With Raw's 1000th episode coming so quickly today, I wanted to take a trip down memory lane and remind everyone of one of the key components that made Raw (and the WWE) as popular as it is today--the Divas.
It's sad what the women's division on Raw, let alone the entire WWE, has come to, which is why I want to look back at better times when seeing a Diva smash a weapon into another wrestler's face wasn't so out of the norm.
We tend to forget how entertaining the women can be, so allow me to remind you.
Here are, in no particular order, what I consider to be the 50 best Divas matches, moments and segments:
Let's get some of the obvious out of the way here.
No one will ever forget the pint-sized fireball putting two of the WWE's top workers through a table after methodically wrapping them around her finger.
This was the first Divas match to ever be featured as the main event on Raw. Stephanie and Lita had been feuding for weeks when this match finally came about. The Rock was the special guest referee, and the match saw interference by Kurt Angle and Triple H, adding to the already high-profile match up.
Trish always had a way with words, and it was no different when she returned to her home country. The fans ate up her spiel about being appreciated and destroying Lita. But Trish ended up eating a very nasty chokeslam.
The first Divas steel cage match saw two of WWE's best Divas ever, Lita and Victoria, battle it out with no fear of ramming one another into the intimidating cage. In the end, the winner would be Victoria when Lita's jaded ex-boyfriend Matt Hardy intervened in the matchup.
In a time of decline for the Divas, it was highly entertaining to see one actually attack another. Not to mention with a shoe! Oh that Melina...
Mickie and Melina, to me, have always been the successors of the Trish/Lita dynamic. Their careers always paralleled one another accordingly, and they had just as much talent (I think more) than their predecessors.
So it wasn't surprising that when the two clashed in this high-stakes matchup they delivered a fast-paced, gritty and memorable brawl.
After being pummeled by Jazz weeks prior, Trish made her return with guns a-blazin'. Not even Victoria was able to overpower the fired up Trish.
Trish and Victoria beat the tar out of each other, and afterwards Trish faces Jazz's wrath which led to the previous slide.
Vince's Devils were planning to have even more fun with Ashley, but the 2005 Diva Search winner wanted to have some fun of her own...
One of the many brutal battles between Victoria and Trish saw the "Widow's Peak Freak" defeat Trish using just that--the Widow's Peak.
Lita's return in 2003 was simply put--epic.
Lita came back from her injury to fantastic fanfare and, as seen in this match, fantastic ring work as well.
Yet another epic return for "The Queen of Extreme"
Revel in the greatness that was the year 2003.
Jillian Hall found herself in a world of hurt when Trish and Lita put their past differences aside to create a memorable moment for the fans.
Now this is a match! People tend to forget women like Bull and Alundra, which also makes them forget how ahead of their time these two women were as well. Not even some of the women in the Golden Era could put on a showing like this one.
I don't think I'll ever forget this. Molly literally broke a wooden paddle over Trish's head. Now that's a tough cookie!
One of many countless technical showings by the ever underrated Molly Holly.
I love this segment for multiple reasons, but the main thing I love about it is Trish's attitude about losing her championship. She really believed it was her property.
That's the type of attitude I wish the Divas would be allowed to show nowadays. It would make the belt mean something again. A key component to the credibility of the division back then.
What made this bout so great was clearly the interaction between Beth and Melina. Melina, as per usual, played her role to perfection. The fans really felt the adrenaline coursing through her veins, which caused them to erupt when she got the tag. It was fabulous!
This is my favorite attack by Kharma because of the way Maryse sold it. Absolute perfection!
I find this match to be highly underrated. Considering the women involved at the time, it was a surprise that they put on such an entertaining and solid matchup. Props to them!
One of the reasons Trish and Victoria's feud is so often praised is how intense it was. These girls really were not afraid at all to beat the living hell out of each other. It was refreshing to see.
A solid match from the four most influential women of the Golden Era.
Lita set out to make a very obvious point in her last match on Raw--that she is the best and always has been. I can't say I agree, but I loved her retaliation at the fans in the end. I felt like it was some sort of comeuppance. That was until her last match with the company.
Speaking of Lita, her heel turn was shocking and executed without a hitch. Take a look for yourselves.
This promo took Trish and Lita's feud up yet another notch. Back in the good old days when Lita was beloved by the fans, Trish just continued to prod and prod at her like no other. It led to another one of their big brawls.
Keeping the Lita train going, here she faced the stiffest worker in Divas history. And how fitting that the stiffest worker got to utilize some stiff weaponry.
It seemed to be just another bikini competition on Raw when Victoria's crazy reemerged in the most vicious of ways. It was fantastic!
Most people probably haven't seen this match, or just don't remember it. But I definitely do! It was one of the stronger bouts between these two very talented ladies.
It's the little things in wrestling that are the most entertaining, and the attention to detail in this segment was great. It was a hilarious segment that served it's purpose--to continue Trish and Lita's feud and to just plain entertain.
Clearly the best Divas Battle Royal in history.
Not even Britney friggin' Spears is gonna steal Trish's spotlight, and Christy needed to know that.
Again, when Jackie has a weapon it ain't gonna be pretty.
Best Playboy cover unveiling in my book.
I remember this match like it was yesterday. I was on the edge of my seat when it came down to Lita and Victoria. When "Miss Peak Freak" won, the crowd was surprisingly supportive since she had just turned face.
Seeing Sable flip her two birds up at the owner of the company sent the fans into a wild rampage, and it's no surprise why--that's not very ladylike behavior at all!
Now that's how a six Diva tag-team match should be done!
Everything about this segment was entertaining. Again, it's the little things, like Trish mimicking Jericho's entrance, that just get you.
Now that's brutality! Victoria put all of her hate into that shot, and it translated so well on screen.
It can't get any better then this. When the two top females of their respective brands and the two top talkers in the company meet, it's bound to be a must-see.
Another meeting between Melina and Trish saw the feisty Latina claim herself as the new top Diva in the WWE, but Trish wasn't exactly going to back down so easily.
Lita was headed fast toward gold, but it was no easy feat defeating the three other women involved in this match.
People think AJ is crazy, but they clearly must not have seen Mickie James. You wanna talk about an absolute schizophrenic, psychopathic genius? Then talk about Mickie James.
Beth was the alpha-female of the WWE when this match took place. She was literally unstoppable. That is, until the energetic Virginia farmgirl rolled her up for the shocking upset victory.
Wow. Ok. Does anyone else remember how hard it was to explain this storyline to people?
Another intense matchup from the Divas. This time from two of WWE's best Canadian talents to date.
Never has a match ended in such tragedy. It was undoubtedly Candice's best match to date, so seeing it end the way it did (and end Candice's career the way it did) really spoke volumes about what risks wrestlers take every time they step into the ring.
With so much talent in one ring at one time, this segment was bound to make an impact.
Okay, okay. I know I said this was going to be in no particular order, but I just couldn't help myself. I had to save the best for last. This has to be the best Divas moment ever, from where I stand.
The build up, the drama, the excitement, the atmosphere, the payoff, the everything!
This match was 10 minutes of perfection. If WWE could somehow re-create this moment, I would be in heaven. Everything that had led up to this moment for months finally came together. It was perfection personified.
And I, like many others, would give anything to relive this match.
It represents everything everyone loves about wrestling and then some. When you think best Raw moments, you think of this match.
And that, in and of itself, says it all.
While I'm sure I missed many other matches, moments and segments, this is my complete list.
I'd love to know your favorite Diva matches, moments and segments. So let me know in the comments section!