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Barclays Center
Brooklyn, NY

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Sasha Banks def. Alexa Bliss to become the new Raw Women’s Champion

BROOKLYN, N.Y. — Is a Boss greater than a “Goddess”? Opinions vary among the experts, but at SummerSlam 2017, Sasha Banks defeated Alexa Bliss all the same, knocking her off the pedestal of the Raw’s Women’s division to win her fourth title.

That’s no small amount of vindication for Banks, who had twice defended a title in Brooklyn’s Barclays Center and twice came up short. It may also be considered a precipitous fall for Bliss, who made history as the first Superstar to win both brands’ Women’s Titles, and managed to keep Banks from dethroning her only a couple of months earlier.

In a tenacious battle, Raw Women's Champion Alexa Bliss fights to retain her title against The Boss: Courtesy of the award-winning WWE Network.

It seemed, initially, that this would be yet another showcase for Five Feet of Fury, as Bliss decked the challenger with a right hand to the face, wrapped her up in a chinlock on the turnbuckle and executed the one-two punch of double knees and a moonsault. Banks’ persistence led to no small irritation on the champion’s part, and Alexa only kept just enough on the right side of the rules in her attempt to wear down The Boss.

Yet, Sasha slowly battled her way back, finally cutting the champion short by way of an Alabama Slam into the turnbuckle. Banks went to work on a corner-bound Bliss with an avalanche of knees to the sternum and a Bank Statement, though Bliss narrowly managed to reach the ropes to break the hold.

Sensing her title reign slipping away, Bliss went dirty, yanking the ring skirt out from under Banks’ feet as she exited the ring and sending the challenger sprawling to the outside. Moments later, she hauled Sasha out of the ring outright, leaving The Boss to suffer a landing similar to the one that took Sasha’s friend Bayley out of title contention with an injured shoulder a few weeks ago.

Banks narrowly managed to escape a count-out, and Bliss made her pay dearly for it, attacking the shoulder and landing a Twisted Bliss that still only earned her a two-and-a-half count. An epic temper tantrum ensued, yet Bliss still held the narrowest of advantages, exploiting the injured shoulder to break up a Bank Statement. The Boss responded by locking her in a second one, using the full scope of her strength to keep Bliss a fingertip away from the ropes — a distance, as it turns out, that was enough to make Bliss finally submit, bringing her title reign to an end.

The now-former champion was left to slink away in shock, while a drained Banks simply stayed in the ring for a moment to savor the win. It was a long, hard, occasionally impossible road, but give this to her: She made it back to the mountaintop, and there’s definitely one person who’ll have a hug waiting for her.