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The WWE Divas - Part 1
The Women of the WWE - The WWE Divas
Women's wrestling goes all the way back to the late nineteenth century "women's wrestling championships" and Josie Wahlford.
It progressed up and went through women like Laura Bennet, Mary Harris, Cora Livingstone, Mae Weston, Lillian Bitters, Mars Bennett and Ada Ash.
Female wrestling moved out of the sideshows and into legitimate venues with women like Clara Marie Mortensen, Mildred Burke and June Byers.
Then later we had the Fabulous Moolah and wrestling began to become popular on TV.
The WWF (now WWE) had ladies wrestling (as did most wrestling promotions) and up until 1996, they were actually considered wrestlers.
Then came Sunny (Tammy Lynn Sytch) and everything changed.
Now the woman's skill didn't matter as much as how good she looked in the ring and they were called "Divas".
We had women like Marlena, Sable and Chyna (though to be fair, Chyna was sort of an exception).
The now WWE Divas continued on and though at times they did manage to get their hands on some good female wrestlers (Jacqueline, Ivory, Lita and Luna) and actually made at least one (Trish Stratus) generally the skill level kept dropping with more and more models (as opposed to wrestlers) being added to the roster.
Now the WWE has a kind of weird balance with some real wrestlers, some models that have actually worked to become wrestlers, and some that are still pretty much there just for the looks.
Oddly enough, of the nine women I included on this Lens when I created it, only two still work for the WWE.....
Make that one.....
Eve (Eve Torres)
Eve Torres was born on August 24th, 1984 in Denver Colorado.
Before winning the 2007 WWE Diva Search, she was a model and dancer.
Eve has held the WWE Divas Championship twice.
Recently Eve has become a "heel" (bad guy) and I find her to be much more interesting.
In January of 2013, Eve left the WWE.
Eve vs. Alicia Fox
Tiffany (Taryn Terrell)
Tiffany was born on December 20th,1984 in New Orleans, Louisiana.
She competed in the 2007 WWE Diva Search also, but was eliminated.
If she's not careful, she may wind up being an ex-Diva soon.
Sure enough, Tiffany was released from her WWE contract on November 19th, 2010.
On August 16, 2012, Taryn debuted in Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (TNA) as the official referee for the TNA Women's Knockout's matches.
Jillian (Jillian Fletcher)
Jillian was born on September 6th, 1980 in Ashland, Kentucky.
Now we finally have a Diva with some wrestling cred.
Before she was in the WWE, she was known as Macaela Mercedes on the Indy wrestling circuit and held over ten championships.
On the WWE, they use her as comic relief.
Makes sense right?
Jillian was released from her WWE contract at the same time Tiffany was.
Since then WWE Jillian has worked for wrestling promotions like Xtreme Pro Wrestling, Women Superstars Uncensored and World Wrestling Fan Xperience (WWFX).
Layla (Layla El)
Layla was born on June 25th, 1978 in London, England.
Though she started out in the WWE as a model, she has worked on her in-ring skills.
She was the first Diva Search winner and the British woman to hold the WWE Women's Championship.
Layla came in at #95 on the 2012 Maxim magazine Hot 100 list of the 100 hottest women in the world.
On July 29th, 2015, Layla left the WWE and retired from wrestling.
Melina (Melina Perez)
Melina was born on March 9th, 1979 in Los Angeles, California.
Again we have a female wrestler that got to the WWE knowing how to wrestle.
She trained at Empire Wrestling Federation, and many there said she had the most natural ability of any woman who ever came through their school.
So when she got to the WWE naturally they made her a Valet for M&M.
But, she did manage to break out of that mold and win the WWE Divas Championship (2 times) and the WWE Women's Championship (3 times).
On August 5th, 2011, Melina was released by the WWE.
Kelly Kelly (Barbara Blank)
Kelly was born on January 15th, 1987 in Jacksonville, Florida.
Another woman that came to the WWE as a model, Kelly has really worked to improve her wrestling skills.
You have to admit, she has come a long way.
Kelly has held the WWE Divas Championship once.
Kelly came in at #38 on the 2012 Maxim magazine Hot 100 list of the 100 hottest women in the world.
She and Layla were the only two WWE Divas on the list.
On September 28th, 2012, Kelly Kelly was released by WWE.
Maryse (Maryse Ouellet)
Maryse was born on January 21st, 1983, Montreal, Quebec.
She was another model that came to the WWE and worked on her ring skills, eventually winning the WWE Divas Championship 2 times.
Of course now she has been pretty much downgraded to valet again.
Maryse was released from her WWE contract on October 28th, 2011.
Michelle was born on January 25th, 1980 in Palatka, Florida.
Originally a school teacher, she came to the WWE via the 2004 WWE Diva Search.
I think she has come a long way, but a lot of fans say that she would still be a valet if she wasn't "Mrs. Undertaker".
On May 1st, 2011, Michelle McCool had her last match in the WWE and "retired".
We'll see for how long.
Kharma - Awesome Kong (Kia Stevens)
Now the WWE has signed a woman that could be considered the "Anti Diva".
Five foot nine, 272 pound Kia Stevens was born on September 4th,1977 in Carson, California.
Billed as Amazing Kong or Awesome Kong, she was trained at the School of Hard Knocks in San Bernardino, California, All Japan Women's Pro-Wrestling's Dojo and the Inoki Dojo.
She has held the All Japan Women's Pro-Wrestling WWWA World Heavyweight Championship, the AWA Superstars World Women's Championship, the NWA World Women's Championship and the TNA Women's Knockout Championship (twice), plus a lot more.
Kia (now known as Kharma) made her debut on May 1st at the Extreme Rules PPV, attacking the departing Michelle McCool.
As happy as I was with the appearance of Kharma, now word comes down that she is pregnant and will be out for at least nine months.
So I'm sad for the storyline, but happy for Kia.
Rumor has it that as of July 2012, Kia has been released by the WWE.
This could be a "swerve" or she may really be gone.
Nope...she was really gone
Part Two in this series.....
- The WWE Divas - Part 2
The rest of the beautiful ladies of the WWE