Charlotte Flair defending the WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship does not have the main-event-level momentum needed to headline WrestleMania.
WrestleMania 39 is on the horizon. Fans are hyped about multiple matches, while some do not have the momentum as others. Roman Reigns and Cody Rhodes are destined to headline the second night, but questions continue around the headline for night one. Rumblings are growing that Charlotte Flair and Rhea Ripley will be the last two in the ring on April 1, but that is not the match that should headline either evening.
Dave Meltzer of Wrestling Observer reported that this match is expected to headline night one of WrestleMania.
Charlotte Flair and Rhea Ripley have a backstory that could be leveraged into a major moment at WrestleMania. Flair has thrown cold water on both Ripley’s runs on the main roster, one coming at the PPV showcase prior. Ripley’s emergence as a fan favorite, even while being a part of The Judgement Day is a testament to her power as a superstar. She’s been a force as a part of the WWE women’s roster since her time in NXT, even after the initial botch of her introduction to mainstream viewers. But this isn’t enough to power this match as a main event in 2023.
When looking across the slate of available matches, Flair and Ripley do not have the same level of interest. That is even true across the women’s matches. Bianca Belair versus Asuka may not be at the level that fans want, but still has more buzz than the SmackDown women’s title. The return of Lita and Trish Stratus, pairing them with Becky Lynch and setting up the match against Damage CTRL also has more cache than what is going on over on SmackDown.
Unfortunately, this situation is an outcome of the lackadaisical booking that has hampered women’s wrestling on the main roster, especially the SmackDown women’s division. Ronda Rousey’s title run was shunned from the start, and transitioning the title to Flair brought a spark, but even that has run out. Flair is a big name, but fans have shown apathy toward seeing her in such a primary spot time and again. Ripley is expected to win the championship and go on her own run, but this is also a match that fans have seen multiple times already.
Sami Zayn and Kevin Owen’s moment should stand tall for night one
Plus, there’s the continued swell of momentum for Sami Zayn to have a major moment at WrestleMania. While he is not in the main title picture against Reigns, the idea of him and Kevin Owens taking on The Usos also draws a lot of interest. The main focus of WrestleMania 39 should sit on the toppling of The Bloodline, as it opens up multiple storylines immediately after. Owens and Zayn standing tall at the end of night one pushes momentum into night two.
Charlotte Flair and Rhea Ripley are two powerful names in women’s wrestling. They should have a big moment at WrestleMania 39. Unfortunately, forces outside of their control have not built up their match to carry night one of WrestleMania and that main event should go to Sami Zayn, Kevin Owens, and The Usos.