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Naomi vacates the Smackdown Women’s Championship, new champion crowned

This week’s episode of Smackdown Live kicked off with Daniel Bryan addressing the fans and introducing Smackdown Women’s Champion Naomi. She walked down to the ring with a knee brace so she clearly was still hurting from the injury suffered during her match with Alexa Bliss at the Elimination Chamber pay-per-view.

Unfortunately, Bryan had to ask her to vacate her championship because her medical records showed that she would not be able to defend it within the required 30 days. That’s an interesting rule that has not been used in many years. Many years ago, champions were required to defend their titles at least one time within 30 days or they would have to give it up.

Before giving up her title, she gave a heartfelt speech with tears in her eyes and said that she felt like she was letting the fans down. It’s not clear yet how long she will be out of action. It’s a tough break for her because she was supposed to defend the title in her hometown at WrestleMania.

Bryan announced that Alexa Bliss would immediately take on Becky Lynch to crown a new champion. Bliss defeated Lynch to become the new champion.

Click here for complete results from this week’s episode of Smackdown Live.


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