And the second week of 2012 offers us a TNA PPV and the third in a succession of singles matches for the title. Meanwhile this week we had the Divas mostly out of the ring but still making their presence felt nonetheless.
Genesis - Mickie James vs Gail Kim* (Knockouts Championship):
This was a big improvement over their two previous matches which were only okay. I'll give Mickie her credit, she has been looking a bit better in the ring in this recent push though this feud hasn't really excited me much. I actually loved the stipulation of Madison having to be hung in the shark cage above the ring because it was just brilliant. I couldn't stop laughing and Madison played off it so well. As for Velvet being the possible new VP of the division, I would prefer to have her wrestling but I guess anything that gets her on TV is good enough. This match was pretty crisp and I enjoyed most of it, not getting bored like I did in the first match or feeling like they were holding back like the second. The ending was a bit silly though. If they had really sold the hate between Gail and Mickie then having Mickie use the brass knux would make more sense. If it had been Traci or Velvet or even Tara then it would make more sense. Nonetheless the match was still enjoyable even with the ending. I guess Mickie forfeits any claim to the title with that little stunt. Gail has still yet to get a clean title defence. 6.5/10
Raw - Eve vs Kane:
At least Beth Phoenix got a mention this week. Seriously the Royal Rumble is in two weeks and they haven't even bothered to build up any storyline for it. I'm actually foreseeing them leaving Beth off TV for the next two weeks and having her return competing in the Rumble. I actually wouldn't mind that idea as long as the rest of the Divas had maybe a mini-Rumble of their own to earn a title shot against Beth. There obviously seems to be a few challengers left out there even though Alicia Fox is the only one with an actual pinfall win over Beth. Anyway, I was thrilled that Eve was included in this storyline. People claiming that Eve and Zack's pairing is a punishment should take note that the two of them are in a high profile storyline and were featured in the main event of Raw. In the Raw Rebound the two of them were featured prominently, which I loved. It's great to have Eve in a big storyline and this could help build sympathy for her and help her get that rub with the fans she needs if she's going to be a top Diva in the future. I'll give the Raw writers credit, they have been giving the girls something to do while they're keeping the champ off TV for some reason. N/A
NXT - Maxine vs Alicia Fox:
The promo at the start was pretty good, almost Knockout-like with all the sexual innuendos. Alicia isn't exactly the strongest woman on the mic but she said most of her lines well enough. The match on the other hand was ridiculously short. It was pretty uninspired as well and their other match was a lot better. The exchanges looked awkward and the ending was too abrupt. Not to mention incredibly silly. It's not that big a deal to have Alicia win with a big move. Anyway it's also good to see Aksana on the show and I'm looking forward to the big wedding next week. Who knows what could happen? 4/10
Impact - ODB vs Winter:
Yes! More ODB and Eric Young. They're a great pairing and of course I want to see ODB get a push against Gail for the title. Some of ODB's best work in the past was against Gail and she could add some much needed colour to the division. On the other hand, perhaps pair her up with someone and feud for the tag titles. Anyway the match was fun and it got Winter and Angelina Love back on my screens which is welcome any time. It wasn't the most technical match but ODB missing the Bronco Buster made me lol. Which is funny considering I compared her to X-Pac a few months ago. Eric Young knocking Angelina dizzy with the Airplane Spin was great, as was the finish. Also, Madison continues to deliver comedy gold. As for the cage match, well at least we'll get an idea of what things would have been like at Lockdown though with Mickie's track record in those matches I'm not expecting much. 6/10
Superstars - Brie Bella vs Kelly Kelly:
And the first Superstars match of 2012 is a rematch from both Money In The Bank and Over The Limit. This was probably the longest Diva match this week and usually in WWE that goes hand in hand with being the best. It was standard stuff from Brie and Kelly, pretty much some similar moves as their last few matches but that one spot with the bridge into the arm reversals was really nice. Is it me or does Kelly kind of come across as a heel in the ring sometimes? She uses an illegal submission hold, gets pretty aggressive and does a lot of stomping. I guess if she does turn heel then she won't be too lost without her hurricanranas and headscissors. Perhaps losing constantly to the Bellas could prompt a heel turn from her? It's a thought considering Eve seems to be getting groomed to be the top Diva in the future and Kelly could make a good heel. Once again refreshing to see the twins get a win and usually beating a face two weeks in a row makes you a title contender in WWE. 6/10
Smackdown - Natalya vs Tamina:
This didn't even clock one minute as far as I know and yet was a million times better than last week. I guess Tamina did turn face anyway which I'm not too happy about. She has better ring presence as a heel and the heel side of the division is pretty shallow right now. I don't know why Natalya keeps getting squashed like this. I'm happy she's still a heel but she doesn't deserve to have to be the heel jobber right now. This match served no point except to show Tamina's a face now and Beth still isn't on TV. I hope to the lord this doesn't mean Tamina is getting the next push for the title. Unlike Eve, Kelly or Alicia, Tamina has yet to show actual brilliance in the ring and give us a hint that she could put on a great match. True Melina and Alicia got decent matches out of her but the likes of Alicia and AJ would be better candidates to feud with Beth. But on the bright side, I'm happy this week we had two Divas in main event storylines. Including AJ in the Daniel Bryan angle does raise a lot of questions such as will she turn heel along with him? The heel side is left with one vacancy after Tamina turning face but AJ can't play a heel believably so let's hope it doesn't go that way. You do have to lol at the crowd chanting "she's ok!" because she really should have gotten hit with a chair to be believably knocked out. 2.5/10
So a bust this week in terms of WWE as the Rumble approaches us and still no sign of the Divas' Champion. She did make history by competing in it before so perhaps they're waiting to bring her back then. Perhaps we're also getting ready for a certain Flawless return? And in TNA we have a big cage match to look forward to next week as well as hopefully more of ODB's antics with Eric Young.