2019 Top 25: #10 – Nikki Cross

Nikki Cross is by far the most successful member of SAnitY and her man roster run has only solidified that. She took 2019 by storm after her departure from NXT. She had two last matches on the yellow brand, a main event victory over Candice LeRae and a competitive match against Bianca Belair, which she lost. Her first official match on the main roster was a 6-woman Tag Team match, winning alongside Bayley and Natalya.

She made her PPV debut in the women’s Royal Rumble match, creating chaos for 9 minutes, without scoring any eliminations. The following week she teamed up with Alicia Fox in a losing effort against The Boss N Hug Connection, failing to qualify for the Tag Team Title Elimination Chamber match. She made her WrestleMania debut in the WrestleMania 35 Women’s Battle Royal, where she was quickly elminated by Asuka. At the end of the month she competed in a triple threat match for the NXT UK Women’s title, against Bianca Belair and Toni Storm, with Storm retaining.

Shortly after, she entered a storyline with Alexa Bliss. She replaced her in a Fatal 4-Way match, defeating Natalya. Thus she officially qualified for the women’s Money in the Bank Ladder match. She had an impressive performance, but didn’t get the job done. After the PPV, a string of victories over The IIconics followed, including a singles win over Peyton Royce. This earned her and Bliss a Tag Team title match two weeks later, which they lost following a distraction from Bayley.

After failing to win the Tag Team titles, they set their sights on Bayley and the SmackDown Women’s title. Cross scored a major upset when she defeated Bayley in a singles match to earn Bliss another title opportunity. She continued her momentum with victories over Carmella and a Beat the Clock challenge against Dana Brooke, which she won, earning a stipulation of Alexa’s choice at Stomping Grounds. Bliss opted to face Bayley in a Handicap match, teaming up with Cross. They dominated Bayley, but ultimately lost the match when Bayley pinned Cross.

On the lead up to SummerSlam, Bliss and Cross faced Bayley and her challenger, Ember Moon, in a Tag Team match, scoring a victory. This earned them a title shot the following week on Raw. They competed in a Fatal 4-Way Elimination Tag Team match, being one of the last two teams, eliminating The Kabuki Warriors to win the Women’s Tag Team titles. This marked Nikki’s first championship win in WWE. They retained their titles against The IIconics at SummerSlam Kickoff.

The following night, they once again retained their titles against The Kabuki Warriors. They competed in the main event of Raw against the team of Bayley and Becky Lynch in a champions showcase match, which ended in DQ. Then, they entered a program with Fire & Desire, where Cross pinned Mandy Rose on SmackDown and again at Clash of Champions PPV to retain their titles.

After a competitive Tag Team match against The Boss N Hug Connection, Cross faced Sasha Banks in a 15-minute match, pushing her to her limits. She came close, but lost the match. At Hell in a Cell PPV, Bliss and Cross put their titles on the line once again against The Kabuki Warriors, who ended up winning the titles following a mist attack by Asuka. After the PPV, both Bliss and Cross were drafted to SmackDown.

In her official SmackDown debut, Cross won a #1 Contendership Six Pack Challenge, pinning Mandy Rose. She defeated Rose again the following week. She received her title match the week after, coming close, but losing due to Banks’ interference. She would face Banks again in a losing effort. During the build-up towards Survivor Series, Cross won an eight-woman Tag Team match against Team NXT, pinning Dakota Kai to win for her team. At Survivor Series, she was the first woman eliminated from Team SmackDown.

2019 saw Nikki Cross compete all over the shows, NXT, SmackDown, Raw, PPVs, she was present everywhere. She got to compete in eight PPV matches, won her first title and had several singles title shots. Her pairing with Alexa Bliss took her to new heights and as they are looking to regain their titles, Cross will undoubtedly continue to shine in 2020. 2019 was her breakout year, but she will enter 2020 as one of the top stars of the women’s division.

Check with us tomorrow as we get closer to the completion of our list with #9.

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