Female Bellator MMA prospect Valerie Loureda is now a former Bellator MMA fighter as she announced Wednesday that she has signed a multi-year WWE contract.
The soon-to-be 24-year-old revealed the news on Ariel Helwani's MMA Hour. According to her, she is now the first Cuban-American woman to sign with the company.
She said the deal initially came together when her agent Abe Kawa was working with WWE on AJ Ferrari's NIL deal last year. Her name came into the mix and she was invited to WrestleMania -- her first WWE event.
She wanted the opportunity and realized WWE is where she wanted to go, cutting weight and doing light training for her May tryout following her appearance at April's tryout during WrestleMania week in Dallas. She said she has been in Orlando just once, but when she took her first bump, she knew this career is what we she wanted to shift to.
She signed her deal Monday and according to ESPN, she will begin on July 19th. She didn't know if she will able to keep her name, but would like to keep Loureda or some semblance of her Cuban heritage in her ring name if it changes.
This will be a full-time endeavor as she said she is now done with WWE. However, Bellator MMA's Scott Coker said she will remain under contract.
"She will remain an active and under contract fighter with Bellator, and we look forward to welcoming her back into the cage in the near future. We take great pride in allowing our athletes to test themselves in additional arenas such as boxing and pro wrestling," Coker said to ESPN.
If this is the end of her MMA career, Loureda wraps up with a 4-1 record. She last fought in November 2021. Despite just five fights, she has a major social media following with 908,000 followers on Instagram
She hopes she's a babyface as that's who she is at heart. Her goal is to make it to NXT TV by the end of the year and to the main roster within a year.
Loureda said she's a big fan of Charlotte Flair and Ronda Rousey and that Flair DM'd her to say congrats.
She said she had talked with Paige VanZant about her wrestling training and that she is doing great. When asked if she had talked with AEW, she said she hadn't and had no interest in doing so, pointing to WWE's ability to put on massive events and their global presence.