Editorial Columns

Don’t Turn The Paige On This Tag Team

Neville Triplett takes a look at Paige’s team of Asuka and Kairi Sane and whether they were worthy of all the hype.

As the newly crowned tag team champions, the IIconics made their first ever title defence against the Brooklyn Belles the night after WrestleMania 35 on RAW, an unexpected visitor watched on.

Billie Kay and Peyton Royce had claimed the titles by winning a fatal 4-way match at WrestleMania 35. Title defence number one the following night was a lopsided affair against the undermanned Brooklyn Belles, who were apparently 45-0 in victories prior to this match. Unfortunately for them and their record, the IIconics put them away with relative ease.

The visitor in question that night and keeping her eye on the proceedings from backstage was none other than WWE royalty Paige. Following the match, Paige announced that she would be debuting a new tag team at this year’s SuperStar Shake-Up on April 15th & 16th. A visibly agitated Paige commented backstage to Kayla that she would be bringing “an impressive tag team of my own” to the upcoming SuperStar Shake-up. The IIconics immediately responded via social media with Peyton Royce tweeting out “Bring em all on!” while Billie Kay taunted with “Definitely not worried… Na mate, just wondering what tag team @RealPaigeWWE was talking about.” 

Tuesday night on SmackDown Live, all was revealed. Paige introduced Kairi Sane, the pirate princess and latest NXT call up, and Asuka as the tag team which she will represent. She referred to the duo as the next WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions. The IIconics, Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville of Absolution, Bayley, Ember Moon and Becky Lynch were all in the ring when the unveiling of the Paige’s tag team was announced. After the announcement Paige unleashed Asuka and Sane on unsuspecting occupants in the ring.

Let’s get down to discussing this newly formed tag team represented by Paige.

Asuka has experienced success in both singles and mixed singles action. She held the NXT Women’s title for an unprecedented 523 days before taking her talents to the WWE. Asuka took the WWE by storm after debuting on Monday Night RAW. On top of these accomplishments, she was the first ever winner of the Women’s Royal Rumble. 

The second half of Paige’s creation is the pirate princess, Kairi Sane, a former champion in her own right both in NXT and in Japan.  Fresh from NXT, Sane is paired with the more experienced and recognized Asuka, presumably to give her instant credibility and allow her to build name recognition of her own. Sane kicked in the door of NXT by winning the Mae Young Classic. The pirate princess was a participant in the first ever Women’s Royal Rumble where she was eliminated by Dana Brooke 4 minutes and 49 seconds into the match. 

The pairing of Asuka and Kari Sane provide an instant threat to the IIconics as Paige has already predicted that the tag team she created, as a mad scientist, will become WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions. This feud between The IIconics and Paige’s stable looks to immediately inject some excitement into the women’s tag team division. 

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