The popularity of Trish Stratus and Lita played a huge role in the development of women’s wrestling. Both ladies did their best to carry the women’s division for WWE towards the end of the Attitude Era. Stratus and Lita proved that the audience had an interest in them as characters beyond just the scantily clad matches and romantic storylines women typically had to endure during that time.
Many of the current female stars today list either Trish or Lita as their inspiration for wanting to become superstars. Each lady would return for various stints and had fun mixing it up with the current talent. Everyone has their own preference for one of the two as the G.O.A.T. of WWE’s women’s division. Check out the following explanations for each and make your own decision. These are five reasons why Trish Stratus is the greatest female wrestler in WWE history along with five reasons for Lita.
10 Trish: Had more WrestleMania moments
Trish Stratus had quite a few WrestleMania moments that left an impact during her WWE career. The standout match against Mickie James was a classic and arguably the best WWE women’s match at the time. WrestleMania 20 allowed her to shine as a character with a heel turn on Chris Jericho.
Lita unfortunately never had the same level of success on WrestleMania as her biggest moment came in the TLC match at WrestleMania 17. WWE trusted Stratus enough to have singles matches and bigger storylines on the most important show of the year.
9 Lita: Broke the mold for women in WWE
The success of Lita completely broke the mold of what fans expected from women’s wrestling in WWE. Lita had a look that was unlike the cookie-cutter signing and a wrestling style that was even more unique with her in-ring style.
Many future wrestlers were inspired by Lita pulling out lucha moves and performing like a daredevil. The women’s division would get a huge boost from Lita making such a mark and proving not everyone had to be a blonde fitness model even many of them were talented.
8 Trish: Better retirement matches
Trish Stratus had multiple storybook endings to her career in WWE. The farewell for a wrestler is an important part in ending their time in the business. Stratus’ first retirement match came in her home country of Canada defeating her best friend Lita to win the Women’s Championship and retire as champ.
Future returns would see Trish get involved in the women’s evolution for some dream matches. The Summerslam 2019 match against Charlotte Flair once again in Canada gave her another perfect ending to her career as she believes it was indeed her final match ever.
7 Lita: Helped Edge become legit main eventer during heel run
WWE utilized the real-life love triangle between Matt Hardy, Edge and Lita to turn Lita heel due to the crowd response. The act of Edge and Lita together made them the most hated heels on the roster since fans already genuinely were upset with them.
Edge fell short of breaking out in the main event picture for years until Lita joined him. Sometimes all a wrestler needs is one missing piece to add the finishing touches. Lita helped put Edge over the top as he became the #1 heel and a constant world champion for WWE.
6 Trish: Incredible feud with Mickie James
Many legendary wrestlers are remembered for their biggest feuds. Trish Stratus had a couple that helped cement her legacy in WWE. The storyline with Mickie James lasted for many months with the slow burn of Mickie’s obsession with Trish causing an issue.
Lita’s only major singles rivalry in WWE came against Stratus, but Trish had this feud along with the James rivalry. Mickie became a huge star for WWE thanks to having a strong position in a storyline against the biggest star in the division. Stratus did everything to help build a new star for the women’s division.
5 Lita: Held her own against Dean Malenko
Intergender wrestling is not a popular genre for WWE, but there were a few instances of the man vs woman storylines. Lita and Dean Malenko became rivals when Malenko kept making advances towards her during the Hardy Boyz vs Radicalz angle.
The segments between the two would see Lita holding her own against the respected male wrestler. This rarely happened at the time and helped establish Lita as one of the top stars in the company. Malenko deserves credit as well for not being afraid to sell for a woman like most of his peers would have been.
4 Trish: Bigger star
Trish Stratus became a massive name for WWE that helped them to help build the women’s division. The success of Stratus would see her become an important part of WWE television. Fans viewed her as the top name in the division.
Even male wrestlers to have storylines with Trish like Christian and Viscera benefited from it. The top list of legends in WWE history would see Stratus as the first woman and one of the first ten overall wrestlers due to her impact and star power.
3 Lita: Great moment beating Stephanie McMahon for first title
The first big title win for Lita came against the unlikeliest of opponents. Stephanie McMahon had a Women’s Championship reign after cheating her way to victory and using her power to get out of credible defenses.
Lita received a real shot when The Rock was named the special guest referee. Stephanie could no longer run away as Lita faced her in a legitimate match. Lita would pull off the victory to a massive pop and start her first Women’s Championship in grand fashion.
2 Trish: 7 Women's Championships
Until Charlotte Flair recently became a consistent champion, Trish Stratus had the most successful run as a WWE Women’s Champion. The hit list of successful reigns would see Stratus become a 7-time Women’s Champion during her WWE career.
Stratus was the face of the women’s division and it made sense that she often held the belt to create compelling feuds. Great feuds with Jazz, Victoria, Molly Holly and many others would see Trish continue thriving in the title picture as a decorated champion.
1 Lita: Run with the Hardy Boyz
The formation of Team Xtreme helped the careers of Matt Hardy, Jeff Hardy and Lita as they all became top superstars. Lita joining the Hardy Boyz allowed helped get all three to the next level. Both acts struggled to get completely over until working together.
Lita had a weak run with Essa Rios and the Hardy Boyz had some hiccups when Michael Hayes was their manager. Team Xtreme became a highly popular act with their chemistry impressing. Many longtime fans will state that this was the best time of Lita’s career and it’s hard to argue against it.