We finally get this match, which was originally slated for Jan. 25th, putting Ruby Soho directly in the middle of the
Outsiders Freelancers vs Homegrown storyline and boy, did the ending of this match ever drive that point home.
Toni Storm & Saraya come out first and rip up a
plant’s fan’s sign and then threaten to spray paint her. Ruby Soho comes out and her ring gear looks eerily similar to the green & black theme that Toni Storm & Saraya have started using.
Ruby ends up making the save for the fan, lol. Commentary puts over that “Ruby has to make a decision which side she’s on”. And I ask: Why does she have to do that? Athena doesn’t have to do that. Ah well.
The start of this match is setup to have Ruby go one-on-one in the ring individually with Britt Baker then Toni Storm. I kept watching to see if there was anything overtly aggressive with Storm to say they’re definitely not in cahoots but Ruby delivering a backdrop to Toni proved that to me.
Toni, as she does, finds another creative way to work the Hip Attack into the match when she’s whipped into the ropes by Ruby and uses that momentum to throw her backside into Britt on the apron.
Britt Baker hits the spot where she hits a running neck breaker on one opponent which causes that opponent to DDT another opponent. It’s a bit contrived but that’s easily the best I’ve seen this move be hit. All three women nailed the timing perfectly. This credit extends to the semi-tower of doom spot but instead of a power bomb from the top it was a rollup from the middle rope. It’s an easy detail to miss when it’s done correctly but sticks out like a sore thumb if mistimed.
“No DQ in a 3-way”
When I start my own women’s wrestling federation (maybe I’ll call it the WWF), I’m going to do away with the rule whereby 3-way matches are automatically No Disqualification because it leaves me asking: Why wouldn’t Saraya be interfering from the sound of the bell? Why would she wait 8-minutes to get involved if it’s only advantageous? Anyway…
We get to a really interesting point in the match where Toni has Ruby in the Cloverleaf submission and then Britt puts Ruby in the Lockjaw but this is where Saraya enters the ring and starts beating up Britt. Since this was the main event, I suspect they were wary of time because I would’ve liked it if they let that moment of Ruby being in the submission breathe, maybe even give commentary time to speak on how each side is trying to get Ruby to submit to being on their side and now they’re literally trying to get her to submit in this match. One detail I did think was smart was to have Toni Storm cancel out Jamie Hayter with a Spinning DDT off the apron before Jamie could even get involved.
Your mileage may vary on the spot where Saraya sprays Toni’s backside before she does the Hip Attack. For me, I think when they were setting it up I thought it was pretty clever. In execution though, I wish it was left on the cutting room floor. I’ve seen fans who loved it without reservation though. I think at worst it was a cleverly conceived noble failure.
Ruby ends up being the beneficiary of this Hip Attack, taking out Toni Storm and rolling up Britt for the win. After the match Saraya and Jamie are on each side of Ruby bickering at her, I guess that she needs to “pick a side” still and Ruby shouts “ENOUGH!!!” but then gets entranced momentarily in the shine of Jamie’s World Title.
So, again, your mileage may vary. Without getting into some of my reservations with the overall story, I think this plot point whereby both sides want Ruby on their team is solid enough and was communicated extremely clearly. I’m a bit more of a “show don’t tell” type of fan so I would’ve liked this story told with more subtext. Like what I think would’ve been cool is if Jamie gets into Ruby’s face immediately following the match because Ruby pinned her friend. She’s got the belt looped around her arm. Saraya whips past Ruby, turnstiling her, and spearing Hayter taking themselves out of the ring but in the process of Ruby getting turned around, her arm hooked Jamie’s belt and now she’s standing in the ring alone holding the World Title at no fault of her own. In any case, this closing shot was meant to setup that it’ll be Jamie Hayter defending her World Title against both Ruby Soho & Saraya at Revolution. That’s what I expect, anyway. I know there’s some fans not enjoying this storyline. For me, it’s a solid story but it’s just colouring outside the lines a bit too much.