Dakota Kai

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Dakota Kai
Dakota Kai Axxess 2018.jpg
Kai in April 2018
Birth name Cheree Crowley[1]
Born (1988-05-06) 6 May 1988 (age 30)[2]
Auckland, New Zealand[2]
Professional wrestling career
Ring name(s) Dakota Kai
Evie[3]
The Big Dog
Billed height 5 ft 6 in (1.68 m)[3]
Billed weight 55 kg (121 lb)[3]
Billed from

East Auckland, New Zealand[3]

Auckland, New Zealand[4]
Trained by WWE Performance Center
Debut December 2007

Cheree Crowley (born 6 May 1988) is a New Zealand professional wrestler of Samoan and Irish descent.[5] She is signed to WWE and performs in its developmental territory NXT UK, under the ring name Dakota Kai. Under the ring name Evie, Crowley has wrestled for Impact Pro Wrestling, Shimmer Women Athletes, Shine Wrestling and Pro Wrestling Women's Alliance.[6]

Professional wrestling career[edit]

New Zealand and Australian independent promotions (2007–2016)[edit]

Evie made her professional wrestling debut in December 2007 for the Auckland based company, Impact Pro Wrestling.[7]

In September 2011, she debuted in Sydney, Australia-based Pro Wrestling Alliance Australia (PWA Australia) for their annual PWWA show, where she defeated Kellie Skater. In August 2012, Evie became the first Impact Pro Wrestling NZ Women's Champion, defeating Britenay and Megan-Kate in a triple threat match. A week later, she won the Interim PWWA Championship by defeating Jessie McKay in the finals. She retained the title during her first defense against Kellie Skater on 6 October.

After Impact Pro Wrestling returned after a few months from folding in mid-2013,[8] all the previous title holders were stripped of their championships. Evie won the IPW Women's Championship back in December 2013 and aligned herself with a new heel faction called 'The Investment'.[9]

Evie began 2014 in Japan working on a three-month contract awarded to her through Pro Wrestling Zero1. She was the first female to receive such a contract. She competed with the promotion Diana. During her stay, Evie also teamed with Madison Eagles in a losing effort against Global Green Gangsters (Kellie Skater and Tomoka Nakagawa) for the Shimmer Tag Team Championship as part of the Joshi4Hope show.

American independent promotions (2013–2016)[edit]

Evie wrestling for Shimmer Women Athletes in April 2013

Evie made her debut for the all-female American promotion Shimmer Women Athletes at Volume 53 on 6 April 2013, participating in a five-way match which she lost to Christina Von Eerie and also included Yuu Yamagata, Kalamity, and Rhia O'Reilly. At Volume 54, Evie defeated Kimber Lee to pick up her first win for the promotion, but she was defeated by Mia Yim the next day at Volume 56. She competed in a losing effort against Hikaru Shida at Shimmer Volume 62 in April 2014. At Volumes 63 and 64, Evie defeated Rhia O'Reilly and Nicole Matthews, respectively.

On 19 April 2013, Evie made her debut for Shine Wrestling at Shine 9, in a losing effort against Mercedes Martinez.[10] At the Shine 18 iPPV on 20 April 2014, Evie and Skater lost to defending champions the Lucha Sisters (Leva Bates and Mia Yim) for the Shine Tag Team Championship.[11]

World Wonder Ring Stardom (2015–2016)[edit]

On 6 December 2015, Evie made her debut for the Japanese World Wonder Ring Stardom promotion. In her first match she won the vacant Artist of Stardom Championship alongside Hiroyo Matsumoto and Kellie Skater.[12] They lost the title to Io Shirai, Kairi Hojo, and Mayu Iwatani in their third defense on 28 February 2016.[13]

WWE[edit]

Guest appearances & Mae Young Classic participation (2015-2017)[edit]

Under the ring name Evie, Crowley appeared on the 14 October 2015 episode of NXT, losing to the debuting Nia Jax.[14] On 15 December 2016, Crowley signed a contract with WWE,[15] and few months later she was announced as a participant in the upcoming Mae Young Classic under the ring name Dakota Kai.[16] Kai entered the tournament on 13 July, defeating Kavita Devi in the first round[17] and Rhea Ripley in the second round, before being eliminated in the quarterfinals by Kairi Sane.[18]

