WWE invalidated the NXT women’s tag titles with Dusty Cup switch-up


This past Wednesday’s episode of WWE NXT 2.0 — another odd duck of an episode that contained some fun matches and the usual weird stuff — presented a main event that served as a microcosm for the good and the bad this brand exhibits on a weekly basis.

Said main event was the finals of the women’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic, which pitted the team of Kay Lee Ray and Io Shirai against Wendy Choo and Dakota Kai for the right to challenge Toxic Attraction members Gigi Dolin and Jacy Jayne for the NXT Women’s Tag Team Championships…or so one would think.

As expected with wrestlers the caliber of Ray, Shirai, Kai, and Choo, there is little to complain about when it comes to the match or the result — Ray and Shirai winning clean. The post-match developments are a different matter. See, instead of Kay and Shirai challenging for the tag titles, they instead opted to add themselves to the Mandy Rose vs. Cora Jade NXT Women’s Championship match at NXT: Stand and Deliver.

This switch to a Fatal-4-Way match at NXT Stand and Deliver undercut any value the NXT Women’s Tag Team Championships have.

Now, to be fair, there is always a chance that WWE switched things up due to an injury to one of the Toxic Attraction members. After all, there’s little reason to blame WWE for adjusting things when situations outside of its control occur. Of course, there’s nothing that says WWE couldn’t hold off on booking Dolin and Jayne vs. Shirai and Ray at a later date, but such a move would still be understandable.

However, if WWE made this move because it doesn’t trust Rose and Jade to put together a compelling one-on-one match…well, all due respect to those two, the promotion should’ve known that when it booked the match for Stand and Deliver, and changing things to make up for that mistake isn’t worth chipping away at what little credibility the tag titles have.

It’s bad enough that WWE didn’t have enough teams to challenge for the tag titles from the outset and proceeded to fill the women’s Dusty Cup with a bunch of makeshift teams (some of the “Odd Couple” variety, WWE’s favorite type of tag team), but to have the winners go “actually, we don’t care about the tag titles” tells the viewers to give the belts the same level of attention; as always, perception is reality in professional wrestling.

Keep in mind, these are championships that WWE supposedly created to give women’s duos in NXT something to fight over after squandering the full potential of the WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships. Those goals have never come to fruition, but now WWE has made it harder for itself to reach that endpoint (again, if this is injury-related, then it’s understandable).

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Of course, it’s never too late to make fans care about the titles. The formula is simple: build up champions and contenders that fans will emotionally invest in. But if this switch-up is any indication, that isn’t a priority for the company.