Monday, December 4, 2023

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Perfect 10 of 2009: Tara (#2)

The Perfect 10 is back for a year-end special, counting down the top 10 Divas and Knockouts from the year gone by. Last year, Michelle McCool was #1 on the Perfect 10 of 2008, can she make it a repeat performance? Who has had the most memorable moments & matches of 2009? Check back over the next 10 days to find out how the countdown will unfold!

When Victoria retired from WWE mid-January, Diva fans mourned the departure of the final connection between the current era of Divas and the last, which is often considered the best. Victoria was a celebrated two-time Women’s Champion and Diva veteran. After taking a loss from Michelle McCool in her final match, we thought that’d be the last time we’d see of her in active competition, assuming she’d go the way of her fellow ‘golden era’ gals, Trish, Lita, Torrie, Molly etc. — moving onto things outside of wrestling.

Little did we know that Victoria’s WWE departure early in the year which seemed to be the end of her run, was actually just the beginning of her year. In May 2009, Victoria became Tara and joined the opposition — TNA for another stab at glory. After being wasted in her final years in WWE, Tara took control of her career and opted to go somewhere she felt she could once again be challenged by wrestling. The move rejuvenated her career and helped rejuvenate a Knockouts division that needed a leader after Gail Kim defected to WWE.

The veteran came into TNA ready to make an impact and chose then-Knockouts Champion, Angelina Love and her Beautiful People partners as the platform to do it. Interrupting Love’s post-match speech on an episode of Impact where she talked about new competition, Tara arrived in one of the year’s most memorable moments. In grandiose fashion, Tara took out all three members of The Beautiful People and set her sights firmly on Angelina Love and her Knockouts Championship.

Despite losing her initial title match at Slammiversary, just weeks later on Impact, Tara won her first championship in five years. The risky career change had paid off. However just 10 days later, the belt was dropped back to Angelina but even without the title, Tara stood as a firm favourite in the Knockouts division. Her next big challenge was one Awesome Kong, the fiercest Knockout in all the land. The pair’s feud led to a Knockouts Championship match featuring ODB at Bound for Glory before Tara defeated Kong in a Six Sides of Steel grudge match at Turning Point.

In November, having defeated the monster Kong, Tara turned her attention once again to the Knockouts Championship and it’s new holder, ODB. After showing signs of an attitude change, ODB teased Tara on her Diva past which only fuelled Tara’s aggression until she became the new Knockouts Champion at December’s Final Resolution, just days before Christmas.

It’s been a storybook year for Tara; rather than accepting her WWE circumstance and retiring from the business, Tara knew she had more to offer and is now enjoying perhaps the biggest comeback of any Diva/Knockout. With two reigns as Knockouts Champion already notched up, Tara will usher in the New Year as champion and the top Knockout in her division. What more could a girl ask for?

Check back later today for #1

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