A Kelly Kelly return at WWE WrestleMania 33 would force two vastly different eras of women's wrestling to collide.
The former Divas champ sauntering back into the WWE spotlight in time for the biggest event of the year would be a shock to the system. The women's division has transformed in her absence, and it's hard to imagine her fitting in.
Still, Kelly Kelly would bring some buzz to WrestleMania and open up a number of new directions for WWE to take.
That's what the company may be thinking right now. As strong as the women's division is right now, a recent backstage interview hinted at Kelly Kelly coming back.
On the Feb. 13 edition of Raw, in her first WWE appearance in years, she teased the possibility of another run.
"There's definitely a chance," she said on the possibility of a comeback and heading to WrestleMania. "I love meeting the fans. Yeah, so look forward to that, and you never know. Maybe something else."
She would be a welcome addition to The Show of Shows in a cameo role, but the company is better off keeping her out of the ring.
When Kelly Kelly (real name: Barbie Blank-Souray) left WWE in 2012, women's wrestling was not nearly as strong as it is today. Models-turned-Superstars filled most of the division. Women's matches didn't often last longer than two minutes.
Thanks to increased opportunities and an abundance of talent on the female side of the roster, all that has changed. Sasha Banks, Becky Lynch and others have spear-headed a revolutionary change in the women's division that has led to a growing collection of great matches.
Read on for a look at the pros and cons of bringing her back into the fold following all those advancements.
Pro: Name Power
Welcoming Kelly Kelly to WrestleMania isn't like bringing back Sting or Goldberg, but she's recognizable and would create some buzz for the event.
She was one of the top stars of the women's division in the early 2010s and Divas champ in 2011, and she competed in three editions of The Show of Shows. Beyond that, she's added a modicum of fame by being on the reality show WAGS.
WrestleMania has brought in names less familiar to wrestling fans like Maria Menounos.
To a small degree, the event will feel bigger with Kelly Kelly involved. She's both a low-level celebrity and a blast from the past.
Con: Subpar in the Ring
If Kelly Kelly's return involves wrestling, the quality of WrestleMania will suffer.
She's a decent athlete and had some "it" factor, but she's a poor in-ring performer, to be kind. Kelly Kelly was the embodiment of a period in women's wrestling where the matches were invitations to head to the concession stand.
Dave Meltzer's ratings for her matches in the Wrestling Observer Newsletter (h/t Internet Wrestling Database) speak to that.
|Star Ratings for Matches Late in Kelly Kelly's WWE Run|
|Event||Match||Star Rating (out of 5)|
|Money in the Bank 2011||Kelly Kelly vs. Brie Bella||0|
|SummerSlam 2011||Kelly Kelly vs. Beth Phoenix||2.25|
|Night of Champions 2011||Kelly Kelly vs. Beth Phoenix||2.0|
|Hell in a Cell 2011||Kelly Kelly vs. Beth Phoenix||2.0|
|TLC 2011||Kelly Kelly vs. Beth Phoenix||0.75|
|Royal Rumble 2012||Kelly Kelly, Alicia Fox, Eve Torres and Tamina vs. Beth Phoenix, Brie Bella, Nikki Bella and Natalya||1.5|
|WrestleMania XXVII||Kelly Kelly and Maria Menounos vs. Beth Phoenix and Eve Torres||0.25|
|Internet Wrestling Database|
She boasted an average of 1.25 stars in the aforementioned seven matches. Five of her career bouts netted a zero rating or lower.
Fans' expectations from the women's division are much higher than they once were. Last year, Lynch, Banks and Charlotte Flair stole the show at WrestleMania. Flair and Banks put on some of 2016's top bouts. And this year, Bayley and The Queen thrilled in the main event of the Feb. 13 edition of Raw.
Kelly Kelly can't hang with those women. She would only drag them down if she tangled with them in the ring.
Pro: Fresh Interactions
Fans have seen Banks and Flair face off 41 times on TV and pay-per-view, per CageMatch.net. Nikki Bella vs. Natalya is a familiar sight at this point, too.
The brand split has forced WWE to repeat a number of matchups.
Kelly Kelly would be a change of pace with that in mind. Only Natalya, Alicia Fox and Bella were around during her previous stint. Her presence would create a number of new, intriguing matchups.
Flair could add to her resume of savagery by tearing Kelly Kelly apart. Nia Jax clobbering her from behind would be a callback to Kharma hunting down the blonde Superstar. Bliss could create a memorable moment for herself by verbally tearing into the former Divas champ.
All this can be accomplished without an actual match. A segment or non-wrestling appearance would be plenty sufficient.
Con: Already Difficult to Showcase Entire Division
Goldberg vs. Brock Lesnar is a lock for WrestleMania 33. Bray Wyatt is set to defend his WWE Championship. Seth Rollins and Triple H are sure to battle at the marquee event.
WrestleMania is a lengthy show, but the card is filling up fast. It should feature both the Raw and SmackDown women's titles in separate bouts, but there's no guarantee that any women outside of those contests will get to compete that night.
If Kelly Kelly were to get a match, that would take away a spot from a full-time star who will be here long after K2 goes back to her life.
That could leave Bliss out in the cold. Jax may not make her WrestleMania debut this year. The added puzzle piece in Kelly Kelly would makes things more difficult for WWE when divvying up the PPV spotlight.
And Kelly Kelly isn't valuable enough to push aside the women's division's rising stars to make room for her.
WWE's best bet is to make her appearance the non-wrestling kind for a variety of reasons. It would be fun to see her back in the spotlight and intriguing to see her interact with today's female Superstars, but everything she brings to the table can be tapped into without a single minute of ring time.
Like the new article format? Send us feedback!