I was due to write the review of the Beth vs Layla match at No Way Out last week, but due to other priorities, I had to leave it to Lee. It’s probably just as well that I’ve had a week to think about it, because for what it’s worth, I hated the match. Well, maybe “hated” is too strong a word, but I really didn’t like the comedy of Layla stealing Beth’s headband and dancing with it. The finish of Beth losing again also irritated me a bit, mostly because it’s patently clear that WWE have absolutely nothing in mind for Layla, and with Beth losing again, it securely slots her below Layla on the pecking order and kills another level of anticipation (whatever there is left of it anyway) for the Beth Phoenix vs Kharma feud that we’ve been waiting/hoping for ever since Kharma signed up with the company.
Let’s make it clear here – my major downer on the Divas division at the minute is not the usual “wrestlers vs models” debate (I’ve learned for the most part to turn off my brain and find a way to enjoy the Divas for what they are rather than what they aren’t)… no… my big problem is the fact that at the minute, the future of the Divas division is just deathly dull. (more…)
This year’s Royal Rumble was just about set in stone as far as matches were concerned. However, the powers that be must have figured that one more match was needed to fill time in between the World Heavyweight title match and the John Cena v Kane contest. Cue an impromptu Divas match – Beth Phoenix, Natalya and Nikki & Brie Bella taking on Alicia Fox (who, like Beth, has returned from exile), Eve Torres, Kelly Kelly & Tamina. No build up for it, but when does a women’s match in WWE have build up anymore?
For the record, Phoenix got the win for her team, delivering a Glam Slam to Kelly to get the victory.
Meanwhile, Kharma made her return to WWE as a surprise entrant in the Royal Rumble match, making Michael Cole eliminate himself, pulverising Dolph Ziggler, throwing out Hunico and then being eliminated by Ziggler while she wasn’t looking.
Lets see what was pepperoni, what was sausage and what was anchovies… (more…)
While it’s been a great year for independent wrestling, it has taken its toll on a number of the biggest stars. Serena Deeb is currently walking a razor’s edge as far as her career is concerned following a concussion that she suffered at SHIMMER in October, LuFisto is taking some time out to let her troublesome back heal and had also had heart surgery this year, while Madison Eagles has a racked up shoulder and a dodgy knee that is currently sporting a massive brace. And now, Mercedes Martinez is getting over her own concussion issues following the War Games match at Breaking Barriers 2 on November 19 – a match in which she suffered temporary paralysis after suffering a stinger.
Women Superstars Uncensored announced last Tuesday that their champion would not be defending her title against Jennifer Cruz on January 21 in Stirling, NJ, as had been originally planned, due to her not being allowed to fly. Instead, her next match will be against Jessicka Havok on March 3 at WSU’s 5th Anniversary Show in Deer Park, NY.
Speaking exclusively to Ringbelles, The Latina Sensation explained what happened and the health issues that followed, immediately and days afterward… (more…)
When Beth Phoenix and Natalya turned heel back in August, WWE Diva fans held their breath. They seemed hell bent on turning the division upside down, separating themselves from the “models” like Kelly Kelly, Eve Torres, Alicia Fox and others. They christened themselves the Divas of Doom, or, alternatively, Sisters of Salvation, claiming that they were out to “save” the Divas division from princesses and perky blondes.
The storyline has mostly gone downhill now, for several reasons. It took Beth three matches to defeat Kelly for the Divas title. Even when she won it, at the Hell in a Cell pay-per-view, it was only after Natalya interfered by hitting Kelly in the head with a microphone. Hardly a dominant win. Creative also didn’t go nearly far enough with the storyline – Beth and Natalya still refer to themselves as “Divas”, they still do photo shoots, and they have been very selective in who they choose to go after. So far it has only been the faces such as Kelly, Eve, Alicia, AJ and Kaitlyn. If they were after the models, shouldn’t they also target Brie and Nikki Bella, as well as Rosa Mendes? Tamina was never a model, so there is a logical reason why they wouldn’t go after her.
Also, at the start, Natalya was presented as an equally dominant partner. However, her singles wins have been sporadic, at best – any match that she won was when she was in a tag team match with Beth. Lately she has lost out to Alicia on RAW, SmackDown and at the house shows. This weakens the concept of the dominant team they were originally made out to be. Now it seems like they are another version of LayCool. (more…)
Anyone see Raw this week? I mean besides the awesome stuff with CM Punk? I mean, the Divas match in particular between Kelly Kelly and Melina, with a post-match beatdown by the Bella Twins on Kelly and Eve Torres? Anyone see how Melina joined in with the beatdown? No?
That’s because it didn’t happen. The two-time Divas Champion and three-time Women’s Champion was left in the shadows after being defeated in 100 seconds by Kelly, having only got in three moves, and two of those were kicks. It could be claimed that the match was short – so short that Melina was introduced in the ring and din’t even get to do her signature entrance with the paparazzi and the splits – because the show was overrunning. Some would say it’s a big push for Kelly, given that she is the Divas Champ right now, and that she has a title defence this weekend on the Money in the Bank pay-per-view against Brie Bella - and that’s all true. However, Kelly could have beaten any number of women on the Raw roster in what was effectively a squash match – Maryse would have been perfect for that role. It is telling that WWE chose to send out Melina – its former golden girl, the woman who was the figurehead of the division for years and the woman who has seemingly been in the Diva doghouse for all of 2011 – to lie down… (more…)
The Big News
Christina Crawford was eliminated from Tough Enough last night, putting an end to any prospect of a woman winning the show for the first time since 2002. She was cut by Steve Austin for not showing enough charisma during this week’s challenge, and had lost her confidence after suffering an ankle injury on last week’s show when her leg buckled from delivering a top rope axehandle.
