Charlotte Flair is a WWE legend. She's won more world championships than any other woman in WWE history, has headlined “Premium Live Events” across the country, and will eventually join fellow WrestleMania performers Lita, Trish Stratus, and Rey Mysterio in the Hall of Fame when she decides to hang up her robes for good.
But at WrestleMania 39, Flair was afforded a chance to prove whether or not she's still the top woman in WWE, as she went up against a starving Rhea Ripley who wanted nothing more than to prove she's the now. Taking the ring with the gravitas of a main event, even if the match didn't technically fill that slot, Flair and Ripley went to war in a match Michael Cole and Corey Graves noted on commentary was one of the best matches in the SmackDown Women's Championship's history, and ultimately delivered the goods for 80,000 fans in SoCal.
Flair, to her credit, took part in one of the most hard-hitting matches in her career, taking shots to the head, a Rip Tide, and even a particularly brutal headshot to a turnbuckle that left her seemingly unconscious and ultimately set up for an avalanche Ripley Rip Tide for the 1-2-3.
Holding her arm up high, Rhea looked down on the fallen “Queen” and picked up her proverbial crown, holding the SmackDown Women's Championship up in the air before declaring to the 80,000 fans in attendance and the millions more watching from home that “it's my time.” With The Judgement Day seemingly set to face off in a new feud with the lWo, it's safe to say SmackDown is Ripley's kingdom now.
We have a NEW #SmackDown Women's Champion at #WrestleMania!
Congratulations to @RheaRipley_WWE! pic.twitter.com/Mr0udhoYJP
— WWE (@WWE) April 2, 2023