Episode 7 saw the quarterfinals of the Mae Young Classic. This round aimed to accentuate the strengths of every competitor, to the fire of Mercedes Martinez, the ruthlessness of Shayna Bazsler to the athleticism of Piper Niven. This was probably the best round regarding overall match quality. Here are the results for Episode 7 of the Mae Young Classic.
Mercedes Martinez vs Abbey Laith
This was a very good technical match. Starting with a test of strength, both women did a great job at lobbying and swaying the momentum between them during the match. Abbey Laith continued her role as the plucky baby face by hitting some great evasive offense, with her highlight being a cross body to the outside on Mercedes. Mercedes was a tweener during this match as she showed great fire while selling. Not getting in a lot of offense, the majority of what she did was stiff strikes and slaps, telling a cool story of showing a certain degree of disrespect when Abbey went for her signature offense.
The finish came when Mercedes managed to roll out of the Alligator Clutch and hit Abbey with her signature Fisherman Buster. Abbey looked great in the match and showed promise, a great sign for her probable future in NXT in mind. Mercedes could have gotten more offense in the make her look a little more dominant heading up against Shayna, but her ability to resonate as a badass with a chip on her shoulder helped her connect with the crowd. A very good match from these two.
Shayna Bazsler vs Candice Lerae
This match was easily Candice Lerae’s match of the tournament, while it also achieved their goal of making Shayna seem like the dominant force in this competition. Johnny Gargano was in Candice Lerae’s corner while Ronda Rousey and Jessamyn Duke were in Shayna Bazsler’s corner. Shayna showed complete disrespect towards Candice early, toying with her with kicks to the head before Candice was able to get the upper hand and hit an impressive Suicide Tornado DDT. She was then able to apply Ms Gargano’s Escape and the crowd bought that Shayna may tap out to Candice for a split second.
The ending came when Shayna reversed Candice’s swinging neck breaker into a rear-naked choke for the submission victory. The important part of the match came afterward when Shayna refused to let go of the choke, effectively establishing Shayna as the heel force of the tournament, similar to what they did with Pete Dunne during the UK tournament. Candice still looked sloppy in places, but she did up her game against Shayna. Jim Ross really sold Shayna as the dominant force, and this was a really effective way to showcase Shayna in this tournament. A short match, but one of the more important ones to the overall story they were able to tell through this tournament.
Toni Storm vs Piper Niven
Toni and Piper both had excellent showings in this match as they told the story of two friends fighting for a place in the next round. They started with a very impressive chain wrestling sequence to start the match, culminating with a handshaking, a nice showing of comradery between the two women. Piper then took control of the match, hitting a variety of cross bodies and power moves. Toni then hit her signature moves such as the hip attack and a backstabber, whilst also doing a great job of dodging Piper’s offense. The first real finisher kick out of the tournament occurred when Toni kicked out of Pipers Michinoku driver, leading to a great reaction from the crowd.
The finish came when Toni hit a second rope German Suplex on Piper before hitting a top rope leg drop on her for the pinfall. Piper was one of the standout performers of the tournament, as she was really able to resonate with the crowd. Her presence was a great addition to the tournament as she promoted body positivity by being a larger, yet very athletic girl. Toni is someone that the hardcore fanbase can really resonate with due to her alternative look, great reactions, and her promos. It was a really fun match and probably the match of the round.
Kairi Sane vs Dakota Kai
Kairi Sane continued her string of impressive matches with another very good match with Dakota Kai. For the two most likable women of the tournament, these girls had a hard hitting encounter. Dakota Kai was able to utilize a variety of unique kick variations, including a great running facewash kick and the scorpion kick. Kairi brutalized Dakota with a variety of hard chops and her great angled spear, which very well could be the best spear since Goldberg. Kairi was able to reverse the Del Rio Stomp by simply not holding the top rope, which surely pleased a large section of the Hardcore wrestling Fanbase.
The finish came when Kairi dodged Dakota’s circular helluva kick and hit her with an Alabama Slam before hitting her most picturesque elbow drop to date. Both girls looked great in this match. Dakota Kai has a unique quality about her in that she has somewhat of a crossover appeal similar to Bayley. Her bubbly personality and colorful gear appeal to kids while her wrestling ability, and to a degree her looks, can help her become popular with the hardcore fanbase. ‘The Big Dawg’ has a bright future in the WWE and is someone to watch for going forward. Kairi Sane is a star with a very high ceiling if there is one. She can effectively be the same as Asuka, a dominant champion, while having an underdog quality that Asuka didn’t quite have. These girls are two for the future in WWE.
- Mercedes Martinez def. Abbey Laith
- Shayna Bazsler def. Candice Lerae
- Toni Storm def. Piper Niven
- Kairi Sane def. Dakota Kai
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