C.L.R.

Sep 21, 2020

7 min read

Ranking The Remnants: WWE Mae Young Classic 2017 — Three Years On

Three years hence and here we be.

We’ve come to 16 in and 16 out, and I know those 16 out are living their best lives whatever they’re doing, and heck to the yeah, so are the 16 in.

But who do we want more of? Who’s perfectly placed? Who’s having the time of their life and owing it all to themselves?

Last time out, we had 22 on this list, some were just hanging out of course, but let’s see where they ranked.

22) Serena Deeb (Honourable Mention)
21) Renee Michelle (Honourable Mention)
20) Kavita Devi
19) Reina Gonzalez
18) Santana Garrett
17) Rachel Evers
16) Vanessa Borne
15) Jazzy Gabert
14) Sarah Logan
13) Taynara
12) Xia Li
11) Dakota Kai
10) Piper Niven
9) Toni Storm
8) Candice LeRae
7) Mia Yim
6) Bianca Belair
5) Kay Lee Ray
4) Kairi Sane
3) Lacey Evans
2) Rhea Ripley
1) Shayna Baszler

So a few big names gone, but that’s an opportunity to move up for some. Let’s rank the remnants of the 2017 Mae Young Classic.

16/ KAVITA DEVI
A Worlds Collide battle royale, two MYC first round appearances, and a Wrestlemania Kick Off battle royale remain the extent of Hard KD’s tele time.
She ain’t done nothin’ since last July, so my patience will maintain, and we’ll hopefully spy her doon the line.
Moving up though.

DIFFERENCE: +4

15/ VANESSA BORNE
One match in the period between this article and the last saw her pop up in a battle royale on NXT-TV, and since then she’s been out.
Word had it she was quietly drafted to RAW, and she might yet have a very big role on main roster tele, but as of right now, her absence, while anticipative, has done her.
Looks like she’s lost her mate n’all.

DIFFERENCE: +1

14/ SANTANA GARRETT
She’s been about, couple of losses, got a win in there though. Says a lot about her that even though she’s out there making other people look good, she’s looking fly n’all. If she’s showing this much in this time, imagine what she could do with a tick-tock more.

DIFFERENCE: +4

13/ PIPER NIVEN
Bad luck here, as we’ll see a bit later on, but Piper’s a victim of NXT-UK being taken off the air. She got a few matches in before it was cut, and she’s come back with a head of steam, but it’s that middle section that’s got her, the emptiness, shame. I mean, it ain’t a sandwich without some filling.
She’ll be up here next time, lemme tell ya.

DIFFERENCE: -3

12/ XIA LI
Bit of stagnation from Xia here. She’s working hard, that much is obvious, but the reward, as of yet, is nicht forthcoming. Another Royal Rumble appearance and a happily crafted angle with Aliyah that did more for The Robert Stone Brand is what she’s been up to, and it looks like she might be about to snap at her lack of opps.

DIFFERENCE: NO CHANGE

11/ TONI STORM
Another NXT-UKer that might also be an NXTer, no-one knows, but she’s been out for a bit anyways. She got in a few title matches, succumbing to the NXT Champion and the NXT UK Champion, and a Royal Rumble appearance didn’t hurt, but expect Toni to come back up like some 20-year old Crystal Pepsi, ‘cos nowt can keep her down for long.

DIFFERENCE: -2

10/ MERCEDES MARTINEZ
A Royal Rumble appearance, some dominant matches, and a killer mini-feud that culminated in a cage match sees Double-M crack the top ten. I don’t know if she’s here for a long time or a good time, or even both, but her extra layer and extra gear ain’t hurting her or the NXT roster right now.
Just missed the cut last time, like, by hours, so a new leaf on this branch.

DIFFERENCE: NEW ENTRY

9/ LACEY EVANS
It’s felt like Lacey’s gonna push on for a while now, ‘cos she’s a wee-bit tailor-made for Smackdown; it only makes sense she could be the figurehead. A feud with Bayley ended up being a fruitless endeavour, a two changes of heart saw her swiftly sick of being away from the title.
She been putting nasties in their place, but that’s been her only joy amongst a bit of disappointment.

DIFFERENCE: -6

8/ KAY LEE RAY
Yeah, another NXT-UKer, but she’s the champ, and she’s been the champ for over a year now. Lockdown (not TNA) might have done her a favour, but she’s had a couple of impressive matches in this period (before the cut-off), and when you’ve got a title belt holding up your pants, it’s easier to climb.

