Match Examination: Nia Jax vs. Bayley

WWE’s insistence on working to the hard camera drives me out of my mind. Couple that with the fact that it appears that the young wrestlers who break in through WWE developmental are not taught to improvise. You’ve got a recipe for some ugly, awkward occurrences.

I think the developmental coaches are told to make sure the wrestlers don’t know how to improvise. Nia Jax defeated Bayley last week on Monday Night RAW in a very solid match. As it was set to come to a close, Jax hit the Samoan Drop, one of her signature maneuvers. That was the end, so she went for the pin.

Suddenly she stood up very clumsily, walked around Bayley and proceeded to pin her opponent while glaring at the hard camera just like she was taught.

It looked stupid.

I’m not an idiot. I understand that very few people are going to remember that little mix-up, and I understand that it’s not going to affect Nia Jax’ character as an ass-kicker. It would be silly for me to think it would have any short term ramifications. It’s not short term I’m worried about. I’m worried about a year from now when she has been wrestling the same few women night in and night out and is still making that same little mistake.

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Where can I get a pair of socks like that?[/caption]

There are two ways to fix the problem. For one, WWE could stop teaching the wrestlers to skew their work toward one camera. It’s unfair to the rest of the arena in attendance. Not only that, but they have about 316 cameras covering the show every week. Is the director so lazy that he can’t just have them cut to a different camera that is facing the proper direction to catch a pinfall? Easy fix. No more teaching to the hard camera, and no more lazy directing.

Secondly, they could allow the wrestlers to think for themselves. If Nia Jax was more experienced, or if WWE allowed some more freedom to abound, that ugly spot would not have occurred. Nia was told that the Samoan Drop was the end of the match. When she crawled over to make the cover, she realized that she was looking the wrong way. She proceeded to stumble into position, finally falling to the mat to make the cover and get the win. If she knew how to (or was allowed to) improvise, she could have easily glossed over the mistake by standing up and hitting her actual finisher, the leg drop, before going for the pin. That gives her an excuse as to why, exactly, she would stand up. Inflicting extra punishment seems like something the Nia Jax character would do.

That is honestly my only gripe with the match. The right person won, the loser put up a heck of a fight, and it furthered two storylines in one.

Bayley used her experience to stick-and-move and keep the advantage for most of the match. Unlike in NXT, however, her offense wasn’t enough to defeat the far larger Jax, who has extra motivation now that she has a chance to make a huge impact on RAW. The guillotine choke slowed Jax down but was unsuccessful. Bayley chopped her down with dropkicks and a face buster but sheer power overcame the smaller competitor’s heart and experience.

With this match in the books, we have a number of things going. Bayley is being set up to be the next challenger for Charlotte’s title, which will probably happen at the Roadblock event in December. Nia Jax looks like a monster, and after being off of TV for a number of weeks the win over Bayley is the high-profile victory that she needed.

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It also adds intrigue to the RAW women’s team at Survivor Series. Charlotte, Bayley and Jax are the only three announced team members thus far. Charlotte has the utmost confidence that Nia will be the force of nature that helps lead her team to victory. She also had a great line when the match ended in response to Byron Saxton, which you can hear in the video. Saxton was harping on how Bayley is successful due to her heart and soul. As soon as the match ended, Charlotte threw it right back into Saxton’s face, much to the delight of Corey Graves. “I mean she really gave it her heart and soul”.

Nia has the opportunity to prove that she is a real force to be reckoned with. Remember, Jax was never able to win the NXT Women’s Championship. That has to be a sore point for her. A dominant performance at Survivor Series surely puts her in line for a RAW Women’s Title match.

Bayley, after taking a loss here and receiving constant verbal abuse from Charlotte, will be amped up and itching to prove that she does belong. This is an extremely dynamic team, and there are still two spots left to fill!