Former WNBA player Anriel Howard joins the WWE Performance Center

By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher 

Former WNBA player Anriel Howard has signed with the World Wrestling Entertainment. She has reported to the WWE Performance Center on Wednesday.

She is a part of the latest class that includes the former Desmond Xavier (now Deveon Everheart Aiken) and Zachary Wentz (now going by his real name Zachary Green). Xavier and Wentz previously were a tag team in several independent organizations, including New Jersey’s Combat Zone Wrestling. 

Former Seattle Storm forward Anriel Howard attempting a shot in a WNBA game
Anriel Howard attempting a shot in a WNBA game (Photo by Anriel Howard/Instagram)

The class also includes Japan wrestler Sojiru “Ikemen” Higuchi, Alex Zane (now Alex Brandenburg), Howard, and California wrestler Russ Taylor, who has competed in the United States, Japan, and Germany.

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Howard was drafted in the second round by the Seattle Storm in the 2019 WNBA Draft. However, Howard played in just three games with the team in 2019. 

She did not start a single game with the Storm. In fact, Howard averaged just 1.7 points per game in the three games in 6.7 minutes per game. 

Before being drafted by the Storm, she played for the Mississippi State Bulldogs. 

Related: Tyson, Jones Jr. fight to draw in exhibition bout in Los Angeles

In the past two recruiting classes in the past two months, the WWE has added two females. In October, the company announced that Brandi Lauren, who is now going by her real name Brandi Pawalek, joined the Performance Center.

WWE has a history of signing non-traditional wrestlers. The company has hired numerous former football players, who turned out to be superstars with the company, like Roman Reigns (real name Leati Joseph Anoa’i), Brock Lesnar, Baron Corbin (real name Thomas Pestock), Mojo Rawley (real name Dean Muhtadi), Rob Gronkowski, and more.

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