WWE’s female Superstars were once considered as lesser talent than their male counterparts, resulting in Mick Foley stepping in against Jonathan Coachman to defend Stacy Kiebler.
The perception of female WWE Superstars compared to their male colleagues has forever been a hot topic of discourse, with the days of the dreadful butterfly-esque Divas Championship and Bra and Panties matches now gone in favour of multiple Women’s Championships and women main eventing premium live events.
In the early 2000s, Stacy Kiebler wanted to depart WWE for pastures new, with her official departure coming in July 2006. However, Mick Foley had to step in to defend her wish to leave Vince McMahon’s sports entertainment giant after Jonathan Coachman was reportedly badmouthing her.
“As long as I’ve known Jonathan Coachman, I only had one argument. That was when he was maligning the good name of Stacy Keibler. Stacy didn’t want to come back [to WWE], she wanted to do other things.
So I cut what we in the trade call a promo on Coach about how unlike those guys, the women didn’t have their travel paid, they didn’t get their rental cars or hotels paid for.”
Mick Foley continued, explaining how female Superstars were paid considerably less despite some fulfilling the same roles as their male opposition:
“They were expected to be great ambassadors of the company. They were expected to look good at all times, travelling the globe. And in the end, after taxes, they’re not making – I just didn’t think it was in keeping with a Superstar should be making.”
Mick Foley has long been an advocate for equality in WWE, tweeting in April 2021 that WWE should make an all-women’s brand. This is yet to happen, although the latest NXT 2.0 episode featured 24 female Superstars featured in a variety of roles.
Stacy Kiebler hasn’t wrestled since losing to Jillian Hall on an October 2005 edition of WWE Velocity. She’d signed with WWE after they bought out World Championship Wrestling in March 2001, with her WCW run having previously lasted for two years. Kiebler would spend around a decade as an actress, with her most notable role coming in How I Met Your Mother for two episodes.
Kiebler’s last appearance for WWE came at the 2019 Hall of Fame induction ceremony, where she inducted Torrie Wilson. She’s set to appear in WWE 2K22 through their upcoming Stand Back DLC pack, which releases on 7 June.