Mercedes Varnado (AKA Sasha Banks in WWE) has been absent from pro-wrestling altogether since she and Naomi reportedly walked out of the building ahead of the May 16th episode of Raw, resulting in the pair being stripped of the WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships and suspended indefinitely.
In recent weeks, Varnado has began to trademark a number of names and phrases for a multitude of purposes, leading many to believe that her in-ring return is right around the corner. PWInsider have now shared an update on her pro-wrestling career, revealing that she’s expected to feature on New Japan Pro Wrestling’s Wrestle Kingdom 17 event in January of next year.
“Mercedes Varnado aka WWE’s Sasha Banks is expected to be at New Japan Pro Wrestling’s Wrestle Kingdom 17 event next month, according to several sources close to the situation. While it is unknown whether Varnado will be appearing before the live crowd, we are told that NJPW is bringing Varnado in for the event.”-PWInsider
Varnado teased potentially wrestling in Japan back in October, sharing a fan-made match graphic featuring herself and Stardom’s KAIRI, who conveniently enough will be competing on the afformentioned WK17 show, defending her newly won IWGP Women’s Championship against Cosmic Angels’ Tam Nakano.
Adding further to the possibility of an in-ring return edging closer, Varnado has recently been training in a number of places across the United States and Mexico, and thus it may only be a matter of time before she’s back inside the squared circle.
As always, we’ll aim to provide any further updates on the prospect of Mercedes Varnado appearing in NJPW as soon as we hear more.