Impact Knockouts Champion Deonna Purrazzo has named Alundra Blayze, The Bella Twins, Trish Stratus and Sasha Banks as the best everfemale wrestlers for her version of Mount Rushmore.
The iconic National Memorial features the carved heads of former presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln.
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Purrazzo, 26, was previously asked which male wrestlers past or present deserve to be on wrestling's Rushmore.
And now she has made her picks for women, telling The Sun that her selection is based on people who have "transcended wrestling" and moved into "other avenues of entertainment through the sport, but have remained true to their roots."
"And the Bella Twins count as one," she added.
Alundra Blayze, known as Madusa in WCW, pioneered women's wrestling in the 1990s.
"I believe she [Blayze] was ahead of her time and was vital to how modern women’s wrestling has evolved.
"Her matches with the legendary Bull Nakano finally showcased women’s wrestling on TV."
Blayze, now-57, became a controversial figure in the sport when she threw the WWF Women's Championship belt in a trash bin on a live episode of WCW Monday Nitro in 1995.
Despite that move, she later returned to WWE to be inducted into the 2015 Hall of Fame class by Natalya Neidhart.
After wrestling, Blayze made a name for herself in the monster truck industry and in 2004 she became the first woman to win the Monster Jam World Finals racing championship.
Second on Purrazzo's list is WWE Hall of Famer Trish Stratus, now 45.
She told The Sun: "There are so many women today who grew up watching Trish Stratus and being inspired by her."
"Trish was my favorite growing up and one of the many reasons I wanted to be a wrestler myself.
"Her feuds with Mickie James and Lita showcased what storytelling can do, and how women could get people invested.
"She has also transcending wrestling with outside opportunities in entertainment as well as her yoga business."
After leaving wrestling, Stratus set up an eco-friendly yoga studio in Toronto called Stratusphere, which recently won a Canadian Business Award.
A post shared by Trish Stratus (@trishstratuscom)
THE BELLA TWINS
The Rock and John Cena have enjoyed stunning success by moving their appeal beyond the ring and into the mainstream.
The women who have best followed in their footsteps are undoubtedly The Bella Twins.
Nikki and Brie, 36, have had quite the career since semi-retirement in 2019.
"The Bella Twins, I think have transcended wrestling the most," saidPurrazzo.
"They put new eyes on women’s wrestling in so many new ways with their reality shows Total Divas and Total Bellas.
"The popularity from the shows really allowed [WWE] management to see that people were very interested in women’s wrestling which in turn sparked an evolution in the sport," Purrazzo addded.
The "Women's Evolution" in WWE started in 2015 when fans pushed the hashtag #GiveDivasAChance, calling for women to be given the same time in the ring as the men.
WWE bowed to the movement and announced their female wrestlers would no longer be called Divas but "superstars" – just like the male talent.
The Divas Championship was retired in 2016 and the WWE debuted the WWE Women's Championship (now RAW Women's Championship) at Wrestlemania 32.
After wrestling, the Twins "continue to market themselves in new avenues with their clothing line, hair care lines, and even wine," Purrazzo noted.
Another wrestler who is blazing a trail is Sasha Banks.
The 29-year-old was named number one wrestler in the world last year by Sports Illustrated and has held a world championship belt in WWE eight times.
She is also part of the Four Hoursewomen stable with Charlotte Flair, Bayley and Becky Lynch.
Last year Banks starred as Koska Reeves in the hit Stars Wars show The Mandalorian.
"Sasha Banks is still actively wrestling and pushing the envelop [in the ring], as well as being on a path to mainstream success," Purrazzo said.
"Being featured in the Mandalorian is an amazing accomplishment and by staying at the pace she is at, there’s no doubt in my mind she should be on Mount Rushmore."
Purrazzo, who started wrestling in 2013 and has competed in Ring of Honor, Total Nonstop Action (TNA), WWE NXT, and now is the Knockouts champ in Impact Wrestling.
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