WWE Main Event may be a secondary show, but AJ Lee and Natalya tore the house down with this hidden gem for the Divas Title in 2014.
WWE Main Event never gets the same respect or recognition as Raw or SmackDown, which isn’t surprising considering it remains a lower tier show without nearly the same tenure. However, it would be a mistake to assume WWE Main Event doesn’t have anything you need to see.
The show’s “lesser” status actually helps it, because the intense micromanagement of Raw and SmackDown often falls by the wayside. Competitors often are given more time and freedom on WWE Main Event than they’ll ever be afforded on Raw or SmackDown, and that recipe creates the potential for some true hidden gems.
Back in 2014, one of those hidden gems came to fruition in a Divas Championship Match where reigning champion AJ Lee defended against Natalya. It was March 11, less than one month before WrestleMania XXX.
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AJ Lee was 268 days into a reign that would ultimately set the record for the longest Divas Championship reign at 296 days until Nikki Bella narrowly beat that record by five days a year and a half later. This wasn’t the first time AJ Lee had defended her title against Natalya.
On the contrary, AJ Lee defended the title in a Fatal Four Way Match at Night of Champions 2013 against Brie Bella, Naomi, and Natalya. She retained after just over five and a half minutes of action.
A few short months later, Natalya challenged AJ Lee for the title in singles action at TLC 2013. AJ Lee retained again after just over six and a half minutes of action.
Those two pay-per-view title matches combined came out to 12 minutes and 11 seconds of action, only half of which was exclusively Natalya and AJ Lee. They weren’t bad matches, and the competitors did everything they could with the time they were given.
On March 11, 2014, AJ Lee and Natalya were actually given the opportunity to show what they were truly capable of. For 14 minutes and 19 seconds, longer than both previous pay-per-view matches combined, these two women put on a wrestling clinic.
The psychology, limb targeting, and selling were all absolutely top-notch. Another nod has to go to Tamina, who was ringside as AJ Lee’s bodyguard and played her role perfectly in this contest. If you just sit back and listen to the crowd, you can hear their investment and the impact the match is having on them.
If you’ve got 15 minutes and you want to see some truly fantastic women’s wrestling from a time before WWE’s self-proclaimed Women’s Evolution, a time period that could not have existed had the company not so consistently held down women in the preceding years, find WWE Main Event from March 11, 2014.
Weekly WWE television may have developed a habit of pretending WWE Main Event doesn’t exist, but you’re missing out on some spectacular wrestling if you take the same stance. If you haven’t seen much of WWE Main Event, this episode and this Divas Championship Match are the perfect way to remedy that.