It’s no secret that the Mae Young Classic taped it’s tournament the past few days. Spoilers are everywhere on Social Media. Don’t worry, this article will NOT spoil the results or match-ups. But some interesting things happened during the tournament and in the crowd that has many fans chomping at the bit. The inevitable showdown between the MMA world’s Four Horsewomen and the WWE’s version.
WWE posted a video prior to the Mae Young Classic starting, showing UFC fighter Rhonda Rousey arriving at Full Sail prior to the tournament, with Jessamyn Duke. The two, alongside Mae Young Classic competitor Shayna Baszler and Marina Shafir, the fiance of NXT Superstar Roderick Strong who’s appeared in NXT for a few segments already, are the MMA stable known internationally as The Four Horsewomen.
It makes sense that the other three MMA Horsewomen would be there to support Baszler in the tournament. The video also showed WWE Superstar Natalya coming out to great Rousey and Dukes – over the past few years, Natalya had been training some of them at various points in professional wrestling. Baszler was the first to take the full time plunge, first debuting with Ring of Honor in 2015, after further training from Josh Barnett. She made an immediate impact – she’s been a regular in promotions around the world and beat Heidi Lovelace (now Ruby Riot in NXT) for the AIW Women’s title in 2016, which she still holds. Shafir has appeared on NXT several times now as part of the Roderick Strong story, with mention of her MMA history woven in. With Rousey and Duke winding down their MMA careers – and Rousey’s very public love affair with pro wrestling and desire to go to the WWE – it’s only a matter of time before we see all four in the ring.
The WWE’s Four Horsewomen probably have a more legitimate claim to the Four Horsewomen name (despite the MMA stable getting the nickname a year prior in 2014), as one of it’s members, Charlotte Flair, is genetically a part of the actual Four Horsemen lineage – her father Ric Flair was the group’s leader for decades. Charlotte, alongside Sasha Banks, Becky Lynch and Bayley, helped define women’s wrestling in NXT, revolutionize it in the WWE, and bring women’s wrestling to the main event status it hasn’t seen in decades.
Without revealing when in the tournament in happened or during which match, there came a confrontation between both factions this past few days that has the wrestling buzzing. During a match involving Shayna Baszler, the former UFC fighter began to mouth off the the WWE women.
Which of course, led to Shayna’s crew joining the fray.
The mainstream potential for a match-up of both rival Horsewomen to face off is a money machine. While Rhonda may not be the MMA fighter she once was, she’s still a huge money maker as a draw. Shayna has transitioned well into the life of a professional wrestler and the four have a strong desire to enter the WWE together.
While there’s no confirmation any of this will make it on television (although you’d think it would be exactly the mainstream attention they’d want), but if it does, it could potentially be laying the starting groundwork for perhaps the greatest faction war in women’s wrestling history – the battle of the Four Horsewomen.