in a headscissors, taking a moment to tauntingly flirt with Kidd at ringside.
Summer takes an opportunity to slap Natalya with the ref's back turned, and Layla continues to dominate the flow of the match. She applies her headscissors from over the top rope, but Natalya escapes the pressure, sending her rival crashing to the floor. Natalya builds momentum with a low dropkick and ducks a crossbody attempt as the crowd gets behind her strongly. She locks in the Sharpshooter which Layla can only withstand for so long before submitting. Natalya celebrates behind her devoted husband on the turnbuckle.
Impact Wrestling was replaced this week with a look back at matches where wrestlers ended up being placed in Turkey costumes because TNA. So, due to this there was no Knockout match or any other matches this week.
One divas match and another divas segment took place on Thursday's edition of NXT, the match featuring one of the newest recruits on the roster. Carmella has shown flashes of potential in her opening matches on the brand after being brought in by Enzo Amore and Colin Cassady. She certainly has their gift of the gab, but her promos have not exactly endeared her to the audience like the goofy Jersey boys have. Carmella participated in a repeat of her first match on NXT, when she took on 'Blue Pants' Leva Bates, and independent performer.
This isn't really much of a match though. Carmella knocks down Bates with a shoulder tackle as the crowd get behind 'Blue Pants'. This is followed by a pair of substandard dropkicks, into her yoga stretch headscissors submission for the victory. Matches like this aren't really proving anything about Carmella, as it was not only too easy but she didn't do enough to put herself over. It was just a waste of a few minutes, and she will hopefully be able to feature in another competitive match soon to see more of what she can do.
Later in the evening, Bayley approached the ring, looking to address the actions of Sasha Banks and Becky Lynch in recent weeks. Despite being warned by the absent Charlotte last episode not to go out there on her own against the two, the bubbly diva bravely called them out. Bayley stated that she has had to deal with bullies all her life, but she has been told to stand up to them, as they are nothing but cowards.
This brings out Banks and Lynch, who shove Bayley only to be met with a hard forearm. Lynch dropkicks the back of her leg, sending Bayley to the floor where she is preyed upon by the pair of hyenas until referees come out to protect her. Although it was short and the attack was pretty low key in viciousness, the acting of Banks and Lynch along with the sympathetic character of Bayley made this full of visceral emotion of hatred towards the bullies. Banks and Bayley will definitely make big impacts when they make their main roster bow with stories like this.
Ending the week on SmackDown, Nikki Bella competed in her first match as champion, battling the kooky Emma. With Brie Bella no longer mandated to accompany her sister to matches, she was still out there in support, confirming her definitive turn to the dark side. Emma was on the winning team in her Survivor Series debut, but has had little joy as of late in singles competition. Could she provide a shock to the new champ?
In a word, no. Nikki dominates the early going, using her strength to throw the Aussie about the ring, as she talks up her ability to an unappreciative audience. Emma eventually battles back with the Dil-Emma against the ropes, before slapping Nikki on her rather ample rear. This is followed up with a slap across the face, but as Emma charges in she is caught with an elbow, then a springboard kick from out of the corner. Nikki then lifts her into the Rack Attack for the victory, and celebrates with her title and sister.
The champion then takes the opportunity to cut a promo, stating that she is sick and tired of how AJ Lee broke barriers and worked hard to get to the top. Nikki states that she has worked harder to prove her doubters wrong, saying she is what a champion should look like, and that she will expose AJ for what she really is. This brings AJ charging out to the ring, taking down Brie with punches as Nikki escapes, and followed by Brie when she manages to escape. The unstable former champion stares them down as they escaped up the ramp.
So there you have it, the breakdown for the week in women's wrestling. What were some of your favorite and least favorite moments from these women? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!