I was among the many who were happy to see Taya Valkyrie sign to AEW earlier this year. A veteran of the sport, Valkyrie has wrestled for all other significant promotions around the world and would be a great addition to their women’s division.
Valkyrie’s start in AEW started promising when AEW threw her into a feud with Jade Cargill right from the start. However, since then, she has been used questionably based on what someone with her stature should be. Let’s look at the time Valkyrie has spent in AEW so far. All stats have been referenced and made possible by www.cagematch.net.
Taya started her AEW career at 5-0, as she was being booked strong ahead of her clash with Jade Cargill. While she was off to a good start, all these matches aired on AEW’s secondary show Rampage. Her first match on their flagship show Dynamite resulted in a loss for the TBS Women’s Championship to Cargill. They continued this lackluster feud for a month, ending at AEW’s PPV Double Or Nothing.
The real story behind their match at Double Or Nothing and Valkyrie’s second loss to Cargill was to work in the surprise return of Kris Stratlander. While this was an excellent spot for Stratlander returning, and I’m all for her being the one to dethrone Cargill, Taya’s momentum came to a screeching halt!
After her second loss to Cargill, she has a combined record of 4-3, beating her opponents again on either Rampage or AEW Dark. This while all of her losses came against younger talent and champions. You can argue that she’s trying to build the younger talent; however, why not have promising back-and-forth feuds with these talents? Why not have a continued lengthy rivalry between Stratlander and Valkyrie? As a heel, Taya scratches and claws her way to get to the title using any means necessary.
In a few months, Taya went from a potential Babyface with a chance of dethroning Jade Cargill and ending her undefeated streak to being not a natural heel or face thrown into championship matches to lose.
There are no storylines or real feuds from these losses she’s had with younger talent or championships. She’s portrayed as someone in the back watching these champions on TV and her being injected into a match when need be. While that may be okay for some women on the AEW roster, someone with Valkyrie’s talent and experience should be allowed to do more.
This brings us to the main question: is Taya Valkyrie underutilized in AEW?