The women's evolution in WWE is set to reach new heights with the Raw Women's title match widely touted and odds-on 1/25 favorite to headline WrestleMania 35.
This is shaping up as the long-awaited and much anticipated triple threat bout between champ Ronda Rousey, Charlotte Flair and 2019 Royal Rumble winner Becky Lynch. At present the latter is suspended and has been replaced by The Queen - for now - in her automatic title match with "Baddest Woman on the Planet" Rousey.
Flair and Lynch served up the best female feud of 2018 and both head into The Showcase of the Immortals as still official members of the SmackDown roster. This match for the Raw Women's title looks a watershed moment for the two likely challengers and champion alike.
Lynch is a red-hot 8/15 betting favourite to win the gold and, given she's over with fans to Stone Cold Steve Austin in the Attitude Era levels, a WrestleMania moment beckons and looks the obvious booking choice despite her current knee injury storyline angle.
WWE creative do like to use The Grandaddy of Them All to throw the occasional curveball, however. For evidence of this, see WrestleMania last year - where Brock Lesnar retained the Universal title over Roman Reigns despite being an underdog in the betting to do so as he was widely expected to leave the company, and Charlotte snapped Asuka's winning streak since the Japanese wrestler moved to America.
Flair (5/2) is more fancied in the market on who will be Raw Women's champ at the end of the supercard in MetLife Stadium on Sunday, April 7 offered by bookmakers than Rousey retaining her title (4/1). The Rowdy one is the betting outsider and that may be because of rumors that she could take time off from in-ring activities after WrestleMania to start a family which did the rounds earlier this year.
Rousey has been protected throughout her WWE run to date and booking could again preserve her by having Flair beat Becky or vice versa. This is the advantage of triple threat rules - the champ doesn't have to be involved in the decision to lose the title and can still look strong without taking the fall or submission. That is something to factor into your thinking before betting on any multi-person match.
Given the huge pops Lynch receives, free bets for you available for betting markets on the WrestleMania 35 card look the sensible choice. A title change is also the perfect opportunity to get Charlotte and Becky, who is odds-on at 1/5 to be the cover star of the next WWE computer game, off the same brand.
Asuka, who as noted above lost to Flair at WrestleMania 34, is a big 1/10 favorite to still be SmackDown Women's champion following the event this year. She won the belt when defeating both Flair and Lynch in December - a triple threat match in which Rousey interfered.
New storylines involving other wrestlers need space to grow following WWE's flagship annual pay-per-view. Thinking long-term, if Becky does win the Raw Women's title as expected, there's a readymade feud with Nia Jax in the offing following the legit concussion she gave Lynch before Survivor Series last year.
Whichever woman comes out of WrestleMania with the gold, WWE has already announced the Superstar Shake-up on the Raw and SmackDown Live shows on April 15 and 16 - just over a week after the big event. The roster in general would benefit from this, although there's still likely to be some crossover following the creation of the Women's Tag Team Championship won at the Elimination Chamber pay-per-view by Sasha Banks and Bayley.
Setting the scene for future fights is just as important for the women's evolution as Flair, Lynch and Rousey going on last at WrestleMania 35. Betting on who will win between them is as much about knowing how WWE books outcomes at big events as the talented trio sharing the spotlight.