Summer Rae

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Summer Rae
Summer Rae WrestleMania 32 Axxess.jpg
Rae in April 2016
Birth name Danielle Moinet
Born (1983-11-28) November 28, 1983 (age 32)[1]
Manhasset, New York, United States[2]
Residence Chicago, Illinois, United States[3]
Professional wrestling career
Ring name(s) Summer Rae
Billed height 5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)[4][5]
Billed weight 118 lb (54 kg)
Billed from Raleigh, North Carolina[4]
Trained by Florida Championship Wrestling[5]
Debut December 18, 2011[5]

Danielle Moinet[5] (born November 28, 1983)[5][1] is an American professional wrestler, professional wrestling manager, model, actress and former American football player currently signed to WWE under the ring name Summer Rae, performing on the Raw brand.

Prior to joining WWE, Moinet played with the Chicago Bliss of the Legends Football League. She was a main cast member on the WWE reality television show Total Divas for seasons two and three.

Early life[edit]

Moinet was born in Manhasset, New York.[5] She attended East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina, where she was a member of the Alpha Delta Pi sorority.[6]

Football career[edit]

Moinet played with the Chicago Bliss of the Lingerie Football League (LFL) from 2008 to 2011. She played as a cornerback and was the team's captain.[5][7] On June 30, 2011, Moinet played in the LFL All-Star Game at Copps Coliseum in Hamilton, Ontario, in Canada which was her final game in the LFL. She was one of two players in the game from the Chicago Bliss.[5][8]

Professional wrestling career[edit]

WWE[edit]

Florida Championship Wrestling (2011–2012)[edit]

In November 2011, it was reported that Moinet had signed a contract with WWE and was assigned to their developmental territory Florida Championship Wrestling (FCW).[5][9] Moinet made her televised debut on the December 18 episode of FCW TV, appearing in an in-ring promo with Abraham Washington, and the following week she managed Washington during a tag team match.[5][10] She also served as the ring announcer for FCW TV for several months.[11] Changing her ring name to Summer Rae, she was prevented from interfering in a match between Seth Rollins and Rae's new client Brad Maddox by the debuting Paige on the March 5 episode of FCW TV.[12]

On the March 11 episode of FCW TV, Rae became the FCW General Manager.[13] On the March 15 episode of FCW TV, Rae decided to deactivate the Queen of FCW crown, leaving Raquel Diaz as the last champion.[14] Rae made her in-ring debut on April 6 at an FCW live event, where she lost to Sofia Cortez in an elimination triple threat match, which also involved Paige.[1]

NXT (2012–2014)[edit]

After the dissolution of FCW, Rae went on to become a ring announcer for the rebooted WWE NXT in 2012.[15] Rae transitioned into an in-ring competitor on the January 30, 2013, episode of NXT when she attacked Paige due to her jealousy of Paige's popularity and success.[16][17] On the February 13 episode of NXT, Paige suffered a shoulder injury while brawling with Rae, which Rae exploited later that episode in her first televised match to defeat Paige.[18] After Paige continued to confront Rae,[19][20] Rae finally faced off against Paige on the May 1 episode of NXT, where Paige emerged victorious despite Rae's pre-match attack.[21]

Rae competed in the NXT Women's Championship tournament on the June 19 episode of NXT to crown the inaugural champion and defeated Sasha Banks in the first round,[22] but lost to Emma in the semi-finals on July 10. Rae's post-match attack on Emma started a feud between them.[23][24] Emma later defeated Rae in a dance-off to become the number one contender, but Rae retaliated by injuring Emma in the storyline, then issued a title challenge to the new NXT Women's Champion Paige, which she accepted.[25] On the August 14 episode NXT, Paige defeated Rae to retain the title.[26] For weeks, Rae began to influence Sasha Banks to make herself relevant, leading to Banks turning heel on the September 11 episode of NXT, by attacking NXT Women's Champion Paige.[27] On the September 25 episode of NXT, Rae accompanied Sasha Banks to her match against Bayley, which Banks won. Summer then declared that she and Sasha would run the NXT Divas division.[28] Banks and Rae, collectively known as the BFFs: Beautiful Fierce Females, faced Paige and Emma on the October 16 episode of NXT, where they emerged victorious after Rae pinned Paige.[29] Rae and Banks continued to face Paige and Emma in singles matches, including aligning themselves with Charlotte.[30][31] Rae continued her rivalry with Natalya, who had aligned herself with Bayley, losing to both in singles matches.[32][33][34]

