Published Feb 24 2020 By Hakeem Fullerton of Wrestlingwithwrestling.com
Intro: Since it's official inception back in 2007, the Knockout Division has become a mainstay of TNA/ Impact Wrestling, providing fans with some of the most talented and athletics ladies to ever step foot in a wrestling ring.
However, in order to be at the top you've got to beat a number of competitors along the way and in most cases it could lead to a feud or rivalry that last months or even years.
Many of these feuds and rivalries have become legendary not just in the company's history but, in all of wrestling and today I'll be talking about the 10 feuds and rivalries that helped to redefined women's division for TNA/ Impact.
Few rules: I'm only counting one person/ fraction per entry, for example one feud or rivalry that features a knockout like will make this list.
However, feuds or rivalries involving factions or in fighting within factions or stables that resulted in rivalry are also allowed on the list.
Gail Kim vs. Jessicka Havok
ODB vs. Awesome Kong
Mickie James vs. Madison Rayne
Rosemary vs. Su Yung
Taryn Terrell vs. Gail Kim
Trinity vs. Traci Brooks
Tessa Blanchard vs. Taya Valkyrie
Sarita vs. Taylor Wilde
Jade/ Mia Yim vs. Rosemary
Gail Kim vs. Jacqueline "Jackie" Moore
Taylor Wilde vs. Awesome Kong
Rosemary vs. Sienna
Tara vs. The Beautiful People
Allie vs. Su Yung
Brooke Tessmacher vs. Gail Kim
10. Kiera Hogan vs. Tessa Blanchard
These two young athletes began their feud in early 2018 during the early stages of the Callis/D'Amore regime, and would waste no time in proving themselves as future stars in the wrestling business.
Kiera Hogan (No relation to Hulk Hogan) was signed to the company back in 2017 and made her on-screen debut a few months later defeating former Knockouts champion Laurel Van Ness.
At the 2018 Redemption pay per view, Kiera was set to face off against Taya Valkyrie in a unadvertised match at the event however, both women would get overshadowed on this night thanks to a debuting Tessa Blanchard.
Tessa's appearance and signing with Impact Wrestling stunned many fans and critics alike as no one would imagine that the third generation star and daughter of Tully Blanchard would join a company like Impact Wrestling following the issues that plagued the company in previous regimes.
But like most things in wrestling: Anything can happen, On any given day...for Impact Wrestling, they got a five star athlete signed to their company.
On the May 3rd 2018 edition of Impact, the two ladies had their first meeting as Kiera was being interviewed backstage when Tessa appeared and gave Kiera a pseudo congratulations before running down her in-ring abilities, only for Kiera to respond back with a witty remark.
Following this, Tessa would attack Kiera after her matches before the two would face on the May 17th 2018 episode of Impact where Tessa would defeat Kiera in a ultra competitive seven minute match.
But Kiera wasn't done with Tessa just yet as the former would interrupt the latter's backstage interview a few weeks later leading to a brawl in the backstage area.
Their feud would culminate with a match of the year quality fight as Hogan and Blanchard would face off in a No Disqualification match.
The match is still one of the best matches both women have had with each other as Kiera brawled with determination and purpose in this match while Tessa was still feeling cocky, following her previous encounter with Hogan but held nothing back against her rival.
Despite her bringing her A-Game on this night, Kiera was once again defeated by Tessa.
The feud between Kiera Hogan and Tessa Blanchard not only harked back to the old classic TNA feuds of Gail Kim vs. Awesome Kong but, it also felt like a program you would see on WWE's third brand NXT.
However, this feud ranks low on the list as it only lasted a few weeks if not a month and was sadly cut short as Kiera would get involved in the "Undead Realm" Storyline for the rest of the year.
Still, what the fans got to experience between these two gave a glimpse into a new crop of female wrestlers that would dominate
the Knockouts Division for the foreseeable future.
