In the WWE, you can be a Superstar today, holding the belt in front of a roaring crowd, and have it all stripped away tomorrow. Whether through unexpected injury, drunken rampage caught on camera, or rewrite in storyline, those of us populating the WWE Universe are left guessing what will become of our beloved Divas (or Female Superstars as they’re now called).
As WrestleMania draws closer, it’s time to crap or get off the pot, as they say. Sure, the Women’s Division has grown leaps and bounds from being a valet service for such meager talent among the likes of Brodus Clay, but there’s still far less opportunities for these ladies on the main stage. And they’re well aware. With women’s matches becoming bigger, gnarlier, and requiring true athletic stamina and performance prowess, we’re about to see a separation between the little girls of WWE and the badass women. So here’s a look into the crystal ball at where the likes of the current WWE female roster will end up … and some of it doesn’t look pretty.
15. Paige: More Trouble Ahead
Let’s begin with wild child Paige. Well, I’m not so sure we can call her a child anymore. Initially coming over the Atlantic from England to join WWE at the nubile age of 19, the Anti-Diva is now a good 24 years old and engaged to ex-WWE wrestler Alberto Del Rio, whom the other Divas agree is bad news bears. Paige had been pushed out of an active storyline following a neck injury, then suspended for violating the WWE’s Wellness Policy. We didn’t see her on the latest episodes of Total Divas, and all the photos of her and fiancé Del Rio seem to suggest a Sid and Nancy type romance. However, we project that Paige will make a comeback. First, WWE’s Senior Director of Talent Mark Carrano absolutely loves Paige. Second, Paige took to Twitter January 23 announcing she was in physical therapy and getting strong quick. She’ll reappear, then Del Rio will get mad that she’s with the WWE, he’ll dump her, call off the wedding, and Paige will go mad trying to get him back. This will lead to her lashing out at the company and forever sealing her fate as an outlier. Perhaps in an attempt to rekindle with Del Rio, Paige will move to Mexico City and become the biggest hit south of the boarder. We also think she’d do great in Japan, given her attitude and look. But for this Brit, it will get darker before it gets light.
14. Summer Rae: Obscurity
After the big draft, Summer Rae pretty much vanished out of thin air. She explained this past November that the absence was due to an injury, but is planning on coming back to the ring. Then some fans thought she might be behind La Luchadora on SmackDown, but we all breathed a sigh of relief when it was Mickie James. Honestly, we could care less if Summer Rae ever returns to wrestling. And the company no doubt feels the same. She doesn’t have the star power, nor the athletic fortitude to be a champion in the Women’s Division. We suspect the WWE (not being one to hurt feelings) will bring Summer back for a short time before letting go of the reel altogether. This will clear up room for the badass Asuka to come up from NXT and really do work for the main roster Women’s Division. Another way the WWE may try to get Summer Rae out is by casting her in another Marine film, as a very D-role character (maybe another human shield like she was in The Marine 4). In the end however, Summer will fade into obscurity.
13. Nia Jax: Doing Projects Away From WWE
Who? Sorry, Nia Jax but this is the general response to your career right now. Although Nia Jax has been getting a bigger nudge than in the past (steamrolling all the women on both Raw and SmackDown on the five-on-five Survivor Series Women’s Elimination match), but playing the role of brick wall won’t lead to stardom. Nia Jax lacks … let’s call it sparkle… on the mic, along with any semblance of an alluring storyline. Our projections? Nia will keep making appearances on Raw but do more of her own work in the background, perhaps starting a nonprofit that helps young girls feel more comfortable in their bodies. It would be killer if the WWE made Nia the next Raw Women’s Champion, since it’s been more than a decade since they allowed a full-figured woman to take the status. Unfortunately, Nia doesn’t have the “look” to be the face of the Women’s Division, and I think that’s horse$%&*, but hey, that’s the biz. Even Bayley has a better chance, which is just bleh. So Nia, we suggest sticking it to the man before the man sticks it to you and you become more of an accessory than you already are.
