While the women’s division on WWE Raw has been main eventing the majority of episodes since WrestleMania, there has often been criticism regarding the women’s division on SmackDown, with it focusing on primarily the same faces for most of the year.
Fightful Select (subscription required) has provided more information on creative frustrations in the WWE women’s division this past Spring. Fightful had learned that several female talent were frustrated with their utilization on the show, from the bottom of the card up to the top. However, Fightful notes that several of these women were waiting to see where the ‘chips would fall’ following WrestleMania.
The returns of both Asuka and Lacey Evans were two of those falling chips, as was Charlotte Flair taking time off. With none of them factoring into SmackDown at the time, though Evans has since moved back over to the blue brand, Fightful notes that creative was able to feature more women on the show on a regular basis, starting with the SmackDown show on May 13.
Since that episode, there has been more integration of a wider variety of female performers, albeit with varying creative satisfaction. This was accelerated when Naomi and Sasha Banks left, which left a huge gap on the shows.
However, Ronda Rousey joining SmackDown was another chip that fell, with Fightful noting that numerous sources on the roster have claimed that she has been more than willing to work with a wider variety of women on the blue brand.
One of the same sources that Fightful had heard from said that it ‘felt like Vince McMahon was more concerned with squeezing himself onto television after the Wall Street Journal story than actually making sure female talent was booked and protected on the show.’
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