PWInsider continues to release names of past legends who have seemingly confirmed to them via their sources for the upcoming WWE Evolution pay per view. A day after reporting that former Women Champions Molly Holly and Ivory were headed to the WWE’s first all-women’s pay per view, today Mike Johnson reported that former AWA, WWF and WCW star Alundra Blayze (aka Madusa Micelli) will also be appearing at the PPV. Much like the two announcements yesterday, there has been no word on their role at the event, be it special appearance, a singles or tag match, or as a participant in the Battle Royal scheduled for the event.
Alundra Blayze broke into the business in the late 1980s with Verne Gagne’s American Wrestling Association (AWA) as Madusa Micelli, winning the AWA Women’s Championship in 1987 and holding it for an astounding 335 days. In 1989, she headed to Japan and spent the next two years working with All Japan Women’s Wrestling (AJW), where she allied with the likes of Aja Kong and Bison Kimura in their battles against Manami Toyota and others. She even faced Lioness Asuka for the “red belt”, the WWWA World Championship.
In 1991, she returned to North America but signed with World Championship Wrestling (WCW), where she would wrestle for the next couple years. But in the early 1990s, women’s wrestling was more of an afterthought that a proper division, and with no title or legitimate competition, she headed to the WWF in 1994, where she was repackaged as Alundra Blayze.
For two years, Blayze jump started the WWF’s Women’s Division, with Alundra becoming a 3x WWF Women’s Champion in a relatively short time. Her feud with another former Japan star, Bull Nakano, is remembered as one of the best women’s feuds of the 1990s, and spilled over into AJW, where she defended her title against Nakano at the Tokyo Dome. But by 1995, the WWF was souring on women’s wrestling despite the increased talent, and with the company facing financial problems, decided to deactivate the women’s division, releasing Blayze in the process. She would immediately re-sign with WCW, who produced one of the most memorable moments of the Monday Night Wars – and what many suggest was the first firing shot – when she appeared on Nitro with her WWF Women’s title and proceeded to throw it in the garbage.
Madusa would spent the next four years with WCW, although once the initial shock of her reappearance wore off, WCW also stopped pushing their women’s division. While Madusa would end up working some intergender matches – she infamously won the WCW Cruiserweight Championship in 1999 from Evan Karagias at WCW Starrcade ’99 – she was more used a valet, including a stint as part of “Macho Man” Randy Savage‘s Team Madness.
She began training women’s wrestlers at WCW Power Plant and remained semi-active on television, before going down with injury in late 2000. When WCW was purchased from the WWE, Madusa retired from pro wrestling in 2001, upset with the state of women’s wrestling. She was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2015, erasing decades of bad blood over the “belt incident”, taking her rightful place in the WWE Universe as one of the company’s most important historical women’s wrestlers.