Video: Charlotte Flair Defeats Asuka, Wins SmackDown Live Women's Title

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistMarch 27, 2019

WWE wrestling stars Sasha Bank (R) and Charlotte Flair (L) fight during a WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment) women's fight at the Olympic hall in Munich, southern Germany, on November 3, 2016.  / AFP / CHRISTOF STACHE        (Photo credit should read CHRISTOF STACHE/AFP/Getty Images)

Asuka's road to WrestleMania 35 took a massive detour Tuesday night on SmackDown Live.

In a previously unannounced match, Charlotte Flair defeated The Empress of Tomorrow for the SmackDown Women's Championship. She forced Asuka to submit in the Figure Eight Leglock.


It's QUEEN vs. EMPRESS as @MsCharlotteWWE battles @WWEAsuka for the #SDLive #WomensTitle! https://t.co/lImPi3Ic0q

WWE Universe @WWEUniverse

YES, QUEEN. 👑 #SDLive #WomensTitle @MsCharlotteWWE @WWEAsuka https://t.co/JtEI8hUGiH


😮😮😮😮😮😮😮😮😮 @MsCharlotteWWE has DEFEATED @WWEAsuka to become the NEW #SDLive #WomensChampion! #SDLive #WomensTitle https://t.co/9FF3aUiLj7

With WrestleMania less than two weeks away, many fans were left puzzled by the fact WWE had still to announce whether Asuka would be defending the SmackDown title. Now, it would appear that was all part of the plan.

Of course, the obvious question is how this impacts the Triple Threat match between Flair, Ronda Rousey and Becky Lynch for the Raw Women's Championship.

The Irish Lass Kicker offered her two cents about The Queen's victory:

The Man @BeckyLynchWWE

She did less to earn that title shot than the Wrestlemania one. Asuka deserves so much better.

Perhaps WWE envisions building the SmackDown Live women's division around Flair after WrestleMania and wants to accelerate that process. And should she fail to win the Triple Threat match, she'll have her newly won belt as a consolation prize.

Title unification could be an option as well. However, presenting that storyline so close to The Show of Shows seems unlikely, and the women's division as a whole is too good to have only one championship—unless the promotion plans to do the same with the universal and world titles, too.

There's no question Flair's victory adds another dimension to the main event of WrestleMania 35.