12. Bayley: Raw Women’s Champion
Speaking of The Hugger… Bayley has somehow found herself opposite Charlotte Flair. The PG Superstar has vowed to defeat Charlotte at the Royal Rumble, thereby fulfilling a dream she’s had since childhood. That’s Bayley’s whole thing: she’s been a forever fan and now follows in the footsteps of her idols (i.e. Ultimate Warrior). The WWE likes this. Heck, they go weak at the knees for it. They had the same background going with AJ Lee, but alas, Bayley is no AJ Lee no matter how hard they try to make her a champion. We’ll see Bayley go on to indeed win the Raw Women’s Championship, at least until Sasha Banks is all healed up. The kids will love it, and that’s money for the company. And since Bayley will never get caught doing anything bad during her off time from the ring, WWE will keep pushing her whenever there’s an opening. BUT, she just doesn’t captivate like Sasha and Charlotte, and even Becky Lynch and Alexa Bliss. The McMahon’s might try to turn Bayley heel once all her kid followers have grown up, and it will work (some). Don’t underestimate the power of nostalgia. However, Bayley’s lisp will keep her back from sounding truly sinister.
11. Carmella: Female Face Of SmackDown
For some unbeknownst reason, James Ellsworth is still around and now hanging on the shoulder of Carmella (well, at least the underdog isn’t dragging down The Lunatic Fringe anymore). Carmella’s charity time with Ellsworth (no, it’s not believable that she finds him attractive) will lead to her turning face, as the mini-feud with Nikki Bella will find its natural death and the two will make amends saying it was Natalya who caused the strife. During this time Carmella will continue to put newbies in their place, acting as a type of entry-exam for new women to enter the primetime ring. Carmella will go on to be pit against Alexa Bliss, since they’ll make a good match in both skill and size. (We all know Becky Lynch is better than Alexa and it’s sort of a joke having Becky pretend to tap to the mini-Harley Quinn.) The Alexa/Carmella feud will feature some of the best mic insults of this decade, and an extra dose of cattiness to aspire to. As time goes on, Carmella will change her gimmick (much in the way John Cena did when he ditched the corny rapper thing), and step up to the challenge of becoming a leading force on SmackDown.
10. Charlotte: Legend
On the last Monday Night Raw before the Royal Rumble, Charlotte said that although father “Nature Boy” Ric Flair opened the door for her to enter wrestling, the rest was done on her own two feet. And she’s right. Charlotte will go on to be a legend in WWE, surpassing the fame and skills of Trish Stratus and Lita, and dominating the number of Women’s Championships won. There will be very few women that can really hang with Charlotte in the ring (her recent feud with Bayley is just laughable). Once The Queen becomes aged in the ring, she’ll serve as a way to catapult newer, younger female talent, where beating Charlotte acts as a stamp of approval and talent. You know how The Undertaker is with WrestleMania? Well that’s Charlotte with the Women’s Division. She’ll remain a villain for the majority of her career, but turn face only for quick glimpses to help an up-and-comer the network really believes in. But we’ve got a grip of time before then. Long live The Queen.
9. Becky Lynch: Married To Finn Balor
The Irish Lass Kicker is a force in the ring. However, at the moment she’s still a bit green, but we expect time will make her feel more comfortable in promos. Although Bayley’s the one that gets to play up that she dreamed of being a wrestler since a young age, Becky Lynch was training in Ireland’s first wrestling school as a gawky teenager. And it wasn’t just any wrestling school, but Fergal Devitt’s (aka the Demon King himself Finn Balor). With Finn Balor’s return, a domino effect will begin that takes him straight to the top of the men’s roster, and Becky will start an in (and out of ring) romance with the Irish powerhouse. Eventually they’ll have a kid together and she’ll retire, after securing a number of Women’s title and finally getting the acclaim she deserves. We also suspect the WWE will introduce a new Women’s belt that both SmackDown and Raw Divas can battle for. Or, like we’ve seen with the men’s division introducing the U.K. title, the company could bring an EU Women’s Championship, eyeing Becky as the lady to lead things off. While pregnant, Becky will return to NXT as a judge and eventually move back to the homeland with dear Fergal, where they will grow old in a cottage, teaching their he-man child to Bex-Plex.
