WWE Changes Name of Wrestlemania Match Due to Controversy
Due to fan and sponsor backlash, the WWE has announced a name change for their all-female battle royal at Wrestlemania.
WWE's female superstars have participated in many firsts over the past two years, such as the first women's Hell in a Cell, Money in the Bank, Royal Rumble, and Elimination Chamber matches. For Wrestlemania 34 next month, the WWE planned a counterpart for their all-male Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal that has been a staple of the event for the past few years, announcing the Fabulous Moolah Memorial Battle Royal.
However, this announcement was met with backlash from fans who felt that Moolah, once regarded as a pioneer for female wrestlers, is no longer someone to be honored. Since her death in 2007, stories have come out accusing Moolah of unethical, and even illegal, business practices that included stealing from female performers under contract to her, purposely sabotaging wrestling story-lines to further her career, and even prostituting her students to wrestlers and bookers across the country. A petition was created on Change.org asking WWE to change the name, and Snickers, a primary sponsor of the upcoming Wrestlemania, issued a statement,
We were recently made aware of the World Wrestling Entertainment Inc’s (WWE) decision to honor a former wrestler during the upcoming WrestleMania 34 event. As a principle-based business that has long championed creating inclusive environments that encourage and empower everyone to reach their full potential, this is unacceptable. We are engaging with the WWE to express our disappointment.
After Snickers' announcement, WWE issued a statement to media outlets saying they would be changing the name of the match,
After further consideration, we believe it's best to proceed with the name 'WrestleMania Women's Battle Royal.' What remains most important is that this historic match is part of WWE's unwavering commitment to the Women's Division.
WWE had previously honored Hall of Famer Mae Young, the long-time partner of Moolah, by naming their inaugural all-women tournament last year after her.