Hello Diva fans and welcome to this week’s SmackDown Redux! This week on the blue brand, Rosa Mendes takes a break from her Salsa dancing ways to step into the square against the one and only Natalya. Can Rosa shimmy her way to a victory, or will Natalya come out on top? Check out the match below:
Out first is Natalya, flanked by her ragtag stable of misfits. Rosa is out next with Epico and Primo in tow. As Rosa gets her eagle on in the ring, the Divas’ male counterparts take their places at the commentary booth and our match for the evening begins.
The Divas lock up, and Natalya quickly gets the upperhand with a headlock takedown. Rosa manages to reverse the hold into a headscissors, buddy Nattie kicks out and gets back to her feet via a flashy neckspring. Nattie tries to get the jump on Rosa with a kick to the midsection, but Rosa grabs her foot. Not to be outdone, Natalya rolls through, driving Rosa’s face directly into the canvas… Ouch…
Natalya quickly goes back to the offensive, locking in a leg submission, but Rosa counters with a headlock submission of her own. Natalya fights her way out by whipping her opponent across the ring and finds herself on the receiving and of a kick from Rosa Mendes. Rosa slams Natalya to the mat by the hair and goes for the pin, but only gets a nearfall.
Not deterred in the least, Rosa slaps on a straitjacket/surfboard submission, looking to wear her opponent down. Unfortunately for Rosa, Natalya fights out and levels her with a discus clothesline for a two count. Looking to finish this match off, Natalya lifts Rosa over her shoulder, but Rosa has the presence of mind to convert into a sunset flip. Nattie uses the momentum to her advantage, rolls to her feet and goes for the Sharpshooter.
Rosa sees the end is near and just barely manages to wiggle her way to the ropes, forcing Natalya to break the hold. But before she gets a chance to, Rosa nails her with a kick to the gut. Rosa follows up with a Thesz Press and starts smashing Nattie’s head into the canvas.
At this point, I’m guessing Rosa thought she had this match won. I mean, why else would she take the time out for an impromptu Cha-Cha? While Rosa is celebrating the concept of winning her first singles match in the WWE career, Hornswoggle jumps on the commentary table and does a little jig on his own, distracting Osa Mendes. With her head out of the game, Nattie sneaks up behind her with a school boy into the Sharpshooter to pick up the submission victory.
Thoughts: Let’s be honest, when we all found out Rosa would be in action on Smackdown, did we think it was going to be a good match? I know I sure didn’t. Fortunately, I had to eat my words. With the exception of one major botch, I thought Natalya and Rosa did pretty well. Was it a five star mat classic? Not in the least, but it wasn’t a train wreck like I thought it would be. For that I’m grateful.
Also, it’s nice to see some Divas outside of the title picture get some shine for once. WWE has a very linear mindset when it comes to the Divas and their storylines, so this was a nice little surprise. I’m sure after the Royal Rumble we’ll get some progression in the budding feud between Kaitlyn and Tamina, but this will hold me over until then.