Women's Wrestling Weekly Recap & Review #263 | Smark Out Moment

Women's Wrestling Weekly Recap & Review #263

Posted by Dallas Allsopp Monday, January 27, 2020
Welcome to another edition of WOMEN'S WRESTLING WEEKLY—a rundown of the events which have transpired in the world of women's professional wrestling over the past several days not just with the Superstars on WWE programming, but with Impact Wrestling's Knockouts, ROH's Women of Honor, and even a glimpse at the women on the independent circuit.

logo for Divas Debrief Women Wrestlers weekly rundown

WWE Monday Night Raw

Becky Lynch vs Kairi Sane

This was the perfect match for Becky Lynch to secure the advantage heading into her match with Asuka at the Royal Rumble, as a victory over one half of the Women's Tag Team Champions would be a huge boost to her confidence. As expected, Asuka was ringside to ensure that Lynch needed to keep her wits about her.

Kairi Sane was motivated to soften Lynch up for her tag team partner, with some of the strikes landed on Lynch looking particular stiff. Lynch was more than happy to return the favour however, and followed this up by managing to maintain control of the match. Lynch was able to avoid a distraction attempt from Asuka, before locking Sane in the Disarm Her. Sane tried in vain to escape the hold, but ultimately had to tap out.

Lynch didn't have long to celebrate as Asuka attacked her, hitting a Head Kick to leave the Raw Women's Champion prone in the middle of the ring. This was a good match, but Asuka looked dominant as a result of the post match beatdown.

Winner: Becky Lynch
Rating: 3/5

WWE SmackDown

There were no official women's matches this week as Nikki Cross and Alexa Bliss vs Fire & Desire was interrupted by Bayley and Lacey Evans, with chaos predictably ensuing.


Toni Storm vs Io Shirai

This match looked very interesting on paper, however both wrestlers failed to live up to the hype. Toni Storm was competing on the back of losing her opportunity at the NXT UK Women's Championship at NXT UK TakeOver: Blackpool II, which meant she brought a higher level of fire to the match than what we are used to.

In what was a fairly back and forth contest, Bianca Belair interfered at the end of the match by attacking Storm, which drew the frustrating DQ. As Belair put the boots to Storm, Rhea Ripley came out to brawl with the number 1 contender to her NXT Women's Championship, with Storm and Shirai both getting involved. This resulted in Storm standing tall, as she cheekily posed with the title to send a message to everyone in the women's division.

This match felt like an excuse to have a brawl, which is a shame as Shirai and Storm are capable of putting on a 5 star match. The post match brawl was fun, however I feel the entire segment could have been achieved through a promo battle instead.

Winner: Toni Storm (via DQ)
Rating: 2.5/5

Shotzi Blackheart vs Shayna Baszler

This match was the result of Shotzi Blackheart's shrewd elimination of Shayna Baszler during last week's battle royal match, which meant Baszler immediately took control of the contest to gain some revenge over Blackheart. Baszler's offense was crisp, whilst Blackheart's looked rough and imperfect, which is understandable considering Baszler is arguably the best women's wrestler in NXT.

Blackheart attempted to steal the victory by hitting a really rough looking Sliced Bread #2, only to miss a follow up Senton. This allowed Baszler to lock in her dangerous Kirifuda Clutch, with Blackheart submitting as a mere formality. This match was entertaining, but it only really served to show how dominant Baszler is, whilst inadvertently showcasing how rough around the edges Blackheart is.

Winner: Shayna Baszler
Rating: 2.5/5

AEW Dynamite

Britt Baker vs Priscilla Kelly

Britt Baker has embraced her heel side, which is vital for her standing within AEW as her cookie cutter face character had not been good effective enough to win the AEW Women's Championship. This meant she would need to hit the ground running on Dynamite, which is exactly what she did here against Priscilla Kelly.

Baker had the lion's share of the offense in this match, but Kelly posed a clear threat throughout. Baker played up to her heelish side by using the ropes as a weapon, which was an impressive visual. Baker was able to seal the victory by hitting a Superkick, before transitioning to her patented Lockjaw to secure the submission victory.

Whilst not on the same level as some of her previous matches, this was an important step in the right direction for Baker. It was entertaining, whilst hinting at how heelish she could potentially become. Kelly didn't look weak, which is important as AEW needs to build their women's division up to match the high level of performances of NXT's women's division.

Winner: Britt Baker
Rating: 2.5/5

Impact Wrestling

Havok vs Rosemary

This was yet another sluggish Havok match, which is really disheartening to say in 2020. Despite Rosemary trying her best, she was unable to drag an interesting performance out of Havok, which resulted in a boring and frankly insipid match. Nothing Havok does is interesting, however James Mitchell keeps her from complete irrelevance.

After what felt like an eternity, James Mitchell was misted by Rosemary, only for Havok to take advantage and hit a Tombstone for the pinfall victory. This match was not good at all, and Impact Wrestling should seriously consider how they book the Knockout's division, as fans deserve much better.

Winner: Havok
Rating: 1.5/5

Main Event

Sarah Logan vs Deonna Purrazzo

Surprisingly, this match was one of the best offerings from Main Event in a long time, with Sarah Logan and Deonna Purrazzo putting on a good match. I say this because the standard women's Main Event match is usually boring and uninspired, however this trend was bucked in style by both wrestlers.

Logan dominated the majority of the match, with Purrazzo looking strong as she was able to counter a number of Logan's stronger moves. Logan managed to take out Purrazzo with the ropes, before following this up with a Running Knee Strike for the pinfall victory. This was a good match that would not have been out of place on Raw.

