Ronda Rousey (c) def. Nikki Bella, for the RAW Women’s Championship
Say what you want about The Bella Twins, but they sure know how to get their branding on. See: the “BELLALUTION” flag that Brie Bella waves loud and proud on their way to the ring. (I hate that I love it. Sorry, Ronda.)
But also, see Brie trying to start a “YES” chant for Nikki, which now the WWE Universe should all feel bad about: You all indulged Brie Bella in her Daniel Bryan-esque moments, and now she’s using it all for evil.
While Nikki Bella is an accomplished wrestler (and honestly a threat) in her own right, going into this match, the RAW Women’s Champion Ronda Rousey was the obvious favorite. But as mentioned in previous recaps, the disadvantage she has as a rookie—and something she even addressed on the red carpet—is that she comes from a world where it’s all about the individual. In MMA, it’s one-versus-all. So even with friends like Natalya, Rousey is actually not suited for situations where the numbers game is the advantage. For example, she’s smart to go after Nikki when Nikki rolls out of the ring but not-so-much when she’s baited by Brie’s distraction. To quote an exchange between myself and my mother (after she told me how much she loved Ronda Rousey’s eye makeup) during this match:
The Mother (to Rousey): “Don’t be nice to her, she will cheat.”
Me: “If she can.”
And as it turns out, Nikki can cheat, thanks to Brie. As Michael Cole points out, it’s “The Bella factor.” (It’s similar to “the damn numbers game,” but with lady twins.) After this, Nikki is on top of things, and we even get our first “COME ON, NIKKI!” from Brie of the night. We also gets Nikki’s headscissors/cocky push-up combo, which would be far more impressive if not performed on Ronda Rousey. to prove a message (1. Use your powers for good, Nikki. 2. You’re only going to make her angry, Nikki.) After that, Nikki continues to take it to Rousey, and Brie goes back to the “YES” chanting, but…
Okay, here we go. A failed kick leads to Nikki Bella begging for mercy and ending up on Rousey’s shoulders for her modified Samoan Drop. But before Rousey can hit it, Brie decides she wants in on this.
This leads to a double modified Samoan Drop, and you know who’s saying “COME ON, NIKKI” next? Rousey, and not in a positive way. By this point, Rousey’s face is cut and bruised by Nikki, and Nikki’s got bruises that fishnets can’t truly hide. These women are fighting each other. Not only does Ronda Rousey get payback—a “receipt,” if you will—for Nikki Bella’s slap from this week’s RAW, she ends up getting revenge. However, Brie tries to interfere again, but the only “YES” in this situation comes from Rousey, before she throws Brie into an announce table. But again, Ronda lets the distraction get to her, which is how Nikki is able to hit a high-impact Alabama Slam (to which I yelled, “ALABAMA SLAM-AH”) for a count of two and then the Rack Attack 2.0 for a count of two point nine. After that, Nikki Bella throws a temper tantrum, which certainly doesn’t help things, especially when she soon taps to the armbar.
And yet, somehow, Nikki Bella says this isn’t over. The delusion is strong with The Bellas—Ronda Rousey beat Nikki Bella fair and square, didn’t she? Every woman on the Evolution card would happen to agree, as they all congratulated Rousey after the fact. Except for Nia Jax, who is in the locker room scouting her future opponent.