For all the slip ups and facepalm moments that came with the WWE women’s division in 2016, it cannot be denied that it was a significant year for the women. 2016 gave us an array of surprises and history making moments, from the elimination of ‘divas’ to Sasha Banks and Charlotte Flair’s ever increasing stipulations.

However, with those advances, there’s still a lot more that could be done to really take women’s wrestling in WWE to the next level in 2017. Here are just five things that this writer would like to see happen in the rest of 2017 as the commitment to women’s wrestling in WWE continues.

Take a look at the Women’s Division of Raw

It seems being down on Raw is the popular thing to do, but the flagship show has always been a funny one with me in terms of ‘its not all that bad’. That aside, the women’s division is honestly struggling right now. With the likes of Summer Rae and Paige firmly on the injury list there doesn’t seem to be too much of a second (or third) focus outside of The Usual Suspects (Flair, Banks and Bayley).

Now that the near blood feud of Banks and Flair has settled, and Bayley has firmly cemented herself into the title picture, the Road to Wrestlemania would be a great place to help build up other women in the division.

Stop Using Total Divas as a Crutch for Nikki Bella’s Angles

Love her or hate her, Nikki Bella has improved tremendously compared to where she started; and since her return she has been on a roll. Her work on Smackdown Live has been doing wonders when it comes to putting over new talent and she is proving herself time and time again as one of the more solid women workers.

This is why it is hard to fathom the reason behind Smackdown Live being so dependent on making all of her storylines revolve around her status as a reality TV star. Sure it’s a miracle that she is no longer a heel because of this status but surely they can come up with something better than an angle around jealousy because of who she is in a relationship with?

Eliminate Romance Angles Once and for All

Speaking of relationships, the most apparent one right now features 205 Live Cruiserweights Cedric Alexander and Noam Dar; but mainly more importantly Alicia Fox. What is it with WWE’s recent rekindled interested in romantic storylines?

Outside of this we have the somewhat bizarre flirting between Carmella and James Ellsworth, the disaster angle between Enzo Amore and Lana and the inclusion of Renee Young and Dean Ambrose’s relationship one of the main factors behind the changing hands of the Intercontinental Championship.

It’s not cute. It’s not heroic. In fact it’s rather cringe worthy and awkward. It down sells the talent of the women involved. Time to get rid; once and for all.

Build Alicia Fox or make her your modern Jacqueline with the Cruisers

Alicia Fox – whether you want to believe it or not – is actually rather talented. Honestly. She wouldn’t have been around this long if not. She is quite clearly a case of creative struggling to find direction for someone.

Whatever her current storyline with Cedric Alexander and Noam Dar on Raw and 205 Live is by the by. Given how sparse Raw looks, in terms of storylines outside of the Women’s title picture, now would be a perfect time to build Alicia’s character back up. Or if Vince McMahon is so desperate to bring back elements of the Attitude Era, maybe he could start with Fox challenging for the Cruiserweight title, like Jacqueline did in 2004.

The Long Rumoured Women’s Tournament

Since the Cruiserweight Classic ended, there have been continual rumours that the WWE has been planning a similar women’s tournament for the Network. With the recent signings of Heidi Lovelace, Kimber Lee, Nixon Newell and the United Kingdom Championship Tournament, it seems said rumour maybe isn’t so farfetched.

New female signings are happening continuously and the turnover of talent in the Performance Centre is almost conveyer-belt-like. It would almost be a tragedy to not showcase the talent you have. However possibilities aren’t certainties, but seeing the women wrestlers lay it on the line the way the Cruiserweights and UK guys did would be pretty interesting viewing to say the least.

Images courtesy of WWE

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