Winner: Sarah Logan
Rating: 2.5/5

WWE Worlds Collide

Kay Lee Ray vs Mia Yim

This was the pre-show match for Worlds Collide, which only served to inspire both wrestlers to put on a good performance. Kay Lee Ray has been a breath of fresh air as the conniving NXT UK Women's Champion, whilst Mia Yim can put on an impressive performance when motivated.

Thankfully for fans, Yim was motivated here as she pushed Ray all the way in this contest. Both wrestlers were able to counter each other's signature moves, which helped engage the crowd. Ray losing was a distinct possibility, especially when Yim countered the Gory Bomb into a Powerbomb of her own. However, Ray was able to steal the victory by cradling Yim and using the ropes for leverage to win by pinfall.

Despite not being on the main card, both wrestlers put on a great performance. It was refreshing to see Yim motivated, whilst Ray continues to shine. This match is definitely one to check out for fans of NXT UK.

Winner: Kay Lee Ray
Rating: 3.5/5

Rhea Ripley vs Toni Storm

This match was for the NXT Women's Championship, however Rhea Ripley's fledgling reign never once seemed to be at threat. This is not to say that Toni Storm didn't pose a threat, but rather the way in which this match was presented left nothing to the imagination.

Ripley did not dominate the match however, with Storm able to show why she is considered one of the best wrestlers in NXT. This was a physical match, with both wrestlers hitting each other with all they had. Storm attempted to settle the match with a Frog Splash, however Ripley was able to avoid this and follow up with a Riptide for the pinfall victory.

The quality of the match was good, however the lack of drama really hurt it. Ripley is a convincing champion, which meant it would take a herculean effort to beat her. Hopefully Storm coming up short multiple times means she is due a heel turn, as it may spice up her character.

Winner: Rhea Ripley
Rating: 3/5

WWE Royal Rumble

Bayley vs Lacey Evans

Despite being pushed hard during this feud, Lacey Evans struggled to overcome Bayley in what was a poor match. Considering how often these 2 have come to blows recently, the match lacked any real heat.

Admittedly, Evans held her own against Bayley, but this contest felt flat and uninteresting. Evans attempted flashy moves, but she was arguably too ambitious as she went for a Moonsault, only for Bayley to get her knees up to counter it. Bayley followed this up with a cradle for the pinfall victory, retaining her SmackDown Women’s Championship in the process.

Bayley was never in danger of losing, which hurt the interest in this match. Evans has improved, but she is nowhere near Bayley’s level. This was simply disappointing.

Winner: Bayley
Rating: 2/5

Becky Lynch vs Asuka

Becky Lynch was determined to finally vanquish Asuka, who had been a suffocating presence for the Raw Women’s Champion. Asuka had been on a hot streak, with her trusty green mist and tag team partner Kairi Sane giving her an advantage over The Man.

Lynch and Asuka were both able to take control of extended sections of the match, with each wrestler teasing their favoured submission moves. Lynch was visibly frustrated as she seemed to be losing her grip on the match, only for Asuka to slip up and miss with her green mist, allowing Lynch to lock in the Disarm Her for the submission victory.

This was simply the best singles match featured on the pay-per-view. Asuka played up to her heel role perfectly, whilst Lynch clearly summoned all of her strength to overcome a perennial thorn in her side. Asuka remains strongly booked, but The Man clearly is the strongest wrestler in Raw’s women’s division.

Winner: Becky Lynch
Rating: 4/5

Women's Royal Rumble

This was perhaps the best booked women’s Royal Rumble match yet, mainly due to the fact multiple wrestlers were booked really well, whilst also retaining the fun factor from previous matches. As the women’s division is less populated than the men's, it was clear we would be expecting a number of surprises, and WWE didn’t disappoint. Mighty Molly and Kelly Kelly were a blast from the past, whilst Beth Phoenix proved she is stronger than ever as she overcame her head wound to put in an impressive performance.

The undoubted stars of this match were Bianca Belair and Shayna Baszler. Belair received the biggest push of her career as she eliminated 7 wrestlers, which is a new women’s record. She looked stronger than most of the established stars, which underlined the strength of NXT’s women’s division. Baszler came close to winning, but in finishing as the runner up to Charlotte Flair, she has a fair claim to a shot at the Women’s Championship that Flair passes up.

Flair winning made sense as she is the cornerstone of WWE’s women’s division, but unfortunately the reception to her victory was lacking. She is a natural heel, and Flair winning feels like WWE has gone back to the well once again. Baszler perhaps should have won, but at least losing to Flair keeps her credibility intact.

This was the best women’s Royal Rumble yet, and one that served it’s purpose well. Well done to everyone involved.

Winner: Charlotte Flair
Rating: 4/5

Becky Lynch vs Asuka

This was an incredible match, with Becky Lynch finally defeating the thorn in her side that is Asuka. This was a frenetic and exciting match, with Lynch looking stronger than ever. This match was everything I hoped it would be.

Bianca Belair

Bianca Belair was so imposing and dominant in the women's Royal Rumble match, that she instantly becomes a made woman. She has a new level of credibility, which should allow her to rival Rhea Ripley in the quest for sheer dominance over the rest of NXT's women's division. Belair has finally shaken off a poor 2019 to make a name for herself in 2020 in the best possible way.

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!

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Dallas Allsopp is a writer with two main interests, Pokemon and wrestling. He has been writing for a few years for his own personal blogs and is now taking his passion for wrestling and putting it into his writing. You can follow him on Facebook.


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