Thursday, September 21, 2023

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Toxic Attraction Advances To Semi-Finals With A Dominant SmackDown Debut

This week’s SmackDown comes just two weeks before Clash at the Castle and there was a lot for the women content to unpack.

Ronda Rousey kicks off the night, seemingly walking in from the crowd as Michael Cole and Pat McAfee are opening the show despite her suspension. She says that she wants to be reinstated and calls out Adam Pearce, threatening to hold up the show, saying she’s not leaving until he comes out and lifts the suspension.

Pearce comes out with a group of security guards to tell her things don’t work that way. This echos what Shayna Baszler told her last week. He can’t make that call because that kind of decision-making is above his pay grade.  Rousey refuses to leave and tells Pearce that she left last week on her own and asks him not to make her get violent this week. Pearce responds by sending in the security guards to escort Ronda out of the arena.

And like a true badass, Rousey destroys the security guards. Pearce then calls for police and Rousey allows the officers to handcuff and arrest her. She trashes and belittles Pearce as she’s being taken to the police car. 

Later in the night, Michael Cole informs us that Rousey was not taken to jail and was released on her own accord.

Next up was the first match of the night for the women. For the final First Round match of the WWE Women’s Tag Team Championship Tournament, Sonya Deville and Natalya are introduced as they’re already standing in the ring after the commercial break. Bayley, Dakota Kai, and IYO SKY from Raw appear in the audience setting up right behind the commentary table. The team of Kai and SKY are in the semi-finals for the Raw side of the tag team brackets. They face Alexa Bliss and Asuka this coming Monday on Raw.

NXT’s Toxic Attraction, Gigi Dolin and Jacy Jayne, debut as the opponents replacing Nikkita Lyons and Zoey Stark as the NXT representatives. Toxic Attraction start as the underdogs but quickly gain control of the match. They display their tag team prowess, leading to Deville getting the hot tag to Natalya which naturally gets a huge pop. Bayley, sitting front row adds her own commentary as Jayne and Deville take the battle to ringside, tells Deville that she should have stuck to being a GM.

Moments later, Jayne sneaks a tag without Natalya noticing. Natalya locks in the Sharpshooter on Dolin but Jayne sneakily comes from behind and gets the roll-up victory over Natalya advancing Toxic Attraction to the next round of the WWE Women’s Tag Team Championship Tournament. This was Toxic Attraction’s debut on SmackDown but was still referred to as NXT talent. Jayne and Dolin will face Raquel Rodriguez and Aliyah in the semi-finals next week.

A recap of last week’s contract signing between SmackDown Women’s Champion Liv Morgan and Shayna Baszler leading into a brief backstage interview before her match with Shotzi. Morgan is asked how she feels about having a huge target on her back and she responds by saying she has never played it safe to get to where she’s at. She knows the entire SmackDown women’s locker room wants what she has, and she’s ready to do what it takes to keep the title around her waist.

Before Shotzi makes her way to the ring, she says Morgan is a very emotional wrestler and that’s why she’s willing to fight without being fully healed. Shotzi says she plans on taking advantage of her arm injury and she’s going to make Liv pay, dearly. Morgan starts off in control until Shotzi lands a devastating DDT onto the ring apron, leaving the champ laid out at ringside. Shotzi seemingly dominates most of the match.

In the closing moments of the match, Liv catches Shotzi off guard and sets her up for ObLIVion, securing the win. After the match, Baszler attacks Morgan from behind. Baszler almost immediately focuses on the injured arm of the champion, screaming in her ear that she can break her arm, but she’ll wait to break her arm and take her title at Clash at the Castle.

Other moments involving the women of SmackDown had Hit Row and Maximum Male Models meet while Scarlett had a vignette with Karrion Kross.

Lastly, there was a vignette with the Viking Raiders as they were having a “funeral” for The New Day. At the start of the video, a woman whose face wasn’t fully shown appeared. It could be possible for a Sarah Logan return.

Check back in with Diva Dirt for more news and results from the women of SmackDown!

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