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WWE Payback 2017: Bayley vs. Alexa Bliss full match preview

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Women’s championship match

A rivalry with roots in Developmental makes its way to Raw at Payback.

The Road to Payback

It’s been a long-time since these two were plucky babyface newcomers, high-fiving each other during a NXT match back in 2014...

While their time in WWE’s Orlando-based third brand was successful for both Bayley and Alexa Bliss, it would be hard to argue it wasn’t a little more successful for the Hugster. Sure, Bliss turned heel and really found herself - and a character that accentuated her strengths as a performer - but Bayley was the one who became champion, and the co-face of NXT.

Bayley’s arrival on Raw was anticipated for months, and foreshadowed with a big pay-per-view (PPV) mystery partner angle. Alexa being drafted to SmackDown was somewhat of a surprise, and left many asking if it wouldn’t have been better for her to spend some more time in Developmental.

Since the Summer of 2016, however, it’s been a different story.

You can’t say Bayley’s main roster run hasn’t been a success. She comes into Payback as the Raw Women’s champ after all, and following a successful defense at WrestleMania. But Bliss’ time on SmackDown included two title runs of her own, as she was fixture at the top of their women’s division and impressed management and fans alike with her microphone skills and ability to act in a variety of scenes and scenarios.

Now, the Superstar Shake-Up put the two back on the same brand. And it hasn’t stalled Alexa’s rise in the slightest, as she defeated Mickie James, Nia Jax & Sasha Banks in her second week on Raw to earn a title shot.

The only other wrinkle to their kayfabe angle is Bayley’s friendship with Sasha, which occassionally has shown flashes of the old Boss returning for her belt, and turning on her bestie. But for now, that seems to be back on hold, and even Banks’ involvement in the program only highlights the more interesting question... has Little Miss Bliss surpassed these Horsewomen?

What's at stake?

Haven’t you been paying attention?

Obviously, the top prize for the ladies on WWE’s flagship program. And with that red & white belt comes the perception of being the second most important women’s wrestler on the roster (cause, Charlotte Flair).

Neither of these performers are in danger of being cut or anything, but the rumor mill and fan debate will read a lot into who leaves Bayley’s hometown as champ.

Which is a lot different than the conversation which surrounded these two when they were appearing on the fledgling WWE Network in 2014.

Poll

Who will win?

This poll is closed

  • 55%
    Alexa Bliss
    (230 votes)
  • 44%
    Bayley
    (188 votes)
418 votes total Vote Now