Sonya Deville’s return came as a much-needed jolt to the WWE SmackDown women’s division and it came at a time when it was needed the most.
Sonya Deville’s mere presence brought an immediate and excitable response across the wrestling space on Friday. She was on screen for less than one minute, did not say anything, but to see her walking backstage at WWE added a jolt to not only the WWE women’s division but the roster. There is no indication as to where she will fit into feuds or storylines, but the fact remains that “Daddy’s home” and she will be looking to fight someone. These ladies should be the individuals that Deville faces first to reintroduce herself to the WWE SmackDown women’s division.
It will be interesting to see where Deville fits into the women’s division. The secrecy of her return and the silence creates intrigue about what is next for her. Especially since nearly the entirety of the SmackDown women’s division is tied up in other angles. Other than the injured Chelsea Green, all the ladies listed on the SmackDown roster are involved in other angles. That does not mean that Deville cannot be involved in a quality angle that builds her into an eventual title challenger.
First, she does not need to immediately enter the ring. During her build against Mandy Rose last year, one thing that stood out is that Deville can tell a believable story every time she touches the microphone. She should continue telling her story in another form, such as on commentary. Deville does not need to be in the role permanently, but just enough to remind people why she is here and why she is a threat. Plus, her presence as other women compete in the ring is close enough to the action where she could get physical if needed.
Then, there’s the women’s Royal Rumble on January 31. Both the men’s and women’s rumbles have an air of being “wide open.” There is no telling who should be considered a favorite to win either. Part of this is due to the lack of creativity and long-term booking within WWE. But the other part is that there are several women that could find themselves the last person in the ring. Deville’s return immediately adds her to the shortlist of potential winners.
In good taste, WWE should not mention her real-life struggles in her return angle. But that does not mean a push to the top would not be a comeback story of sorts. Imagine Deville winning the Royal Rumble and moving on to challenge a champion of her choice at WrestleMania. Fans and wrestling industry experts alike looked at Deville as a promising talent, even before her singles storyline with Rose in 2020. Picking that back up with the momentum generated by her surprise return on Friday is an opportunity the promotion should capitalize on.
Sonya Deville’s return was quite the moment to start off the near year. It is good to see that the industry did not lose a rising personality. Even though it is very early to tell, there is a chance that Deville could become one of the top names in the WWE women’s division if her return angle is built in the right way.