The Women of the Year 2011: AJ and Rosita (#19)

A la TIME’s Person of the Year list, Diva Dirt has compiled a countdown of the women we feel have best embodied the zeitgeist of the year in women’s wrestling. To compile this list, the Diva Dirt team have tracked the headlines here at Diva Dirt over the past 12 months, followed the lively fan debate on social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook, considered the impact that the women have made within the industry, and taken into account personal achievements as well. More information on the Women of the Year list here.

Small But Mighty

Both WWE and TNA added pint-sized additions to their respective Divas and Knockouts divisions this year, but don’t let their sizes fool you — AJ and Rosita may be small, but more than make up for it with their endearing stories of success, great personalities and of course, their in-ring work.

Both AJ and Rosita have similar stories: One is from New York, one is from New Jersey, both dreamed of being wrestling superstars, both cut their teeth through independent circles — particularly WSU — and both finally managed to achieve success.

While we saw AJ on NXT in 2010, the young Geek Goddess finally made it to the main roster in 2011, joining her BFF Kaitlyn as one half of the Chickbusters on SmackDown. As we know through her run on NXT, AJ has been a lifelong WWE fan, hoping to one day make it into the company. Well, persistence and hard work pay off, and AJ now shares a lockerroom with the likes of Beth Phoenix and Natalya.

As for Rosita, her story has been well documented. Being inspired to wrestle as a young girl by her father, an amateur wrestler himself, Rosita kept her father’s dream alive after his passing in the 9/11 tragedies. In 2011, she marked the 10th anniversary of 9/11 and her father’s passing by becoming a star in Impact Wrestling, holding the Knockouts Tag Team Championships with her on-screen cousin, the much respected veteran Sarita, and most recently winning Pro Wrestling Illustrated’s Inspirational Wrestler of the Year award.

With their dynamic personalities — AJ with her adorkableness and Rosita with her Scrappy Doo-esque earrings-off explosiveness — they’ve won over their brand’s respective fans. AJ, in particular, has quickly become of the most popular Divas in WWE.

They’ve overcome obstacles such as being told “no” or being told they couldn’t make it because of their size, and in 2011, they proved that dreams can come true.

AJ and Rosita represent the potential future of their respective divisions. How will they shine in the year ahead?

The Women of the Year 2011: Karen Jarrett (#20)

Click here for the full Women of the Year countdown

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  •!/jayd211 Jayd211

    great choice Rosita was a big get for TNA and i think AJ really is the future of the WWE she is the ultimate underdog baby face.

  • JillianHallTNA

    Rosita is better! :)

    • perceval

      Check out AJ’s FCW work before you say that with certainty. WWE hasn’t let her show a fraction of what she’s capable of.

      • Jhonmarco

        Her match with Naomi on NXT, easily made the entire divas roster except a few look like crap.

        • GailKimFan09e

          Agreed even the commentators were Stunned at what they were looking at, AJ Can Work No questions.

  • adifferentsame

    I’m not entirely sure the need for them to share the same spot based on their similarities, but hey. Not much of a fan of AJ to be honest. Rosita, however, I did connect with given the background that TNA explored earlier this year. Next year could be big for both girls.

  • Jhonmarco

    Rosita has yet to impress me, but her 9/11 story was so heatbreaking :( hopefully 2012 will be better for her. AJ, on the other hand is along with Layla, Natalya, & Kelly my favorite diva in WWE. Great look, wrestler, charecter, I just love her. She’s so fricking adorable, as well :p! & she’s the photoshoot queen imo :) lol. Hopefully after her suspected feud with Kaitlyn next year, she moves on to better things. Maybe the title picture? :)

  • FrankNFurter

    I never understood AJ’s vast popularity. I’ve seen people put her in the same category as Kharma, Beth, and Natalya. I mean she’s solid (great bumping techniques) but she surely isn’t on their level of skill.

