WWE SmackDown needed to send one more tag team to the Elimination Chamber Pay Per View for the Women’s Tag Team Championships match inside the Chamber, and they decided to pair Naomi up with Carmella. Though this is an admittedly random tandem, they could easily prove to be an awesome team together.
Naomi has been almost every babyface’s friend on WWE SmackDown, and it all began in the fall with Asuka, who helped her overcome the IIconics. The Empress and The Glow formed one of the most entertaining tag teams in WWE, as they meshed perfectly in the ring, using plenty of kicks and hip attacks to keep their opponents scrambling for answers. Furthermore, they had fun working together in the ring and backstage.
But Naomi wasn’t able to continue working with Asuka, because the greatest champion in NXT history had designs on finally winning gold on the main roster. And she did exactly that, avenging past title losses to Carmella and Charlotte Flair by grabbing the SmackDown Women’s Championship in the main event of TLC, defeating Charlotte and Becky Lynch – two of the world’s best – in the process. And Asuka has retained that title against Naomi and Becky since.
As a result of this, Naomi couldn’t tag with Asuka again, but since she had a brief partnership with Lana, that seemed to be in the cards. However, Lana is now a heel thanks to Rusev’s actions against R-Truth last week, when Rusev was unable to defeat Truth for the United States Championship.
That left Carmella as the most likely option for Naomi. The two WWE SmackDown superstars announced that they will form a tag team tonight, and they entered themselves (SmackDown doesn’t have enough tag teams to hold qualifying matches, which could play into the story at the Elimination Chamber with three teams from Raw and three teams from SmackDown in the match) into the Women’s Tag Team Titles bout in Houston on the 17th.
Mella and Naomi then proceeded to lose to Sonya Deville and Mandy Rose, who pinned Naomi after hitting her finisher, in what was an emotional Triple Threat loss (the IIconics, one of the favorites to win the new tag titles, were also in the match). But it made sense, because while Deville and Rose have been tagging for over a year, Carmella and Naomi still have to get on the same page.
Of course, they will get on the same page, and that will be awesome news for WWE fans, including those skeptical of this random pairing. But Naomi is one of the better wrestlers in WWE, and Carmella has joined her at that level by improving by leaps and bounds recently. She was a strong champion, and a recent Triple Threat match with Becky and Charlotte proved to the WWE Universe that they can no longer knock her in the ring.
Both Naomi and Asuka worked so well together because of their similarities in the ring. Naomi and Carmella may have even more similarities. Both are former cheerleaders who can perform incredibly acrobatic moves, including a variety of hurricanranas, and have some great kicks. Mella’s Code of Silence and Naomi’s submission move that won her the SmackDown Women’s Championship at WrestleMania 33 are both vicious, overlooked submissions that could play into their finishes. (Also, Naomi’s hot tag is awesome.)
Now because they are a new team, Carmella and Naomi aren’t favorites to win the Women’s Tag Team Championships at the Elimination Chamber. But they have three WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship wins in between them, meaning that the other tag teams in that match cannot take them lightly despite their lack of experience together.
Beyond the potential in-ring work and their credentials as former champions, both Naomi and Carmella are entertaining as hell in backstage segments. Carmella’s recent work with R-Truth has been tremendous, as she’s seamlessly transitioned from being an arrogant, over-the-top heel to a fun-loving, fan-favorite babyface. This tag team with Naomi could highlight more of Carmella’s great feel for the wrestling business and comedic timing, and it could also get more fans to praise Naomi’s strong, authentic babyface work in backstage segments.
This is a tag team born out of thin air, but Carmella and Naomi are both so talented that if they remain partners for a few months, they’ll undoubtedly become one of the WWE Universe’s favorite tandems. Both women have earned the audience’s respect as singles competitors with their consistent all-around improvements resulting from their hard work, so it stands to reason that they’ll have this same success in a tag team.