Raw Redux (January 24th, 2011): Melina Bent in Half, Bella Twins Bent Out of Shape

After a confusing edition of Raw last week, WWE had a lot of work to do to get everyone on the same page again. Luckily for us, WWE managed to work almost every Diva (Sorry Eve) into the show and it worked out really well. First up, Melina cashes in her title shot, squaring off with Natalya for the Divas Championship. Check out the match below:

Out first is the challenger, Melina, minus red carpet and paparazzi. Next, Natalya makes her way to the ring, championship belt in tow. The official presents the belt to the audience, signals for the bell and our match is underway. The lovely ladies lock up and Melina gets the upper hand, forcing Natalya to the ropes. The referee breaks them up, but Melina tackles Nattie, sending her flying out of the ring. Melina picks Nattie up off the floor, slaps her across the face (Just one of many slaps to come tonight) and tosses her back in the ring.

Still in control, Melina slams Natalya’s face into the mat a few time, before leveling her with a vicious curb stomp for a one count. Frustrated, Melina slaps on a unique legscissors submission, working over the arms and back of the champion. After a long struggle, Natalya fights to her feet and slams Melina into the turnbuckle to free herself. Natalya wails on Melina with a few forearms, prompting the referee to pull her off of the challenger. Natalya charges a second time, but gets caught by a heel kick from Melina.

Melina tries to get back in the game, but Nattie takes her over with a scary looking hip toss, followed by a hair biel. Natalya goes for her discus clothesline, but Melina has her scouted and blasts her with a blow to the head. Taking advantage of the stunned champion, Melina goes to work stomping on Nattie’s mid-section. Melina tries for a split leg drop, but she’s caught by Natalya, who quickly slaps on the Sharpshooter. And here’s where things get crazy…

We all know Melina is flexible and all, but this Sharpshooter must have stretched her to her limit (literally). Nattie leans all the way into the submission, putting her shoulders flat on the mat and folding poor Melina in half. Melina has no choice but to tap out and Natalya retains the Divas title.

Natalya celebrates her win, but the party is cut short by Smackdown Divas, Lay-Cool, who are looking great tonight. They get on the mic, and basically tell everyone they will be invoking their rematch clause at the Royal Rumble, while throwing in a few fat jokes at Nattie’s expense. Later, we would find out that this will be a Handicap match.

While I haven’t been the biggest fan of Melina’s heel turn, I loved her tonight. She showed a lot of the aggression heel Melina was known for in her heyday. I also think this is the best she’s looked in the ring in a long time. That said, it’s all too little, too late. We should have seen this Melina weeks ago when she first turned heel. Now Lay-Cool has swooped in to take a crack at the title and Melina is left out in the cold.

Speaking of Lay-Cool, I was really hoping to have a break from them in the title picture. Let’s face it, they ran the division for the better part of 2010. That said, Lay-Cool have been the most consistent Divas in WWE for a while now. Love them or hate them, you can’t deny that. While I’m not thrilled at the possibility of another Lay-Cool reign, I could see why the writers would go that route.

Moving on, we got another match involving the Divas and a doozy of a backstage segment to go with it. Watch below as Daniel Bryan teams up with The Bella Twins to face Ted DiBiase, Maryse and Alicia Fox:

We come from commercial to find Daniel Bryan and The Bellas already in the ring. Out next is the team of Maryse, Alicia and DiBiase. Both Maryse and Alicia are sporting new gear and they look fantastic. I must say, Alicia’s new Rihanna-esque weave has worn on me. I approve.

Bryan and DiBiase start things off, but that’s not why you’re reading this, is it? After a stalemate between Daniel and Ted, Maryse tags her herself in, forcing Nikki Bella to come into the match. Nikki lays in a boot to Maryse’s mid-section, whips her into the corner and takes her over with a snapmare. Nikki take Maryse out with a clothesline, but gets distracted when she sees Brie giving Daniel some “special attention”. Maryse takes advantages of the distraction and rolls Nikki up to pick up the win for her team. Ted DiBiase take notes.

