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Xia Li Makes SmackDown Debut, Saves Naomi

Xia Li entrance

Xia Li has arrived on SmackDown coming to the aid of Naomi as her issues with Sonya Deville continue.

After a series of vignettes hyping her debut, Xi Li made an instant impact on SmackDown. In the clips, Li was described as “defender, destroyer and a protector,” and she certainly lived up to that billing as she saved Naomi from a beatdown at the hands of Sonya Deville, Shayna Baszler and Natalya.

Ahead of the show it had been announced that Naomi would finally get her one-on-one match with Deville after being slapped by the WWE official the previous week. However, as has been the case in recent weeks, Deville had a plan. Despite looking ready to compete, the match never got going as guest ring announcer Natalya and guest time keeper Baszler made their presence felt.

With Naomi looking in serious peril, Xia Li made her lightening filled entrance before taking out the devious trio. Li and Naomi bowed in the middle of the ring as a sign of respect to close the segment.

Xia Li signed with WWE in early 2017, before going on to compete in the first ever Mae Young Classic tournament that summer. After being defeated by Mercedes Martinez in the first round, she returned to the tournament a year later, this time making it to the second round, only to be eliminated by Deonna Purrazzo.

In 2019, Li became a regular feature on NXT while also competing in the Royal Rumble. In September 2020, Li was approached by Boa as she was summoned into service for Mei Ying, and the mysterious Tian Sha group.

The move sparked a new attitude in Li who rose through the women’s division destroying anyone who got in her way.

Xia Li’s last match in NXT came on July 20th when she was defeated by NXT Women’s Champion Raquel Gonzalez.

After the match, Li began appearing in a number of dark matches on SmackDown while she was drafted to the blue brand in October.