9. Karen Jarrett vs. Velvet Sky
You can be forgiven if you forgot about this rivalry if not completely unaware that it took place.
In early 2011, Kurt Angle and TNA founder, Jeff Jarrett resumed their violent feud from a few years ago but this time, Karen who was the real life ex-wife of Kurt returned to the company following a hiatus from the sport; however, she would return as the new wife of Jeff Jarrett thus making this feud even more personal then it already was.
In May of that same year, Kurt by this point was beaten by Jarrett multiple times on pay per view thanks to interference of his ex-wife, realizing that he needed some help, Kurt would announce on an episode of Impact that he found someone to take off of Karen, so that he could focus his efforts on defeating Jeff.
This led to Karen, who was the authority figure in the Knockouts Division at the time to round up a number of suspects she believed was working with Kurt; Ultimately the final suspect was former Knockouts Tag Team Champion, Velvet Sky.
Sky told both Jeff and Karen that she wasn't Kurt Angle's enforcer, however this didn't stop Karen from making Velvet's life a living hell as she call upon Knockouts like Angelina Love and Winter in the following weeks to dispose off her, unsuccessfully.
Karen would continue to abuse her power as leader of the Knockouts Division by enlisting the services of Madison Rayne, another former ally of Velvet Sky, but this didn't stop the former beautiful person as during an episode of Impact, Karen returned from injury and was in a wheelchair when she continued to pester her former husband; Velvet would come from behind and push Karen off the entrance ramp leading to more embarrassment for both Karen and Jeff Jarrett.
While all of this was happening, Velvet would build herself up in the ranks of the KO Division and be cheered by the fans for her dedication to the company, this culminated at Bound For Glory 2011, when Velvet defeated three other competitors to become Knockouts Champion for the very first time in her career.
Unfortunately, the celebration didn't last long, as mere weeks following her title win Velvet would be attacked from behind by the godmother of the KO Division, Gail Kim who not only returned following a disappointing second run in the WWE but also allied herself with Madison and Karen.
This led to a championship match at the Turning Point PPV which saw Gail become the champion once again thanks to the interference of Madison Rayne and Karen Jarrett.
Velvet wouldn't get her rematch for the title until Lockdown 2012, which she was unsuccessful in defeating Gail Kim once again, but Velvet did get the last laugh as general manager, Sting would fire both Karen and Jeff Jarrett from the company following a stipulation added into Jarrett's match with Jeff Hardy at Final Resolution.
Velvet would regain the title one more time in 2013 before wrestling her last match with the company in 2016 against Sienna aka Allysin Kay.
8. Allie vs. Laurel Van Ness
2016-2017 was a really difficult time to be a TNA fan as rumors about the company's financial issues began surfacing, lawsuits from both Billy Corgan and Matt Hardy added more money problems to the promotion and a failed merger/ rebranding with Global Force Wrestling and TNA only made matters worse.
While the issues continued to plagued the company backstage, the onscreen product on the other hand was still dynamic; Around this time, a lot of wrestlers would got themselves over with the fans thanks to company's policy on creative freedom and in the process they became bright spots in a disastrous time within the company, Case in point: Allie.
Laura Dennis also known as Allie debuted in 2016 as the secretary/ lackey for authority figure of the Knockouts, Maria Kanellis Bennett. As a member of Maria's "Lady Squad", Allie alongside Sienna would do the bidding of the first lady of professional wrestling by helping her win matches, attack anyone who posed a threat to her and become a dominate force within the division.
However, issues arose when Allie accidentally won the Knockouts Championship and got a loud cheering ovation from the fans in attendance. Her reign would be short lived as she would lose the title soon afterwards to Maria and eventually become the lackey to newcomer and lady squad member, Laurel Van Ness (Chelsea Green).