Not much to say on the match, so I’ll skip to the good stuff!:

After the match, we find The Bellas Twins arguing backstage over the match and who Daniel want to console. The charge into his dressing room, only to find him making out with… Gail Kim?! *cue shocked gasps* When the Bellas ask him what’s going on, Daniel introduces Gail as his girlfriend of six months. So THAT’S what she’s been doing for the last six months! It all makes sense now!

The Bellas go on to reveal the fact that they don’t know the difference between a ‘virgin’ and a ‘vegan’. Gail Kim gets involved telling the twins Daniel has only been seeing them because he felt sorry for them, because they have nothing to do with no guest hosts around. OH SNAP! The Bellas comeback by calling Gail an afterthought, asking when’s the last time she’s been TV. OH SNAP 2x! Not willing to take any crap from The Bellas, Gail hauls off and slaps the holy hell out of Brie, starting a brawl. Daniel sees his girl getting jumped and tries to help, but gets bitch-slapped by Brie for his trouble. The catfight is broken up by the referees (Where’d they come from?) and the segment ends with Daniel Bryan holding a livid Gail Kim.

Wow. After months and months of relative obscurity, what a way for Gail to get into the limelight. The best part of the segment was the fact that everything Gail and The Bellas said was true. I mean, what Diva fan hasn’t made a comment about The Bella Twins and the guest host or complained about Gail not being on TV. I don’t know where this Daniel Bryan/Gail/Bella storyline is going, but WWE definitely livened things up tonight and I can’t wait to see what happens next.

All in all, I enjoyed Raw this week. We got an enjoyable title match, a match for the Royal Rumble and an excelllent backstage segment. Believe it or not, I’m actually for forward to next week’s Raw for a change.

SmackDown Reviewer - Read Profile
  • JillianHallTNA

    Gail will lose all those 2 matches with Brie and Nikki.They will switch and get a pin like they always do -.-”
    If Natalya do that on Melina or Layla she can’t kill them because they are flexible but if she do that on like Michelle,Maryse,Kelly,Bella’s…..She will defiantly kill them ;)

  • http://twitter.com/#!/jayd211 Jayd211

    i would love for gail to dominate the bellas and for heel bellas to bring in kong to handle her hell they can even throw zack ryder in the mix to equalize DB

    i kno im just kidding myself that but it would be awesome

  • http://goth-goddess.org Kerry

    No sly insults about the Daniel Bryan/Gail Kim “romance” angle? Interesting. Their acting was no better than Kelly Kelly and Drews but I suppose that gets overlooked when it’s everyones favorite afterthought Gail Kim involved right? It must be one rule for one diva, one rule for the next these days…

  • wl75

    So if the Bellas think Daniel two-timed them, does that make him a four-timer?

    And Melina must be half-plastic or something- that bend in the Sharpshooter was insane! (and note Nattie kept her shoulders off the mat so she wouldn’t be counted as pinned). Don’t like the LC stuff, but if it goes like a lot of people think it goes this weekend, it could be very interesting…

    and love that Maryse got a win- moves forward the DiBiase losing streak storyline (wonder if she’ll throw it in his face on NXT tonight)…

  • A.E

    gotta agree with you on that part i see gail jobbed to the bella’s hopefully i am wrong.

    gotta ask a question who is the fave and who is the heel gail/the bellas

    i am still pissed that laycool got another title shot are you kidding me other divas like gail or melina are far more deserving .plus their gimmick became old they need something new.

    ahh great more fat jokes i hate what that company represent be a stick figure or be the subject of a fat jokes it absolutely despicable.i know it’s sports entrainment you can mock your opponent in many way put physical appearance should be off limit weather it’s vickie,or natalya .

    though i am glad that natalya didn’t bother her and responded to michael cole little comment
    such a classy lady.

  • A.E

    i have enjoyed melina and nattie match seriusly their feud was build badly and it could have been better.i feel bad for melina that she got overlooked .

