One is a former SmackDown Women’s Champion. One is a potential champion in waiting. And even if Charlotte Flair is the one holding down the throne, Natalya & Carmella will not be so easily forgotten as WrestleMania 34 approaches in earnest.
The Queen of Harts and Ms. Money in the Bank claimed victory over Becky Lynch & Naomi in a fast-paced tag team match that came about in the most no-frills way possible: Some good old-fashioned trash-talk.
As it turned out, the only thing that flew faster than the insults were the fists, and Natalya & Carmella came into the bout showcasing their surprisingly crisp teamwork, with The Queen of Harts using power maneuvers to soften up Naomi for Ms. Money in the Bank’s rope-a-doping.
Carmella proved to be a breakout Superstar in the match, pulverizing Naomi with a Bronco Buster into the corner, an armbar over the top rope, and a series of clubbing blows to the back while Natalya directed traffic.
A fresh Becky Lynch provided much-needed relief for Naomi, and they clearly had some chemistry of their own.
But Becky & Naomi were a step behind their opponents from the jump, and Natalya & Carmella’s slightly crisper teamwork ended up being the deciding factor.
While the referee was preoccupied with Naomi on the ring apron, Carmella called for Natalya to hand her the Money in the Bank briefcase, seemingly so she could use it for a cheap shot against The Irish Lass Kicker.
Lynch knocked Natalya off the apron, but the whole episode turned out to be little more than an expertly-laid trap, as Becky focused her attention back to Carmella only to be met with a whip-fast superkick that ended the match.
In a war of insults and maneuvers alike, perhaps it’s fitting that the self-proclaimed trash-talker got the last word.