In 2004, the women wrestlers were still struggling to find their place in the male-dominated world of the WWE. Short matches and offending storylines were common. Fans and wrestlers alike were frustrated by the lack of broadcast time and attention given to the women’s division. Trish Stratus and Lita were going to alter that and remind everyone that women’s wrestling could be fascinating, and essential.
Trish and Lita’s paths crossed many times throughout the years as the first women to headline Monday Night Raw. Fans were hoping that Lita would finally get a break and win the women’s title.
On June 13th, 2004, Trish Stratus beat Victoria, Lita, and Gail Kim in a Fatal Fourway match to win the women’s title. The storyline between Matt Hardy and Kane resulted in Kane assaulting Hardy and trying to take Lita from him. Lita become pregnant with Kane’s baby and married him later on. Throughout all of this, Trish Stratus was repeatedly antagonizing Lita, knowing Lita could not physically do anything because she was “pregnant”.
Lita miscarried when Snitsky attacked Kane with a chair, causing Kane to collapse on top of Lita. Lita, no longer pregnant, was able to exact vengeance on Trish for her actions and words throughout the pregnancy. The two had a match at Survivor Series 2004 on November 14th. Lita ultimately took her rage out on Trish by repeatedly striking her with a chair, disqualifying her from the contest. Trish also suffered a broken nose during the ordeal. Trish may have ended the night as champion, but she left bloody and embarrassed.
All of this would lead to the two women main eventing Monday Night Raw on December 6th, 2004. Before Trish and Lita, no woman has ever been the main event of WWE’s flagship show. The tale was there, and the spectators in person and at home could connect with it. There were no men involved and there wasn’t a degrading stipulation. This was just two women fighting for the prized women’s championship that Trish had held since June. Trish came out with a mask over her face due to Lita breaking her nose the previous month.
Lita got a great reaction from the live crowd. Although the match only lasted about eight minutes, it was eight minutes more than women had ever gotten in the main event and it was still a great showcase for both Trish and Lita. Towards the end of the match, there was a series of false finishes where it really seemed that the match could go either way. Lita ended up hitting the twist of fate and then a moonsault to finally put Trish away and win the women’s championship for the second time.
Trish and Lita would meet again at the Royal Rumble in 2005, but their initial encounter on Raw was historic. It proved that women belong in the main event and are able to draw an audience and keep people invested. It allowed today’s ladies to not just main event Raw or Smackdown, but even Wrestlemania. Trish and Lita breaking the glass barrier with Monday Night Raw allowed Becky Lynch, Charlotte Flair, Ronda Rousey, Sasha Banks, and Bianca Belair to headline Wrestlemania. Trish and Lita gave hope to young ladies who thought they might one day lead a wrestling event.