The women’s division, now known as the Divas division in WWE, has a long history and has gotten a little more attention in the past year with the rise of AJ Lee, and Paige being called up from NXT.
This year AJ broke the record for the current edition of the Divas Championship, as she held it for 295 days before losing to Paige in her WWE RAW debut.
The current title has only been around for six years. The Women’s title was introduced in 1956 after the Fabulous Moolah won the belt in a women’s tournament. It was deactivated in 2010 and the pink butterfly belt is now the top prize for females in the wrestling industry.
As impressive as AJ Lee’s 295-day title reign was, there were several other reigns that blow it away. Here are the 10 longest Divas/Women’s title reigns in WWE history.
10) Michelle McCool (217 days)
Michelle McCool was dominating the Divas division in the final days of the Women’s title belt and this reign was her best. After winning the title from Melina at the Bash pay-per-view in 2009, McCool would hold the title for 217 days.
She would eventually form an alliance with Layla to form LayCool and the alliance helped her to a long title run.
She eventually lost the title to Mickie James at the 2010 Royal Rumble, though McCool would eventually win it back. She wound up being the last Women’s Champion before the title was deactivated that September.
9) The Spider Lady (220 days)
Bret Hart wasn’t the only one to get screwed out of his title.
In the most controversial Women’s title match in history, Wendi Richter suffered what is now known as “The Original Screwjob” when a masked lady called the Spider Lady stole the women’s title from her.
Richter was the face of the women’s division through the mid-1980s, but by late 1985, her relationship with the WWE had taken a negative turn. They decided they needed to get the belt off of her in any way possible and they did that with the referee fast-counting her down in a title match with the Spider Lady, who turned out to be the Fabulous Moolah. Richter had no way of knowing she’d be losing the title, hence why it’s dubbed the screwjob.
8) Wendi Richter (239 days)
What a great segue! Richter was actually a two-time Women’s champion, winning her second championship at the inaugural WrestleMania in 1985 over Leilani Kai.
Scheduled to defend her title at Madison Square Garden on November 25 against the Spider Lady, Richter was counted to the mat after a rollup. Despite her kicking out at the count of one, the referee continued his count and the bell sounded.
Richter ignored the bell and continued attacking the masked lady, taking off the mask to reveal it was the Fabulous Moolah. The plan was orchestrated by, you guessed it, Vince McMahon after Richter had reportedly refused to sign a new contract with the WWE. Richter however, says she was wrestling under contract, though she had many disagreements with McMahon over her compensation.
Richter has added she was surprised to see Moolah at the arena that day. Following the match, Richter made a quick exit out of the arena with her gear, took a cab, got a flight out of New York and never spoke to Moolah again. She was finally inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2010.
7) AJ Lee (295 days)
The only Divas title run to make this list, AJ Lee, as we all know, has been a revelation for what was a very stale and dull division. Her combined wrestling skill, promo ability and persona captured all the attributes fans want in a champion.
Despite working as a heel for a good part of the last few years, AJ still gets cheered by fans.
She defeated Kaitlyn at last year’s Payback pay-per-view, a feud that should’ve gone on much longer, to begin her historic reign.
AJ then cut a very memorable promo on the entire cast of Total Divas, claiming she was the only real diva in WWE. AJ made herself public enemy no.1 in the divas division, calling one diva out after another, but she took out all comers.
She defeated essentially the entire Total Divas cast, defeated Kaitlyn in what was her final WWE match earlier this year and her final title defence came in the 14-Diva Vickie Guerrero Invitational at WrestleMania XXX.
Her reign ended the next night after Paige, making her main roster debut, shocked AJ in an impromptu title match to end the 295-day reign. Following a short leave of absence from WWE, AJ won the title back in her return a few weeks ago over Paige.
6) Alundra Blayze (342 days)
After the Women’s title had been vacant for three years, the WWE reintroduced the title in 1993, bringing in Medusa from WCW and renaming her Alundra Blayze to spearhead the division.