8. Naomi: Remain Second-Fiddle Talent
A Woman whose been consistently great since the beginning of the Divas Revolution, Naomi will keep doing what she does best: be a second-fiddle who deserves first chair. We can confidently say that anyone with half a brain predicted her break from tag valets with Cameron in The Funkadactyls to become a solo talent, but it’s questionable whether she’ll make another move this bold to push her career to the top level. Although she isn’t very natural on the mic, her in-ring skills astound, and she doesn’t cause much drama backstage. Still, the WWE will never give her a real shot at a Women’s Championship. Since her hubby Jimmy Uso does pretty well for himself, and she’s not exactly pushed to the bottom of the Women’s barrel, Naomi will stay with WWE through the end but never progress much. What she should do, and there’s a shred of possibility she will, is ditch WWE and make the jump to TNA, where she could elevate the Women’s Division, actually putting it on the map. Let’s be honest, the TNA ladies kind of blow, and could use outfit advice like ASAP. But since Naomi is a bit reserved and shy outside of the ring, she’ll play it safe and keep treading water at SmackDown.
7. Natalya: NXT Trainer
Natalya’s run is nearing to an end. After turning heel (and I’d say this is her best performance as a bad guy to-date) the company will have trouble finding a good spot for the Diva of the Heart dynasty after Nikki moves on to be considered for the championship. Even during the first season of Total Divas in 2013, the WWE seemed to keep dropping hints that Natalya was getting (and looking) too old for the role. Both her willingness to be a mentor to new girls, along with her dynasty, has kept Nattie around. But there’s only so much plastic surgery she can get before it’s time to call it quits (and yes, we can tell the difference, girl). Natalya has a great relationship with Stephanie McMahon (who we predict will take over for her father and lead the company), so Natalya will remain employed by the WWE, being offered a position at the developmental center in Florida where she will train the next generation of both men and women Superstars (Natalya’s already credited with training the Bella Twins, Paige, Cesaro, The Great Khali, and Eva Marie). She’ll no doubt be the inspiration behind many new wrestlers coming up through NXT.
6. Nikki Bella: Champion, Retirement, Co-GM Of SmackDown Live
The Bella Twin with the bigger twins is going to exit her current storyline beef with Natalya sooner than expected. Although it’s been great to watch a jealous Natalya throw Nikki’s merchandise in the trash before being pummeled by the twin, we’re already getting bored. Nikki’s future is paved toward another championship. She’ll be put in the running for the SmackDown belt, facing off against Mickie James (the feud will start over John Cena, since Mickie used to have a lil’ thang with The Champ), and Nikki will emerge with the belt just in time for her neck and shin issues to resurface. These injuries will lead to retirement, but it won’t be a sad day because after years of dating and being told “I’ll never marry again,” boyfriend John Cena will finally cave and propose. He’ll remain adamant about no kids, however. After a televised marriage and another couple seasons of Total Bellas, Nikki will be offered a co-general manager role alongside brother-in-law Daniel Bryan on SmackDown.
5. Eva Marie: Failed Movie Star, Champion
Dear, sweet, poster child for the WWE that never worked out. When Mark Carrano first set eyes on Eva Marie he saw nothing but money. Still today at 32-years-old, the WWE is holding out hope that somehow, someway, they’ll get their All Red fairy tale ending. But what the writers and talent managers fail to come to terms with is that Eva Marie is awkward. Despite putting in some hard work, she just doesn’t have the natural body mechanics it takes. But she is really good at walking down the entrance ramp. Eva Marie will make her return to WWE and for the next five years we’ll see her getting pushes but never taking leaps. In that time, she’ll also do movies, push to grown her clothing brand NEM, and eventually try to become a silver screen movie star. Even during her stints trying to find stardom, the WWE will keep a soft hold on Eva, reeling her back when they need a bombshell for Tribute to the Troops. While in Hollywood auditioning for roles and filming some direct-to-DVD flops, Eva will realize it’s harder than it looks and not have the fortitude or patience to wait for success outside of wrestling. She’ll return to WWE, tail between her legs, and get the championship once for a very short time, via a shady move that requires no work and all the reward. She’ll be the Sable of her era.
