Asuka vs. Nia Jax
While the big focus for the women at the Elimination Chamber pay-per-view (PPV) will be their championship Elimination Chamber match, they needed something for the Women’s Royal Rumble winner Asuka and Nia Jax, who was left out of the Chamber for some reason, to do. So they’re going to fight each other.
How did we get here? Honestly, there’s not much to it.
After she won the Rumble, Asuka was booked in single’s matches against top stars in the division. She defeated Sasha Banks in an incredible one on one match (one I’m still hoping we get to see at WrestleMania). Then she defeated Bayley.
It was the same night that Asuka defeated the Hugger that Kurt Angle announced tonight’s match, meaning there’s no real story to this outside they needed something for both of these women to do.
Last week, they built it to some degree when Nia attacked Asuka from behind during an interview and left her laying.
Now there’s a stipulation to this match, one that doesn’t make too much sense.
WWE.com mentions in their preview for this match the match that if Nia wins, she gets added to the Raw women’s title match at WrestleMania. Now that stipulation has been mentioned before, but I wanted to refer to the dot com piece because last week, Michael Cole said she’d be added to Asuka’s title match. That’s two different things.
It’s been established this year that the Rumble winner gets to pick which title they challenge for. Shinsuke Nakamura said he wants to face AJ Styles at WrestleMania, meaning he’s going to choose the WWE title. Asuka stared down both Charlotte and Alexa Bliss in the ring after she won her Rumble, though never hinted at who she’d pick since she was interrupted by the debuting, awkwardly pointing Ronda Rousey.
So going by what’s currently in print, if Asuka loses to Nia, what’s to prevent her from saying “OK, I’m just going to challenge Charlotte” ensuring she still gets a one on one match? Yes, Nia would still get a title opportunity for winning the match, but it wouldn’t punish the Empress for losing. (And that’s not to mention the rumors that Nia may face Alexa at WrestleMania, meaning that it looks like she could lose and get a Raw Women’s title match anyway.)
In the end, what’s the chance any of this is even going to matter? What’s the chance Asuka loses to Nia here?
In the WWE, it’s not going to be zero. Yes, it’d be crazy if WWE touted this big undefeated streak, Asuka wins the Rumble, and then loses on the next PPV. The winner of the first ever Women’s Rumble heading into her title match with no momentum would be ridiculous. But stranger things have happened. It was just this time last year that Charlotte’s PPV win streak was unceremoniously ended at a February PPV.
But it’s still highly unlikely. It’s more likely that Nia makes for a great obstacle for Asuka to overcome. Despite what Jonathan Coachman may say about Asuka never facing anyone the likes of Nia during her undefeated streak, the Empress actually faced Nia herself multiple times during it. Outside the match that happened just before the Royal Rumble where Asuka won by referee stoppage due a leg injury to Jax, they also feuded in NXT.
Tonight, the undefeated Empress of Tomorrow will face the powerful Nia Jax and if Nia wins, she will be added to the Raw title match... I think. I’m still not entirely sure about that stipulation regarding if she wins. But in the end, it probably won’t matter and that’s why they didn’t put that much thought into it.
WWE Elimination Chamber airs tonight at 8 EST on WWE Network. Keep it here to CagesideSeats.com for all of your Chamber coverage.
Who will win this match?
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