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With Bayley’s win, all Four Horsewomen have been Women’s Champion

Tuesday’s Rude Awakening looks at Bayley’s Women’s Championship, Kevin Owens turning on Chris Jericho, and the (d)evolution of Emmalina.

We publish a whole lot of content here at Cageside Seats. We’re also [looks around and whispers so the bosses can’t hear] not the only place producing wrestling content on the internet. So, as a service to you on the weekdays, we’ll be producing a wrestling newsletter, "Rude Awakening." Well, it will be a newsletter eventually: for now, it’ll just be part of your experience here at Cageside, collecting the news, recaps, and social moments from the greater wrestling universe daily so you won’t fall behind, with a newsletter format to come.

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Charlotte Flair, Sasha Banks, Becky Lynch, and Bayley all came up through WWE’s developmental system, NXT, during the same time frame. The first three all made it to the main roster much earlier than Bayley did, but that was due to the Hugster suffering an injury that interfered with her timeline, and also the move of NXT into a touring brand that needed major players to sell tickets. Charlotte was the first of the Four Horsewomen, as the foursome was often referred to as a unit given their developmental proximity to each other and importance in changing the perception of women’s wrestling in WWE, to win the WWE Women’s Championship, at that time known as the Divas belt.

The Divas title transitioned into the WWE Women’s Championship, with Charlotte transferring her reign from one to the other with a triple threat victory at WrestleMania 32. Sasha Banks would eventually be the first women to successfully wrest that that championship from Charlotte. Becky Lynch was drafted to SmackDown, where the SmackDown Women’s Championship was eventually introduced, and she was the inaugural winner. Now, Bayley has defeated Charlotte on Monday Night RAW to become the last of the Four Horsewomen to hold a WWE Women’s title. She’s not behind, though: the whole women’s revolution idea WWE had going is still ongoing, and far from over.

There was some (unwarranted) concern over whether WWE just got lucky with these four women in particular or if they were truly the start of something new for women in the company as a whole. With Alexa Bliss defeating Becky Lynch to become the second SmackDown Women’s champ, then original NXTer Naomi — like, NXT-as-game-show original — taking out Bliss at Elimination Chamber, and Nia Jax likely to be a major piece of RAW’s WrestleMania feud for the title, we can see WWE is already successfully integrating women who aren’t one of the Four Horsewomen into the scene, and doing so convincingly and successfully. Charlotte, Becky, Sasha, and Bayley aren’t it for women’s wrestling in WWE, not by a long shot. They were on the front lines of the push that has helped Bliss, Naomi, Nia, and more to come get their shot and time, though, and that’s something to celebrate on top of Bayley winning herself a title.

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