The Deadly Draw: Fantasy-booking the AEW Women’s Tag Team Cup Tournament
Late July, All Elite Wrestling (AEW) announced they would be holding a new all-women tag team tournament dubbed AEW Women’s Tag Team Cup Tournament: The Deadly Draw.
The single-elimination tournament consists of 16 women who form eight tag teams, created by a random draw. The specific rules for the tournament are as follows:
- The tournament is a random draw.
- All competitors must draw a color.
- Matching colors will become a team.
- Selections are final and cannot be appealed.
The controversial tournament is already well underway—the semi-finals will air Monday, August 17. All of the teams and the current standings can be seen in the tweet below.
While it’s not clear what the winners will receive, it’s pretty clear it won’t be tag team titles of their own. What’s even clearer, is that AEW had no intention of using preformed tag teams that already existed in the indie scene, where the wrestlers are hurting the most.
Many of the women in The Deadly Draw have wrestled against each other in various promotions. In some cases, the women in this tournament have wrestled with each other in a tag team, at some point in their careers. The choice to not utilize existing tag teams, however, is disheartening.
So, what if AEW had created the tournament around tag teams that did exist already?
Fantasy booking is just that—choosing what you would have rather seen happen, booking wise, and letting the tape play out. The choices made in the fantasy tournament below are only one person’s preference, but you can’t deny it would’ve made for some great wrestling.
In this version of The Deadly Draw, the unfortunate barriers of COVID-19, booking concerns, and banned travel don’t exist (this is fantasy booking, after all).
There’s still 16 women in eight teams, as listed below:
- The Nightmare Sisters
- Twisted Sisterz
- The Woke Queens
- Bird and the Bee
- Sea Stars
- Swole Family
- Jungle Kyona and Konami
- Medusa Complex
The Nightmare Sisters vs. The Twisted Sisterz
The Nighmare Sisters (Brandi Rhodes and Allie) announced almost immediately after the tournament announcement that they would form a team, bypassing the rule of needing to draw teammates randomly. No one is particularly surprised by this move, but it doesn’t happen to matter much. The Twisted Sisterz are brutal.
Twisted Sisterz debuted in November 2016 during Night #4 of the Stardom Goddesses of Stardom 2016 tour, making the team nearly five years old. They’ve appeared in dozens of promotions as a tag team, which means they’ve faced more than enough opponents to be able to confidently take Allie and Brandi out of the tournament.
The Twisted Sisterz have held gold together, and have the chemistry and history to make for a winning tag team. They get this win, easily.
Winner: The Twisted Sisterz
Woke Queens vs. Bird and the Bee
If we’re using plain logic, Bird and the Bee (Willow Nightingale and Solo Darling) would easily overpower Valkyrie and Debbie Keitel with their experience, team chemistry, and pure skill.
But, as Woke Queens usually do, they manage to squeeze a surprise win out of the match, and advance to face the Twisted Sisterz in the semi-finals. And let’s face it, probably off to grab some coffee.
Winner: Woke Queens
Sea Stars vs. Swole Family
The Sea Stars (Delmi Exo and Ashley Vox) is another long-lasting team who has gone through battle together and came out the other side stronger. With nearly 100 matches together, there’s no way they don’t win, right?
Well, normally I would agree, but Big Swole and Nicole Savoy have the energy, family-like friendship, and hard-to-come-by talent that is powerful enough to overpower any team.
Sorry Sea Stars. You didn’t have a chance.
Winner: Swole Family
Jungle Kyona and Konami vs. Medusa Complex
Jungle Kyona and Konami have worked as a tag team in various forms for over three years. As members of Tokyo Cyber Squad, Kyona and Konami have nearly ran through everyone on the Stardom roster with ease and fierceness. They’ll need that character and stamina when they face their opponents, Medusa Complex.
Medusa Complex (Charli Evans and Millie McKenzie) are young, foul-mouthed, and brutally deliver pain. In the words of Evans, they are “here to f*** sh** up.” Their attitude won’t be enough to overturn the talent of Kyona and Konami, though, and the two Stardom standouts will move forward to face Swole Family.
Winner: Jungle Kyona and Konami
Twisted Sisterz vs. Woke Queens
As much fun as Woke Queens like to have in the ring, and as high-energy as they can be, the won’t be enough to make it through another round, especially against some of the hardest working wrestlers in the business. The Sisterz move to the finals.
Winner: Twisted Sisterz
Swole Family vs. Jungle Kyona and Konami
In what could easily be the toughest match of Swole Family’s career, Kyona and Konami take the pair through the ringer.
Their ability to adapt and change under pressure will give Swole Family the push they need to overcome the certain challenges they’ll face in this high-paced match. The family that tags together, stays together. In this case.
Winner: Swole Family
Twisted Sisterz vs. Swole Family
It’s the moment of truth, who will take home the big tournament trophy, and in my fantasy tournament, be the inaugural AEW Women’s Tag Team Champions?
Twisted Sisterz are just that—twisted. They’ll try every trick under the sun, play every head game, and squeeze every pinfall attempt into a two-point-nine disappointment. What they won’t have, though, is Swole.
Big Swole and Nicole Savoy will have the fans rooting for them, the sheer determination to allow anything to happen, and the love and respect for each other that will assist in making the finals drenched in emotion.
And like the old idiom says, blood is thicker than water…or in this case, tears and sweat. Swole Family will pull out the stops to break Twisted Sisterz, and they’ll succeed, but only by the skin of their teeth.
The Deadly Draw Winners: Swole Family, by pinfall.
There’s so many amazing women’s tag teams already in existence in different wrestling promotions and markets. It’s not easy to book like normal, because our sense of normal has completely changed.
But, if AEW wants to gain the trust of their fans back, they’ll start to listen to them. It’s fair to assume some people complain because they like to complain, but some of us just want to see wrestling, and in particular women’s wrestling, to be the best it can be, with the best talent, allowing for that talent to get the shine they so rightfully deserve.
How would you fantasy book The Deadly Draw? Share your teams and ideal wins below and on Twitter. Be sure to mention @BellToBelles when you do!