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WWE star announces sudden exit from company after appearing on TV ‘without a contract’


Popular WWE star Kayla Braxton is leaving WWE after eight years with speculation already mounting she may switch to rivals AEW.

The backstage interviewer and programming host made the sudden announcement in an X post on Saturday, revealing next Friday’s Smackdown at Madison Square Garden will be her final show.

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Kayla Braxton has been a regular on-screen figure for WWECredit: WWE

The event will end a memorable tenure in WWE for the 33-year-old, who is widely respected by colleagues and a real hit with fans.

Braxton’s charisma and ability to blend in with the company’s on-screen stars and storylines has won her plenty of admirers – not least her ‘feud’ with veteran manager Paul Heyman.

During the height of The Bloodline saga, long-running champ Roman Reigns would blast Heyman for the pointed questions asked by The Wise Man’s ‘girlfriend’, with the two regularly throwing jibes at one another.

She’ll now leave Heyman and the rest of WWE behind, explaining her decision on social media.

A post on X under her real name Kayla Becker said: “After nearly 8 years holding the microphone on WWE television, I am setting it down to pursue my next chapter. Next week at the world’s most famous arena, I will be officially signing off.

“During my years with WWE, I was able to master the art of the back-stage interview. I hope I was able to turn minutes into moments for you who watched week to week and maybe even ushered in a new fan base.

“My banter with Paul Heyman became the stuff of legend, and I am so thankful for all he has done to elevate my career. I gained a wealth of knowledge from the Wise man and for that, l’ll be eternally grateful.”

Braxton would go on to thank her WWE colleagues and bosses before throwing a hint toward the future.

Braxton's cheery manner has endeared her to WWE audiences for the last eight years

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Braxton’s cheery manner has endeared her to WWE audiences for the last eight yearsCredit: WWE

She went on: “I am extremely thankful to Triple H, Nick Khan, WWE and all of its partners for allowing me to be a trusted voice on WWE television for all these years.

“Thank you to every single person who made me feel like this was my home and that I was a part of this family. Thank you for taking a chance on me and welcoming this outsider with open arms.

“I hope I made you proud and l’d love it if you’d stay with me for this next chapter. I’m excited to reveal to all of you what I have coming up next!!!!”

While Braxton was coy on what exactly the future holds, it hasn’t stopped wrestling fans speculating that rivals All Elite Wrestling may seek to snap her up.

Sean Ross Sapp of US outlet Fightful reported following the Alabama-born star’s announcement that she had already been working the final part of her WWE tenure without a formal contract in place, and that AEW had been ‘made aware’ of her status.

Their report stated: “Braxton is currently working for [WWE] under a verbal agreement between the two sides following her WWE deal expiring recently.

“The two sides have been discussions, but we’re not told what came of them.

We’re told AEW had been made aware of her contract status a couple of weeks ago, but we aren’t sure if that was due to direct communication between Becker/ an agent, or AEW.”

It's not yet known whether Braxton will continue to work in wrestling

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It’s not yet known whether Braxton will continue to work in wrestlingCredit: WWE

In 2021, Braxton came out as bisexual by posting on X that she was ‘over having to choose.’

The post, roundly applauded by fans and colleagues alike, read; My whole life, I’ve had to choose. Are you black? Are you white? Which bubble do you fill in on the SATs? I always filled in “other” because nothing applied to me.

“Tonight, I choose to be over having to choose. Hello world. I’m Kayla. Oh. And yeah – I’m Bi.”

Braxton first appeared on WWE programming in 2016 on NXT, the company’s developmental programme.

From there she progressed on to the ‘main’ roster, featuring on Raw, SmackDown and Premium Live Events – WWE’s term for pay per views.

She’s also acted as a ring announcer and has been a long-time co-host of The Bump and Talking Smack.

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