    I’m anticipating the day when TNA allows Rosita to showcase what she can do inside the ring. Divina Fly impressed me, I hope Rosita does as well. Congratulations ladies.

    • Jordan

      I’ve always found Rosita to be pretty green. Other than her sassiness and that brash sense of confidence she shows off and on camera, I don’t think she brings a whole lot more to the table right now. Maybe she’ll “Wow!” me in 2012 but 2011, meh …

      AJ – I want to see become somebody worthwhile with WWE. she’s a Cinderella story for any little girl or woman in the audience who’s ever thought they couldn’t make it to the big stage. Ditch these faux, T&A Barbie types and give AJ a solid push. The Kaitlyn/ Divas of Doom angle was just what both characters needed to get the crowds behind them in their respective responses/ reactions.

  • Jysos Ouellet

    I think both deserves to be in the top ten , I don´t like the #19 … Two good female wrestlers, I think both have all the potential to be champions :)

  • Juan

    Haha how cool they are both matching lol :) hopefully both have an impressive and standout 2012 because their futures seem bright! Personally though I like Rosita more but Aj is cool too and both definately made an impact in 2011

  • perceval

    Mini-Mickie and Mini-Trish. Now, we need a travel size Lita jumping around. :)

  • Cookie

    i don’t watch Tna that much but i like rostia & her dad would been proud of her if he was here today. I cried when saw Nxt season 3 for the first time & talking about her dreams became wwe diva not when she lose,but when they first come on the diva search!She inspire because i want to became wwe diva when i grow up Aj Fan forever <3

  • Raekon

    Two great girls that deserve to be in this years best ones!
    Congrats on both. :)

    I hope Brooke and Kaitlyn make it to the list as the best newcomers in 2011 aswell! :)

  • Lily

    AJ goes right behind the list of Beth, Natalya, Kharma and Layla. AJ has amazing skills though she tends to sometimes mess up her crossbodies and trip. Beth, Kharma and Natalya have each been wrestling for about 10 years while AJ is in her 4th year and she’s half way there to being par with the other 3 veterans.She’s one of the few Divas to actually be liked and praised by the Anti-Diva fans along with Lay, Beth, Kharma, Naomi and Natalya.

    Rosita is in the middle for me when it comes to her wrestling. I think the only reason to her being seen as a bad wrestler is because she doesn’t have anyone her own size to actually go head to head with or because she’s always being beaten down. AJ vs. Rosita would be a perfect match for each other, they would both be able to go hard against each other since they are about the same size.

    • FrankNFurter

      Yeah, AJ never seems comfortable on the top rope, she’s jittery and sometimes leaves one hand on the turnbckle before she crashes into her opponent. And I still can’t get over her not tucking her knees when she executed or should I say attempted the springboard DDT. Nonetheless, the girl still has some mad mat skills.

  • stephmc

    i love both these girls! they are so entertaining and full of life. they got personality and its important to bring that up when you are a Diva/Knockout! rosita is truly inspiring and i love how AJ represents the nerds out there – she rox!!!!

  • dah-dah-dah-diva

    Rosita sucks. She can’t wrestle to save her life. I HATED the NXT and FCW girls when they were new and green, but I am so greatful for them because at the end of the day, Divas like AJ, Naomi, Maxine, Aksana and even Kaitlyn have consistently delivered better and more entertaining matches then the main Diva’s like Kelly, Beth, Eve and Natalya.

  •!/IanBacallo IanBacallo

    Layla is my favorite Diva right now but AJ will overtake that spot one day. AJ is the future of the Divas division. I just hope that WWE uses her to her full potential.

  • joeyesrojo

    I stand by that AJ could be the next Lita. She’s got the same likeability factor that Lita does (different style, different move set, different look) and I think that’s why the fans have taken to her so quickly. Many fans have been shocked watching, “Let’s Go AJ,” chants happen on TV and hearing a newer Diva get such a big pop. If WWE would just take notice I think AJ could rise to the challenge and finally be the new female face of WWE.