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AEW Women’s Tag Team Tournament night 2 recap: The favorites to win have emerged

Night 2 of AEW’s The Deadly Draw women’s tag team tournament featured the remaining two first round matches with three surprise participants in Nicole Savoy, Rachael Ellering, and Dasha Gonzalez.

Watch the full episode here.

Let’s break down night 2 of The Deadly Draw.

Tony Schiavone and Veda Scott were on commentary. Shaul Guerrero was the ring announcer. Madusa was milling around as sort of an unofficial tournament commissioner.

The show opened with a brief highlight package of last week’s matches and rolled into the signature theme song for The Deadly Draw.

Backstage, Big Swole picked the color gray. Her partner was Lil’ Swole (Nicole Savoy). The two Swoles celebrated their good luck by making Cookie Monster noises. Later on commentary, Scott mentioned that Big and Lil’ have teamed together in Shimmer and Lil’ is a former Shimmer Champion.

The other team was Leva Bates and Rache Chanel. They practiced a team pose.

First Round: Leva Bates & Rache Chanel vs Big Swole & Lil’ Swole

Peter Avalon was ringside, but he played no role in the outcome. The Swoles controlled much of the action. Bates had a few flurries of offense to keep it somewhat competitive.

In the end, Big broke free from a double underhook by Bates for a back body drop. Big then lowered down to lock up a pin. Chanel ran in with a head kick for the break. Bates reversed the position to be on top. She should have gotten the win, but the referee was too preoccupied with removing Chanel and Lil’ from the ring. Bates had Big for a clear three count before Bates let go to complain. Lil’ tossed out Chanel. The Swoles attacked Bates with a double team Flatliner/Blockbuster combo as Big picked up the winning pin. Big Swole and Lil’ Swole advance to the semifinals.

Backstage, Ivelisse picked the color pink. Her partner was revealed to be Diamante. On commentary, Scott informed us that this was actually the first time Ivelisse and Diamante tagged together.

Dasha Gonzalez was ready for the next pairing when Madusa strolled in to alert Dasha that she will be in the tournament. Dasha picked blue. Her partner turned out to be Rachael Ellering. They were buddies back when working in NXT.

First Round: Ivelisse & Diamante vs Dasha Gonzalez & Rachael Ellering

Dasha started strong against Ivelisse with a fancy arm drag, a handspring forearm smash in the corner, and a dropkick.

As the match progressed, Ivelisse and Diamante focused on beating down Dasha. That led to a hot tag moment for Ellering to clean house. Her flurry culminated with a bottom rope springboard twisting leg drop to Ivelisse.

Dasha and Ellering had momentum until Diamante turned the tide with a stunner to Dasha. Dasha was able to kick out, but she didn’t last much longer. Ivelisse connected on a scorpion kick then a Puerto Rican Destroyer to win. Ivelisse and Diamante advance to the semifinals.

The show wrapped up with three backstage interviews from Alex Marvez. The Swoles were confident about their chemistry. Swolenanigans all day, every day.

Despite Dasha’s loss, she was grateful for the opportunity to wrestler in AEW. She views the match as a starting point and not the end. Dasha hopes that this won’t be the last time we see her in the ring.

The one thing that brings Ivelisse and Diamante together is respect. Consider them a threat.

The semifinals bracket was revealed.

This episode of The Deadly Draw dropped off a little bit from last week. The matches were subpar again due to inexperience, but the finishes were exciting. The short promos added a bit of fun. I think the issue was uneven teams in terms of competitiveness on paper. The winners should have won much quicker than they did, but the matches took their time to make the show last longer. That’s where the benefit of Nyla Rose and Ariane being upset last week came into play. It was obvious the Swoles and Ivelisse & Diamante were going to win, but I had to stay tuned in just in case there was another surprise. The match quality should pick up next week for the semifinals.

I think the Swoles have emerged as the favorites to win The Deadly Draw. They were the most competent team in the first round and also have the most chemistry. Lil’ Swole’s fiery attitude may be able to be turned against her by a shrewd tactician. Other than that, I don’t see any weak points for the Swoles. Granted, Big Swole did get a little lucky with the referee distraction, but that is the kind of thing that makes them the team of destiny in this tournament. I’m hoping they meet Ivelisse & Diamante in the finals. That would be the best matchup to put on a memorable conclusion to get fans talking about women’s wrestling.

Dasha Gonzalez was surprisingly decent in the ring. Her offensive moveset has flash. Dasha was a tad slow in execution, but she definitely has potential.

My favorite move of the evening was the Lotus Lock from Ivelisse. That submission looked painful. Too bad there is an easy counter to escape. Dasha showed that by leaning back into a pin, so Ivelisse had to let go or lose.

Veda Scott was better this week on commentary. She was solid with her knowledge last week but a bit bland for my taste. This time, she did well using first-hand stories about the competitors to build them up. For example, Scott told how she’s been afraid of Diamante ever since Diamante showed no signs of pain when dislocating her elbow.

Give us your take on night 2 of The Deadly Draw. Which team are you predicting to win? Who stole the show in the ring?

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