WWE Women's Tag Team Championship Needs To Matter

Buried in a Christmas episode of Monday Night Raw, Vince McMahon dressed as Santa Claus makes some announcements. Among them was that WWE will unveil new women's tag team championships.

The delivery is a far cry from when Lita revealed a new women's championship at WrestleMania 32. Or when Stephanie McMahon broke the news of the first all-women's Royal Rumble and Evolution Pay-Per-View. Even though many of the female talent on the roster expressed their excitement for the additional duos title, it has predominately been on social media or in passing during a promo.

What should be celebrated as another notch in the proverbial belt for women's empowerment and equality has not been treated as such. Instead it was part of a comedic segment involved Santa Vince during a taped Raw on a night many fans are preoccupied watching A Christmas Story on repeat and sipping eggnog with family. Should we expect anything less when it comes to WWE tag teams in general? Over the years the company has gone hot and cold on the men's side for decades with a few bright spots.

There is still hope if WWE changes its approach in making the women's tag team gold a prestigious fixture on the shows. A start is to embrace the brief but impactful history. Yes, the promotion had women's tag team titles before. Upon transitioning from the NWA, Velvet McIntyre and Princess Victoria got the ball rolling in 1983 in being recognized as the inaugural champions for WWE. Though during this era there were two other tag teams who developed a rivalry over the titles, winning over fans in the process.

The Glamour Girls (Judy Martin and Leilani Kai) with Jimmy Hart and the Jumping Bomb Angels (Noriyo Tateno and Itzuki Yamazaki) tore the house down on the shows they were on in different parts on the globe. It was more than 30 years ago since they met at the Royal Rumble in two-out-of-three falls, presenting something unique from the rest of the card. They not only stood out being women, but their presentation and move set also made them an attraction. In many ways, these four maximized their minutes to the fullest in telling a story in the ring and getting the audiences invested and excited about what they were doing.

Sadly, their existence on the events were fleeting with WWE largely moving on from women's wrestling in general until 1993 with Alundra Blayze. Despite the short time, a retrospective of these revolutionary series of matches would be a nice way to embrace the legacy they created before beginning a new phase of the tag titles. Maybe even an induction into the WWE Hall of Fame during WrestleMania weekend would be a nice touch. It's criminal trailblazers like Leilani Kai have yet to receive the accolade for their contributions.

If WWE wants to bring importance to the women's tag team titles right off the bat, having a tournament featuring participants from all brands (even NXT) would help. I've always been a proponent of having one world champion for each division with the feeling less is more. So, by doing it with a new championship would be a step in the right direction for me. Having a deep roster to pull from can keep the matchups fresh. It has to be more than just this team meets that team. There should be underlying stories, which as we've seen with the other title programs is easier said than done.

But one thing WWE has going for it is some established units to get things going. There is the Riott Squad, The Iiconics, Naomi and Lana or Asuka, Bayley and Sasha Banks, Nia Jax and Tamina, Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville, Ronda Rousey and Natalya, Alicia Fox and Mickie James and so on. That's not even counting NXT. Fleshed out partnerships fans already associate together. This is good because it won't come off to fan's as tag teams getting together for the sake of it with no background. You can even add a shot of nostalgia by bringing the team of Trish Stratus and Lita or the Bella Twins. Times like these one wishes Kaitlyn and AJ Lee and the LayCool were still around.

Much like any other part of pro wrestling, consistency is key. The tag team titles need to develop with weekly screen time. If WWE wants to add more titles to the women's division, the company should do it right. They're only going to get one real shot at having fans perceive the titles as coveted. Just putting them on one show every few weeks isn't going to get it done. There is a ton of potential in having women's tag team titles. Even TNA found success with the Knockouts formulating quite a competitive title scene.

Outside of creative and booking, at the end of the day a big deciding factor whether the division floats or drowns to the bottom of obscurity are the talent. They have to be passionate about it and go out to the ring fully committed. It can be an uphill battle considering there was a point when WWE commonly featured women in short tag team matches. It was a vehicle to get a bunch of female talent on the show all at once, which unfortunately meant getting lost in the shuffle.

The pressure is on for the women to raise the bar even higher. They must continue to steal the show and run with the ball. They are doing it right now more nights than not with the mindset that failure is not an option. For the locker room, this is nothing new and if their current track record is any indication these superstars will deliver.

The question is who should be the first to hold the women's championships high and grow in the seeds the Glamour Girls and Jumping Bomb Angles planted? It's a pivotal choice because they set the tone for perhaps future generations to come.

Scott Fishman contributed to this article.


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