Natalya confirmed on Monday that she's going through surgery to reset her dislocated nose. The winningest female competitor in WWE history blamed her opponent, Shayna Baszler, for the injury. It's expected that Natalya will miss at least three months to recover following her match against Baszler last week.
The November 4 episode of SmackDown saw the former tag team partners, Baszler and Natalya, square off. Baszler walked away with the win after successfully pulling off a Kirifuda Clutch submission. But, Baszler wasn't content with just winning. After she defeated Natalya, Baszler ran a knee through her opponent's face, resulting in her apparent injury. The camera then cut away to Baszler as she celebrated with her newfound friend, Ronda Rousey.
However, according to John Pollock of Post Wrestling, this injury is part of a storyline, and Natalya had planned to take time off for nasal surgery.
The upcoming WWE storyline between Baszler and Natalya is the culmination of years of speculations about Baszler teaming up with Ronda Rousey. This all started a few weeks back when Baszler ambushed Natalya backstage. It definitely seems like Triple H wants to build up Baszler as a legitimate threat in the women's division.
We wouldn't be surprised if she and Rousey ended up facing off against each other in the future with the SmackDown Women's Championship on the line.
Baszler is best known for her success as a tag team partner, but she was a dominant force as a singles wrestler in NXT. The Queen of Spades held the NXT Women's Championship for 548 days in total across two reigns. This is a record in the women's division for NXT. As for Natalya, her presence in SmackDown will be terribly missed. She's one of the most reliable wrestlers in the WWE stable and currently holds the record for the most wins of any woman in WWE history.
It's believed that the WWE wants to bring back more female wrestlers following the return of Tenille Dashwood.