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10 Things We'd Like To See At WWE Evolution

The women's division deserve to put on a hell of a show; here's how they might...

There is enough to the WWE Evolution card to make it a very good show - let's get that out of the way. Three matches have genuine standout potential, particularly the Mae Young Classic final between Toni Storm and Io Shirai, regarded by many as two of the best wrestlers in the world today.

Elsewhere, Kairi Sane and Shayna Baszler could easily steal the show with their NXT Women's Championship rematch, while Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair are backed by one of the hottest feuds in wrestling today (even if there's a tricky Last Woman Standing stipulation to navigate).

With that said, the build to WWE's first all-women pay-per-view has been shaky at best. Key names in the women's revolution have been shoved into lowercard matches, while newcomer Ronda Rousey (as impressive as she's been so far) looks set to main event against Nikki Bella, a manifestation of the era WWE seem so proud to have left behind. That's not a knock on Nikki's ability as a wrestler, but her prominent booking in the build to this event has proven jarring for many.

But, as mentioned, there's certainly enough there. Evolution reminds me of WrestleMania 31, a show scrutinised as a result of its imperfect build, but one with the potential to turn everything around come Sunday.

This time next week, we could be talking about how much of a major letdown Evolution was, or we could be raving about how it surpassed expectations. Hopefully, it's the latter - and here's how that might happen...

10. A Becky/Charlotte Double Turn


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Let's get one thing straight: Becky Lynch is a brilliant heel.

I'm not trying to deny that, and each passing week makes it harder for me to be annoyed at the mismanagement of this feud. However, I still believe that Becky should be the babyface here, albeit one with a harder edge than before, while Charlotte Flair (emphasis on Flair) should be the heel.

As many have already said online, WWE have risked turning Charlotte into the female Roman Reigns here - booed for her push despite her clear ability. Meanwhile, Becky can't seem to get herself booed no matter what she does.

The clear solution here is a double-turn - which is obviously easier said than done. Bret Hart and Steve Austin's version at WrestleMania 13 is the most famous of all time, but it very much represents the pinnacle rather than the norm.

However, I believe Charlotte and Becky can pull it off. The Last Women Standing stipulation is the perfect excuse for Flair to grab a tainted victory, whether by underhanded tactics or sheer brutality. Meanwhile, can anybody play to the sympathy card better than Becky Lynch these days, or come back with such fire?


9. Asuka To Dominate The Battle Royal


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The battle royal has been one of the most controversial aspects of Evolution already, given the number of talented Superstars that have been seemingly shoved in as an excuse to get everybody on the card.

Many of the women involved have responded to WWE's tweet hyping the match with gifs of themselves looking unimpressed or disgruntled, particularly Naomi. However, I think the most deserving name in the match is the Empress of Tomorrow.

Since losing to Charlotte Flair at WrestleMania, Asuka's decline has been abrupt and saddening. She is one of the finest wrestlers in WWE, but finds herself saddled in a lowercard tag team (alongside the similarly undervalued Naomi).

I don't even think Asuka needs to win the match here, she just needs to clearly get her mojo back. Have her dominate a few opponents, eliminate a couple of legendary names, and act like the badass we all know she can be. If she makes the final two, she could even be eliminated in sneaky fashion by Zelina Vega or somebody similar, planting the seeds for a storyline that could hopefully elevate her up the card once more.

8. A No DQ Stipulation For The Six-Woman Tag


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The other highly-criticised match at Evolution, alongside the aforementioned battle royal, is the six-woman tag pitting Bayley, Sasha Banks, and Natalya against the Riott Squad.

The Riott Squad have really improved as a unit recently, that much is certain, but the decision to shove three key members of the women's revolution in such a low profile bout is maddening.

This match could be saved, potentially, by a no DQ stipulation. The anarchic Riott squad would surely benefit from the introduction of weapons, while we could even see Bayley overcome her baffling fear of kendo sticks.

7. Sane Vs. Baszler To Be Given Lots Of Time


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There's not a lot of nuance to this point; I just want to see the NXT Women's Championship match go long.

Sane and Baszler have proven on two occasions now that they have a clear chemistry, and Shayna, in particular, seems to be improving with every big match she has.

As mentioned in the intro, this has a strong chance of being the best match of the night - but only if it's given a lot of time. I'd much rather see the pair go all-out for 15-20 minutes than a long series of bells and whistles for the Raw Women's Championship match later on.


