THE WWE Universe was in shock last night after it emerged Toni Storm had left the company.
The 26-year-old, from New Zealand, was believed to be one of those that the company were set to build their women’s division around over the coming years.
After first breaking into WWE in their NXT UK and then NXT division, she moved up to the main roster earlier this year.
That has led to her enjoying a fierce rivalry with Charlotte Flair over recent weeks, culminating in a failed title shot against The Queen on last week’s SmackDown.
However, Fightful’s Sean Ross Sapp reported on Wednesday that Storm had requested to be released from her WWE contract.
He tweeted: “Those that I spoke to within WWE believe Toni Storm asked for her release from the company, though I'm also making an effort to reach out to those close to her.
“The memo that went out did not list budget cuts as the reason, as has been tradition of late.”
Storm had appeared on FOX Sport's Out of Character with Ryan Satin earlier this week to discuss her move from NXT to SmackDown.
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She said: “I was just cruising along in NXT minding my own business and I got called in for a few dark matches and didn’t think too much of it, didn’t want to get too excited because every time, it never works out.
“Did a few dark matches, did my best, and then next thing I know, I’m on SmackDown and it’s been a crazy ride ever since.
“My whole life has changed. I’m a different person, a whole different being.
“It’s a whole new set of challenges, it’s been a whole new learning curve. I have this undying respect for this industry, it’s what I’ve been doing my whole life but now, I’m like, ‘oh wow, I have so much respect for what people do up here,’ and it really is top-notch quality.
“I’m just putting everything into bettering myself and showing I can hang here.”
Storm announced her engagement to NJPW wrestler Juice Robinson back in October.
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