Witness the Rated-R Diva make a splash on WWE television for the first time.
Inception is the commencement, the beginning, the birth or debut of an event. In the WWE, nothing can be as impactful and telling as a Superstar’s debut. When you have one chance to make an impression in the always evolving landscape of WWE, you have to put it all on the line to steal the show and be memorable. A debut can often be the precursor of success, or footnote on an otherwise illustrious career. This week covers the debut of WWE Hall of Famer, Lita
On the February 13, 2000 episode of Sunday Night Heat, the WWF Light Heavyweight champion Gillberg issued out an open challenge to anyone in the locker room. In response, Essa Rios made his way to the ring with his valet in tow, Lita. Essa Rios quickly defeated Gillberg with a top rope moonsault making an immediate impact. After the match, Lita made her way to the top of the turnbuckle and hit her own moonsault splash on Gillberg mimicking the moveset of her latin counterpart. Essa acted as referee as Lita pinned the shoulders of Gillberg to the mat, humiliating him further.
Lita’s debut didn’t have the seismic influence that her legacy would have on the wrestling world, yet it still signified that wrestling fans were about to witness a woman that would be a true trendsetter in the squared circle.
In an era filled with Diva’s Lita was the true punk rock alternative. Lita will always be known for her iconic look and moveset. Her trademark fishnets, low hanging cargo pants and fiery red hair made her relate to both sexes. During the time of Lita’s debut, WWE was singing female talent that had zero wrestling experience and were willing to remove their clothes on national TV to increase ratings. Lita represented the bad ass tattooed chick who all the women wanted to be like and all the guys wanted to chill with.
Lita would be a key part in some of the highest profile matches, factions, and rivalries in WWE history. These would include her alliance with the Hardy Boyz as they formed Team X-treme, sharing the ring and going toe-to-toe with The Rock, Stone Cold and HHH, as well as her infamous real life affair turned storyline with Edge and Matt Hardy.
Lita’s accolades would include capturing the Women’s Championship four times, being the first woman to main event RAW, the first woman to main event RAW twice, one of the first women to compete in a Steel Cage, and her well documented rivalry with the Quintessential Diva, Trish Stratus.
In 2014, Lita rightfully took her place among the greats as she was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame. Perhaps Lita’s greatest accomplishment is inspiring a generation of female wrestler’s that include Becky Lynch, AJ Lee and Bayley; a true testament to her work and bequest.