Martinez in 2016, posing with the Shimmer Championship
|Born||November 17, 1980|
Waterbury, Connecticut, United States
|Residence||Waterbury, Connecticut, United States|
|Professional wrestling career|
|Ring name(s)||Maria Toro|
|Billed height||5 ft 7 in (1.70 m)|
|Billed weight||147 lb (67 kg; 10.5 st)|
|Billed from||Waterbury, Connecticut|
|Trained by||Jason Knight|
|Debut||November 12, 2000|
Mercedes Martinez (born November 17, 1980) is an American professional wrestler, currently performing for Shimmer Women Athletes, as well as numerous independent promotions including World Xtreme Wrestling, Full Impact Pro, Women Superstars Uncensored, and Rise Wrestling. She is a former three-time WSU Champion, two-time Shimmer Champion. She is also the current WXW Women's champion the current Phoenix Of RISE Champion and World Association of Wrestling's Bellatrix World Champion.
- 1 Professional wrestling career
- 2 Personal life
- 3 Championships and accomplishments
- 4 References
- 5 External links
Professional wrestling career
Mercedes got involved in professional wrestling after an injury sustained playing basketball in college. Mercedes was a standout basketball player in high school. She later transitioned to professional wrestling due to her love for contact sports. As Mercedes explained in an article for the Boston Herald in 2004, "Wrestling just came at the right time." Mercedes Martinez began her training under Jason Knight in October 2000. She defeated a male wrestler by the name of "Juice" in her first match on November 12, 2000. In 2001, she gained exposure under promoter Sheldon Goldberg. Goldberg subsequently formed a women's division in New England Championship Wrestling around Martinez, including bringing in foreign talent such as Yoshimoto Ladies Pro's Sumie Sakai. The duo traded the North American Women's Championship.
Through 2003 and 2004, Martinez competed in various promotions in New England such as Connecticut Championship Wrestling, Combat Zone Wrestling, and Ian Rotten's IWA Mid South. In IWA, Martinez was brought in to face the star of the women's division, Mickie Knuckles.
Shimmer Women Athletes (2005–present)
On November 6, 2005 Mercedes wrestled in the inaugural event of the new exclusive women wrestling promotion, Shimmer Women Athletes run by Dave Prazak, who discovered her while watching a Kiryoku Pro DVD. Martinez wrestled Sara Del Rey in a 20-minute time limit draw, and both were given a standing ovation after their match. Martinez continued to wrestle for Shimmer and various independent promotions across America through 2006.
On May 2, 2009 she took part in Shimmer's Volume 23 where she lost to Awesome Kong. Later in the night, as part of Volume 24, she defeated Madison Eagles. The next day, she lost to Serena Deeb for Volume 25, and teamed with Deeb to take on Sara Del Rey and Kong for Volume 26, but had a losing effort in that match.
She lost against the debuting Ayako Hamada on November 8, 2009 after a Hama-Chan Cutter, but was able to score a pinfall over Cat Power as part of Volume 28 after hitting her with the Fisherman Buster.
On June 26, 2016, after being retired for two years, Martinez made a surprise return to Shimmer, aligning herself with Nicole Savoy and Shayna Baszler and defeating Madison Eagles in an impromptu match to win the Shimmer Championship for the first time. She lost the title to Kellie Skater on November 12, only to regain it the following day. On November 12, 2017, Martinez lost the title against Savoy.
Ring of Honor (2006–2007)
On March 25, 2006, Martinez made her Ring of Honor (ROH) debut in New York City where she competed in a Shimmer sanctioned match versus her counterparts of Allison Danger, Daizee Haze, and Lacey. On December 22, Martinez suffered an injury in an ROH match teaming with Jimmy Jacobs against Haze and B.J. Whitmer. She returned to Ring of Honor by the end of December 2007, aligning herself with The Vulture Squad. On May 27 it was announced that Martinez and ROH had amicably parted ways.
World Xtreme Wrestling (2005–2009; 2011–present)
In 2005, Martinez joined World Xtreme Wrestling. She participated in several matches, and then started feud with Talia Madison for the WXW Women's Championship. On July 8, Martinez defeated Madison to become the new Women's Champion. However, the title was declared vacant on September 3, when she won the WXW Cruiserweight Championship from Drew Blood on February 19, 2006. On January 6, 2007, Martinez defeated Cindy Rogers to regain the Women's Championship. When she had to undergo shoulder surgery in February 2007, a "Phantom Title Change" storyline was done where Kacee Carlisle claimed she beat Mercedes in an Empty Arena Match to become the new champion was Mercedes's exit for her surgery.
