Once again, it’s time for a Main Event Redux! This week, we witness the continued development of the Divas division’s B-feud when Paige takes on Summer Rae. Lana also puts in an appearance, following up on her face-off with the Anti Diva on Raw and mixing things up a bit.
Entrances done and the bell rung, the Divas start the match by tying up, Paige taking Summer down for an early pin attempt. Summer kicks out, but Paige takes her down once more for another unsuccessful pin attempt. Paige pulls Summer to her feet and hits her with a headbutt. Summer crawls to a corner, where Paige lays into her with a few stomps to the chest.
Summer slowly gets to her feet and blocks Paige’s flying knee attempt, vaulting her over the ropes and onto the apron. Paige fends off her follow up attack, nailing her with a right hand that sends her to the mat. Before Paige can reenter the ring, though, she’s interrupted by the entrance of Lana. Summer tries to take advantage of the distraction, but Paige stops her, hitting her with knees to the chest. Summer stops the barrage and knocks Paige off the apron as Lana makes her way to the announce table and sits on top of it.
Summer slams Paige’s face into the ring apron before tossing her back into the ring. She follows Paige and chokes her against the middle rope before propping her up in the corner and doing the same with her boot. Summer roughly yanks Paige to the middle of the ring. She covers Paige for the pin, but Paige kicks out. Summer locks in a headlock, but it’s short lived. Paige battles out and runs the ropes, only to be hit with a spinning heel kick. Summer goes for another pin, but Paige kicks out again.
Summer locks in another headlock, but Paige manages to fight out of it again, tossing Summer across the ring. Paige kicks her repeatedly, sending her into the corner for a flying knee attack. She follows that up with a running knee to the face and a pin attempt. Summer kicks out. Paige acknowledges Lana’s presence with an air kiss before planting Summer with a superkick. Lana climbs up onto the ring apron, distracting Paige and allowing Summer to roll her up for a pin attempt. Paige kicks out and rolls through into a pin of her own, earning the three count and the win.
Immediately after scoring the win, Paige goes after Lana, pulling her into the ring by her hair. Summer comes to her old foe’s rescue, knocking Paige down and allowing Lana to flatten Paige with a high kick! Lana exits as Paige lays on the mat, stunned.
Thoughts: This was an incredibly short match, but it served the purpose of furthering a storyline, so I can’t be too mad at it. Lana’s M.O. has been a bit repetitive as of late, so it was thrilling to see someone actually get physical with her. Paige was the perfect candidate for that, as the Queen of Not Giving a Fuck.
It was definitely strange to see Summer, of all people, come to Lana’s aid, but it makes sense. Lana, I believe, is actively recruiting Divas to her side. She did so with Naomi and Tamina on Raw, and she’s probably done the same with Summer prior to this match. What her or their motivations are is anybody’s guess, but it’s not completely out of character for Summer to align herself with someone on a whim. I mean, it’s kind of her thing, right?
Lana’s kick to Paige was impressive, especially since I definitely didn’t see her busting out something like that outside of a match. She’s been hitting Bella Busters all over the place, but a high kick in a miniskirt isn’t exactly easy. It was a nice choice, too, as it plays into the idea that Rusev has been teaching her hard-hitting moves and preparing her for this occasion. I’d like to learn more about why she’s doing this, though: why did she initially target Brie Bella? I know why she took out Paige – their face-off on Raw explains that pretty tidily – but this all started with Lana taking a shine to Brie. Maybe it’s as simple as Lana getting tired of the “mediocre” Divas and wanting to weed them out so she can carve out a path for herself as a competitor in the division. With that as her motivation, recruiting heel Divas to her cause would be simple: taking out the babyfaces means less competition for them, so they should simply target them together.
I’m sure this will be fleshed out in time for the (likely) match at WrestleMania. However tenuous the connection between these Divas is, I’m content seeing them interact and acknowledge their shared pasts while fighting to achieve a common goal. If Lana’s interaction with Naomi and Tamina was any indication, this could be entertaining as hell. In fact, this tag match could achieve something multi-Diva tag matches have never been able to before: allowing the Divas to stand out while standing together.
Usually, in these kinds of matches, the Divas blend together into two monolithic groups: good guys and bad guys. Here, that’s definitely not the case. By having this feud start between two women and expand out to include several, the WWE is ensuring that motivations and relationships are explored as others are recruited to the competing sides. It’s so simple, and yet seeing it play out like this makes it feel almost revolutionary. This isn’t a case of “all women secretly hate each other” – it’s “women have competing desires, experiences, motivations, likes, dislikes, dispositions, etc.” And really, that’s all I’ve ever wanted from the Divas division: for the Divas to be treated like real, breathing women. You’d be surprised how quickly compelling characters and stories develop once that simple hurdle is passed.