History is Made at WWE's Hell in a Cell 2016
Image courtesy of Pix123.com

History is Made at WWE's Hell in a Cell 2016

WEST LONG BRANCH, N.J. – Each year, World Wrestling Entertainment holds a live pay-per view event on their network called Hell In a Cell. A “Hell in a Cell” match is basically a larger version of a cage match. The “cell” is a gigantic steel structure that surrounds the ring. Unlike a regular WWE match, there are no disqualifications or count outs. The only way to win is by pinfall or submission. Being that there are no disqualifications, wrestlers are encouraged to use any sort of weapon they can find from under the ring to defend themselves – whether that be a steel chair, table, or even a kendo stick. This year’s match was held at TD Garden in Boston on October 30th.
WWE has not held too many Hell in a Cell matches in the past, due to the massive injury risks it presents for all wrestling stars involved. However, this year, WWE decided they were going to have three separate cell matches in the same night. The first match was for the United States Championship belt. Roman Reigns took on Rusev in a fight that went deeper than a battle for the belt and became extremely personal. The second one was for WWE’s Marquee Championship: the Universal Title. In that match, Kevin Owens took on “the Architect” Seth Rollins. Both of these matches delivered all the excitement the audience could hope for and then some. However, that is not the main reason why the TD Garden was sold out on Sunday night.

Image courtesy of Bleacher Report
Image courtesy of Bleacher Report

The crowd really came to witness history. A quick backstory: in July of 2015, WWE decided to start what was called the “Women’s Revolution”. For years, women who worked for WWE were considered to be more about glitz and glam than they were actual professional wrestlers. So, WWE decided to get rid of that narrative, and they started to feature more women’s matches on a regular basis. Fast forward to October 30, and for the first time in WWE history, a women’s match was set to be held inside Hell in a Cell. Anyone who has watched and loved WWE for as long as I have (17 years and counting), knows that this was an unprecedented event. Sasha Banks was set to take on Charlotte Flair for the WWE Women’s Championship.
The match not only lived up to the hype, but it kept the crowd on their feet chanting throughout the entire match. The women truly stole the show. Banks is originally from Boston, so she was the crowd favorite, while Flair was booed mercilessly. Before the match even began, as both women were watching the cell lower and encapsulate the ring, Flair hit Banks with a cheap shot and knocked her out onto the floor. She then used the announcer’s table as a weapon, and power-bombed Banks spine first through the table. The medic on scene had to call for a stretcher, as it seemed Banks was going to have to forfeit the match and the title due to being incapacitated. However, as the ring announcer was set to declare Flair the winner, Banks jumped off the stretcher, pushed the referee out of the way and demanded that the match begin.
Image courtesy of 411Mania
Image courtesy of 411Mania

The two would go on to have a battle for the ages. Weapons were used early and often. Flair got put through a table as well, and both women received multiple steel chair shots all over their bodies. After about a solid 45 minutes of intense competition, Flair busted out her signature move, “Natural Selection,” to take the victory and become the WWE Women’s Champion for the third time. Even though Banks had the hometown advantage, she was not able to pull out a win in the biggest women’s match of all time. Despite rooting against Flair for much of the night, the crowd gave her their respect in response to the incredible danger she put her body through for their entertainment. Overall, this was a huge night for the WWE network, who has seen a dip in their ratings as of recent. This match gained traction around the world; throughout the night, WWE was the top trend on Twitter.
It will be interesting to see how this storyline will play out moving forward, for both Flair and Banks. But for now, one thing is for sure: the two fighters stole the show, and more importantly, made history while doing it.

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