In December, Blayze won a six-woman tournament and began her reign. There weren’t many contenders for the new title, so the WWE brought in Bull Nakano to feud with Alundra Blayze and she successfully defended her title through most of 1994.
Eventually Nakano defeated Blayze for the title at the Big Egg Wrestling Universe event in November of 1994.
Blayze eventually had a couple more title reigns before leaving the WWE to go back to WCW as Medusa. As the Monday Night Wars were heating up, WCW struck a low blow when Eric Bischoff convinced Medusa to throw the title, which she still was holding, in the trash can on Nitro.
The title would once again be vacated before it was brought back in 1998.
5) The Fabulous Moolah (380 days)
The Fabulous Moolah again makes the list, this time in what is officially recognized as her third title reign.
After her run as the Spider Lady, Moolah was champion until losing her title to Velvet McIntyre while on an Australian tour in July of 1986. McIntyre’s reign lasted just six days, before Moolah would regain the title.
She remained champion for the rest of the year and into the summer of 1987 before losing the belt to the next entry on our countdown.
4) Sensational Sherri (441 days)
After decades of the Fabulous Moolah on top, the WWE needed a new face for their ladies division. Enter, Sensational Sherri.
Debuting as Sherri Martel, Sherri defeated the Fabulous Moolah in July of 1987, ending Moolah’s stranglehold over the women’s division.
Sherri renamed herself Sensational Sherri and held the title for 15 months. She would eventually lose the title to Rockin’ Robin, which only opened up the door for her to do something in which no other lady could top her; managing.
3) Trish Stratus (448 days)
Many consider her to be the greatest WWE Diva of all time, and when you factor in all of her attributes; wrestling ability, charisma, promos, persona and oh yeah, beauty, it’s hard to argue.
Trish Stratus‘s sixth title reign proved to be her longest. She won the title against her greatest rival, Lita at New Year’s Revolution in 2005. Lita suffered a torn ACL in the title loss, which worked well onscreen for Trish, who was a heel at the time.
Stratus herself would suffer an injury in midst of the title reign, suffering a herniated disc in May. She returned in September, as she was allowed to keep her title while in recovery. She went on to feud with Torrie Wilson, Candice Michelle and Victoria, but it was her long storyline with Mickie James that was the highlight of this title run.
With Mickie first playing the role of an obsessed admirer of Trish, she turned on her hero and the two faced off at WrestleMania 22. Mickie James ended Trish’s long title run, ending one of the best women’s storylines in WWE history.
2) Rockin’ Robin (502 days)
Rockin’ Robin was the woman who ended Sensational Sherri’s 15-month title reign after defeating Sherri in Paris on Prime Time Wrestling, which aired in November 1988.
Rockin’ Robin’s reign lasted an impressive 502 days. Not many people would guess that she is the second longest reigning women’s champion in history.
However the title reign was forgettable due to a lack of formidable challengers for the title and long periods of inactivity. She would leave the company in 1990, with the belt still in her possession. The WWE decided to vacate the title and it remained inactive for three years. Robin actually still has that belt.
1) Fabulous Moolah (10,170 days)
This is the most unbeatable record in sports entertainment. The original Women’s champion, Fabulous Moolah won the title on September 18, 1956 and would hold the title for nearly 28 years, before losing it to Wendi Richter in 1984.
Technically, Moolah lost the title several times, for short periods, throughout those 28 years, including losses to Bette Boucher, Yukiko Tomoe, Sue Green and Evelyn Stevens, the WWE does not recognize those ladies as champions, so the history books show that Fabulous Moolah held the title for over 10,000 days.
Even if we were to go by facts, before losing to Boucher, Moolah still has 3,651 days on her longest reign, still by far the most in Women’s championship history. Unless AJ Lee plans to wrestle until she’s 60, no woman, or man, is ever coming close to this run of dominance.