  • Mr. AJ Lee

    Wow that Gail and the Bellas segment was amazing. Hey was Tamina on the show or was she left of to like Eve? The match was pretty good. When I first heard about it I thought it was gunna b some squash match. But it wasn’t and I’m very happy

  • http://Youtube.com/xXxCandiiDiivaxXx AmaziinqxDiiva

    After watching that sharpshooter done to Melina my back literally went stiff

    Damn i have to give props to Melina for selling that damn good. to damn flexible

    Laycool vs Natalya Again!! *Sigh*

    That backstage segment had me crying for tears

    Gail FTW!!! Heel Bellas FTW!!!

  • 04bia

    the match was pretty good, it was too short for a championship match, they could have easily had a 7-8 minute match but its wwe! melina did good, but honestly im not feeling her as heel, her heel turn is garbage. the fans still cheer for her its like they dont even know shes heel! wwe have put no effort in developing her character as heel and shes failed.

    anyway about laycool, im not too bothered im not angry, laycool are the most over heels in wwe and have been consistent divas for a year. they’re can work the crowd and back it up in the ring and the mic so they wont be boring champs. laycool were entitled to a rematch months ago BUT they happened to invoke it now so whats the problem?

    tbh honestly i think this is the way to get the title on beth, i think wwe wants laycool to win so then later beth and beat them for it. also i feel this is also leading to the debut of kong at RR

  • Paparazzi8o8

    wow., Ok Dnt Get Me Wrong I Love Me Some Lay-Cool……But Im Kinda Getting Tired Of Them Being In The Title Picture I Mean I Was So Excited Too See Melina As A Heel & Going For The Divas Title. Smh Well That Was A Waste Kinda.

    Hmm Since There Making Maryse A Winner Again Maybe Lay-Cool Will Loose At The Royal Rumble & She Culd Be The Next Divas Champ Who Knows. Btw Her Hair Was Looking Really Good Monday. Lol

    &The Whole Bellas & Gail Thing I Like It Bout Time We Seen Some Love Triangles On Raw Again.
    Oh And Did You See The Way Brie…Or Nikki Tossed Gail Into The Corner LMAO.

  • http://twitter.com/RangerDeon RangerDeon

    Did he really call Natalya “hefty”??
    …..at least I got to see MY hairflip!!! :):):)

  • http://myspace.com/bigdogpimp20 Kantrell

    lmao @Paparazzi8o8 Yea brie tossed tha hell outta Gail =O … but i think this is bella twins heel turn.. cause they were acting more heelish than Gail Kim IMO

  • A.E

    @RangerDeon yes he did and natalya responded on twitter.

    seem to me nattie become wwe victim of fat jokes some idiot here on diva dirt just call her fatalia.

  • http://twitter.com/TeddyBearTastic Steven

    Kerry: Maybe you haven’t realized yet, but the SD and Raw Reduxes are written by two different people with two different opinions for the most part. But since you seem you want my opinions on the acting in WWE, here it is:

    I think 95% of the the acting in WWE is crap. With the exception of a handful of Superstars and Divas, none of the WWE roster offers much in the acting department, That said, the Gail/Bella/Bryan honestly segment entertained me, which is something I can’t say for the Kelly/Trent/Drew storyline. When the K2 storyline delivers something I find entertaining, I’ll say so. Oh wait, no I won’t. Because I don’t write the reduxes on Smackdown.

  • Dale

    It was a decent enough match, but it wasn’t long enough for me to call it a good title match. If it had been a few minutes longer then I could have classed it as a good title match. The ending spot was nice and unique.

    With LayCool coming out at the end and announcing they’re once again #1 contenders (yay -.-) I think it’s fair to say that unless there’s some spectacular turn of events, Melina’s heel run was a complete and utter failure.

    I loved The Bellas segment btw, although shame on Daniel Bryan for choosing Gail over either of the twins.