6. Storm Vs. Shirai To Be Given Even More Time


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Take what I just said for Sane vs. Baszler and add a little bit more for Io Shirai vs. Toni Storm.

The final of the second Mae Young Classic deserves to be an epic affair, particularly given the quality of some of the matches we've already seen in the tournament. This match being cut short would be a disservice not only to Storm and Shirai, but to the likes of Meiko Satomura, Rhea Ripley, Tegan Nox, and many other impressive wrestlers throughout the competition.

Given the quality of both women involved, this has real potential to be one of WWE's best matches of the year - regardless of gender. Let's hope it's given the time to fulfil its promise.

5. A Big Scalp For Alexa Bliss (If She Is On The Show At All)


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Alexa Bliss has come under fire this year due to a perceived overpush, but she remains one of the most charismatic wrestlers in WWE, with nobody playing the cowardly, cocky heel quite as well as her (alongside perhaps The Miz).

Provided she is healthy enough to appear on the show, I think Bliss should win the match for her side, picking up a big victory over Trish Stratus and Lita. Admittedly, it's one of the more unlikely entries of this list, as the chances of a nostalgic Trish and Lita victory seem pretty high.

If there really is no way of putting Bliss over, hopefully WWE will at least allow her to get something in that may cast an Attitude Era win in doubt. Mickie James' history with Trish might be enough to play into the finish instead. Ultimately, however, not giving Bliss a moment might be a massive mistake on WWE's part.

4. The NXT UK Women's Championship Situation To Resolve Itself


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One of the most curious aspects of the Evolution build has been the rumoured NXT UK Women's Championship match. It has appeared on the event's Wikipedia page (including spoilers of the inaugural champion, so be sure to avoid that if you don't want to know) - but the episode of NXT UK crowning the champ hasn't aired yet.

It seems as though this match may just not take place, but even if that's the case, some transparency from WWE would help matters quite a lot.

This isn't the most exciting part of this list; it's simply a confusing situation that fans would probably like to see resolved in a manner that makes sense.


3. A Surprise Return


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Several legends have been announced for the battle royal, including Molly Holly, Michelle McCool, Alundra Blayze, and Torrie Wilson.

While it'll certainly be nice to see some old faces, and lend Evolution a sense of history and prestige, I think an unannounced appearance or two would be even more exciting - whether in the battle royal or elsewhere.

The biggest unannounced name to be banded around has been AJ Lee, but given her ties to husband CM Punk (and his acrimonious departure from WWE) the chances of an appearance look to be unlikely. Despite this - or perhaps because of it - an AJ sighting would likely blow the roof off the place.

2. Ronda Vs. Nikki To Take Inspiration From WrestleMania 34


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Ronda Rousey vs. Nikki Bella looks to be one of the more predictable matches on the card, both in terms of outcome and the type of match it's set to be.

Rousey is almost certainly going to win, and should do, but the manner of her victory could make or break the tone of Evolution as a whole. The likely outcome is that she'll struggle to a hard-fought victory, overcoming Nikki's heelish tactics and a boatload of interference from Brie on the outside.

I think WWE would do better to take inspiration from the awesome mixed tag match at WrestleMania 34 - Ronda's in-ring debut.

That match had a more simple, old-school feel, with a rampant babyface taking it to the heels in front of a red hot crowd. I really think that this match needn't go more than a few minutes, and while WWE will probably want to position it in the main event slot, it would probably be better a little further down the card.

1. No Hugging


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The women's revolution has undoubtedly been a great movement for WWE, and the perception of women's wrestling as a whole - but it isn't in its infancy anymore. In the early days, it was perfectly acceptable to see heels and babyfaces embrace, because their breaking down of boundaries really transcended traditional storytelling.

However, in the past year or so, we've seen too many instances of the entire women's locker room celebrating an announcement - usually by Stephanie McMahon - of a particular match-up or stipulation.

I hope we see none of this at Evolution, with the possible exception of Toni Storm vs. Io Shirai, given the palpable respect shared between the two.

In every other match, however, I think we all want to see the women's division treated with the same level of competitiveness and attitude as their male counterparts.

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Jack G. King

Written by Jack G. King

Head of News at Cultaholic.com | [email protected]