NXT & NXT UK (2017-present)[edit]

On the 25 October 2017 episode of NXT, Kai made her television return competing in a battle royal, where she was eliminated by Sage Beckett.[19] On 10 January 2018 episode of NXT, Kai was defeated by Shayna Baszler by referee stoppage when Baszler injured Kai's arm in storyline.[20] On the 14 March episode of NXT, Kai scored her first televised victory when she defeated Lacey Evans.[21] Kai made her WrestleMania debut at WrestleMania 34, competing along with several other NXT women in the WrestleMania Women's Battle Royal.[22] With that participation, she became the first female New Zealander to compete at WrestleMania. Kai participated in a WrestleMania Axxess tournament with the winner earning an NXT Women's Championship match on April 8, 2018. Kai ended up winning the tournament but was defeated by newly crowned NXT Women's Champion Shayna Baszler.[23] On May 9 episode of NXT, Kai was victorious in a match over Vanessa Borne, only to be intimidated by Baszler after the match.[24] On the May 30 episode of NXT, Kai was unsuccessful in a title match against Baszler. Afterwards, Baszler attempted to attack Kai, until Nikki Cross made the save.[25] Following this, Kai would enter a feud with Lacey Evans, with Evans mocking her after a loss to Bianca Belair, and a win against Santana Garrett. This would lead to a match between the two on the July 18 episode of NXT, where Kai was unsuccessful.

Upon July, Kai began competing on NXT UK. Kai would enter a tournament for the vacant NXT UK Women's Championship on August 25, defeating Nina Samuels. Kai returned the following day, being defeated by eventual winner Rhea Ripley.

Other media[edit]

In September 2009, Evie starred in the music video for "Sweet December" by Auckland band 'These Four Walls'.[26] In April 2013, 20/20 aired a story which followed Evie on her lead up to her first tour in the United States.[27] Also that summer, she was similarly profiled on the Māori Television sports show Code.[28]

Personal life[edit]

Crowley's mother is originally from the village of Lepea on the island of Upolu in Samoa.[27] She has two younger siblings, her sister Nyrene is a mixed martial artist and her brother Earl is a DJ in New Zealand.[29] Her grandfather Pat Crowley represented New Zealand as a member of the All Blacks in 1949 and 1950.[30]

