This week’s episode of Monday Night RAW witnessed Natalya defeat Alexa Bliss, Nikki Cross and Carmella in a Fatal 4-Way Elimination Match to become the #1 Contender for Becky Lynch‘s RAW Women’s Championship at WWE SummerSlam.
While many expected Cross to emerge as the victor, fans were quite puzzled as to why veteran Nattie was handed the victory in the most crucial match of the night.
On Oh, You Didn’t Know podcast, Brad Shepard noted that the sole reason why WWE suddenly shoved Natalya into the title picture is that the 37-year-old Superstar hails from Canada, the home of SummerSlam.
Moreover, since Lynch has become the immovable object of the Women’s Division in WWE, it’s hard for her babyface challengers to get over, no matter how big names they might be.
“A source speaking to me on the reason Natalya’s in the Raw women’s match at Summerslam, they’re hoping Natalya gets a big reaction in Toronto which they believe she will, so that’s the reason. That’s the reason she’s facing Becky Lynch so she can get a pop in Toronto.”
WWE’s long history shows that Superstars, even ardent heels, receive significant pops when performing in their hometown/country.
Take Super ShowDown 2018 for example. Buddy Murphy, heel, received gigantic pops throughout his Cruiserweight Title match against babyface Cedric Alexander. The Aussie defeated Alexander to win the title at the event in Australia.
While it’s very unlikely that Natalya will defeat Lynch for the title at the PPV next month, the grand stage is still beneficial for the decorated veteran to remain in the spotlight.
Natalya still has plenty left in her and the WWE Universe is still high on her for the enigma that she brings to the ring.