Around the time of the first ever women’s only Evolution event, The Man started to come around. Becky Lynch the character, and maybe even Rebecca Quinn the person started to get really tired of always getting passed up. Especially when the fans were so ready for her to win the WWE Smackdown Women’s Championship. When she defeated Charlotte to finally win it, she took a page of her Charlotte’s dad’s book and started calling herself the Man. The change paid off. Gone was steampunk smiling Becky. In her place was a rough and rugged redhead ready to take on the world and call out anyone who tried to keep the Man down.
It all culminated at WrestleMania 35, the way it should have always been. With The Man standing tall in front of a packed house, hoisting not just Smackdown’s but the Raw Women’s championship as well. She even pinned Ronda Rousey to do it, giving Rousey her first defeat ever in a WWE ring and sending her packing. Becky 2 Belts is down to one these days, but she’s still just as over as ever and more importantly, she’s still The Man. Here are 10 Female WWE Wrestlers That Could’ve Been “The Man” Of The Attitude Era.
Trish Stratus usually gets all the credit in the world before being the best the Attitude Era generation of Divas has to offer. But it was her bestie, Lita that also got a lion’s share of the love from the fans.
Much like Charlotte and Becky a year ago - it certainly could have been enough to make the fiery Lita shed her grungy skater-girl image and start taking names and kicking tail.
Much like Becky Lynch Pre-The Man, Victoria was the WWE’s resident “good worker.” She could be relied upon to have stellar matches and be a stalwart of the division, but seldom considered worthy of having her face on the cover of video games.
Had she forced her way through, we’d be having a much different conversation in regard to Victoria being the best all-around Diva of the time.
8 The Sensational Sherri
The Sensational Queen, Sherri Martel is the equivalent of a wrestler in limbo. She came around a few years too late after ladies like Moolah ruled the ring. But she also came a few years too early before the Attitude Era.
Because she was mostly a valet, WWE and WCW fans seldom got to see her in-rig work, but based on some of the bumps she’d take, there is no doubt that in any other era, there’d be no stopping her.
7 Mae Young
The indomitable Johnie Mae Young wanted to wrestle one more match once she turned 100. Unfortunately, she passed away in 2014. But if anyone could actually still pull off the fete, it’s Mae Young.
She had to fight and claw and scratch her way to make a decent living in a then-very much man’s world. Then she had to do it again as a septuagenarian during the Attitude Era. It’s not that Mae Young could’ve been the Man during the Attitude Era - she already was.
Miss Jacqueline was the during her time, the toughest woman on not just the WWE roster, but any roster.
Her ability to intimidate even the men made her a true force to be reckoned with. Plus, her attention to how her body looked helped her way over during big body-conscious years of the Attitude Era.
Another competitor that was already close to being The Man during the Attitude Era was DX’s resident female degenerate, the Ninth Wonder Of The World - Chyna. The WWE Hall Of Famer did over 20 years what Becky is doing now.
They both broke the mold of what a WWE’s woman’s wrestler should be. On her way to both the intercontinental and women’s world championship, she dominated anyone and everyone who got in the ring with her.
One of the aspects of being The Man is having that rebel spirit and be able to call out any and all fallacies that you see. Nobody embodied that spirit of the day more than the Hall Of Famer, Alundra Blayze, aka Madusa.
Madusa fought very hard to try and legitimize female wrestling in the United States by bringing in fierce competition from Japan, like Aysa Kong or Bull Nakano. But when no one was seeming to notice her efforts, she did the unthinkable and heaved the WWE women’s title in the trash.
3 A.J. Lee
It’s only been a few short years since AJ Lee left the wrestling world, presumably forever. But she did what every wrestler would like to do and went out on top. Her entire run not only featured her as the then-longest reigning Divas champion of all time, but she also did her best to affect change wherever she went.
Had she shown up a few years later during the Attitude Era, the diminutive adorkable diva would have been a huge foil for the cookie-cutter divas of the day.
When the Man first came around, it was because Becky Lynch was feeling (and rightfully so) overlooked in favor of other ladies around her. Ladies that might be “better looking,” or flashier in the ring than the great little hand, Becky Lynch.
Ivory had those same issues. During the Attitude Era, when Ivory got fed up of all of the other ladies getting over by dressing skimpy and being flirty instead of working hard in the ring, she buttoned up her blouse and joined the Right To Censor. She could have just as easily threw on a leather jacket and started obliterating the competition.
1 Molly Holly
Nice girls don’t always finish last, but when they do - they get really pissed off! Molly Holly spent most of her early WWE career, smiling and kissing babies. She also dates Spike Dudley and practiced superhero poses with the Hurricane.
It was when she got fed up with how the women were treating themselves that her career took off and she captured the Women’s Championship. But perhaps more so than anyone on this list, had she taken a page out of her Team Madness captain’s book, we would have had an early prototype for what The Man could be.