DIFFERENCE: -3

7/ RAQUEL GONZALEZ
A reinvention here, and what a mighty one. Mighty, ‘cos she ain’t changed that much, but the fact she’s come in as muscle and has been allowed to show that, it’s beautiful. She’s been dominant and dangerous and seems set to break even higher, and she got STYYYYLE.

DIFFERENCE: +12

6/ MIA YIM
She been all on since January, racking up a Royal Rumble, a cracker ladder match and an entertaining feud with The Garganos. But the ceiling’s there, for every win over Jessi Kamea or Santana Garrett, there’s a high profile defeat. Is the pressure too much? She’s always on the cusp, but never seems able to break through to the very top.

DIFFERENCE: +1

5/ BIANCA BELAIR
Kicked off this period winning an NXT Battle Royale, and though she wouldn’t win the title, she did whip up a tremendeux Royal Rumble appearance and a main roster call. She hasn’t rocked up on RAW all that much, but she’s bossed it when she has, and she’s become the Queen of Main Event, racking up a 9–0 record. She’s already pretty high, but for The EST, there ain’t nowhere to go but up.

DIFFERENCE: +1

4/ CANDICE LERAE
A change of heart kicked LeRae’s run into a fresh gear just when she was at risk of slipping into the void. Instead, The Poison Pixie has been turning in performance after performance and wrestling like the NXT title is the be-all and end-all. That could be the difference for her in the next year… Maybe she just wants it more…

DIFFERENCE: +4

3/ DAKOTA KAI
Just before the last entry, she was returning from injury and promised an upward trajectory. She feckin delivered.
A helluva feud with Tegan Nox, a bangin’ partnership with Raquel Gonzalez, some killer contendership matches and a killerer title match have given Kai the best nine months of her WWE in-ring career.
The title is coming, surely, but Kai and Gonzalez look set to maintain their upwards trend.

DIFFERENCE: +8

2/ SHAYNA BASZLER
Dominant Royal Rumble, check.
Elimination Chamber victory, check.
Wrestlemania title match, check.
Money in the Bank ladder match, check.
Women’s Tag Team Titles, check.
What keeps her off the top here is her success rate. The Elimination Chamber win was dominant and the tag title victory was mightily impressive, but her RAW career has had a stuttering middle thus far that saw her drift off for a while. Still, she managed to cram all this in, so in the next twelve months, she can claim top spot once more.

DIFFERENCE: -1

1/ RHEA RIPLEY
Coming in as NXT champion, she retained in several impressive matches, and though she would lose it to Charlotte at ‘Mania, she is the one who took the NXT title to the grandest stage and put on a hell of a showcase for it. Since then, she’s been on the warpath back to the title, destroying The Robert Stone Brand in crackingly entertaining matches that seem to point to Ripley regaining the NXT title in the coming months.
Right now, Rhea just embodies the division and the direction it’s heading.

DIFFERENCE: +1

— —

Boom.

Half-present, half-absent, all of ’em killing it whatever they be doing.

BIGGEST MOVE UP: +12 — Raquel Gonzalez
BIGGEST MOVE DOWN: -6 — Lacey Evans

Aye, there are names dropped here, and that’s mostly due to the shitey year we find ourselves in that appeared to receive the ‘take’ memo, but missed the ‘give’ one. Apart from where it came to diseases.
But these lasses can still give it everything whether they’re in front of a crowd or not, and they will continue to for a long time, knocking everything from their path. And we saw a lot of these folks get on TV when they were barely on it before, so there are positives abound for the tele on which they grace.

Everyone’s got a place.

I said it once, I’ll say it again: I’m a wrestling fan and I’m a fan of wrestlers. Women’s wrestling is in a boom right now cos they got SO MUCH STYLE, and that style was shown on a grand scale with the 2017 Mae Young Classic.

Sixteen lasses might not have joined us here, and they are Nicole Savoy, Sage Beckett, Rachel Evers, Miranda Salinas, Serena Deeb, Abbey Laith, Renee Michelle, Sarah Logan, Marti Belle, Zeda, Princess Sugehit, Jazzy Gabert, Taynara Conti, Ayesha Raymond and Kairi Sane. But they be doin’ cracker, no worries.

Keep it streets ahead,

C.L.R.