Over the last decade or so we have seen a huge shift in how wrestling is viewed and digested. Due to this, we have seen an improvement in the athletic ability modern wrestlers. This shift is most obvious in female wrestlers, who are currently having a bit of a golden period. Below we have taken a look at some of the best female wrestlers to have graced the ring in the last ten years.
Many wrestling fans might be a bit surprised to find her on the list, but nobody can deny how far she took her wrestling career throughout the decade. When 2010 started, her and her sister were simply just extras in the women’s division. It was not until she featured on Total Divas, a reality TV show, that WWE started to see her as a main star. In 2014, Bella won the WWE Divas Championship, and she held the title for 301 days, which is a record. During this period, she improved her in-ring game significantly. In fact, she improved so much that she became a regular in the division when it started to develop in 2016. Her last in-ring match was in 2018 when she starred at Evolution PPV next to Ronda Rousey, which emphasized just how big she had become.
When people discuss performers that have transitioned from mixed martial arts to wrestling, many will immediately think of Ronda Rousey. However, when it comes to impact on the brand, Rousey’s training partner and friend actually tops her. Baszler transitioned to wrestling a full three years before Rousey did and trained under the guidance of Mercedes Martinez. Therefore, by the time the Mae Young Classic came around, she had a much more defined style in the ring. In 2018, she arrived in NXT, which was a scene that was dominated by Asuka. The brand needed a new star, and Baszler happily took up that mantle. Over the next two years Baszler beat everyone that came up against her. In 2019, she was the NXT Women’s Champion for all but 14 days, which is an amazing feat. Some of the talented wrestlers that she beat included Binaca Belair, Ember Moon, Kairi Sane, and Candice Le Rae. We do not think there are many that will argue with Baszler being on this list.
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Before she arrived on the WWE scene in 2015, Asuka was an intimidating and dominating presence throughout Japan. She gained such a reputation that when she signed with NXT, she was the most hotly anticipated wrestler in the brand’s history. She was undefeated and unpinned for a staggering 914 days. Her achievements during this time include a long reign as NXT Champion – a title that she never lost. She would later go on to make even more history by being the first woman to win the Royal Rumble. She continues to take part in top class matches, but she is no longer as popular as she was a few years ago.
The match that she had at the end of 2018 with Charlotte Flair and Becky Lynch was voted by CBS Sports as the Match of the Year.
At just 29 years of age, it is safe to say that she still has plenty of years left in her. This is quite amazing in itself when you take into consideration what she has achieved so far in her short career. Before she made her debut in 2007, she was a tag team wrestler, but during her time in Stardom she went on to become one of the top wrestlers in Japan. She won the Wonder of Stardom title twice and was an Artist of Stardom champion no fewer than six times. She made her debut in WWE in 2018 in the second of the Mae Young Classics, and she came second behind Toni Storm. She first started off as a colourful character, but she recently changed her character to a more cold-hearted one, which has gone down very well with wrestling fans.
In 2018, Banks paired up with Bayley and became the first ever women’s pairing to become Tag Team champions. When she first appeared on the wrestling scene, many people thought that she was arrogant, but we feel that it matched perfectly with her ability in the ring. Her matches against Bayley in 2015 were big standouts in her wrestling career, but she also had a very fine 2016. Throughout this year she found herself participating in a number of first time ever matches such as the inaugural Women’s Hell in a Cell Match. Her best match in 2016 was the Falls Count Anywhere bout against Charlotte Flair. Despite her young age, she has done an awful lot in the world of wrestling. Her harshest critics will say that she is reckless when in the ring and can endanger herself or her opponent, but when she is on form there are not many better female wrestlers to watch.
Nobody can deny that Lynch had an outstanding decade, especially when you remember that she had semi-retired before the decade began. However, three years later, in 2013, she decided that she was not finished as a wrestler just yet and signed for the NXT brand. She became part of the Four Horsewomen and was a consistent and solid member. However, in 2018, it looked like she was lagging behind the other members and was out of the spotlight. However, all that changed the following year as one solitary blow to Flair at SummerSlam turned her career around and put it back on the right path. The WWE Universe started to give her more support, and she did not hide away from any fights. She can now consider herself to be one of wrestling’s biggest stars, even up there with some of the best male wrestlers. Nowadays, the sky is the limit for Becky.
Wrestling runs in Flair’s family, which could be seen right away as she progressed much quicker than her peers. She has only been an active wrestler since 2012, but it is easy to see why many consider her to be the greatest female wrestler of all time, not just the last ten years. During her short wrestling career, she has been the RAW Women champion four times, she was the first Divas champion, she was the first woman wrestler to main event SmackDown, Raw, and PPV, and she has been the smackdown Women champion no fewer than five times. While wrestling fans will probably disagree with some of the inclusions on our list, we highly doubt anyone will question whether Flair should be here or not.