It’s that time of year once again: the Perfect 10 is back to count down the top 10 Divas and Knockouts of 2010. Based on their year’s successes, we’ve compiled (as best we can) the ten Divas and Knockouts we feel gave us a 2010 to remember in WWE and TNA. Check back over the next five days to see the countdown unfold, with the #1 being revealed on New Year’s Eve (Friday).
#8: BETH PHOENIX
LAST YEAR: — 2008: #2
Perhaps the most inspirational Diva of 2010, Beth Phoenix went through hell and back with a grueling 6 months on the shelf due to injury, but you wouldn’t know it when you rack up her accomplishments this year.
In January, the Glamazon became only the second woman to compete in the Royal Rumble match and made quite the impact, eliminating The Great Khali in the 30-man match. Over a decade after Chyna first appeared in the Rumble, Beth Phoenix really did prove to be, in the words of Matt Striker, the 21st Century Femme Fatale with her awe-inspiring appearance.
Beth quickly solidified herself as a babyface on SmackDown, the first time in her WWE career, not counting that brief stint in 2006. Showing signs of being a tweener during the Mickie James/Lay-Cool feud, Phoenix eventually made a complete turn feuding with the dastardly Diva duo after a series of snide comments about her femininity — or if you believe Lay-Cool — lack thereof.
Phoenix, along with Michelle McCool, made history in April, competing in the first ever Extreme Makeover Match in which she was victorious and captured her third Women’s Championship. The era of the Glamazon, it seemed, was upon us but disaster struck as Beth suffered an ACL tear during a match with Rosa Mendes on WWE Superstars. In a moment of heartbreak for her fans, Beth dropped the title in front of a hometown crowd in May, saying goodbye to the WWE Universe for six long months.
Fast forward to November and the Survivor Series and we saw the culmination of six months of intense rehabilitation: the Fabulous Firebird returned in fine form, taking out Lay-Cool following their Divas Championship loss to Natalya. In one of the most picture perfect highlights of 2010, Beth and Natalya embraced as tears streamed — not only from the two Divas, but many a Diva fan too.
In December, Beth made more history by competing in the first ever Divas Tag Team Tables Match, where she and Natalya were victorious.
Despite a lengthy absence, 2010 was quite the Glamtastic year for Beth Phoenix; a successful babyface turn, the Royal Rumble, two ‘first evers’ in her match history and of course, a Women’s Championship run.
2011 will no doubt see Beth strive for a new goal, however. One that she has yet to accomplish: Divas Champion.
Check back tomorrow for #7