When Becky Lynch walked out of WrestleMania 35 as the “Champ Champ,” the holder of both the RAW and Smackdown Women’s Championships, many fans wondered who would be set up to challenge Lynch first.
Of course Ronda was going to be out of the picture, as she is taking time away from the company to try and have another child. Many would’ve pegged Charlotte Flair as the first given that she lost her championship without being pinned, but we are in the era now of no automatic championship rematches.
There’s also the fact that the Becky/Charlotte feud has been done to death, and it’s probably best to sit on that match for at least a little while.
The next obvious challenger for Becky would’ve seemingly been Asuka, who beat Becky for the title at Royal Rumble and lost it to Charlotte a week before WrestleMania. This is yet another big time match, and once again something that didn’t need to be rushed to and won’t now that Asuka has been put in a tag team with Kairi Sane.
If not Charlotte or Asuka, Alexa Bliss could’ve been seen as the first to challenge “The Man.” These two had a great rivalry a couple of years ago on Smackdown, and it was that feud that helped put Alexa Bliss on the map in WWE.
WWE went in a different direction though, and as usual the Internet Wrestling Community has been split on it. Becky’s first challenger, for the RAW Women’s Championship, will be newcomer Lacey Evans.
Lacey was of course in NXT for a little while, but she’s been known to WWE audiences for the past month or two for doing one thing… walking down the ramp waving at people as her music played. That is until the night after WrestleMania, where she walked down the ramp and punched Becky right in the mouth.
Last week on RAW, “The Lady” wrestled her first televised WWE match, knocking off Natalya to earn a shot at the RAW Women’s Championship.
It wasn’t a technical masterpiece, but it was still a rather good showing from the still learning Lacey. She hit a beautiful moonsault to get the win, although the sticklers out there would complain that her legs hit Natalya’s ribs too hard and that one incident somehow makes her “not safe.” It happens.
I’ve become a HUGE fan of Lacey’s since her WWE debut. And I don’t mean since her match last week, I mean since she first started interrupting people or matches to walk down the ramp to her music.
Lacey Evans has become a breath of fresh air in a women’s division that has, to me, been over-hyped and over-pushed for social agenda reasons only.
The women in WWE have certainly done a great job and worked extremely hard to get to where they are at now, and I’m glad for them, but I just don’t care to see the women (be it Becky, Ronda, Charlotte, Nia, or anyone else) get to slap and toss around a ring full of male security guards.
Becky has caught fire with “The Man” gimmick, but I liked her better when she was in NXT or feuding with Alexa on Smackdown in her “pre-Man” days. I’ve actually begun to dislike “The Man” gimmick, though still count Becky as one of my favorites because she’s awesome as a talent and a person.
Maybe I just have a thing for heels, but I adore Lacey Evans and the gimmick she has going. The Sassy Southern Belle. The Lady of WWE. So traditional. I also adore the IIconics and Alexa Bliss.
Awesome character aside, it’s hard not to like Lacey as a person. She’s a Southern girl, she served her country as a Marine, and she’s seemingly a very dedicated and loving mother and wife and the character just seems like her with the volume turned way up. Not necessarily the high class, lady like aspect, but more so the traditional aspect.
So now we’re heading for the showdown between The Man and The Lady. I’m both excited for it, and disappointed by it.
Excited because again I believe Lacey Evans is a breath of fresh air in the division. A woman with a character, who is doing a fantastic job with that character even if she isn’t yet the greatest wrestler in the division. She oozes charisma the way few in the division do and she has a fantastic look.
On the looks front, I get that this isn’t the Attitude Era, and unlike say Mr. Tito from LOP I don’t think WWE is trying to make Lacey the next Sable, but there’s a reason folks like Mandy Rose and Lana despite being heels and not necessarily good wrestlers… they’re super hot. And that does still matter even if the matches today are wrestling matches and not bikini contests.
I’m excited for it because Lacey is different, and we’ve seen the same thing for so long that it’s hard not to be excited by something different.
At the same time, I’m disappointed because this is Lacey’s first feud on the main roster and unfortunately it’s one she isn’t likely to win. I don’t see Becky losing a title in the near future; I think they’ll want to try and capitalize on Becky’s current popularity by having her on both shows as much as possible.
So what happens to Lacey when she loses to The Man? She’s likely to flounder in a RAW division that is pretty lackluster while someone else moves into the challenger role.
I’m not a fan of hot-shotting a championship on to someone, so that’s another reason I’m a little disappointed by this. Lacey Evans should have somewhat quietly ran through the RAW women’s division while subtly taking shots at The Man and playing up being a Lady.
On paper, Lacey is the perfect foil to Becky. She’s the traditional lady like it’s the 1950s, and Becky has been positioned as the 2010s embodiment of an empowered feminist woman who’s anti-authority. She’s “The Man” in the role people like to liken to a Stone Cold.
The Lady vs. The Man… it practically writes itself. It’s just a story that should’ve been told vi a slow build over months, culminating with a Lacey victory, and not one rushed to in weeks that will inevitably result in a Becky victory and the status quo not changing.