At SummerSlam a few short weeks ago, Becky Lynch made her long-awaited return to WWE. She also dethroned Bianca Belair after like 26 seconds and made the now former champion look like a total chump. Yes, WWE really baited us with the expectation that Sasha Banks would be in the match, but they apparently knew a few days out what would be happening. I don’t know why they did Bianca Belair as they did, she didn’t deserve it, but it brought The Man back to WWE and we’re supposed to believe that she is a heel now apparently.
Whatever, WWE will do what it does. But for my part, I am going to look at five women who should challenge Becky Lynch for that championship now that she has it. I am also going to spoil the list a bit for you… Charlotte, Asuka, Sasha Banks, Bayley and Bianca Belair will not be appearing on today’s list. I want some fresh faces in the title scene and its high time WWE stopped pushing the same women over and over again. Also, there will be a fair few names from NXT today. Let’s get into it…
10. Shayna Baszler – Raw
I’m going to be brutally honest when I say this. Shayna Baszler has been stagnating on Raw. She really has. Ever since her planned match with Becky Lynch got scrapped, due to the latter getting pregnant, her stock in WWE has gotten so low that she’s been stuck in a tag team with Nia freaking Jax. She’s done her damndest to make the best of what she’s been given, but it’s high time WWE takes the chains off of the Queen of Spades and lets her run roughshod over the women’s division like she did when she was the most dominant champion in NXT history. Shayna is a legitimate badass who is actually really good in the ring, so give her a chance WWE. She deserves that chance, but she has a history they can draw on to make her challenging Becky Lynch believable as soon as she arrives.
9. Mia Yim – Smackdown
The HBIC (Head Baddie in Charge) is up next and is another name that WWE has done absolutely nothing with since calling her up to the main roster. She was part of the disastrous Retribution angle and then shipped off to Smackdown, but she has yet to make a single appearance on the brand. What the eff WWE. When she arrived for the May Young Classic, the fans were so into her that they chanted for her to get a contract. The fans love Mia Yim and she would be a perfect fresh opponent for Becky Lynch. It’s not like they have a lot of matches against each other, cough Charlotte Flair cough, so it would be a pure and fresh feud for each woman, and one that WWE would be absolutely stupid not to cash in on.
8. Ember Moon – NXT
Ember Moon did not have a very good run in her first stint at the Main Roster after all injuries derailed any momentum she had after coming up from NXT. However, she has returned better than ever and the former NXT Women’s Champion would make a perfect addition to the Smackdown Roster. Better yet, she would be another fresh feud for the new champion. Ember Moon has all the tools needed to be the main event star, WWE just needs to give her a chance. They give -ample- opportunities to the likes of the four “horsewomen” but they don’t ever seem to give a true chance to anyone, not of those four. Well, with some exceptions. There is no reason for WWE not taking a chance on Moon.
7. Sarray – NXT
It’s no secret that I love the Joshi scene, so it shouldn’t surprise any of you that I would name some of the WWE’s Joshi talent on my list. However, some of you may be surprised that I would choose Sarray to come to Smackdown. Sarray is legendary in her home country and has all the talent in the world, there is no reason why WWE should let her meander down in NXT longer than absolutely necessary. Sure she’s been on NXT for maybe a few months now and hasn’t been on tv all that much of late, but the strong style that Sarray brings to the ring makes her the female version of Shinsuke Nakamura and that is something that the women’s division could really use. Sarray may struggle to connect with fans at times, mostly due to an anti-Asian sentiment or the fact that English isn’t her native language that the racist idiots like to spout, but Sarray is so good in the ring that she can make those minorities eat their own words.. and maybe stick their feet in their own mouths. If not… let her kick each of them in the head. Maybe she’ll undo their brain damage.
6. Naomi – Smackdown
Why do I get the feeling that for WWE, Naomi is pretty much an afterthought anymore? She’s a former Women’s Champion, she’s married into the Bloodline and she is pretty damn solid in the ring. Instead of letting her hit the ground running, you had her debut back on Smackdown the way they did? I don’t understand WWE at times, and this is definitely one of those times. It’s ridiculous that Naomi has gotten stuck back in the mid-card when she could be pushed as a new top heel, or face, and face off against Lynch for the title. It’s been too long since Naomi was challenged for the belt and WWE needs to let her have her chance.