It doesn’t seem to have made a difference to her prospects of ending up on WWE TV though, as she was filmed last week wrestling at Florida Championship Wrestling, where she had been training previously before getting out of her developmental deal to compete in Tough Enough. The indication that she has returned back to the situation she was in previously just shows that she had a fall-back option in case she was cut, in that she could return to Florida and pick up where she left off. It must annoy other female wrestlers who applied that this was possibly an “easier option” for Christina, rather than being her best chance at making it to WWE.
In fact, many women – Brittany Savage, Mercedes Martinez, She Nay Nay, Athena, Jessicka Havok, Roxie Cotton and the like – must be pretty disappointed how for the most part, none of the girls made any impression on the show in one way or another. None of them won a skills challenge, and between the five girls, they featured in the bottom three on a total of eight occasions in eight episodes. (more…)
The Big News
Some wrestlers who quit the business can’t stay away from the spotlight and return time and time again. Some – like Bob Backlund – think they still have one more run left in them. Some have to keep wrestling because they can’t afford to stop – Flair, I’m looking at you. And some look like they’re happy to be consigned to history, only to show up out of the blue and shock us all.
And that’s what Joanie Laurer’s done.
Well, I say Joanie Laurer, but as of 2007, that’s no longer her name – in fact, she’s legally changed her name to Chyna, which is why TNA has been able to use the name that she used when she was in the WWF as part of her return to the grap game after nine years away. Her last main stage matches were in New Japan in late 2002, though her last appearance on US wrestling TV was in May 2001 – exactly 10 years ago – when she was the WWF Women’s Champion. She unceremoniously left the promotion after being benched for a few months – while still the champ – because she and the WWF could not reach a deal in her contract negotiations. To take her off TV while still in possession of the title shows just how pissed off they were with her.
Over the last decade, most of the reports and appearances of Chyna have shown her spiralling out of control – she’s been hospitalised a few times due to medication overdoses, as well as appearing on rehab programmes and complete freakshow The Surreal Life.
Things took a positive twist earlier this year when it was reported that Chyna was looking to go to Japan and teach English as a foreign language. As someone who has a number of friends who have done the very same thing in South Korea, it sounded like a great plan for her to get a career and her life back on track. It seemed like she had put wrestling behind her.
Then TNA came calling. (more…)
There was precisely zero Diva action when it came to the initial portion of the WWE Draft on last night’s Raw. Eve Torres beat Layla in a complete stinker to earn Raw a pick, which led to Rey Mysterio to be shifted from SmackDown to the red brand, but that was all. As expected, today’s supplemental draft has seen some Divas switch sides.
See all the news after the jump: (more…)
NOTE: This is a commentary. The views expressed may or may not reflect those held by Ringbelles Admin.
With the upcoming returns of both Tough Enough next month and the Diva Search later this year, it leaves this writer wondering: if the pattern from previous contests holds true (in that, no matter who won either show, some of the runners-up made it into the WWE), will we see an influx of new female talent? If so, could some of the current Divas on the roster be in jeopardy of losing their jobs? Most likely and off the top of my head, four names came to mind. Mind you, this is all speculation, but there are some women whose jobs are secure for the most part and some are very much expendable. The following list is in no particular order. (more…)
A bumper week of TV in prospect here, kids. Not only do we have the return of Trish Stratus on Raw and Alissa Flash taking the Madison Rayne open challenge on Impact, we’ve got women’s matches on the secondary shows too (Superstars and Xplosion), so given that these shows actually feature longer matches, I had initially planned to deal with the “B” shows first, but believe it or not, my favourite match of the week was from the next level down, namely Florida Championship Wrestling, as AJ takes on her former NXT buddy Kaitlyn.
It’s all about the build-up this week on the TV digest, as both WWE & TNA actually put some effort into building up some future matches and programmes. In WWE, the build is towards this coming Monday on Raw, when Eve Torres will defend her Divas title against Natalya, while TNA are promoting their “Against All Odds” PPV this weekend, as Madison Rayne is set to defend her Knockouts Title against Mickie James in a “Last Knockout Standing” encounter.
TV match of the week this week goes to the challenger for the Divas Title, Natalya, who took on Alicia Fox on Superstars this week in a match that was a significant cut above the Melina vs Tamina mess from the previous week.
Welcome to our Television Digest of the week, where you can catch up with all of the goings on from TV during the last week. In this edition, we tick a lot of boxes… singles, tags, six women matches, mixed tag matches and even include couple of title matches. Excited? Well, it’s alright…
TNA narrowly grab “TV match of the week” honours this week with a six woman elimination match that was given some time. Sarita teams with Tara and the Knockouts Champion Madison Rayne to take on Mickie James and The Beautiful People.