Over time, Allie had developed an interest in fellow wrestler, Braxton Sutter (Laura's real life husband) but when this was discovered, Laurel decided to flirt with him to the annoyance of Allie; LVN would eventually go on a date with Braxton and mistakenly thought that he was proposing to her, thus leading to a memorable wedding segment on the February 23rd 2017 episode of Impact.
The segment saw Allie stand up to Maria, Braxton professing his love for Allie and the two sharing a kiss right in front of Laurel who began drinking a out of a bottle of champagne (thus, leading to her gimmick change as a crazed hot mess).
With Maria and Sienna gone from the company, Laurel was the only one left from the lady squad who Allie had some unfinished business with.
Laurel would become knockouts champion following Gail Kim's "last match" at Bound For Glory 2017 and in the months that followed, LVN would continue to taunt and defeat Allie until their match at Crossroads 2018 which saw Allie vanquish Laurel Van Ness to become knockouts champion once again.
7. Daffney vs. Taylor Wilde
When people talk about the company's use of female wrestlers they tend to mention how the company helped to bring the importance and credibility to woman getting into the ring and producing matches that even surpasses the male roster.
In 2009, the company continued to pushed the boundaries of women's wrestling in the U.S. by making a feud involving two of their most recognizable knockouts go to they extreme.
The Beautiful People were in a feud with Roxxi (more on that later) which resulted in the governor (aka Daffney pretending to be Sarah Palin) getting her hair cut by TNA's vindictive blondes.
Daffney would resurface as her old gimmick and began attacking Taylor Wilde due to Daffney's belief that Taylor wasn't there to save her from the Beautiful People cutting her hair.
This storyline began to interconnect with Abyss' issues with his psychiatrist, Dr. Stevie (Stevie Richards) and this led to the first ever females monster's ball between Taylor Wilde and Daffney at Sacrifice 2009.
Both ladies used weapons like kendo sticks, trash cans, cookies sheets and even thumb tacks which was unheard of during a time when women's wrestling was seen as a time for a toilet break.
Taylor won her match at Sacrifice as well as her match at Slammiversary 2009 in the first ever mixed tag team monster's ball match where she partnered with 'The Monster' Abyss against the team of Daffney and ECW legend, Raven. Thus, ending their violent but blood soaked rivalry.
6. Tara vs. Mickie James
The issues between Tara and Mickie James allegedly go back to their time in the WWE when Tara then known as Victoria left the WWE in early 2009 before debuting in TNA later that year.
The story has it that the reason why Tara was let go was supposedly due to Mickie James, who was rumored to have had an affair with John Cena at the time, but when Cena was looking to get married to another woman, James allegedly became obsessive which resulted in her moving from Monday Night Raw to Smackdown and everything fell apart from there until she left the company in early 2010.
When the two ladies were reunited so was their feud and it resulted in numerous brawls and PPV matches at Turning Point and Final Resolution 2010, not to mention their match on Impact which took place inside a steel cage.
Whether or not the story behind the feud or the animosity between Mickie and Tara was real, the feud did come to an end onscreen at Sacrifice 2011 when Tara helped Mickie defeat Madison Rayne in in a match where the Knockouts title as well as Tara's contracted partnership with Madison was at stake.
After the match, Tara and Mickie were seen backstage having a quick conversation that put their differences asides once and for all.
5. Madison Rayne vs. Angelina Love
The Beautiful People is without question the greatest all female faction in the history of professional wrestling and while the trio of Angelina Love, Velvet Sky and Madison Rayne have had their fair share of feuds during the groups existence it's the rivalry between Angelina and Madison that is the most memorable.
In 2009, Madison Rayne debuted in TNA as a complete unknown to many fans until she caught the attention of Angelina Love and Velvet Sky; After helping Velvet and Angelina in a series of matches and becoming a member under the groups new but temporary name of Mi Pi Sexy, Madison went through a lot of hazing from both of the ladies before she officially became the newest addition of the Beautiful People.
