WWE’s Mae Young Classic has just wrapped up, and as you may know by now, Japanese wrestling sensation Kairi Sane became the tournament’s first winner, defeating mixed martial arts veteran Shayna Baszler in the final match. But what about the other women who took part in this WWE Network-exclusive tournament? Reports suggest close to half of the MYC’s participants signed WWE contracts, with a few more expected to sign in the coming weeks. But don’t expect to see a lot of familiar names, i.e. former WWE Divas or TNA Knockouts, second-generation wrestlers, or indie darlings/NXT spouses in the list of confirmed signings.
According to the latest issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, 14 of the 32 women who competed in this summer’s Mae Young Classic signed contracts with the WWE, with Kairi Sane obviously leading things off. The Wrestling Observer also noted that Sane was supposed to face Australian youngster Toni Storm in the final, only for WWE to go with Baszler instead, so as to further the rivalry between wrestling and UFC/MMA’s Four Horsewomen. The May Young Classic finale was also thought as a way to crown a new NXT Women’s Champion, with Asuka recently vacating the title, but WWE will instead be having Sane take part in a multi-woman match at NXT TakeOver: Houston on Nov. 18, 2017.
The following names were also reported to have signed WWE deals following the Mae Young Classic: Abbey Laith, Bianca Belair, Dakota Kai, Kavita Devi, Lacey Evans, Reina Gonzalez, Rhea Ripley, Sage Beckett, Sarah Logan, Taynara Conti, Vanessa Borne, Xia Li, and Zeda.
As noted by WrestleZone, there are a few others who might be under consideration to sign WWE contracts, including the aforementioned Shayna Baszler and Toni Storm, Piper Niven, Mercedes Martinez, and Candice LeRae, the latter of whom is married to NXT Superstar Johnny Gargano. Chances of the other women getting signed by the WWE are “less likely” at this point, though there’s always a chance the company will want to give a few others a shot at the big leagues.
As mentioned above, that list of "other" women who haven't signed yet includes a couple of second-generation wrestlers – Tessa Blanchard (daughter of Tully Blanchard), and Rachel Evers (daughter of Paul Ellering). Also conspicuously absent from the list of signings is former Straight Edge Society member Serena Deeb, who was infamously fired by WWE for drinking at a bar and therefore not living up to her gimmick. Mia Yim, who enjoyed a brief reign as TNA Knockouts Champion, isn't included among the confirmed and/or potential signings either.
It's only been a few days since the Mae Young Classic wrapped up, so who knows, maybe we'll see a few more familiar names get signed up in the days to come. But in the meantime, we should keep our expectations reasonable, and remember that when it comes to tournaments this large, you simply cannot expect Triple H to sign them all.