The in-ring showdown between Zelina Vega and RAW Women’s Champion Asuka on last night’s WWE RAW was done to set up a new feud between the two.
There had been speculation on WWE doing Vega vs. Asuka with Vega splitting away from Andrade and Angel Garza to become an in-ring competitor, and now PWInsider reports that the new feud was the plan as of last night. It’s likely that Vega will get her first title shot from Asuka at WWE Clash of Champions on September 27, but that match was not decided on as of Monday night at RAW.
On a related note, original plans for the Mickie James vs. Asuka finish had James tapping out to the Asuka Lock, according to PWInsider. As seen on RAW last night, the referee awkwardly called the match and it was announced that the referee ruled that James could no longer continue. The referee could be seen tending to James at ringside during the in-ring post-match segment with Asuka and Vega.
We reported earlier that Mickie is not injured, and that last night’s awkward finish was due to the referee botching the call as he thought James was hurt when she wasn’t. There had been some speculation on James suffering a shoulder injury, but that is not the case as she is fine.
In an update, PWInsider reports that the decision was made to ring the bell out of concern over James possibly being knocked out on her feet due to the way she was selling the previous move from Asuka. They added that James just did an excellent job at selling that she was out of it, so much that she fooled people overseeing the match, including the referee. There were different versions going around on who called for the finish, but the decision was made out of concern for James but she was fine.