While there may have been no Divas match scheduled at Elimination Chamber, it featured a number of angles and announcements involving WWE’s women.
Jennifer watched the pay-per-view and fills us in with the details:
Booker T was in the ring to announce the third trainer for Tough Enough, aside from Stone Cold Steve Austin and himself – and it’s Trish Stratus. She looks great as she comes out, but the crowd response is considerably less than she’s gotten in prior appearances. Booker asks her why she’s there, and she replies that she wants to help find the new WWE Superstar or Diva, and she’s been working on a catchphrase. She gets into a yoga position (trying to mimic the Rock, but with a yoga stance) and says, “FINALLY…The Trish has come back to Oakland! To deliver Stratusfaction to the millions (crowd chimes in “millions” but a bit weak)…SUCKA.” Booker looks amused, saying, “Tell me you didn’t just say that..” and asks why she’s there tonight. Trish replies that she’s there to see one of her favourities, Jerry “The King” Lawler win the WWE Championship. Booker ends the segment, “Now can you dig THAT sucka?”
Crowd reaction was definitely smaller for her than it’s been before, but WWE is definitely trying to pull out all the stops for Tough Enough by getting big names as trainers. From a practical standpoint, however, if I wanted someone to train a person who’s supposed to have no prior wrestling training….Trish is not the woman I’d call as a female trainer. Ivory, Jackie and even Tori were much more capable. But for star power and as one of the biggest female names in the past ten years, the only other woman they could’ve turned to was Lita, so this choice makes sense.
Later in the evening, Vickie came out, begging for people to use social networking to get Teddy Long to rehire Dolph. Teddy comes out and said he did rehire someone – out comes Kelly Kelly. Vickie tries to avoid her but they wind up in the ring, Vickie trying to let bygones be bygones. Kelly attacks, slamming her head into the mat until LayCool make the save. Out comes Trish though, who sends LayCool running, but they sneak attack her as she’s checking on Kelly. Layla gets on top of a turnbuckle, screaming at McCool to get her, but Michelle gets a Chick Kick and Layla gets a (botched due to her wearing these huge heels) Stratusphere – that handstand hurricanrana in the corner. Both members of LayCool then get a Stratusfaction. Kelly gets back into the ring and Trish hugs her, holding up her hand as Kelly’s music plays.
I have a feeling that Kelly is really going to be elevated and it feels like they might have her and Trish vs. LayCool at WrestleMania, culminating in a win for the first two and the final breakup of LayCool. (Michelle looked confused as Layla was screaming at her to get Trish.)
As Jennifer points out, WWE is going for all the star power it can with Tough Enough to appeal to as many different corners as possible. Rima Fakih’s announcement was expected to spike the mainstream media interest – it hasn’t yet – and Trish’s participation is supposed to appease the wrestling fans. However, Trish has been away from wrestling for more than four years, and wasn’t part of the industry for that long when you compare her longevity to the show’s other trainers, Stone Cold Steve Austin and Booker T. Also, that trainer spot could have gone to someone who is already on the roster – Beth Phoenix or Natalya immediately spring to mind. However, let’s keep more of an open mind about this than the Miss USA announcement, as she showed the desire to improve during her time in the WWF/E, and ended up being a good worker.