Controversial ending of title change in WWE Raw

For the first time in more than three months, WWE has a women’s team champion. August was home to the WWE Women’s Tag Title Championship, an arc-shaped series of matches to determine a new pair of title holders after Sasha Banks and Naomi were stripped of the championship in May. Many joked that the tournament was a curse from the start, as NXT representatives Nikita Lyons and Zoe Stark were deemed “medically unavailable” to compete. They will be replaced by Gigi Dolan and Jesse Jane who defeated Natalya and Sonya Deville in the first round, but were also forced out of the tournament due to injuries.

Regardless of early round problems, the championship was crowned last night Monday Night Raw, the Raw team of IYO SKY and Dakota Kai put up against Raquel Rodriguez and Aliyah of SmackDown. The two teams were fairly even throughout the competition, but the scales tilted in favor of Kai and SKY due to Bayley’s help. Bayley’s outside interference caught the attention of the women’s locker room, as Raw Women’s champion Bianca Belair, Alexa Bliss and Asuka hit the ringside to chase Bayley away from the squared circle. SKY and Kai were distracted during this outside melee and failed to notice a blind mark from Rodriguez to Aliyah, allowing Aliyah to slip past Kai in a 1-2-3 match.

Even though Kai’s shoulders flush against the mat for the full three count, this fixation shouldn’t count at all. As many have pointed out, SKY was never tagged in Kai before the end of the match, which means that SKY was in fact the legal woman. Kai was aware of this as well, as broadcast footage caught her speaking, “I wasn’t legal.”

The commentary appears to have been aware of this as well, as “Wait but…Dakota…” can be heard before interviewer Corey Graves to focus on awarding praise to the new champions. It remains to be seen if this was a deliberately intended ending to enhance the story or if the change of title did not go the way it was planned.

WWE recently used controversial finishers in multiple matches, such as Usos’ victory over Street Profits at WWE Money in the Bank Although Montez Ford’s shoulder was elevated during the pin. This was immediately worked into the story as it gave earnings a claim for another title shot, which fell weeks later in WWE SummerSlam. On this show, Liv Morgan pinned Ronda Rousey to retain her SmackDown women’s title, but submitted to the middle of the Rousey bar.

Unintended changes to the address have occurred many times before, too. AJ Styles lost his USA title to Kevin Owens at WWE Battleground 2017 after forgetting the expulsion of the cradle pin.

At the moment, both SKY and Kai . are watching WWE Clash at the Castle As they team up with Bayley to take on Blair, Bliss, and Asuka in the Six Women’s Movement.


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