4. Alexa Bliss: Mrs. Olympia
For being only 5’1, and a pound or two above 100lbs, Alexa Bliss has clawed her way to the SmackDown Women’s Championship with great vigor. Half of the WWE Universe thinks she’s awesome and the other half find her Harley Quinn shtick totally overrated, so it’s hard to tell where exactly she fits in the future. One thing that’s certain is she’ll remain on the card for a long while, but competing just below the top women. No more belt, baby. The only way Alexa managed to get to the women’s main fight is because something must have gone wrong in a bigger plan. But that mishap is righting itself now. Alexa will eventually get homesick for the championship as she gets pit against mediocre female talent (we project she’ll go as low as the fight you see live before the show even beings filming). WWE won’t throw her a bone so she’ll quit and focus all her pint-sized fury on bodybuilding. Ten years down the road, Alexa will be Mrs. Olympia.
3. Sasha Banks: Broken Shell Of Her Former Self
For a while there, it seemed Sasha Banks was on a rocket ship going only up, as her feud with Charlotte made for some gnarly matches (i.e. first women’s main event at Hell in a Cell). The Boss was able to keep up with the much taller, more athletic Charlotte, but no matter how high she flew, Sasha’s body bared the grunt of her big push. Already we’re seeing a plummet in Sasha’s storylines, being billed as a midcard against Nia Jax. This will just keep dropping, because despite her heart and sass, an injured star isn’t an investment. Some might whisper that Sasha will transition to SmackDown, but Vince McMahon doesn’t want to give her a second chance at being hurt and fudging with the storyline trajectory. Before everything crumbles, the WWE is going to proverbially milk Sasha Banks until she’s dry— making 2017 a major Boss year. She’ll play a big role in WrestleMania 33, most likely turning heel to match Bayley’s face. But come 2018, the Banks train will be leaving the station, and you’ll see Sasha on the ring skirt supporting new talent.
2. Mickie James: Veteran Presence
Mickie James signed a new real-deal, multi-year contract with the WWE to be on the main female roster, after an absence of about six years. Her return was teased on NXT when she showed up to battle Asuka. Most likely, Mickie will be pit against Nikki Bella due to their shared interest: John Cena. But backstage the two will be cherry together. Once Asuka is called up, their feud will be reignited for a short time and Mickie will use her veteran status to slingshot Asuka to the main event. However, the majority of Mickie’s matches will be against Natalya, as the company begins to phase out the Hart from the top tier. These two women will be the first, old Divas to keep appearing on live and pay-per-view events— showing that like the men’s division (I mean dang, The Undertaker has been wrestling for 200 years), the women of WWE won’t be thrown out (completely) once their looks fade.
1. Stephanie McMahon: Running WWE
Vince McMahon is nearing the end of his run as The Boss of WWE. He’ll pass the reins to Stephanie (over Shane), since the former has already shown tremendous savvy in guiding the Divas Revolution and building the female roster to what it is today. Stephanie’s also smart by not letting ego or emotion overpower her business decisions. And yes, she’s got the cool viciousness of a snake that makes you not want to cross her. From what we’ve seen of Steph on Total Divas, she’s understanding yet stern, and has been primed since prepubescence to take over the empire. Add to her side the husband, former World Champion, and surprisingly awesome business man Triple H (who can take most the credit for making NXT a thriving brand instead of just a developmental training program), and Vince will be confident in passing the torch. Together the power couple will split Raw and SmackDown, with Stephanie keeping charge of the firstborn Raw. Shane will push back and wave his shares as a threat, eventually splitting from the company to try and start his own online version of what ECW used to be, pushing the boundaries of censorship and gore while Steph and Hunter will do the opposite, going too far into the PG. WWE will lose some of its bite with Stephanie at the helm, yet continue to grow. We’d like to see Steph appoint Jericho to a high-level position within the company, to bring back some of the initial spice the WWF had.
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