The big news story yesterday was Toni Storm’s release from WWE. The details behind her exit fall outside of the typical “budget cuts” bucket that was given for so many of the 80+ wrestlers released by WWE this year. Toni Storm wanted out of WWE, and the rumor mill suggests the company was blindsided by how abruptly she came to that decision.
In the aftermath of her release, many pro wrestling fans (this writer included) immediately assumed her terrible booking over the last month on SmackDown played a role in her decision to leave WWE. Her championship feud against Charlotte Flair was a complete dud. It started with pie-throwing, never really established Storm as a threat to win the title, and ended with a title match dominated by the champ.
It’s easy to blame bad booking for her release, but there could be more to the story than that, or an entirely unrelated reason for why she wanted out of WWE. Wrestling Observer Radio’s Dave Meltzer acknowledged that bad booking may have been a factor in her decision to leave WWE, but he heard a different reason when asking around for more information:
“As far as her reasons and why she left, the only thing I heard was, you know, burnout, essentially.”
Meltzer added that it’s not clear if WWE has put any provisions on the terms of Storm’s release that would prevent her from going to AEW:
“There’s probably a 90 day non compete involved...whether she can go [to AEW] and that was part of the deal that you can’t go there, I don’t know that.”
Roughly 24 hours later, what do you make of the circumstances surrounding Toni Storm’s WWE release, Cagesiders?