She made her surprise return on February 10, 2008 to challenge Carlisle for the WXW Women's Championship but did not regain it. When WXW relocated as a result of Afa Anoa'i moving to Florida from Pennsylvania, she was a part of it from the get-go. She would win the 2008 WXW Elite 8 then on December 20, 2008 defeat Betsy Ruth for the Vacant WXW Women's Title for her 3rd reign.
After her defense against MsChif on February 7, 2009. She announced she was returning to her hometown of Waterbury Connecticut & vacated the title.
On August 27, Martinez returned to the company, starting feud with Kimberly. On September 10, Martinez defeated her to become the first woman to hold the WXW Women's Championship four times. On February 11, 2012 Martinez defeated Kimberly in a two out of three falls match. She would lose the title to Kimberly on July 14, 2012, this marked the first time Mercedes had lost the Women's title in a 1 on 1 match.
Independent circuit (2006–present)
Martinez also competed in ChickFight IV in April 2006. She made it to the final round before being eliminated by MsChif. Later in the night, MsChif also defeated Martinez and Cheerleader Melissa in a falls count anywhere match. On May 27, 2006, Martinez competed in the debut MXWomen (MXW)'s match, one of the Quadruple Main Events at MXW MAYhem in Bristol, Connecticut. On November 12, 2006, she defeated Nikki Roxx in a match for MXW. The following month, Martinez appeared on World Wrestling Entertainment's Heat (taped June 12) in a losing effort against Victoria. On July 19, 2009 Martinez returned to WXW C4 in Allentown and won a 20-person Battle Royal at WXW C4's Flagship show Sportsfest, earning a title shot of her choosing. On September 5, 2009 in Allentown, she opted to use the victory to create the WXW C4 Women's Championship, and she immediately won it in an Elimination Style 3-Way Dance over Jana and Nikki Roxx.
She also took part of Jimmy Hart's Wrestlicious series as a Bull Fighter character named "Maria Toro", managed by "Bandita." In the main event of the first episode she teamed up with Bandita and Felony in a winning effort against the team of Cousin Cassie, Tyler Texas and Charlotte.
Mercedes Martinez debuted for NCW Femmes Fatales on February 6, 2010 taking on Portia Perez. At the end of the match Mercedes Martinez was able to hit with the Fisherman Buster to get the pin. She challenged NCW Femmes Fatales Champion Kalamity on March 10, 2012 and was unsuccessful. She promptly turned heel afterwards laying Kalamity out and LuFisto came out and they brawled to close the show.
More than a year later, Mercedes would become NCW Femmes Fatales Champion on March 30, 2013. Defeating Kalamity at NCW Femmes Fatales XI, ending her 538-day reign on top. She lost the title on August 16, 2014. On May 6th 2017, at Challengemania 25, Mercedes came back to defeat Stefany Sinclair and reclaim the NCW Femmes Fatales Championship. She left the event as a triple champion, already walking in the match with both the WSU World Championship and the Shimmer Championship.
On July 24, 2011 Mercedes made her first appearance in Japan, wrestling in famed Korakuen Hall against Nanae Takahashi as a part of the STARDOM Title Tournament during the Nanae Takahashi 15 Anniversary show. She would lose to Takahashi however.
She has worked in SHINE Wrestling for a number of years and was until 2018 a Shine Tag Team Champion with Ivelisse as Las Sicarias until they were defeated by the Twisted Sisterz (Holidead and Thunder Rosa). There was one very memorable match that Mercedes Martinez had with Cindy Rogers. During this encounter, Cindy Rogers was wearing her spandex. At one point, Cindy left the ring. Mercedes then grabbed Cindy by her spandex. Then she dragged her back into the ring by her spandex.
