WWE has confirmed to Sports Illustrated what most of us guessed from the jump - Zelina Vega (real name Thea Trinidad) “was terminated for breaching her contract.”
While the company told SI’s Justin Barrasso about the technical reason for Vega’s firing on the record, he also shared information from unnamed sources which backed up other reports we’ve heard since her release last Friday.
As part of the company’s ban on independent contractors supplementing their income on fan engagement platform’s like Twitch and Cameo, Vince McMahon threatened talent that didn’t comply with fines, suspension or outright dismissal. Vega’s continued Twitch streaming was part of what made her the first example.
The other part was Vega’s OnlyFans account, where the 29 year old was offering cosplay and other non-nude photos for a $30 monthly subscription. She started using the service after the Twitch ban was announced, and Barrasso writes that “upper management felt Trinidad boxed them into a difficult situation by opening the OnlyFans account.”
McMahon and WWE likely see firing Vega as a message to the rest of the roster about the new policy specifically, and defying their rules in general. However, the release has drawn even more attention from labor organizers, specifically the Screen Actor’s Guild.
The company is betting the former is worth the latter.
Time will tell if it’s a smart bet.