After a four-month absence from the show due to her activities on WWE's main roster, Rae returned on the June 6 episode of NXT, briefly distracting Charlotte during her match. After the match, Rae led an attack on Bayley, only to be seen off by Paige and Emma. On the June 26 episode of NXT, during a match with the debuting Becky Lynch, Charlotte and Sasha Banks backed away from Rae when reaching out for help, hinting at Rae's removal from the stable. The following week, Banks disbanded the BFFs in a backstage segment. The following week, Rae defeated Bayley in a number one contender's match, earning a NXT Women's Championship match against Charlotte.[35] On the July 24 episode of NXT, Rae received her title shot against Charlotte, however she failed to capture the championship.[36]

Fandango's dance partner (2013–2014)[edit]

Rae as Fandango's dance partner during a WWE Raw event in April 2013

Rae made her official debút on WWE's main roster on the April 22, 2013, episode of Raw, as Fandango's dance partner and valet. Later that night, Chris Jericho attacked Fandango following a match and proceeded to dance with Rae.[37] On the May 13 episode of Raw, Rae, along with Fandango, faced Chris Jericho and Dancing with the Stars competitor Edyta Sliwinska in a dance–off, but Fandango's dance was cut short by an apparent injury to Rae's ankle. However, Rae later revealed that her injury was a distraction to trap Jericho into Fandango's attack.[38] On the October 25 episode of SmackDown, Rae got into a brawl with Natalya during a match between Fandango and The Great Khali,[39] which set up a mixed tag team match[40] for the Hell in a Cell pay–per–view, where Rae made her in–ring debút, teaming with Fandango to defeat Natalya and Khali, after Rae pinned Natalya.[41] The following night, Rae made her singles debút in a rematch against Natalya, where she was defeated.[42] On November 23, at the Survivor Series pay–per–view, Rae participated in a seven–on–seven elimination tag team match, as her team took on the cast of Total Divas, where she was eliminated by Nikki Bella, before her team ultimately lost the match.[43][44] A rematch took place the following night on Raw, where her team was once again defeated, with Rae being the last to be eliminated.[45] On the December 19 episode of WWE Superstars, Rae defeated Kaitlyn, garnering her first singles match victory on the main roster.[46][47] In the beginning of 2014, Rae began a rivalry with Emma, and the two competed in several dance–off competitions on both Raw and SmackDown, which Emma won.[48][49][50][51] Rae lost to Emma in matches on the February 24 episode of Raw[52] and on the March 27 episode of WWE Superstars.[53] On April 6, Rae made her WrestleMania debut, competing at WrestleMania XXX in the 14–Diva "Vickie Guerrero Invitational match" for the WWE Divas Championship, which was won by the defending champion AJ Lee.[54]

On April 8, Fandango announced the end of his association with Rae on his Twitter account[55] and introduced Layla as his new dance partner on the April 11 episode of Smackdown, which in storyline was put in place to allow Rae time off television to film The Marine 4.[56] Rae returned on the May 19 episode of Raw, confronting and kissing Fandango and attacking Layla before their match.[57] Rae made her in–ring return on the following episode of Raw, in a losing effort to Eva Marie after interference from both Fandango and Layla.[58] On the June 20 episode of SmackDown, Rae shared another kiss with Fandango backstage, which Layla witnessed.[59] In the following weeks, Rae and Layla assaulted each other backstage[60][61] and at ringside during Fandango's matches,[62][63] leading to a match between Rae and Layla at the Money in the Bank pay–per–view on June 29, with Fandango as the special guest referee,[64] which Layla won.[65][66]