However, when Angelina Love was let go from TNA due to issues regarding her visa, Madison saw the opportunity and took Angelina's position in the group whilst adding Lacey Von Erich as the group's newest member and enforcer.
Along the way, the group would win the Knockouts Tag Team Titles but when Angelina returned to the company, lets just say she wasn't pleased with the coup d'état that happened during her absence.
This led to a power struggle within the group as Angelina feuded with her former stable especially with Madison with the two ladies trading the Knockouts title back and forth at events like Lockdown and Victory Road.
This even included the return of Tara as the bodyguard for Madison Rayne which, coupled with the recent departure of Lacey and a face turn by Velvet Sky led to demise of the group in 2010.
However, the feud would resurface in 2014 when Love once again returned to the company and attempted to reunite the Beautiful People, Velvet agreed but Madison refused and after a number of heel turns by Angelina and Velvet, the original duo would reunite and even saw Angelina win her sixth and final Knockouts championship.
While the group including Madison would reunite briefly in 2016, the feud between Love and Rayne came to an end.
4. Rosemary vs. Taya Valkyrie
The Demon Assassin and the Queen of Slamtown are have had their rivals with countless other women in the Knockouts locker room but the feud that people remember the most was the one they both had from 2017-early 2018.
Since her debut, Rosemary is one of the most beloved wrestlers and greatest characters currently working on the Impact roster, but for those who only know her for her work in the "Undead Realm" storyline and her partnership with real life friend and wrestler Allie, then you sadly never got to see the Demon Assassin at top of her game.
From 2016-18 Rosemary backed up her amazing character by being a great in-ring worker and she even captured the Knockouts championship from Jade aka Mia Yim in late 2016.
While names like Sienna and Gail Kim were worthy adversities, Rosemary's greatest foe would arrive in 2017 when Taya still under her gimmick as "Lucha Royalty" attacked Rosemary in the middle of the ring.
The rivalry would escalated through a series of promos, backstage brawls and mind games which usually saw Rosemary getting laid out by Taya and while a match was set for the two ladies to face off at Bound For Glory 2017, the match never happened do to travel issues regarding Taya's visa.
The feud would be on hold for a little bit until Taya returned to the company and the animosity between the two of them would culminate in a match known as the "Demon's Dance" on an April 12th 2018 edition of Impact, with Rosemary finally defeating her arch nemesis.
Although the feud ended in early 2018, Rosemary and Taya would face each other in series of matches on Impact, Slammiversary and the most recent one being at Turning Point 2019 where Taya successfully retained her Knockouts Championship against Rosemary.
3. Roxxi vs. The Beautiful People
The Beautiful People are no strangers to feuds and rivalries as their feuds with ODB, Tara, Awesome Kong and Gail Kim have become the stuff of legend.
But the biggest feud involving TNA's blonde trio would have to be their rivalry with TNA knockout, Roxxi.
In the late 2000's, Angelina Love and Velvet Sky debuted at Turning Point 2007 where they defeated ODB and Roxxi Laveaux in a tag team match but it wasn't until an episode of Impact in 2008 when Angelina and Velvet attempted to give Roxxi a makeover, only for it to end up with Roxxi getting beaten and humiliated; thus, officially marking the debut of "The Beautiful People".
Since that event, Roxxi made it her mission to get revenge on the Beautiful People and she did when she defeated Angelina Love in a Queen of the Cage match at Lockdown 2008 but, the Beautiful People would get their revenge at the Sacrifice PPV the next month when Angelina and Velvet interfered in a match that involved Roxxi, which saw the loser getting their head shaved and as a result Roxxi not only lost the match but had her head shaved live on PPV in front of a very pissed off Knockouts locker room all while Angelina Velvet enjoyed every minute of it.
The feud would continue onward from 2008 to the summer of 2009 in a large number of tag team matches with Roxxi having various partners like Gail Kim, ODB and her most frequent tag team partner, Taylor Wilde.
