Layla has done it once more against Beth Phoenix and defended her Women's Championship title belt at WWE No Way Out.
The champion has had Phoenix's number in their recent meetings—with the exception of the June 11 non-title match on Raw SuperShow—and tonight was no different.
Layla combined the perfect amount of showmanship and talent to beat her more physically gifted opponent at the IZOD Center in East Rutherford, New Jersey.
The champion extended her pay-per-view winning streak to three matches by pinning Phoenix. This was a rematch from Over the Limit last month, and it ended with the same result.
Layla toyed with Phoenix at the beginning of the match, mocking her challenger and baiting her into chasing her around the ring for a few seconds. It wasn't all fun and games once Phoenix got a hold of Layla and tossed her into the barricade outside of the ring, but Layla pulled through nonetheless.
The difference between the two was Layla's execution. Phoenix picked Layla up above her head, presumably setting up a slam, but the champion countered it into a huge spinning DDT and narrowly missed a three count.
Phoenix's strength helped her regain control for a few seconds, as she picked Layla up and shouldered her into the turnbuckle. That wasn't enough, though. Layla retaliated with a neck breaker and covered up a motionless Phoenix for a pinfall.
Layla showed once again why she is the No. 1 diva in the WWE. Becoming a fan favorite doesn't just mean winning a lot of matches, it means you have to get the crowd to look at you affectionately. That's exactly what Layla does, and it's exactly what makes her so great.
Forget about the tight leather outfits, the high leather boots and the scantily-clad appearances. Layla is a showman—or a show-woman, rather.
It's becoming increasingly evident that speed and agility in the diva division typically trumps the power tactics. While Phoenix goes lumbering around the ring, ramming and slamming her opponents, Layla prances around the ring with grace and elegance en route to victory.
The diva matches are usually inconsequential to me, but I've enjoyed watching Layla recently because of the way she works the crowd and the ring. If she continues to put on performances like this, we're going to see her retain the belt for a long time.
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