This match at the Hell in a Cell pay-per-view is Ronda Rousey’s first title defense as the RAW Women’s Champion, but with her injured ribs, it’s not exactly a 100% certainty that this will be a successful one.
Ronda Rousey (c) def. Alexa Bliss, for the RAW Women’s Championship (RAW)
While Bliss has Alicia Fox and Mickie James on her side—as back-up, not just to tower over her—Rousey has Natalya. It may not be strength in numbers, but at least Rousey won’t have to worry about Natalya ever throwing her to the wolves (but that’s a point for later in the match).
Sidenote: I don’t know what’s been inspiring Alicia Fox’s ensembles lately, but I’ll admit I absolutely love everything about ‘em. It’s hard to believe this all began with her becoming the literal Poison Ivy to Alexa Bliss’ Harley Quinn, but the mind of a Fox is a mysterious thing.
Bliss’ strategy in this match is a simple and clever one: Go for Rousey’s ribs. It’s really her only course of action, especially as she’s thankfully done attempting to take Ronda Rousey out with an armbar. (That was an interesting couple of weeks, right?) So, Rousey gets Bliss with a quick takedown—Bliss immediately goes for the ribs. Rousey has to break a hold in the ropes—Bliss takes that as an opportunity to kick her in the ribs.
It doesn’t help that Rousey’s rookie status, unfortunately, allows her to get duped by Fox and James’ distractions on the outside too. But even with the ribs disadvantage, Rousey already said on RAW that it doesn’t change the fact that she’s the best. She’s almost able to bust out the armbar relatively early too, but Fox and James rescue Bliss to keep the match going and their friend’s arm safe. Speaking of, that point about throwing a friend to the wolves? That’s what happens when those two run away from Rousey as soon as she chases Bliss outside the ring. They’re smart enough to know Bliss would do (and already has done) the same to them, honestly.
Once both competitors get back into the ring, Rousey promptly attempts to neutralize the situation by throwing Bliss into her ladies in waiting, even letting them know: “Who needs enemies when you’ve got friends like that?” But once Bliss gets back into the ring, she also goes back to the drawing board—which of course reads “ribs.” She even gets Rousey stuck in the Tree of Woe… and dropkicks her right in the ribs. Not wanting to miss out on the fun, Fox and James get physical too and pull Rousey into the post—more ribs action—when the referee isn’t looking, which finally gets Natalya involved.
Natalya takes out Alicia Fox, Rousey takes out Mickie James, and… Rousey and Bliss collide with a double crossbody.
Bliss is able to recover quicker than Rousey because her ribs haven’t been attacked non-stop, but her fatal error is to mock Rousey with a “GRRRRRR” again. With that, Rousey enters beast mode with a “GRRRRRR” of her own, and it’s the beginning of the end for Bliss. Sure, she tries to go for the ribs again, but instead, Rousey only ends up pounding her own ribs—adrenaline is a wonder—and then catching an attempted punch by Bliss. Then it’s armbar time, and honestly? Alexa Bliss taps out almost immediately, perhaps to avoid a broken arm. A broken arm she would absolutely deserve after all of this.