WWE: Nikki Cross’ title match a precursor to future singles championship run

WWE, Nikki Cross Credit: WWE.com
WWE, Nikki Cross Credit: WWE.com /

At WWE Extreme Rules, Nikki Cross showed she’s ready to be a singles champion.

WWE star Nikki Cross was booked heavily as an underdog giving deference to Bayley’s long SmackDown Women’s title reign leading into Sunday’s Horror Show at Extreme Rules Pay-Per-View,

Cross won a Fatal Four-Way match on SmackDown just to get the opportunity, leading to the continued animosity between the Golden Role Models, Bayley and Sasha Banks, and the dip of Cross and Alexa Bliss.

Few would argue Bayley’s combined run with Sasha Banks hasn’t been among the better-written and performed storylines currently running in WWE. Whatever ways Bayley has elevated the SmackDown Women’s Title, she’s gone without many memorable opponents in championship matches in her over 280 days with the belt.

Proving very game in the opening moments and standing out throughout the contest, Cross got in rapid-fire offense with her neckbreacker and multiple top rope cross bodies, before doing the same outside of the ring to get Bayley reeling.

Cross showed the heart of an underdog as should be no surprise, kicking out of a Bayley to Belly and showing the intuitiveness — some may just call it reckless abandon — that she has thrived upon when employing it since her NXT days, incorporating the apron, ring post, hand-to-throat thrusts and more.

The Golden Role Models worked to together to put Cross away, showing that even the long-established champ, one of the most decorated wrestlers the women’s division has known and thus one of the more decorated wrestlers in the company’s history (who would have seen that coming three years ago?), needed brass “BOSS” knuckles to keep down Cross.

Already with a championship pedigree, having become the first two-time winner of the Tag Team Championships with Alexa Bliss, Cross knows what it means to hold a title. Her reigns with Bliss, while not super heavy on strong contenders, were still convincing that the duo belonged at the top of the division. Even in dropping the titles to the Kabuki Warriors at the 2019 Hell in a Cell PPV, Bliss and Cross maintained a presence in the division long enough to lead to this past Wrestlemania, where they regained the titles from Asuka and Kairi Sane.

Cross possessed the charisma and likeability that would make her entertaining as a champion, regardless of whether she’s in a match frequently or not, and her continued relationship with Bliss — until what is likely to be a heartbreaking split in the future — keeps them both in the limelight, especially so when in a program with Sasha and Bayley that could keep going but probably shouldn’t.

There’s no urgent need to strap up Cross. Her character is built in a way where it feels natural that she could build up a head of steam or be opportunistic in earning a singles title shot.

The Chaos of Cross’ 2017 NXT Women’s Title bout with Asuka is still the shining example of what Cross could be capable of under ideal big-match circumstances. Adding on to what she’s done on WWE television for the last few years with something special like that, and that’s more than enough to see Cross realize a championship dream.

Next. An interview with Karrion Kross. dark

For all these reasons, and hopefully more time to build a cohesive story that unites the WWE fandom behind her, this all could lead to a special women’s title win, be it SmackDown or Raw, and a unique reigning champ who’s just a little “unhinged” as the commentary team likes to say, but even more determined.