On this edition, Naomi continues her momentum against Divas Champion Nikki Bella, amid the announcement of a Number One Contender's battle royal next week. Also, Sexy Star has to fight to save her mask in Lucha Underground, Summer Rae celebrates her first movie role, and the renewal of a heated rivalry takes place on Impact Wrestling - Kong vs Kim.
Naomi & Paige vs The Bella Twins
With the retirement of AJ Lee, a new challenger has risen from that disappointment to challenge for the Divas Championship. Naomi has always been considered one of the most athletic and entertaining women on the roster, and has received a couple of opportunities for the gold.
But now it appears as though she is in the midst of her biggest push towards the title, pinning Nikki Bella last week on RAW followed by a win over Natalya in front of the Bella Twins. This week, she teams again with Paige to battle the wicked sisters.
Paige and Brie Bella kickoff in the ring, showing immediate physicality by pulling the hair and slapping one another across the face. Paige gets the better with clotheslines, but a distraction by Nikki sees Brie knock the Brit to ringside, where the champ finishes the job with a lariat of her own.
The match pace slowed down from this point, and whilst the crowd got positively behind Paige, it became a succession of rest holds. Paige breaks free after knocking Nikki out of the turnbuckle, and makes the tag to a fresh Naomi.
This where the contest took a bit of a nosedive, as for all Naomi’s passion and vigor, these closing segments were littered with botches. It happens on occasion, and the crowd stayed invested, but few things went right for her.
A headscissors sent Nikki the wrong direction, and she fell flat on her backside after jumping from the second rope. Then in another Bella miscommunication, Brie dodged Paige’s kick that connected with Nikki instead, and this allowed Naomi to hit her headscissors driver that looked really badly timed and executed.
The flawed moments meant this was not a high quality match, but it was serviceable for the time it was afforded and the crowd continues to take an interest. Hopefully this was just an off night for Naomi. She has proven in the past to be worthy of a title run, as her look and exciting maneuvers mean that she could make an excellent Divas Champion.
At the very least, after next week’s battle royal to crown the next number one contender, Naomi can have a strong contest with Nikki Bella over the butterfly belt.
Summer Rae vs Emma
It’s already a big week for Summer Rae, as her movie The Marine 4: Moving Target alongside the Miz was released on DVD and digital download. Although the WWE Films connotation ensures it won’t get a great deal of critical success, it is still a big moment for Summer to celebrate.
But it was back to the graft on Main Event, facing Emma. Both these Divas will likely be participating in the battle royal on the upcoming RAW, but it would be a shocking turn of events for either to walk out victorious based on current form.
Summer is great at playing a heel that greatly overestimates her ability and exaggerates any hit she can get on her opponent. Dancing following a back elbow sees Emma fly off the handle and send the blonde dancer scrambling to ringside. The Aussie drags her back into the ring by her flowing locks, and applies the Dil-Emma in the corner.
However, Summer turned the tide with a kick from the corner, taking control of the flow of the match with her contorting submission holds. Emma tries to slap her cocky opponent away, but that just angers Summer as she beats down Emma, then regaining her composure in a funny segment.
Summer did a really good job of generating heat in this match by restricting Emma’s movement and ring skills, as the crowd got significantly behind the popular Aussie. They popped when she eventually broke free of Summer’s assault, and produced a low dropkick that nearly pulled off a victory.
Nevertheless, a Summer Crush to reverse an attempted slam earned the Marine star a decisive victory in a solid, extended match. Both ladies impressed me here, and I think Emma has proven a lot more popular than her low placement on the card represents.
Ivelisse, Son of Havoc & Angelico vs Drago, Aerostar & Fenix
Lucha Underground might only have two official female wrestlers on their roster, but they played a prominent part of the most recent edition of the rising brand. In a match as part of the tournament to crown the first Trios Champions, the less than amicable team of Ivelisse, Son of Havoc and Angelico were forced to compete as a trio.
Their contest against Drago, Aerostar and Fenix was a mixture of excellent lucha-style wrestling and animosity between partners. The only neutral party was Fenix, who seemed reluctant anytime he got in the ring with Ivelisse to hurt her. But she was more than ready to lay a beating on anyone in her path, including her own partners.
Ivelisse’s performance was very good as usual, despite the crowd getting most firmly behind the man who dumped her a couple of weeks prior, Son of Havoc. She did not shy away from flying to the outside with a top rope senton onto the other participants.
Nonetheless, she showed her true colors towards the conclusion, as she denied Son of Havoc a hot tag, leaving her former boyfriend hung out to dry. Fortunately miscommunication was also taking place between the feuding Drago and Aerostar, and this was all the opening Havoc needed to hit the Shooting Star Press, his warring team advancing forwards.
Lucha Underground continues to produce incredibly entertaining contests such as this, and all six of these competitors will no doubt be proud of the spectacle they engineered here. But can Ivelisse now be trusted going forward by her team in the Trios tournament?
