— Former WWE superstar Sasha Banks is set to make her in-ring debut with NJPW under the name Mercedes Mone and rumors of her headed to AEW were also a hot topic of discussion until last night when AEW announced that Saraya’s mystery partner next week will actually be Toni Storm and not Mercedes as strongly rumored. On the latest <i>Wrestling Observer Radio</i>, Dave Meltzer suggested that AEW went ahead and announced Storm as the mystery competitor because everyone was thinking it was incorrectly believing it was going to be Mercedes and by leaving it for next week, it was likely going to end up being a massive let down.
— Meltzer also discussed whether Mercedes is ultimately headed to AEW (even though she’s not scheduled for next week) and he believes that it’s not going to happen and in fact, WWE officials are “strongly under the impression” that she will not wrestle for AEW and is going to come back to WWE as Sasha Banks. The belief backstage within WWE is that Mercedes will get wrestling in Japan “out of her system” after a few matches and then come back whereas if she was to sign with AEW, it would have to be at minimum three years. For what it’s worth, WWE.com still lists Sasha Banks as an active wrestler on their Smackdown brand.