World Wrestling Entertainment has retired the WWE Women’s Championship, which lineage dates back to 1956. It was the oldest active professional wrestling championship in company history. WWE is continuing the title lineage of the Divas Championship with the Unified belt. Layla is the last recognized Women’s Champion.
Beth Phoenix, a three-time Women’s Champion, expressed her disappointment in WWE’s decision to put the title to pasture.
“It saddens me to see the historic Women’s Title moved into retirement, but I am so grateful to have had the honor of holding it,” she wrote on Twitter. “My sights remain on the Unified Diva’s Championship.”
Meanwhile, former WWE star Mickie James, a five-time holder of the belt, released an emotional statement on Twitter concerning its retirement.
“The retirement of the Women’s Championship breaks my heart,” she wrote. “The nostalgia and the legacy built off the backs of every woman who paved the way for women like me… Who gave it credibility… Honor… Prestige… & Truth! For every woman who’s carried the championship through the generations… Who know the power & history you feel in holding it high above your head.. That can never be replaced by anything in my mind… In my heart… I am truly honored and forever grateful to be among the women who have graced its presence… Thank you…”
Ex-WWE star Carlito wrote in response to James, “Dont worry, there’s now 2 butterfly belts!”