WWE SmackDown has set the stage perfectly for this Sunday's (Nov. 19) Survivor Series now that we have a new SmackDown Women's Champion.
Hometown star Charlotte Flair, daughter of wrestling legend and 16-time world champion Ric Flair, defeated Natalya in the ring to be crowned the champion of the brand for the first time in her career on Tuesday, Nov. 14.
Flair took some bold risks in the ring, including a moonsault attempt from the top of the barricade but her opponent powerbombed her spine-first into the ring post instead. With Flair knocked out, Natalya attempted to take her out with the Sharpshooter but failed to get the submission.
Flair not only took home the title but also earned a spot against Raw women's champion Alexa Bliss on Sunday. Natalya, on the other hand, still has a spot on the SmackDown women's team as they compete with Raw for a five-on-five tag team match. The challenger then managed to force Natalya out of the ring, kicked her in the face and locked her with the Figure Eight upon re-entry to make her tap out to claim the title.
Following her win on Tuesday night, Charlotte called out Bliss and vowed to defeat her at Sunday's Survivor Series. She then expressed her gratitude to the home crowd with tears in her eyes and dedicated the victory to her father, who recently featured in ESPN's 30 for 30 documentary on the legendary wrestler titled, Nature Boy.
She said that he couldn't be there to see her daughter clinch the title but was pretty sure that he would be watching from home, like he does every Tuesday, but she looks forward to receiving a text message from him when she gets backstage.
To her surprise, just as she started making her way down the ramp, Ric's music came on and the 68-year-old walked out as she ran up to him and gave him a tight hug. Daddy dearest hugged her back like a proud father in an emotional moment that has to go down as one of the best moments in wrestling this year (video below).
It was great to see Ric celebrating his daughter's win after his recent near-death health scare. In August, the two-time WWE Hall of Famer was put on life support and went into a medically induced coma.
"Ten days on life support, it'll wake you up, man," Flair told ESPN in September. "What I remember was that I couldn't talk, but I could hear people talking about me. Which is even scarier ... My daughters told me that (the doctor) said to go in and say goodbye to your daddy, he's not going to make it."