Sasha Banks and Naomi’s walkout during this week’s WWE Raw broadcast was reportedly due to Vince McMahon rejecting their ideas in favour of his own decisions.
Sasha Banks and Naomi sent shockwaves through the wrestling world when they were reported to have walked out of the building during the live 16 May Monday Night Raw broadcast. At the time, no one knew why, exactly, they’d done so.
It appears that a Vince McMahon booking decision was the catalyst that sent Banks and Naomi out of Norfolk, Virginia’s Scope Arena. The WWE boss insisted they follow his creative direction for the company, while rejecting their desire to defend the Women’s Tag Team Championships.
The Wrestling Observer Newsletter’s Dave Meltzer alleges that Sasha Banks and Naomi wished to defend the gold at the upcoming Hell In A Cell premium live event, with McMahon instead wanting them to compete in separate singles matches (h/t Sportskeeda Wrestling):
“Vince McMahon turned down the idea and insisted they do things his way. They packed their bags during the show, handed the tag title belts to John Laurinaitis, and left the building.”
Although an official WWE statement reported that a meeting with the WWE Chairman had gone well, he never planned to change his decision surrounding Sasha Banks and Naomi’s involvement at the 5 June event:
“In reality, McMahon was the one insistent on not changing the plans for the PPV, told others, who informed them, and they thought the producers had reneged on an agreement. McMahon always operates with the idea on the day of the show to get the planned and advertised match in the ring, unless he himself wants to change it.”
Sasha Banks and Naomi had been advertised for the main event’s Six-Pack Challenge, where they – alongside Becky Lynch, Asuka, Doudrop, and Nikki A.S.H – would compete for a Raw Women’s Championship opportunity. Naomi was reportedly scheduled to go on to face Bianca Belair at Hell In A Cell, while Sasha would face SmackDown’s Ronda Rousey.
The duo have since been “suspended indefinitely” and had their Women’s Tag Team Championships stripped away, with a future tournament being organised to crown new champions.