Sasha Banks made her WWE main-roster debut last summer as a part of the Divas Revolution. The arrivals of Sasha, Charlotte, and Becky Lynch contrasted the existing division of Divas that featured the likes of The Bella Twins. Nikki and Brie were the pretty faces that lacked the pure wrestling ability of Natalya, Paige, and the new call-ups. Sasha Banks, Charlotte, and Becky Lynch were here to change the perception of women’s wrestling, and they were here to stay.
Stephanie McMahon announced the Divas Revolution just as WWE’s crossover show, Total Divas, was hitting its stride on the E! Network. The show gave the women of wrestling another avenue in which to gain exposure, with the intention of attracting more female fans to the product. But when Sasha Banks and company showed up, it offered conflicting styles and tastes to a division that had been on a downward spiral since the departure of AJ Lee.
Now, the term “Divas” has been discarded and replaced with simply the Women’s Division. Just like the men, the women are WWE superstars. Charlotte is the newly-crowned WWE Women’s Champion, and with that a brand new championship belt. She, along with Sasha and Becky, tore the house down in their triple threat match at WrestleMania, earning best-match praise from a lot of wrestling journalists.
Total Divas, meanwhile, just wrapped up its fifth season with a Season 6 premiere to air in the fall of 2016. Recent changes (perhaps due to declining ratings) will include Naomi returning to the show, and she’ll be bringing Lana, Renee Young, and Maryse along for the ride. Nikki and Brie Bella will still appear on the show, but they’ve been slated to star in a spin-off entitled Total Bellas, which will follow the lives of the twins and their families. Conspicuous by their absences on either show: Charlotte, Becky Lynch, and Sasha Banks. You’d think that Paige would fall under the wrestler category due to her advanced skill in the ring, but she’s been a Total Divas cast member for three seasons, and recently expressed a touch of sadness over the WWE’s decision to drop the Divas moniker.
Sasha Banks was a recent guest of Busted Open Radio and offered candid responses to questions surrounding Total Divas. It’s clear Sasha is for the change and wants to be a major catalyst for that change (Thanks to Pro Wrestling Sheet for the transcription).
“There’s always gonna be, so to say, Divas. And I’m in a category of wrestlers. It’s not for me. I won’t ever be on that show. Saying it out there for a fact. But it’s fine. People like it. People watch it. So let them enjoy it.”
Sasha putting it out there that she’s in the WWE to be a wrestler, not a star on a reality show that captures relationships and drama for the world to see. It was clear from the moment she arrived that she was a fan-favorite despite her early booking in Team B.A.D. with Naomi and Tamina. That popularity elevated her into that match at WrestleMania and earned her tons of backstage support. There was even quite the groundswell for Sasha to win the championship in Dallas, but those plans obviously didn’t materialize. The new plan may see Banks win the championship at SummerSlam instead, after Charlotte moves on from Natalya, and perhaps one other challenger.
As noted, Total Divas gives the women another avenue to expand their brands. But Sasha Banks for one remains focused on her tasks inside a wrestling ring. It will be interesting down the line if her stance remains the same when producers come calling.
[Image via WWE]