5. Dakota Kai – NXT
You want to talk about someone getting the shit end of the stick, then look no further than Dakota Kai. She’s played second fiddle to the, much, lesser talented Raquel Gonzales in the latter’s rise to the NXT Women’s Championship and then when she’s actually positioned to win it (something she more than deserves BTW) you put over the botch machine instead of the woman who the fans were clearly behind. I understand that WWE doesn’t want to always listen to the fans as their desires change on a whim, but not giving Dakota Kai a chance to be Champion is downright criminal. She’s got more talent in her pinkie finger than a lot of the women currently on the roster and featured on TV. She’d wrestle circles around most of them too. There’s a reason why she has such a huge fanbase around the world and it would be stupid for WWE not to start understanding just what a star Dakota Kai could be for them.
4. Io Shirai – NXT
NXT has been good for Io Shirai, much like Asuka and Kairi Sane before her. She is super popular with the fans and puts on high-quality matches against nearly everyone that she steps foot in the ring with. There are some exceptions, of course, because you can’t make chicken salad out of chicken scratch (I’m looking at you, Raquel). Io has spent the last few years in NXT and it’s high time that WWE brings the Joshi Judas to the main roster. Better yet, they bring her to Smackdown and keep her far, far away from the likes of Charlotte Flair and Nia Jax. A feud with Becky Lynch would spell big money for WWE as it pits two of their very best workers, regardless of gender, in the ring together and that could main event even WrestleMania. There is nothing left in NXT for Io to accomplish, so bring her up already WWE.
3. Toni Storm – Smackdown
WWE has done absolutely nothing with the former NXT UK Women’s Champion since calling her up to the main roster and that is a damned shame. Toni Storm is one of the most talented, and liked, superstars on their roster right now and the fact that they aren’t using her on television at all is criminal. Toni has held championships everywhere she has competed, from PWAQ to Stardom all the way to NXT UK, and whether WWE wants to admit it or not it is Toni Time on Smackdown. Stop leaving her in catering, put her on TV, and let the magic shine when she steps into the ring with the likes of Zelina Vega, Liv Morgan or even better Becky Lynch. You brought her to the main roster for a reason so stop holding Toni Storm back and let her do what she loves.
2. Rhea Ripley – RAW
I’m sure I’ll hear all of your eyes roll when I say that I want Rhea Ripley, and not some of the names I left off, facing Becky Lynch. I am well aware that she has been a top contender for the title since coming to Raw, and even had it until she was fed to the Flair machine, but since she was fed to Charlotte the WWE has done absolutely nothing with her. So, perhaps she should be sent to Smackdown instead and allowed to thrive. She’s got the talent, a unique look and she is an absolute powerhouse. Whether the fans want to believe it or not, a match between Rhea and Becky would be an absolute banger. The Nightmare should be one of the women WWE considers the future of their company, not being fed to the overrated Four Horsewomen, more specifically Charlotte Flair, or even to Nia Jax. Stop being a bunch of pansies WWE and give the Nightmare the reigns to let her do what she needs to do.
1. Liv Morgan – Smackdown
WWE dropped the ball back at Money in the Bank, they really did. The fans have been behind Liv Morgan for months, years even, and they didn’t give her the chance to carry the briefcase. Well, they can make it up to Liv, and the WWE Universe, by letting her challenge Becky Lynch for the Smackdown Women’s Championship. Liv Morgan has improved dramatically in the ring since her time in NXT and, let’s be honest, there isn’t a single woman on the entire main roster who is more deserving of a chance to hold the gold than Liv is. She has the look that WWE likes, she has the in-ring IQ that most women don’t possess and, perhaps most importantly, she has the entire WWE Universe behind her. The woman deserves the world and WWE needs to give her a chance to shine before she calls it a career. Book her against Becky Lynch and let Liv Morgan show the world what she can do against one of your top stars. Hell, let her beat Becky. The fans would go nuts if she won the title, a louder pop than Becky got when she returned. Mark my words, Liv Morgan is money. Let her Liv.