The Women’s Tag Team Championship has given us a few memorable moments in its short history. However, it’s been largely a bust. Throughout 2018, there was a lot of momentum from fans and WWE superstars to (re)introduce the WWE’s Women’s Tag Team Championship. After months (and maybe even years) of petitioning, the titles debuted during a January 14 episode of RAW. They would be defended across RAW, SmackDown, and NXT. It was an exciting moment. It represented real change in the division. Unfortunately, due to a lack of planning from WWE creative, the titles failed to live up to the promise they represented.
Why It Failed
From the very start, I was apprehensive about the introduction of the title. Yes, I agreed that the women’s division was simply too large to have only three titles across all three brands. But, WWE has never put a premium on tag team wrestling. When the titles were first introduced, there were only a few cohesive tag teams (Riott Squad, The IIconics, and Fire and Desire [only one of which have actually held the titles]) and WWE never took the time to create a division. In fact, they weakened the pool by splitting up Fire and Desire and The IIconics in 2020. To fill the hole, WWE has opted to have superstars briefly join forces to challenge for the titles. If they win, they remain a team. If they lose, the team breaks up.
The lack of vision has led to strange tag teams, bizarre booking decisions, and an inconsistent feeling of importance. After starting off fairly strong, the titles mostly serve as a backdrop to the RAW or SmackDown Women’s Championship.
How to Make It Special Again
Fortunately, the past doesn’t need to dictate the future direction of the championship. A few weeks ago NXT announced the first Women’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic. The tournament includes eight tag teams competing in a single-elimination. The winner will challenge for the Women’s Tag Team Championship. It’s a nice start, honestly. However, it feels like at least half of these teams will split up permanently once they have been eliminated. If WWE hopes to elevate the title, it’s critical that they create a consistent pool of teams.
Merge the Tag Titles and Create a Midcard Title
With WWE so averse to highlighting tag team wrestling, it begs the question; Why even introduce the belt in the first place? I don’t have that answer for you. But, my best guess would be positive PR and a boost to ratings following the success of the Evolution event. If WWE’s unwilling to create a tag team division, then merging the titles may be option. The women’s division is too deep and too talented not to have at least one midcard title. With a midcard title, the women would have a chance to showcase their talents as a champion. And WWE wouldn’t have to rely on dubious alliances and start-stop pushes to showcase a title program.
I’m not sure if a tag team championship has ever been merged to its counterpart. However, a storyline could be written if a credible superstar like Asuka was able to defeat the defending tag team champions in a handicapped match and defend the titles as a single competitor. Eventually, other women in the single’s division would have the opportunity to challenge for the title in 1-on-1 matches. Would everyone love the storyline? No, probably not. Would it eventually be the right decision to further the development of the women’s division? Absolutely, yes.
WWE’s women’s division is as good as it ‘s ever been, and with the rise of so many promising, young NXT superstars, it’s only going to get better. While the Women’s Tag Team Championship was a worthy attempt to highlight women outside of the main event picture, it by-and-large has failed. The new title would respect what the previous title holders have accomplished while allowing WWE to focus on what they prioritize, building individual superstars.
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