X

Ronda Rousey Loses WWE SmackDown Women's Title to Liv Morgan at Money in the Bank

Mike Chiari@@mikechiariFeatured Columnist IVJuly 3, 2022

Evan Agostini/Invision/AP

Ronda Rousey beat Natalya at Money in the Bank on Saturday to retain the SmackDown Women's Championship, but the celebration was short-lived because Liv Morgan cashed in her Money in the Bank briefcase she won earlier in the night.

Rousey initially caught Morgan in an ankle lock submission. Liv was able to fight out of it and kicked the champion in her left knee that had been weakened during the match with Natalya and rolled her up for the pin.

WWE @WWE

.<a href="https://twitter.com/YaOnlyLivvOnce?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@YaOnlyLivvOnce</a> IS THE <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SmackDown?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#SmackDown</a> WOMEN'S CHAMPION!!!<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/MITB?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#MITB</a> <a href="https://t.co/xST3omEG4u">pic.twitter.com/xST3omEG4u</a>

Prior to Morgan's cash-in, Rousey submitted Natalya with the armbar after the women traded submissions throughout the match.

Rousey locked Natalya in the sharpshooter at one point and did Shawn Michaels' old pose as she had the hold on.

WWE @WWE

πŸ™ŒπŸ™ŒπŸ™Œ<a href="https://twitter.com/RondaRousey?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@RondaRousey</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/MITB?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#MITB</a> <a href="https://t.co/3uGEgoTc5Y">pic.twitter.com/3uGEgoTc5Y</a>

Natalya returned the favor by getting Rousey in a sharpshooter on the ring apron.

WWE @WWE

INCREDIBLE!<a href="https://twitter.com/NatbyNature?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@NatbyNature</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/RondaRousey?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@RondaRousey</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/MITB?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#MITB</a> <a href="https://t.co/PRDx2ml41g">pic.twitter.com/PRDx2ml41g</a>

Rousey became SmackDown women's champion for the first time in May when she defeated Charlotte Flair in an I Quit match at WrestleMania Backlash, avenging a controversial loss to Charlotte at WrestleMania 38.

That marked the second title reign of Rousey's WWE career, as she previously held the Raw Women's Championship in 2018 and 2019 during her first stint with WWE.

Rousey's first title defense after beating Flair was an open challenge accepted by Raquel Rodriguez, who had recently debuted on SmackDown following a dominant run in NXT.

Ronda beat Raquel in a hard-fought match, leading to Rodriguez being given another opportunity to challenge for the title if she could beat the former UFC star in a championship contender match.

The match didn't have a definitive conclusion, though, as several SmackDown Superstars interfered, including Natalya.

With SmackDown's other women's wrestlers wanting a title opportunity, a six-pack challenge was booked with Nattie, Shayna Baszler, Rodriguez, Shotzi, Xia Li and Aliyah all taking part.

Natalya was victorious, making her next in line for a championship match against Rousey, who is her real-life friend.

Rousey and Natalya faced each other in a singles match on Raw in 2018 with Rousey prevailing, but Nattie looked to get some revenge Saturday.

The Queen of Harts even went to great lengths to soften Rousey up and get inside her head leading up to their match by attacking her on a couple of occasions.

Despite that, Rousey retained against Nattie in their latest encounter before losing the crown to Morgan afterward. It would seem like a safe bet to expect Rousey will challenge Morgan for the title, potentially at SummerSlam on July 30.


Listen to Ring Rust Radio for all of the hot wrestling topics. Catch the latest episode in the player below (warning: profanity).

🚨 SPORTS NEWS ➑️ YOUR INBOX

The latest in the sports world, emailed daily.