By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
Dot Net readers were allowed a single vote per day for each of the 2018 awards categories. The following are the results of our poll for Best Female Wrestler along with our staff comments. Thanks to everyone who took part in the voting.
1. Becky Lynch (65 percent)
2. Tessa Blanchard (7 percent)
3. Ronda Rousey (5 percent)
4. Charlotte Flair (5 percent)
5. Asuka (4 percent)
Others (14 percent)
Will Pruett’s Thoughts: Becky Lynch can and should run away with this one. Over the latter half of 2018, who in wrestling was more compelling than “The Man?” Becky produced on every level, having standout matches, promos, and a genuinely great (and semi-tragic) moment on Raw as she posed covered in blood after leading an invasion. Becky deserves all the praise she’s getting in these awards. Honorable mentions for me include Ronda Rousey and Charlotte Flair, both of whom performed well above expectations.
Haydn Gleed’s Thoughts: With the rise of the women’s division in WWE which started in 2017, the female wrestlers have had a lot more focus than we’ve seen before in 2018. Arguably the most important female wrestler of 2018 was Ronda Rousey due to her high profile elevating everyone else around here, but you can’t look any further than Becky Lynch for this award, as she had a magnificent 2018.
Anish V’s Thoughts: I considered giving this award to Becky Lynch because of just how mad her rise has been in 2018. In the end, I have to give it to Ronda Rousey. It’s weird to see that she only made her debut in April yet she still has the highest of expectations on her. For the most part, Rousey has delivered. More importantly than anything, Rousey has been improving week to week especially in terms of her mic and character work. Even when she doesn’t have the despicable Stephanie McMahon to work across from, Rousey does well to play that babyface role when she could so easily come across as a heel most of the time.
Jake Barnett’s Thoughts: I agonized over this category because there are so many solid choices, but in the end my vote goes to Ronda Rousey. Her explosion onto the scene at WrestleMania, and her ability to wildly outperform any reasonable expectation of her progress as a pro wrestler makes her impossible not to pick. Her celebrity and notoriety has greatly expanded the horizon for women’s wrestling as a whole, and further progressed the wrestling industry further down the path towards embracing its female divisions as viable businesses in and of themselves. Becky Lynch will undoubtedly receive a lot of votes in this category, but I think her lack of visibility for the first 7 months of the year makes her a difficult overall 2018 pick.
John Moore’s Thoughts: Of course Becky was the best female wrestler in 2018. Tessa Blanchard gets an honorable mention from me with her stellar 2018.
Jason Powell’s Thoughts: Becky Lynch ran away with the reader voting and rightfully so. Ronda Rousey’s first year as a pro wrestler was truly special and will be talked about for years to come, but I can’t say that I believe she’s better in the ring than the polished Lynch is at this point in her career. I’m happy to see Tessa Blanchard finish high in the voting. I can’t say she would have finished second in my voting because Asuka is so skilled and Blanchard didn’t compile the body of work that Charlotte did, but Tessa is special and she didn’t have the luxury of working with as many highly talented wrestlers as the others in the top five did.
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The new edition of the Pro Wrestling Boom Podcast with Jason Powell features Ricky Starks on his NWA run, doing enhancement work for WWE, leaving NOLA due to Hurricane Katrina, the January 24 NWA Hard Times PPV on FITE.TV, his relationship with Nick Aldis, and much more...