Women Superstars Uncensored (2007-present)
In Women Superstars Uncensored (WSU) in 2007, Martinez began teaming with Angel Orsini. In March 2008, they began feuding that culminated in many grueling matches throughout 2008 into 2009, including a Steel Cage on January 10, 2009; 2 months later, Martinez defeated Orsini in a Bullrope match on March 7, 2009 at the Second Anniversary Show in Boonton, New Jersey to win the WSU Championship, ending Orsini's record reign of just over nine months. They had one more match that rewrote the record books in a 60-minute Iron Woman Match on June 6, 2009 in Boonton NJ that went a total of 70 minutes including going 10 minutes into sudden death and resulted in Mercedes getting the pin after a fisherwoman's buster and retaining the title. Martinez would continue to defend the title against the likes of Nikki Roxx, Awesome Kong, Rain, and Portia Perez. Along the way, Martinez and Orsini briefly captured the WSU Tag Team Championships. Martinez continued her WSU Championship title reign by defending against more challengers including Alicia, Amber O'Neal, Mickie James, and Jazz throughout 2009-2010. In January 2011, Martinez defeated Angel Orsini again in a ladder match to unify her title with Orsini's All Guts No Glory championship. Martinez then successfully defended her championship against Serena Deeb in the main event of WSU's 4 year anniversary show and also defeated Brittney Savage at WSU's Uncensored Rumble event. In August 2011, Mercedes put her title on the line against Uncensored Rumble winner, Lexxus in a match that would become the longest women's wrestling match in history as the match continued past the 60 minute time limit until Martinez was able to get the win after 73 minutes, breaking the record of the Orsini match by 3 Minutes. Martinez then became involved in a violent rivalry with Jessicka Havok that culminated in Havok putting an end to Martinez's unprecedented 3 year title reign at the WSU 5th Anniversary Show.
On February 11, 2017, Martinez defeated Cherry Bomb to win the WSU Championship, making her the first ever three-time champion. She retained the title for over a year until June 16, 2018, when she lost the title against Tessa Blanchard.
WWE (2017, 2018)
On July 13, 2017, Martinez entered WWE's Mae Young Classic tournament, defeating Xia Li in her first round match. The following day, Martinez defeated Princesa Sugehit in the second round and Abbey Laith in the quarterfinals, before being eliminated from the tournament in the semifinals by Shayna Baszler. She made an appearance on the October 26, 2017 episode of NXT, participating in a battle royal which was won by Nikki Cross to determine one of the contenders for the vacant NXT Women's Championship at NXT TakeOver: WarGames. Martinez would also lose to Ember Moon on the November 15, 2017 edition of NXT. Martinez made her return to WWE, competing in the 2nd Mae Young Classic. She made it to the second round, defeating Ashley Rayne before being eliminated by Meiko Satomura.
All Elite Wrestling (2019)
On August 31, 2019, Martinez appeared at All Elite Wrestling's 2nd major pay-per-view event, All Out. She appeared as the "Joker" in the 2nd Casino Battle Royale, coming into the match as its final entrant. She was eliminated by Britt Baker without scoring a single elimination. She made her return on November 5 at AEW Dark teaming with Big Swole in a losing effort against Allie and Sadie Gibbs.
Mercedes is of Puerto Rican descent.
On June 9, 2008, Martinez launched a new website thelatinasensation.com. It features her audio update show "Stiff Shot To The Ear" where she gives fans news and updates on the goings on of Mercedes Martinez. Her site also has a Pay Per View section with her matches and videos, and a merchandise section where fans can buy her merchandise and get their own custom photo sets.
Championships and accomplishments
- Alternative Wrestling Show
- AWS Heavyweight Championship (1 time, current)
- Bellatrix Female Warriors
- Bellatrix World Championship (1 time, current) 
- Defiant Pro Wrestling
- DPW Women's Championship (1 time)
- Green Mountain Wrestling
- GMW Women's Championship (2 times)
- Independent Wrestling Association Mid-South
- IndyGurlz Championship Wrestling
- NWA Midwest
- NWA Midwest Women's Championship (1 time)
- New England Championship Wrestling
- New Horizon Pro Wrestling
- Femmes Fatales
- Pro Wrestling Illustrated
- Pennsylvania Premiere Wrestling
- PPW Women's Championship (1 time)
- Pro Wrestling Unplugged
- PWU Unified Women's Championship (1 time)
- Rise Wrestling
- Phoenix of Rise Championship (1 time)
- RISE Match of the Year (2018) vs. Tessa Blanchard in a 75-minute iron woman match on RISE 10: Insanity
- RISE Moment of The Year (2018) – Mercedes Martinez and Tessa Blanchard set a new world record at RISE 10, the longest one on one women’s wrestling match in history at 75 Minutes
- RISE Wrestler of The Year (2018)
- Shimmer Women Athletes
- Shine Wrestling
- Women Superstars Uncensored
- World Xtreme Wrestling
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- "NHPW "Global Conflict (Night 2)" results". facebook.com.
- "NCW Femmes Fatales". NCW Femmes Fatales. Retrieved 2012-10-12.
- "First Look: PWI Female 50 2010 Revealed". Diva Dirt. 2010-09-09. Archived from the original on 2010-09-11. Retrieved 2010-07-25.
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- "Your Votes Are In – Announcing The 2018 RISE Year-End Award Winners!". Rise Wrestling. December 24, 2018.
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