Another week down, only one more to go!
With four more women punching their ticket to the second round, we’re almost finished with the first round of the Mae Young Classic. Only four spots now remain, with the final match-ups taking place next week.
Personally, I thought this week’s episode was a step up from last week. The matches as a whole were a lot more cohesive and entertaining from start to finish. Now without further ado, let’s get into it!
First Round: Kaitlyn vs. Kavita Devi
Right away we got to see a familiar face, as the former WWE superstar, Kaitlyn, took on Kavita Devi.
In a relatively short bout that saw Devi control most of the momentum, it was Kaitlyn who would eventually reign supreme after hitting her patented spear.
Everyone knew the point of this match was to show that Kaitlyn hadn’t missed a beat since returning to the ring, and it achieved that to a degree. However, I think they tried to show off Devi a little too much and forgot to give the Hybrid Diva enough time to show off more of her skills. Besides the small amount of offense Kaitlyn had at the beginning and her comeback at the end, it was all Devi.
Even with the tiny sample size we received, it was still clear that Kaitlyn still has what it takes to step between those ropes. Her comeback story will continue into the second round, but she has a tall task ahead of her in Mia Yim.
First Round: Toni Storm vs. Jinny
Up next was a battle of NXT UK superstars, with Toni Storm facing off against Jinny.
These two have quite the history battling in Progress Wrestling, so they knew each other well going into this match-up. While Jinny gave her all she could handle, Storm prevailed after downing her with Strong Zero.
It’s obvious that Storm is a heavy favorite and will undoubtedly go far in this tournament. That being said, I’m glad they gave Jinny plenty of time to show what she’s made of. Don’t let her looks fool you, the Fashionista can hit hard. She gave Storm a run for her money and should be someone to watch in NXT UK. I just wish they had more time considering the matches they’ve put on before, but it was still very good.
Storm is a star and fans know what she’s capable of night in and night out. She’s moving on and that definitely won’t be the last time I say that. Like Michael Cole said, “Look out, a Storm’s a comin’.”
First Round: Karen Q vs. Xia Li
Then there was the highly-athletic Karen Q going up against the hard-hitting Xia Li.
In a back and forth match-up, it was Li emerging victorious after nailing Q with a vicious spinning axe kick.
This one was highly entertaining from the get-go and the crowd was into it from the opening bell. If you like seeing a lot of punches and kicks being thrown around, then this match was for you.
One thing I didn’t get was why they backed off Q being the heel. She slapped Li and mocked her early on, but after that there wasn’t any more heelish behavior and it was like it never happened.
Regardless, I really liked how both women were able to shine. Q was able to show off her gymnastics background, while Li showed off her Chinese martial arts background quite nicely. After an early exit last year, Li now gets her chance to show more of what she’s made of inside the ring.
However, she won’t have it easy in the second round, as she has to face off against the Virtousa, Deonna Purrazzo.
First Round: Mia Yim vs. Allysin Kay
In the final match of the night, the Frenemies World Tour was renewed when Mia Yim clashed with Allysin Kay.
This match was the kind of contest you expect to see in the Mae Young Classic. Both women went back and forth and pushed each other to their limits. Once the dust settled, it was Yim advancing to the second round after hitting Kay with Sole Food from the second rope.
I think this was even better than Killer Kelly vs. Meiko Satomura, and that’s saying something. Having such a well-documented rivalry, Yim and Kay have an undeniable chemistry in the ring and this match proved it. Both women were given plenty of time to shine, trading blows and giving each other all they could handle. They did not hold back, especially with Yim’s ring post spot.
It was a shame to see Kay get eliminated so early, but she sure went down swinging. Hopefully this won’t be the last time we see her in a WWE ring.
Yim looks much more determined and dangerous this time around, which is a bad sign for whoever crosses her path. Her opponents better watch out, starting with Kaitlyn in the next round.