Is AEW testing the waters for a Britt Baker face run already?

All Elite Wrestling
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When Britt Baker won the All Elite Wrestling Women’s World Championship, few fans likely guessed that former champion Nyla Rose would step up as “The Doctor’s” first challenger.

This isn’t to say that Rose is unworthy of a title shot or that the booking doesn’t make sense. Going by her win-loss record, “The Native Beast” is one of the better-protected wrestlers in AEW’s women’s division, and she did pin Baker in the quarterfinals of the AEW Women’s World Title Eliminator Tournament last February. Add in Baker naming Rose as a “conspirator” and holding her partially responsible for the leg injury Baker suffered last year, and this program has all the animus that it needs.

That said, it’s a heel vs. heel pairing, and with neither Baker nor Rose doing much to endear themselves to the audience, there isn’t much of an incentive to back one over the other when they finally clash for the belt on Night Two of Fyter Fest. However, AEW may have other reasons for booking this program.

Is AEW gauging interest in a Britt Baker babyface turn?

Since turning heel in January 2020, Baker has become one of the hottest acts in wrestling. As is usually the case when this happens, fans have begun cheering Baker at AEW shows, appreciating the performance in spite of how they’re supposed to feel about the character. On the Double or Nothing go-home episode of AEW: Dynamite, she received a huge reaction. That carried over to her title match against Hikaru Shida at the pay-per-view. Rinse and repeat for the post-PPV Dynamite.

With that in mind, viewing this feud as a temperature check for another babyface Baker run isn’t the wildest idea in the world.

Of course, it’s also possible that this program is meant to allow fans to get the cheers for Baker out of their system before pivoting back to booking her against babyfaces. After all, the promotion has more than enough popular, credible distaff protagonists to keep Baker occupied for a few months, so there shouldn’t be a rush to turn Baker anytime soon.

Who knows, this program could instead spark the start of a Rose face turn where AEW rekindles some of the dissension between her and Guerrero from last year (keep in mind that Rose worked as a face against Baker in the Eliminator Tourney match). Again, neither wrestler has come across as more likable than the other, so this starting the journey to a white-hat(ish)-wearing Rose is just as possible and arguably more logical.

Or, I’m reading too much into this storyline and this is just a one-off program where Baker gains some credibility by beating the dominant monster heel and both go right back to antagonizing babyfaces.

Next. Looks like we’re getting Bayley vs. Bianca Belair…..again. dark

We’ll have a better idea of what AEW’s long-term plan is once this feud ends.