NXT boasts the most talented and diverse collection of women’s wrestlers in the world. No one has shined brighter over the last month than Bianca Belair. If you’re not convinced yet, she is determined to prove she is the future for aspiring black wrestlers all over the world.
At the end of January, she had a standout performance in the third annual women’s Royal Rumble match. The EST of NXT” entered at number two and last for over 30 minutes, racking up a record eight eliminations in the process.
Belair didn’t win the match but she and Naomi were the topic of discussion for the rest of the week. At the beginning of February, they were both featured in a profile about black women in wrestling for Essence Magazine.
In the article, Belair said, “I was always the bigger, muscular girl. Growing up, I was always told what I needed to look like to perform best and be accepted.”
She certainly doesn’t look like any of her peers at the Performance Center and she embraces it. Belair is built like an elite athlete and she has the agility and strength to show for it. The former All America ran track and had a background in Crossfit and powerlifting.
Belair showcased her athleticism at the 2019 WWE PC Combine, where she came in first in seven events.
With that said, Bianca Belair doesn’t just stand out because she’s so powerful and agile. She’s also unapologetically black and it’s refreshing to see. The way she moves, her look including her trademark braid inspired by Beyonce, and her vernacular embodies African American culture.
Moreover, It never feels like merely an act. You can tell Belair is proud of who she is and how she looks. That may not seem like a big deal to some people but it’s so important in an industry that doesn’t routinely promote women like her. Representation matters and the homegrown superstar doesn’t appear to take her presence in WWE likely.
As her gear said at NXT TakeOver: Portland, she is “Black History In The Making.” Not just for what she can do in the ring, but also for what she represents and everything she does outside of wrestling.
This year during Black History Month, she shared a book every day by one of her favorite black authors. In addition, she put together a photoshoot featuring all of the women of color on the NXT roster. Aja Smith, Briana Brandy, Kayden Carter, Mia Yim, MJ Jenkins, and Simone Johnson all took part in it.
It’s one thing to embrace who you are and be the change you want to see; it’s another to use your platform as a WWE Superstar to educate and highlight acceptance. That’s something you don’t see many wrestler do.
Belair has such a passionate and vocal fanbase full of young black women. So, it’s truly amazing that she took the time to speak to them and set a positive example.
Of course, this month hasn’t been all rosy for “The EST of NXT.” At TakeOver: Portland, she unsuccessfully challenged Rhea Ripley for the NXT Women’s Championship. She also suffered a devastating loss to Charlotte Flair this week, leaving many fans wondering what’s next for Bianca Belair.
However, she has been the most interesting character to watch on the brand since Royal Rumble. She upstaged both Flair and Ripley in their segment on the Feb. 5 episode of NXT. Yes, Belair is due for a big win, but it’s only a matter of time at this point. She has an it factor and everyone can see it.
If she proved anything in the last few weeks, it’s that she has probably outgrown the “black and gold brand.” After all, Shayna Baszler, the only competitor who performed nearly as well in the women’s Royal Rumble match, is on a collision course with the Raw Women’s Champion, Becky Lynch.
So, it’s safe to assume we could see Bianca Belair on Raw or SmackDown soon. Honestly, she deserves a spot on the card for WrestleMania 36, as well.
At any rate, Belair has proven she is a star. Fans will talk about her record-setting performance in January long after the two losses this month are forgotten. Even more, she will potentially inspire the next generation of women of color, who may not have thought they had a place in wrestling.
Right now, the sky is the limit for Bianca Belair. Eventually, WWE will have no choice but to put her in the position to win her first singles title. For now, we can’t wait to see what she does next.
What do you think? Drop a comment below and let us know what you would like to see WWE do with Bianca Belair during WrestleMania season.