SmackDown Women's Championship Match Added To WWE Night Of Champions

Rhea Ripley calls out Raw superstar to title match this weekend.

Rhea Ripley Natalya

WWE Raw superstar Rhea Ripley will defend her SmackDown Women's Championship against fellow Raw wrestler Natalya at Night of Champions this weekend.

Ripley issued the challenge during a backstage interview Monday night, calling out Neidhart after Nattie ran in to save Dana Brooke from a post-match beating a couple weeks ago. The feud itself doesn't carry much juice, but it will mark Rhea's second title defense, her first coming earlier this month at Backlash, where she defeated Zelina Vega.

Natalya came over to Raw during the draft, though she hasn't had a televised match on the brand yet. She and Rhea have had two televised singles matches before, with Ripley winning both summer 2021 contests.


With such a short, lackluster build and the manner in which the match was made, it's highly unlikely we're seeing a title switch at Night of Champions. Rather, this match rounds out the card a bit and gets rising star Ripley on the show.


Despite being a Raw superstar, Ripley still carries the blue brand's top women's title, while Bianca Belair holds the Raw Women's Championship while wrestling on SmackDown. The strange situation has lasted a lot longer than many speculated, with WWE seemingly deciding (for now) to just ignore the brand-specific names of the titles and just carry on.


Scott is a former journalist and longtime wrestling fan who was smart enough to abandon WCW during the Monday Night Wars the same time as the Radicalz. He fortunately became a fan in time for WrestleMania III and came back as a fan after a long high school hiatus before WM XIV. Monday nights in the Carlson household are reserved for viewing Raw -- for better or worse.