WWE Superstars Redux (February 16th, 2012): Aksana Faces the Test Against Maxine

Good morning, afternoon, or evening depending on when you’re reading this. If you’re like me and just finished re-watching Cougar Town’s return to television from this past Tuesday on ABC at 8:30/7:30 central (much like it airs in that same time slot every week!!!) then you know it’s time for some good old fashioned match recapping! This week on Superstars, we got to see Maxine and Aksana square off against one another in a match that isn’t new to our eyes. These two have faced off both in FCW and during their own season of NXT, but let’s be fair, it’s the first time they’re facing off after seeing so much improvement in the ring so this will definitely be one to judge.

Let us get started!

We head out to the ring and out walks my benevolent NXT Queen of Mean/Ruler of Life, Maxine! Sporting the gear from her vicious gooey assault on Kaitlyn from this week’s episode of the golden roped show, she steps into the ring as we get a recap of said attack. Once the video finishes up, the tune that I categorize as “sexy sax music” starts up on the sound system. Aksana makes her way out down the ramp and steps into the squared circle herself, as we prepare for these two Divas to square off with the bell sounding.

They lock up with Aksana taking the early advantage using two arm drags into a submission hold. The Queen of Mean tries to fight out by backing Aksana into the corner, but the Lithuanian beauty ducks a clothesline attempt and scores with a pair of kicks. From there, she snapmares Maxine over and completes the trifecta with a boot to the back for good measure and a two count. She briefly reverts back to the arm lock, before going for a few near fall attempts. Back to the submission she goes until Maxine bridges up and fights her way out with an Irish whip. Aksana stops herself on the rebound and boots Maxine in the shoulder, before going for a running maneuver that gets countered into a drop toe hold.

As Aksana tries to gasp for air, Maxine takes advantage with a face slam, until she begins choking out the Lithuanian on the ropes until a count is reached. Snapmare into a chin lock follows up, as the crowd begins to get behind Aksana and she begins to counter out. Maxine quickly takes control by slamming Aksana down by the hair and going for a few pinfalls that lead her to no victory. Maxine then locks in a dragon sleeper, but breaks out of it and goes for yet another pin attempt. (I guess “if at first you don’t succeed, try again” is a motto she strongly follows!) Aksana finally starts to mount a comeback, but as she runs off the ropes, Maxine plants her with a nice atomic drop and drags her into the nearby corner.

Maxine continues to dominate Aksana with a hair-mare until Aksana finally starts to fight back with a few shots to the face. Maxine with another hair-mare, before going for a pin and getting a two count. Maxine tosses Aksana into the corner, but meets an elbow to the face. Our Lithuanian then moves out of the way and misses a forearm to the face, before hitting Maxine with a clothesline that’s a little off. They recover nicely though, and Aksana sends Maxine off the ropes, before drilling her with a fist to the face. A shoulder block/clothesline combo follows, as Aksana uses her strength advantage to bodyslam the Queen of Mean to the floor and drop the elbow. Both women get to their feet, as Maxine sends Aksana off the ropes. Aksana proceeds to slide below the legs and NAIL her with the Devo Drop for the victory!

Thoughts: I honestly don’t know how I feel about this match. It dragged in a few parts, but there was nothing that was bad by any means. It just sort of felt “there”, like it never got out of first gear in terms of the submissions/pinfall attempts. I am glad Aksana got to keep her sick spinbuster finisher though, and that we FINALLY end a match on a show I recap in a way other than a darn roll-up.

Also, I don’t know if it’s just me, but Aksana is such a better heel than she is face in the ring. It may just be because she hasn’t portrayed a face in FCW for so long, but she didn’t seem as dominant/comfortable as she does in her recent developmental matches. I think her move set is more accustomed to that of a heel which is why she kept reverting to submissions so much. As for Maxine, God knows how much I like her, but she also seemed a little off for some reason. Nobody is perfect and even the top guys have an off night… but who knows? Like I said, this could be because Aksana’s only matches on TV have been all of a combined 30 seconds, so she could still be getting used to playing a face and being given longer time, but it will just take some getting used to in my opinion. I really want these two to face off with each other again now that they’ve gotten to get a feel for one another after stepping up their games because I think there’s a lot of potential for a rematch.

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  • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/goodnightddtmnm-2/ MelinaMickieF3v3r

    yeah this match was pretty boring….^_^ Nice SpineBuster by Aksana tho.

  • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/ricky_says_hi/ ricky_says_hi

    even the best wrestlers will need to adjust if they’re put in a situation they’re not comfortable in. it’s really stupid on WWE’s part to keep her as a heel in FCW if they wanted her to be a face on TV. back on NXT she had the face mannerisms down a lot better so i guess she just needs time to get used to it, obviously why she’s wrestling on superstars instead of Smackdown

  • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/aksana/ Dylan

    That’s my girl!

  • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/litaluva06/ litaluva06

    The match wasn’t an 8 minute Beth Phoenix vs Natalya nor 8 minute Lita vs Trish, but the match by all means was NOT terrible. I watched IMPACT’s battle royal before this and realized that Aksana as a face is giving me Velvet Sky as a face vibes. Its not a bad thing, and they get a reaction from the crowd, they are just better suited as heel’s.

    Maxine has a very bitchy heel type move-set, so I think it would of been nice if Aksana took a more technical or powerhouse route and suplexed Maxine around a bit.

    But never-the-less, I can say I’m proud of this match, its length, and potential. Great job ladies.

    • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/litaluva06/ litaluva06

      Whoops, I meant 8 minute Beth Phoenix vs Melina (Beth & Nattie haven’t gone 1-on-1 for 8 minutes yet lol!)

      • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/mnm4ever/ MNM4ever

        agree completely! no divas match will probably exceed that 8 minute beth vs melina match at one night stand! that was pure brilliance.. as for this match, it is what it is,, bland and not the best; but they have potential,, especially maxine

        • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/the_jm/ Jhonmarco

          I can see Kharma vs. any of the divas surpassing that Beth vs. Melina match. No offense to them, but that match is vastly overrated.

        • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/litaluva06/ litaluva06

          Ha, I was actually referring to their Royal Rumble match, but never the less both matches were great.

  • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/poison_ivory/ Poison Ivory

    Okay, not the best match, but hey, everybody has to start somewhere :)

    I hope this is only beginning to these ladies’ careers in WWE.

  • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/xazureskye/ Liam Holden

    A bit boring in parts, but nothing was bad in the match (except for the 1 botched clothesline attempt) I like that it didn’t end by roll-up and that Aksana is using the spinebuster.

  • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/ter1/ Dorothy Gables

    Eh, it was a bit too slow for too long. Although I’m glad that Aksana’s going to be using her Spinebuster in the WWE. Oh, and the clothesline that Aksana gave to Maxine after Maxine ran the ropes @ 6:30 was pretty sick.

  • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/crazymixedboi/ Cherry Baby, Please Come Back!

    The match was decent,but I do feel it had potential to be better.It was a little slow paced and too many submissions were used.But I’m not gonna complain too much because it was decent and better than a 30 second match.Btw,is it just me or does Aksana kinda remind you of Angelina Jolie’s character in Salt?

  • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/ladygodiva/ LadyGoDiva

    I don’t know if I would call this a boring match but I will say that Aksana needs more help in the ring but Maxine seems to be getting more and more good in each match she’s in.

    Nice solid eight minute match.Aksana needs a new finishing move.

  • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/varsitybasedude/ VarsityBaseDude

    Not the best match and a spine buster as a finisher… well, it’s something. At least they got some time. With that entrance theme, I wouldn’t mind if Aksana pinned her opponents the way Maryse does. It’s sexy!

  • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/redsandman99/ redsandman99

    I agree with the people saying it wasn’t a bad match but it wasn’t that good of a one. It definitely was dragging at times. I think Aksana is so used to playing a heel in FCW that she’s grown more comfortable in that as opposed to being a face again. I do like her spinebuster though.

  • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/jake/ Jake

    The problem I saw with this match was that it was heel vs heel. Even though one of them wasn’t meant to be. There was zero flash from Aksana til the very end with the counter into the spinebuster. These two have put on good matches before. Either they were playing safe or Aksana hasn’t got use to playing babyface again.

  • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/art/ art

    aksana does need alot of training she looked lost maybe its because shes a face now & shes always been a heel but she was all over the place….
    maxine on the other hand looked good & i hope she continues to improve…
    can someone tell why these two had a match??..they were talking afew weeks back on nxt as friends….

    • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/raekon/ Raekon

      It doesnt matter what they did in nxt. They have face vs face and heel vs heel matches.

      In that case Maxine was the heel and Aksana the face.

      • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/art/ art

        but the match was so random….

  • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/raekon/ Raekon

    I loved Aksanas moveset in NXT and in FCW before she started the black haired gimmick a lot.
    Even after, she still have neckbreakers, backbreakers and various takedowns in her moveset.
    Was bad to see that she had to drop the goldust signature and the dibiase signature from her moveset(even she did that one better than him :p ).

    Anyway, the match was too slow and Maxine looked at parts as if she barely could go anymore while Aksana were waiting for her to get back up on her feet.

    It wasnt surprising that in a 8 minutes match(I was surprised by the length btw ^_^), there will be many holds and stuff but it would had been great to see a few more moves from Aksana since she can pull more grabble powermoves out.

    Maxine was in her “default” self of punches, kicks and submissions so nothing unusual there.

    BTW: on SD the divas got around 5 minutes aswell. :D
    I just hope it won’t be a one time thing and that it will continue so we can get longer matches from now on. :)

    • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/shameronstar/ shameronstar

      Taking that into consideration Aksana actually isn’t too bad at all considering her experience, but I kind of liked a few of Aksana’s spots in this match like the stiff looking clothesline and the baseball slide following into the spinebuster.

      • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/shameronstar/ shameronstar

        Also for some reason I like Aksana’s elbow drops!

        • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/raekon/ Raekon

          yep they look forcefull!
          I love Taminas and Kaitlyns elbow drops aswell.
          They have great execution and style.

  • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/aj-glee/ AJ Glee

    Aksana’s theme music is so nauseating.

    • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/shameronstar/ shameronstar

      Yea, it’s a very awkward entrance. I liked her fcw theme song, but since Aksana’s currently face it would be a little weird if she came out to a James Bond sexy villain song.

  • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/shameronstar/ shameronstar

    I’ve grown to really like Maxine because a year ago I didn’t really care for her at all, but she was personality and great mic skills. Although, I wish Maxine wouldn’t use 500 restholds in a single match because I know she’s capable more grabbling maneuvers because I’ve seen her do a double arm suplex before for example.

  • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/stratusfaction89/ Stratusfaction89

    Aksana and Maxine have really grown into thier own in the WWE, I really enjoyed this match. I definantly want to see more in ring action from both divas.

  • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/iamkessuki23tw/ kessa

    Aksana’s clotheslines are really good and i love the spinebuster. she needs more time to wrestle on smackdown because she is not far from the level of alicia fox and i would say she seems less green than say tamina.

  • http://www.diva-dirt.com/members/ahlanthony/ ahlanthony

    WWE really have to focus with NXT girls. They really got some mad skills. AJ, Kaitlyn, Aksana, Maxine, and Naomi.