Women’s Wrestling: 7 Prospects to look out for in 2023

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Women’s wrestling is packed to the brim in 2023, with a number of young stars taking shape across various promotions worldwide. From the independent circuit, to “developmental” brands such as NXT, the always innovative Impact Wrestling, or AEW’s continuously growing roster, talent seems to be arriving to make a statement by the day at this point.

As we’ve reached the midpoint of 2023, there are a number of young women being booked who are almost destined to become stars for their companies or their rival’s own. Whether now or in the very near future, the women we’ll be mentioning in this list have the potential to become industry leaders for years to come should things continue as they are.

#6 – Gigi Dolin (NXT)

A former two-time NXT Women’s Tag Team Champion, and former member of the ever-fantastic faction that was Toxic Attraction, it would be a crime to not have Gigi Dolin anywhere on a list such as this one. In the span of just under two years, Gigi has accomplished more than a solid portion of female competitors, racking up two championship reigns, and a solid list of early rivals to kickstart her young career.

Not only does Dolin have clear in-ring talent, as demonstrated recently with her newly established singles run, but her look bodes perfectly with the new landscape of women’s wrestling and the overall aesthetic of NXT. While her character is currently in a state of limbo and without a meaningful program that truly takes her to that “next level”, based on her early work – we’ll likely be seeing a lot more from Gigi in the coming months.

#5 – Julia Hart (All Elite Wrestling)

With a considerable lack of experience and exposure on one of professional wrestling’s biggest stages, seeing Julia Hart’s ascension and improvements over the course of the last year has been tremendous to witness. The former manager of the Varsity Blondes at one point was attached to a gimmick that this writer personally cared very little for, but has recently found her true calling through a radical character shift.

Hart’s recent heel turn and decision to join AEW’s House of Black faction hasn’t just sparked a newfound interest in the character but gives her an excellent base to build her character. Ever since this change, we’ve seen her psychology in particular improve in matches, with her in-ring storytelling and character work truly shining through. Should the early weeks of this new character change be of any indication, we could be seeing Hart become a permanent mainstay on weekly television.

#4 – Masha Slamovich (Impact Wrestling)

Not a recent signing by any means, Slamovich made her in-ring debut back in 2021 to face Deonna Purrazzo on short notice in a match that resulted in her being signed to Impact Wrestling.

Ever since this impressive debut, Slamovich has been on an absolute tear across the company. She has been piling up dominant squashes, always improving in the ring, and feeling more like a force with each outing we get to see her in. Impact Wrestling is clearly behind the character too, always making her feel like a big deal whether a win or a loss in order to maintain that always valuable credibility and threat level. Recent outings against the likes of Mickie James and Jordynne Grace over the Knockouts Championship in separate offerings, as well as Killer Kelly or Taylor Wilde are more than enough proof of her in-ring ability, and what she can bring to any match of any scale.

Impact Wrestling seems to be playing the long game with Masha Slamovich, which will serve well as it only allows her character to grow and her impending rise to the top to feel all the more domineering.

#3 – Missa Kate (National Wrestling Alliance)

Arguably the least known prospect across this list, Missa Kate is a recent signing under the National Wrestling Alliance after stints in indie promotions such as ZOWA Live and GALLI Lucha Libre, respectively. Kate isn’t just a more recent prospect in professional wrestling, but comes with a mixed martial arts background, which she’s clearly blended into her in-ring arsenal.

Her style is a reminiscent blend of Shayna Baszler and Nikki Cross, bringing both aggression and calculated violence to her matches, when necessary, with some really solid character work to boot when needed. In the past, she has stated her goals of being an entertainer, similar to her idols Lita & John Cena, additionally always aiming to push the boundaries of what can be achieved in the ring.

She is a young prospect, very clearly growing into her role as a performer, but one with a tremendous amount of potential that could spark interest in the very near future.

#2 – Skye Blue (All Elite Wrestling)

A name that was on a number of prospect lists back in 2022, and a name that is on this one again in 2023, Skye Blue continues her role as a growing prospect who we continue to see growth out of with each appearance. Spending her early days on AEW Dark & Rampage and occasional episodes of Dynamite, Blue has slowly worked her way into gaining much more prominent positions in AEW’s expanding women’s division.

Since this period, we’ve seen her lock horns with the likes of Ruby Soho, Britt Baker, Toni Storm, Jade Cargill, and Anna Jay, all in stellar efforts that displayed Skye’s growth as an in-ring performer. She still has ways to go as her skillset develops into its own, where she does come across as a star, however, is her genuine connection to the AEW faithful. Her likability and charm resonate every time she steps out into the ring and as her career progresses, so will the love she gets from those that watch her.

#1 – Miu Watanabe (Tokyo Joshi Pro Wrestling)

The word superstar is one that has been mostly hijacked in the modern era of professional wrestling due to WWE’s overuse of it for the better part of over a decade. But with full confidence, we say that Miu Watanabe feels like a bonafide superstar… At just 23 years old Miu is significantly ahead of most prospects around the world, already boasting an impressive library of great matches, as well as a gimmick that any fan would adore.

Miu clearly takes a lot of inspiration from Bayley at the peak of her “hugger” gimmick, one that is easy for audiences, particularly kids to relate to, and immediately adds stakes to her matches with minimal effort from the outset. Being as entertaining and captivating a performer as she is at her age is quite a feat no matter how you spin it. What’s most impressive is the shine she possesses over performers in her company with far more experience than her.

With the sky being the limit and a fanbase very firmly rallying behind her, Miu Watanabe is arguably the most fascinating female wrestling prospect to watch in 2023.

Who is your prospect to watch in 2023? Let us know in the comments below…

About Post Author

Mishal Shuhaiber

A marketeer, aspiring athlete with current aspirations in BJJ & professional wrestling journalist. I was born and raised in the Middle East before moving to the UK to pursue my goals.
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