Various alliances (2014–present)[edit]

On the June 30, 2014 episode of Raw, during a match between Fandango and Dolph Ziggler, Rae interfered and kissed Ziggler, causing Fandango to lose.[67] On the July 11 episode of SmackDown, Rae faced Layla with Fandango once again as the special guest referee where the match ended when both Rae and Layla attacked Fandango, starting a alliance between them,[68] costing him several matches.[69] In their first match as a team, Rae and Layla, who dubbed themselves "The Slayers", lost to Paige and AJ Lee on the July 18 episode of SmackDown.[70] The Slayers won their first match as a team on the September 2 episode of Main Event, where they defeated Rosa Mendes and Natalya.[71] At Survivor Series, Rae participated in a four–on–four elimination tag team match, where she was eliminated by Emma before her team ultimately lost the match.[72] In January 2015, The Slayers quietly disbanded when Layla underwent surgery.

Upon the release of Rae's first film The Marine 4: Moving Target in April, she was disrespected by her co-star The Miz, and as a result, she allied herself with Miz's estranged personal assistant, Damien Sandow. On the April 20 episode of Raw, Rae helped Miz win a match against Sandow, having been working with Miz from the start.[73]

In June, Rae became involved with Rusev's storyline with his former manager Lana and Ziggler, in which Rae formed an on-screen relationship with Rusev. During several weeks of confrontation,[74][75][76][77] Rusev faced Ziggler at SummerSlam, which ended in a double count–out due interference from both Lana and Rae.[78] In September, Rae attempted to sabotage Ziggler and Lana's relationship by revealing Ziggler's attempts to "seduce" Rae,[79][80] however, the storyline abruptly ended when Lana stopped appearing on television due to injury.[81] After Rusev refused Rae's storyline marriage proposal,[82] Rusev's real-life engagement to Lana was revealed, leading to Rae confronting Rusev and ending their association on the October 12 episode of Raw.[83] Rae gained revenge over Rusev on the following episode of Smackdown when she served as the special guest referee for his match against Ziggler; she helped Ziggler.[84] On the October 22 episode of SmackDown, during a Miz TV segment between Rae and Ziggler, she introduced the debuting Tyler Breeze as her "new man", and she subsequently began managing him.[85] However, during the final SmackDown of 2015, Rae and Breeze announced that they amicably decided to go their separate ways.[86]

Rae (front), along fellow Team B.A.D. & Blonde members, walking to the ring before their match during the WrestleMania 32 event in April 2016

Rae returned to in–ring action in mid–February, 2016, racking up victories over Paige[87] Alicia Fox,[88] and Brie Bella,[89] as well as competing in various singles,[90][91] and tag team matches, where she was on the losing side.[92] In late March, Rae allied herself with Team B.A.D. (Naomi and Tamina), Emma and former rival Lana, leading to a 10-Diva tag team match on the WrestleMania 32 kick-off show, which Rae's team lost.[93] On July 19, at the 2016 WWE Draft, Rae was drafted to Raw.[94]

Other media[edit]

Rae has appeared in three WWE video games. She made her in-game debut at WWE 2K14 as a DLC[95] and appears in WWE 2K15 and WWE 2K16.[96]

In 2014, Rae was a main cast member on Total Divas, a reality television show produced by WWE and E!, for the show's second and third seasons. Rae also starred in the 2015 film The Marine 4: Moving Target alongside The Miz.[56]

Filmography[edit]

Film[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
2015 The Marine 4: Moving Target Rachel Dawes [97][98]

Television[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
2014–2016 Total Divas Herself Main Cast (Season 2–3)
Guest (Season 4–5): 29 episodes

In wrestling[edit]

Rae applying a Cobra clutch on Sasha Banks

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Recipient Result ref
2014 Shorty Awards Best of Social Media Herself Nominated
2014 Teen Choice Awards Choice TV: Reality Show Total Divas Nominated [129]

References[edit]

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