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "WWE signing updates". Pro Wrestling Insider. Retrieved December 8, 2016. 
  2. ^ a b "Evie". Online World of Wrestling. 
  3. ^ a b c d "Evie". PWA Australia. 3 November 2012. Archived from the original on 8 August 2013. Retrieved 13 June 2014. 
  4. ^ "Dakota Kai". WWE. Retrieved 2018-06-13. 
  5. ^ ".. #HappyStPatricksDay from this Irish / Samoan hybrid!! + =". @DakotaKai_WWE. 2016-03-16. Retrieved 2017-07-14. 
  6. ^ "Dakota Kai". WWE. Retrieved 2018-06-13. 
  7. ^ "Evie –". Impact Pro Wrestling. Retrieved 13 June 2014. 
  8. ^ "IPW Closes Doors". NZ Wrestling. 3 April 2013. Retrieved 13 June 2014. 
  9. ^ Taylor, Brendon (12 December 2013). "2013 Live Event Recap: The Investment take control! –". Impactprowrestling.co.nz. Retrieved 13 June 2014. 
  10. ^ Namako, Jason (20 April 2013). "4/19 Shine #9 iPPV Results: Ybor City, Florida". Wrestleview.com. Retrieved 13 June 2014. 
  11. ^ Namako, Jason (20 April 2014). "4/18 SHINE 18 iPPV Results: Ybor City, FL (Ivelisse vs. Knight)". Wrestleview.com. Retrieved 13 June 2014. 
  12. ^ a b 2015年12月6日 Goddesses of Stars2015. World Wonder Ring Stardom (in Japanese). 6 December 2015. Archived from the original on 8 December 2015. Retrieved 6 December 2015. 
  13. ^ 2016年2月28日 大阪大会. World Wonder Ring Stardom (in Japanese). 28 February 2016. Retrieved 28 February 2016. 
  14. ^ Trionfo, Richard (14 October 2015). "WWE NXT REPORT: NUMBER ONE CONTENDERS FOR ALL TITLES ESTABLISHED, NIA JAX DEBUTS, AND BAYLEY TALKS ABOUT THE IRON MAN MATCH". PWInsider. Retrieved 14 October 2015. 
  15. ^ "411MANIA – WWE Signs Kimber Lee, Heidi Lovelace, Evie & More". Retrieved 13 April 2017. 
  16. ^ "Evie gets new in-ring name, confirmed for WWE Mae Young Classic". Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Retrieved 30 June 2017. 
  17. ^ Williams, JJ (July 13, 2017). "WWE Mae Young Classic taping spoilers: The tournament begins". Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Retrieved July 14, 2017. 
  18. ^ Williams, JJ (July 14, 2017). "WWE Mae Young Classic taping spoilers: The finals are set". Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Retrieved July 15, 2017. 
  19. ^ Trionfo, Richard (25 October 2017). "WWE NXT REPORT: BATTLE ROYAL, IS THE VELVETEEN DREAM A NIGHTMARE FOR ALEISTER BLACK?, ALMAS VERSUS STRONG, LORCAN AND BURCH TEAM UP, AND MORE". PWInsider. 
  20. ^ Trionfo, Richard (10 January 2018). "WWE NXT REPORT: TAG TITLE MATCH, COMMENTS FROM GARGANO & ALMAS, BASZLER MAKES A STATEMENT, DON'T MESS WITH NIKKI'S FRIENDS". PWInsider. 
  21. ^ Trionfo, Richard (14 March 2018). "WWE NXT REPORT: THE TOURNAMENT CONTINUES, A CONTRACT SIGNING, AND CIAMPA SPEAKS?". PWInsider. 
  22. ^ Carapola, Stuart (8 April 2018). "COMPLETE WRESTLEMANIA 34 KICKOFF SHOW COVERAGE". PWInsider. 
  23. ^ "Results for all championship matches at WrestleMania Axxess Day 4". WWE. Retrieved 2018-04-13. 
  24. ^ Clapp, John (9 May 2018). "Dakota Kai def. Vanessa Borne". WWE. Retrieved 30 June 2018. 
  25. ^ Clapp, John (30 May 2018). "Shayna Baszler def. Dakota Kai". WWE. Retrieved 30 June 2018. 
  26. ^ "These Four Walls – Sweet December Music Video". YouTube. Retrieved 13 June 2014. 
  27. ^ a b Gregerson, Katie (6 June 2018). "5 Fast Facts About Dakota Kai". Ringside Intel. Retrieved 26 July 2018. 
  28. ^ Dunn, David (29 Aug 2013). "Evie featured on Maori TV's CODE tonight". NZPWI. Retrieved 26 July 2018. 
  29. ^ Stanley, Ashley (16 July 2018). "Nyrene Crowley fighting her way to affecting change". Beyond the Mark. Retrieved 19 July 2018. 
  30. ^ France, Marvin (14 August 2018). "WWE rising star Dakota Kai blazing a trail for Kiwi women wrestlers". stuff.co.nz. Stuff. Retrieved 17 August 2018. 
  31. ^ Kreikenbohm, Philip. "PWWA Interim Title Tournament « Tournaments Database « CAGEMATCH – The Internet Wrestling Database". Retrieved 13 April 2017. 
  32. ^ "Title History – Impact Pro Wrestling". Retrieved 13 April 2017. 
  33. ^ "Internet Wrestling Database – Evie: Pro Wrestling Illustrated Ratings". Retrieved 13 April 2017. 
  34. ^ Bentley, Martin (June 27, 2016). "Shimmer Volumes 84 & 85 results from Berwyn, IL". Pro Wrestling Insider. Retrieved June 27, 2016. 
  35. ^ "Results for all championship matches at WrestleMania Axxess Day 4". WWE. 2 April 2018. Retrieved 15 August 2018. 

External links[edit]