The match has been made and the six women of the SmackDown roster are set to battle in a six pack challenge to determine the inaugural SmackDown Women’s Champion. Putting the decision to split the roster and have two titles between 11 women aside, SmackDown will need to make a statement with their choice and create a feud in doing so that makes people want to tune into the women’s division going forward.
Many dirt sheets are suggesting Nikki Bella is set to win the match, but this article is going to look at both who is going to win, as well as who OUGHT to win. From least to most likely, let’s break down each superstar and determine who should leave with the white and blue belt.
Carmella is probably the least likely to leave with the championship. She’s still very green and probably needed a bit more time in NXT. Unfortunately, splitting the rosters robbed her of development time and that leaves her well shy of being champion. On top of that, she just turned heel and needs to establish her character with the fan base before she can be given the title. Carmella is probably the only one of the six women who you can be confident in saying will categorically not win the championship.
Odds of winning: 1%
5th Alexa Bliss
One year from now, Bliss will be running this division – she’s that good. However, she’s another one who is new to the brand and still yet to really establish herself. Putting the championship on her wouldn’t be an issue because Bliss is good enough to make it valuable, but it’s hard to see them putting the title straight on someone who’s both just come up from NXT and hasn’t had championship experience anywhere in the past. She should be treated as a serious threat, but if you’re picking a heel to leave with the title, Bliss isn’t the right call just yet.
Odds of winning: 5%
Naomi has completely reinvented herself since debuting on SmackDown. Her entrance is unique and enough to get the crowd’s attention. Now, she just needs a chance to prove it in the ring because if she can show off her true ability, she’ll gain a lot of respect from those who haven’t seen it before. It’s hard to see her winning the title though as at this stage, she probably needs more time to establish this new character. She’s in a similar boat to Carmella where she is in a building phase. She will be a genuine championship contender, but not just yet. Not until she has a couple of quality matches and gets over as a babyface. She gets a slight nod over Bliss, because there’s always the possibility they decide to go with the wrestler-who-has-been-overlooked-for-so-long-winning-on-SmackDown angle.
Odds of winning: 5%
If they’re picking a heel to leave as the champion, Natalya is the option. Her feud with Charlotte was very underwhelming in that Natalya never really seemed like a championship caliber competitor. They never got a chance to have a good match, but her work in the feud itself was below par. SmackDown unfortunately don’t really have another option in terms of established heels though and if they want to create a heel champion for Becky or Nikki to chase, which is the route they should go, then Natalya is the option. However, they may go with a face to offset Charlotte on RAW.
Odds of winning: 29%
2nd Nikki Bella
While Nikki Bella is the person most likely to leave with the title according to dirt sheets, she wouldn’t be the right person to leave with the title. SmackDown right now is the cool brand. Putting Nikki Bella at the top of the women’s division would be against that philosophy. While Nikki brings the ‘star power’ and has recent championship experience, it would send a bad message for her to come straight in and win the title. Especially when there’s another babyface on the roster whom the audience deems deserves it more. Though, putting the title on Nikki could work in a different way…
Odds of winning: 40%
1st Becky Lynch
Becky is the best character on the roster. She’s the best wrestler on the roster and she’s the most popular of the six. Logically, she’s the choice to win the title. She’d fit perfectly with the wrestler-who-has-been-overlooked-for-so-long-winning-on-SmackDown angle and it’d provide a feel good moment for the brand to build momentum off. Despite all of that, it might be the right call keeping the title away from her. Becky winning the title is the feel good story of the entire SmackDown roster. Should it therefore happen in a six pack challenge? They might be better off taking their time, putting the title on Nikki or Natalya, and building to Becky winning at Survivor Series or the Royal Rumble. Becky Lynch as women’s champion is one of those moments that is worthy of confetti and pyro and the longer you wait, the more fans will get annoyed that others are being put ahead of her and the more popular she will get. So maybe Becky ought to be robbed here? Have her hit a BexPlex on Carmella, have Nikki throw her out of the ring and steal the pinfall. There’s your finish right there. Having said all of that, Becky is still clearly the person most worthy of being the women’s champion.
Odds of winning: 20%
What could potentially hold Bobby Roode back in NXT? Will Braun Strowman be the next Vladimir Kozlov? Who will be the next champion of the universe? LISTEN HERE for all this and more on this week’s Glorious Wrestling Podcast!