Less than 18 months after making her televised debut, Tiffany Stratton is sitting atop the women's division, winning the NXT Women's Championship Sunday night at NXT Battleground.
Stratton defeated Lyra Valkyria in the finals of an eight-woman tournament to crown a new champion after Indi Hartwell was forced to vacate the title when she was drafted to Raw last month. Along the way, Tiffany beat Gigi Dolin in the quarterfinals and Roxanne Perez in the semifinals.
She and Valkyria delivered a solid championship match, with Stratton targeting Lyra's injured knee and attacking it repeatedly with a series of strikes and submission holds. That injury played into the finish, when Valkyria's knee gave out and allowed Tiffany to pick up the win... and the title.
Debuting in December 2021 with a "daddy's girl" character that was widely derided, Stratton was one of the many... colorful one-dimensional characters who made their bow in NXT 2.0. However, Tiffany hit on something with her character, and after returning from injury in January 2023, she dropped the "daddy's girl" part of her persona and focused more on the entitled aspect. Her in-ring work also improved rapidly during the past year-plus, with her natural athletic talent - she was a gymnast before signing with WWE - shining through.
Stratton still is relatively inexperienced - she has just 43 matches listed to her name - but NXT clearly believes in her, so it will be interesting to see where she goes from here.