It has been a year of ups and downs for the WWE’s Divas Division. While it's no secret that women’s wrestling is not what it once was, 2012 has been a year full of both great gleams of hope and blackening clouds of despair for the division.
The year began with anticipation that Kharma would become active on the roster after her guest entry into the Royal Rumble. However, such hope was crushed following her departure from the company.
2012 saw Layla’s triumphant return to the ring to carry the division for the better part of the year, while the Bella Twins and 2011’s top girl Kelly Kelly all parted ways with the company. One of the roster’s best pure wrestlers Beth Phoenix also retired, barely receiving any sort of sendoff after eight dedicated years with the company.
On the upside we saw the signings of both Sara Del Rey and Buggy Nova, two renowned independent wrestlers. However, we subsequently learned that Del Rey would only be working in the capacity of a trainer and Nova was later checked into WWE-sponsored rehab.
We have seen hope for the future in the rise of Kaitlyn and the potential in NXT stars such as Paige, but we’ve also witnessed the departure of the up-and-comers Raquel Diaz and Sophia Cortez. All the while Tamina and Natalya remain underused on the main roster.
It has also been a year of a questionable attitudes towards the division from WWE’s management and especially the Executive Vice President of Talent, Triple H.
Through the peaks and troughs of 2012 it should be expected that the WWE would want to end the year on a high note for the Divas Division—at least as far as pay-per-views go—but apparently that is not the case.
At TLC live tonight from Brooklyn, New York, the women of the WWE have been relegated to the free-for-all online pre-show. In a “Santa’s Little Helpers” battle royal featuring Layla, Kaitlyn, Alicia Fox, Natalya, Tamina, Aksana, Rosa, Cameron and Naomi, the divas will be serving as a mere novelty.
At this stage Eve is not scheduled to defend her Divas title, yet another poor booking decision from WWE Creative. What will be telling is who picks up the victory in the battle royal, as a shot at the Divas title is on the line.
Whoever wins in the pre-show will lead the division alongside Eve, as we head into the new year and a chance for a new page in the division’s history. Sadly, we can only hope that come TLC 2013 the divas division will provide more than a mere pre-show novelty filler.