Carmella is a Jill of all trades, an American professional wrestler who was once a cheerleader for the New England Patriots and Los Angeles Lakers. She has also thrived as a dancer, model, and a wrestling manager. Although she made her debut as a wrestler in 2013, it was on the 10th of April 2018 that she landed her big break, emerging as the WWE SmackDown Women’s Champion.
Carmella was named Leah Van Dale after she was born in Spencer, Massachusetts to Paul Van Dale on the 23rd of October 1987. Although not much is known about her mother, we can tell her father is a mixed martial artist and professional wrestler, he was part of the WWE in the 1980s.
Carmella’s Fact Sheet
Carmella’s Education and Career Beginning
Growing up, she attended David Prouty High School where she graduated from in 2006 and proceeded to study Marketing at the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth. Carmella earned a Bachelor’s degree in 2010. While in college, she worked as a professional cheerleader with the New England Patriots for three seasons, until 2010. Thereafter, she auditioned for the Los Angeles Lakers and became part of their cheerleading squad for the 2010-2011 season.
Like most professional wrestlers, Carmella caught the bug at a tender age. As a kid, she idolized Miss Elizabeth and Trish Stratus. She signed her first WWE contract in June 2013 and got assigned to WWE’s developmental territory, NXT. Her ring debut came on October 16 of that year, against an opponent called Blue Pants. Carmella knocked down Blue Pants in two matches but eventually lost to her in their third fight on the 1st of January 2015.
In the months that followed, the wrestler got embroiled in a feud that had been raging between Amore and Cassady against NXT Tag Team Champions Blake and Murphy. Siding with the former, they fought for dominance in the NXT Tag Team Championship. However, their efforts couldn’t earn them a win as they struggled to make a mark. It was in her final match in NXT that Carmella had an air of victory. She was part of a 6-women tag team match with Liv Morgan and Nikki Glencross fighting against Daria Berenato, Mandy Rose, and Alexa Bliss.
Accomplishments with WWE SmackDown
In 2016, she got drafted to SmackDown during that year’s WWE draft and recorded her first victory against Natalya on the 9th of August episode of SmackDown Live. Carmella’s professional career hasn’t been all rosy as she has suffered a couple of defeats against Nikki Bella, Lynch, and others she fought as a member of a team.
What’s worthy of note, however, is the leap she experienced on the 18th of June 2017, when she emerged the winner of the inaugural women’s Money in the Bank ladder match at the Money in the Bank pay-per-view event.
Nevertheless, the ensuing controversy surrounding her declaration as winner resulted in Daniel Bryan issuing a rematch. On June 27, 2017, Carmella successfully retrieved the money, emerging as the champion. The following year saw her join the women’s, Royal Rumble. However, she started with a defeat from Nikki Bella. A few weeks later in March 2018, she won against Naomi and headed for WrestleMania Women’s Battle Royal.
Were Carmella and Colin Cassady Lovers?
It all started in October 2014, when Carmella took sides with the duo Enzo Amore and Colin Cassady. As the story goes, the duo made her lose her hairdressing job, so they made her their official manager.
Soon, Carmella and Collin Cassady formed a trio with Enzo Amore in NXT. Having worked together for a while, it didn’t take long before Carmella and Colin caught a fancy for each other. Their romance faced a sudden quake after WWE decided to create a separate roster for RAW and SmackDown. Carmella fell under the Smackdown roster while Cassady alongside Enzo Amore was moved to RAW. The separation didn’t end their relationship but things were never the same for them again.
Reports had it that the two had parted ways by January 2018. It was said that Carmella deleted all their photos together from her Instagram account. Though neither of them cleared the air about the matter, there are reasons to believe they are no longer together; if Carmella’s Instagram posts are anything to go by.
Who Is The Wrestler Dating Now?
As of this writing, the beautiful wrestler is not married and there seems not to be any inkling she will be doing that soon. But then, there is no doubt she is romantically involved with fellow WWE employee Matthew Polinsky, also known as Corey Graves.
Apart from the pictures they share online, Carmella and Corey Graves have largely kept their relationship private.