HOUSTON — Becky Lynch will forever remember Royal Rumble 2020 as the night that she unquestionably became The Man.
Although the moniker has been glued to Lynch since late 2018, it took beating Asuka — the one woman that Lynch had never previously defeated — for Becky to justify her best-in-the-world reputation in her own mind. It’s only poetic that The Man accomplished that goal at Royal Rumble, the same event where Asuka made Lynch tap out one year earlier, forcing a loss that haunted Lynch for a full year.
Just like their first encounter, the rematch was an absolute classic, the type of career-defining title defense that the 42,715 WWE fans who witnessed it in person will talk about for years.
As the battle wore on, both Superstars gave and received big hits. Lynch launched Asuka off the apron onto the floor with a brutal gordbuster. The Empress of Tomorrow rallied by hip-checking The Man into the ring post (to the delight of her WWE Women’s Tag Team Championship partner, Kairi Sane) and eventually locking in the Asuka Lock, only for Lynch to reach the ropes.
Visibly frustrated by her inability to put The Man away, Asuka pelted Becky with soccer kicks to the face, and the last devastating strike caused Lynch to crumple. After checking on the unresponsive champion, the referee was prepared to call the match, but the defiant Lynch regained her senses and desperately pleaded with him not to, just in the nick of time.
After absorbing another round of kicks from Asuka, the champion fought back and tried applying the Dis-arm-her, but Asuka shoved her toward the referee. Becky avoided colliding with the official and instead hit Asuka with a spin kick to the stomach, causing The Empress of Tomorrow, who was apparently planning a mist attack, to spew a green fog into the air.
Sensing her opportunity, Lynch quickly cinched in the Dis-arm-her, leaving Asuka no option but to submit and paving the way for The Man to continue her historic march toward day 300 as the Raw Women’s Champion.