    Sharpshooter looked siiiiick…Oh and where the hell was Eve!?!?!?

  • http://www.pcwrestling.com/forums/ Alexa Hall

    The way that Nikki slammed Gail into the wall made that backstage segment complete <3
    That is possibly my favourite backstage angle since Maryse smacked Eve over the head with the title!

  • Rhawk

    I’ve watched the Bryan/Gail/Bellas segment so many times now, and I still can’t help but lol when Bella 1 throws Gail into the wall, I mean screw the bitch slap, that toss says it all!

    But summing up in fast words cause I won’t wanna go on and on… Nattie’s Sharpshotter was beyond sick, Melina may need some physiotherapy after that. Lay-Cool in the title picture, again… sigh. Here’s hopefully where Amazing Kong makes her WWE debut, when Nattie wins the title, but has Kong attack her after the mtch maybe? Bryan/Gail/Bella promo stole the Divas portion of the night, Gail on TV, TALKING I might add, is always a good thing. MORE PLZ! >=-P

  • chrisP

    “anyway about laycool, im not too bothered im not angry, laycool are the most over heels in wwe and have been consistent divas for a year. ”

    If Laycool are to be considered over heels in terms of reactions (not a push but reactions) I don’t see why Maryse, Melina, or Alicia Fox shouldn’t be considered over, too. The crowds aren’t any less into their matches than they are Laycool’s. The difference in how much effort WWE puts into them are greatly different, but in terms of getting heat, they are all at pretty much at the same, rather low level.

    Really, in terms of female heels getting heat right now. it’s VIckie Guerrero and then everyone else is tied in very distant second place.

  • http://www.youtube.com/RingVixens Teri

    Oh my god… Gail was the last diva i’d imagine being a part of this storyline (or A storyline for that matter). I don’t think I can recall the last time I was genuinely shocked/surprised about a storyline development surrounding the divas. This is so freaking awesome.

    Oh, and great matchup between Natalya and Melina.


  • LaceyVonErichFan


    Must everytime you post something you have to defend Kelly. She gets insulted by the fans all the time and that’s not going to change. Obviously you mark out for Kelly a lot. But every single post of yours is something slick and defensive of Kelly, hon get over yourself.

    I thought the match was good, the ending was a “HOLY SHIT” moment. I can’t wait to see a diva use the octopus on Melina, her hands would literally get into a knot. RAW stepped up their A game this week. This is how it should be all the time. Espicially with AJ, Naomi, Maxine & Kong coming to the roster, the divas division will become a lot better. I’m glad it’s a handicap match at RR, there’s a gut feeling in me saying that the match is going to be great and something’s bound to happend i.e Kong. Also Beth being the first women to enter the RR 2 times maybe.

    I hope WWE have the gail/bellas feud be something like Sarita/Velvet and have the top star win all of the matches because if i have to see the bellas pin gail, i will go nuts!

  • Spideywebby

    I like the title match, but nattie bores me real fast. Melina did most of the stuffs in the match. Blame it on the creative writers etc, but a boring face champ makes me want her to lose the title asap.

  • LaceyVonErichFan


    Well, i don’t know about you but last night i heard a good reaction from the crowd when LayCool came out espicially when they said they would ‘change’ the divas division.

  • Rhawk

    @LaceyVon ErichFan – Actually to correct you, Chyna did actually enter the rumble twice, both in 1999 and 2000.

  • megagary

    Predictions for the Rumble?

    Melina interferes and so Beth Phoenix comes down to assist, maybe even just bring out all the Divas for an all out brawl, (Laycool lose by DQ) and then all of a sudden Awesome Kong appears, all the Divas end up on the far side of the ring, Kong eliminates everyone from the ring with her and Laycool left in the ring who act smart or even better both get tossed out aswell!

    Looking forward to the Rumble as I do feel something interesting will happen

    Also Gail took an awful bump in the corner, the Bellas got their heel on and Brie showed me she can play the heel just as good if not better than Nikki