The feud ultimately saw the Beautiful People victorious when Madison Rayne, who was the leader of the group and Knockouts champion at the time defeat a returning Roxxi in a match at Slammiversary 2010 where Roxxi's career was on the line.
2. Desire vs. Trinity
This feud is a rarity on this list as it predates the entire Knockouts Division by a number of years as this happened during the NWA period, thus making this the first real feud between the women during the early TNA days.
Stephanie Trinity whose known in TNA for her iconic moonsault off the top of the cage at Lockdown 2005 and being the first women in company history to wrestle an intergender match when she fought for the X Division championship in a triple threat match against Kid Kash and Amazing Red, began a feud with Kimberly Nielsen aka Desire in 2003 that also featured names like Athena, Kid Kash and Sonny Siaki where Desire was the heel and Trinity was the babyface.
That all changed in June of 2003 when during a dark match on NWA TNA, Trinity delivered a Fisherman Suplex on Desire which ended up breaking the latter's back.
Although Desire was still able to wrestle and won the match, she ended going to the hospital and spent 10 months away from in-ring competition.
By the time Desire returned to the ring in April of 2004, she was giving a heroes welcome meanwhile her rival had turned heel by this point after attacking Goldy Locks and partnering with Vince Russo (which is probably the most heelish thing to do).
The feud between Trinity and Desire continued with the two ladies competing in a very physical and very competitive stretcher match which saw Trinity win the match thanks to the interference of a debuting Big Vito.
Desire would end up winning their feud as it culminate in a mixed tag team match that saw Desire and Sonny Siaki defeated Trinity and Big Vito on the July 7th 2004 edition of NWA TNA.
While the action is good by early 2000's standards, this feud which could be seen as the prototype for all feuds and rivalries that would happen within the Knockouts Division afterwards.
The feud began to show the company's plans on being progressive within the wrestling world as TNA was looking to incorporated their female competitors into wrestling matches and give them a bigger role in the company as something more than valets or managers.
1. Awesome Kong vs. Gail Kim
Alright come on, you all knew this was coming.
What else could get the top spot on this list then the feud that helped to get not only the Knockouts Division on the map but was also instrumental in women's wrestling be taken seriously in the mainstream.
The feud between Gail Kim vs. Awesome Kong can be traced back to 2007, the year the Knockouts Division was born.
On October the 11th 2007, Awesome Kong made her debut in TNA at which point she defeated Gail Kim in a match which saw the entire Knockouts locker room having to bare witness to the destructive force of Kong.
Later that month at Bound For Glory 2007 Gail Kim won a ten woman gauntlet match to become the very first Knockouts Champion in company history.
After retaining her title in a fatal four way match at the Genesis PPV, Kong appeared and pointed her attention to Gail Kim and her Knockouts championship.
Although their first PPV match at Turning Point was disappointing due to the match ending via disqualification thanks to the unstable rage of Kong, their next match at Final Resolution 2008 became a career defining match for both ladies as they battled in a no disqualification match for the KO championship which saw Gail emerge victorious.
Unfortunately for Gail, her reign wouldn't last long after this as Kong would defeat Gail in the main event of a January 10th 2008 edition of Impact for the championship whilst giving Gail Kim a concussion after hitting her with one to many powerbombs.
Gail would face Kong again in a street fight on August the 21st on Impact but once again she would come up short. After two failed runs in WWE for both Gail and Kong respectively, the old rivals face off one more time at Bound For Glory 2015 which ended with Gail defeating Kong to retain the championship.
One year later, Gail Kim would be inducted as the first woman into the TNA/Impact Hall of Fame while Awesome Kong would be in attendance to congratulate her former rival and best friend.
Gail wrestled her last match at Rebellion 2019 against Tessa Blanchard before resuming her role as a backstage figure for Impact, meanwhile Kong has found success as an actress on the Netflix Wrestling TV Show, GLOW and has been a recurring presence on All Elite Wrestling.
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