Sexy Star vs Superfly (Luchas de Apuestas)
Sexy Star and Superfly were forced to compete against each other, despite being friends and Sexy rescuing her opponent from an attack by Pentagon Jr last week. However, the boss Dario Cueto wanted to ensure both athletes showed no mercy in this match. Therefore, despite no prior feud or animosity, the loser of the match would be forced to shed their mask.
This would be one of the most devastating moments of any masked luchadores’ career, but Cueto did not show any compassion in placing Sexy and Superfly in this difficult scenario. With their prized identities on the line, the bout began with some quick mat wrestling from the technically astute athletes.
Yet, the severity of the added stipulation became apparent when Superfly kicked Sexy straight in the face. This rocked Sexy, but not enough to stop her fighting back with a facebuster following a Matrix like duck of a clothesline.
Sexy demonstrated throughout this match why she is one of the most physical and determined women in wrestling, in both the punishment she sustained and the maneuvers she applied. After a flying hurricanrana helps send Superfly to the outside, Sexy threw caution to the wind with a crossbody from the top rope onto him.
With the audience firmly behind Sexy Star, she continues to apply a beating onto Superfly with strikes and kicks, before both beginning trading high impact moves. A tornado DDT from Sexy is responded to by a powerbomb by Superfly.
The critical moment came from a mistake in the end, as Supefly missed with his moonsault attempt, and Sexy capitalized with a la casita pin attempt to triumph. As per the stipulation, Sexy, albeit with a heavy heart, removed Superfly’s mask, yet both displayed no ill-feeling towards the outcome of the grueling match.
Their moment of camaraderie was short-lived, as Pentagon Jr emerged from the outside, knocking Sexy to the outside. Then, with her looking into the ring with desperation on her face, Pentagon snapped the arm of the unmasked Superfly. No doubt Sexy will seek out revenge for this heinous act, but could easily be the recipient of the same agonizing fate.
Natalya vs Alicia Fox
In a prelude to the Divas battle royal match on the upcoming RAW these ladies cajoled out of Kane, Natalya and Alicia Fox would fight in singles action. Both former champions, they would be desperate to build momentum heading towards crowning a new number one contender. But there would be a wildcard in this bout, as Cameron was the special guest referee.
The match began as little more than a catfight brawl between two Divas that are more known for their impressive wrestling acumen. Eventually, some more technical aspects came into the fray, following a final big boot to the face by Fox with Natalya prone in the corner.
Fox went through her normal routine of a northern lights suplex, but in a welcome change of pace, Natalya countered the tilt-the-world backbreaker into a lateral press pin. Fox was consistently in control of the Canadian throughout, reveling in her domination of the second-generation Diva.
Yet it was Natalya who would earn the victory in the end, countering an attempted sunset flip by Fox and wrapping her opponent’s long legs into the Sharpshooter. It did not take long for her to submit to Natalya, ending a decent but overall uninspiring contest.
However, it would only be the referee Cameron left standing at the conclusion, as after hoisting Natalya’s hand in victory, she dropped the winner with a DDT. Then, Alicia Fox endured the additional humiliation following her defeat by suffering the same fate.
Awesome Kong vs Gail Kim
The renewal of a rivalry that captivated the Knockouts Division from 2007 to 2008 occurred on Impact Wrestling, as Awesome Kong and Gail Kim met one on one. The pair battled over the Knockouts Championship multiple times in its infancy before Kim made an ill-fated switch to WWE. And whilst the title is currently in possession of Taryn Terrell, a victory here would push either of them close to contention.
The pair were quickly throwing punches from the outset, and expectedly Kong’s size and power advantage handed her the initial advantage. Kim would not go away quietly, attempting every trick and evasive maneuver to stop Kong’s assault and attempt to take her down. But that fight was squashed out when the giant sat down onto her with Kim attempting a sunset flip.
Both Knockouts know the other extremely well which led to some strong chemistry during the match. Kong was dominant in trying to squeeze the life out of Kim, with the smaller rival taking any chance she could to attempt some measure of damage. The fans were firmly behind the underdog, but Kim’s attempts were proving futile throughout the contest.
Kong exposed one of the steel turnbuckles, but Kim at ringside finally slowed the monster with a running dropkick against the steel barrier. This was the opening she needed, taking Kong down with a twisting crossbody, and then the giant was the victim of her own doing, charging into the steel turnbuckle which almost led to her being rolled-up into defeat.
Kim came as close as anyone has come to stopping the indomitable run of Kong, but not even Eat De-Feet could keep her down for a three count. Instead, Kong would reverse a headscissors submission with her immense power, dropping her rival with a sat-out powerbomb for the victory.
It is unsurprising that Kong’s best match since her return to TNA would be against Kim, and the crowd was definitely into the contest they produced. Kong will no doubt be back pushing Terrell for the title soon, and Kim will have to wait until next time to potentially topple to Amazon.
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!