(Click here for the link to the match on the WWE Network: http://network.wwe.com/video/v33396365?contextType=wwe-show&contextId=wwe_nxt&contentId=78122256&watchlistAltButtonContext=series )
Charlotte vs Natalya is the first of two Women’s match in the WWE Network’s 100 Best Matches…List, which is a shame. For example, back in the early 2000s, Lita and Trish had some great matches. Maybe some of those matches were deserving of being in the Best 100 list. However, the brains behind the 100 Best Matches…List obviously thought there was only room for two women’s matches. And, quite frankly, Charlotte vs Natalya puts anything that Lita and Trish did to shame (my memories of watching Lita wrestle are always punctuated by a fear of her injuring herself or her opponent. No doubt, she put everything into her matches, but she was dangerous in the ring).
I had seen this match before, as I became a big fan of NXT after watching NXT: R-Evolution. It encouraged me to go back and see what I had missed, especially ravings about the Women’s matches. Charlotte vs Natalya is where I started. From the very beginning of the match, you know you are in for a treat. The presence of Ric Flair (in Charlotte’s corner) and Bret ‘The Hitman’ Hart (in Natalya’s corner) give the bout a sense of history. It feels like a long, storied family feud coming to a head. With little exaggeration, the bout flows like one would between Hart and Flair in their prime. These ladies know how to wrestle and how to build a match up. Slow chain wrestling, submissions, counter submissions and reversals all lead up to the big moves that signal the ending of the match (in one particular big move, Charlotte pulls Natalya off the apron and on to the padded floor).
It is the match of NXT: Takeover. Wrestling seems to come natural to both of these ladies, and if you had the misfortune to watch their match on WWE Raw on December 8th 2014 you would be forgiven if you thought they couldn’t wrestle. But ignore that, they were only given a few minutes to wrestle. During NXT: Takeover, they are given freedom and time to put on a classic women’s match.
VERDICT: 9/10. Of course, in the name of equality, there should be more women’s matches in the 100 Best Matches…List. But, as it is, nothing comes close to Charlotte vs Natalya…apart from the match at #85!
Does this match belong in the WWE Network’s Best 100 Matches To See Before You Die? Leave your comments below!
Click here for #98 The Great Sasuke, Gran Hamada and Masato Yakushiji vs bWo Japan (Take Michinoku, Terry Boy & Dick Togo) (ECW Barely Legal 1997)
Click here to view my list of reviews of the WWE Network’s 100 Best Matches To See Before You Die