Asuka def. Nia Jax

The first time Asuka faced Nia Jax, The Empress of Tomorrow escaped with a win via a technicality. The second time, she won by the skin of her teeth. The third time was the charm, as the Women’s Royal Rumble Match winner finally cracked the code and landed a far more decisive (if no less hard-fought) victory over The Irresistible Force just a month from WrestleMania.

Even though a backstage Alexa Bliss predicted nothing less than a career-ending loss for The Empress of Tomorrow, and even though Jax powered her way to an early advantage, Asuka’s ruthlessness was far more than The Irresistible Force could handle. Asuka ensnared Jax in an armbar down the stretch and transitioned into a triangle when Jax hoisted her into the air, refusing to release the hold even after Nia rammed her into the turnbuckle.

After Jax bounced Asuka off the ropes, Asuka re-applied the armbar in what would turn out to be the bout's deciding maneuver. Jax refused to submit for what seemed like an eternity, but Asuka eventually got the tapout she wanted, handing Jax a loss that left her teary-eyed in the ring. The WWE Universe acknowledged The Irresistible Force's efforts with a pointed ovation, but Alexa opted for more of a tough-love tactic, telling an increasingly emotional Nia she was sure The Irresistible Force would recover to make WrestleMania next year ... or risk losing everybody's respect for her.