It’s been a long road to get here, but on Tuesday night, the WWE Mae Young Classic tournament finally came to an end. WWE’s first all-woman tournament has been highly anticipated pretty much from the moment the company wrapped up its last summer-long tournament, last year’s Cruiserweight Classic.
32 women — some contracted by WWE, some not, several of whom where reigning champions of other companies while participating in the tournament — took part in the tapings of the initial rounds back in July. Those preliminary rounds were released in two batches of four episodes each on WWE Network, and the tournament itself was extremely well-received by fans and insiders alike.
In the end, the tournament boiled down to two competitors: Kairi Sane, who formerly wrestled in Japan as the extremely popular Kairi Hojo, and Shayna Baszler, one of Ronda Rousey’s “Four Horsewomen” of MMA, all of them gigantic wrestling fans, and all of them seemingly in line for an in-ring feud with WWE’s own Four Horsewomen.