Taynara Melo de Carvalho (June 9, 1995) is a female Brazilian professional wrestler currently signed to All Elite Wrestling (AEW) under the ring name Tay Conti. She was previously signed to World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) in its developmental brand NXT as Taynara Conti. During July 2017, Conti participated in the first annual WWE Mae Young Classic.
De Carvalho holds a black belt in judo and a blue belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu and participated in trials for the Brazilian Olympic team at the 2016 Summer Olympics prior to joining WWE.
De Carvalho began in the artistic gymnastics in CR Vasco da Gama, but soon migrated to the martial arts. First, Conti fought for the project "Brasil vale ouro" (Brazil is worth gold) and later went to "Instituto Reação", by judoka Flávio Canto. Conti was a regional champion and four-time state champion. In addition, she was a four-time Brazilian runner-up. She joined the Brazilian team and participated in the European circuit in Portugal and Germany.
Professional wrestling career
World Wrestling Entertainment
Carvalho joined the WWE and was assigned to its developmental program NXT. She debuted as Taynara Melo, on May 13, in a battle royal to determine the Number One Contender to the NXT Women's Championship. She wrestled her first singles match on July 6, where she was defeated by Lacey Evans. On July 13, she took part in the 2017 Mae Young Classic where she was eliminated in the first round by Lacey Evans. Afterwards, Taynara wrestled in several tag matches throughout the remainder of 2017.
On January 5, 2018, Taynara returned to NXT to team with Abbey Laith in defeating Reina Gonzalez & Sage Beckett in a tag match. During the remainder of January, Taynara wrestled in a string of singles matches, won by her opponents Vanessa Borne and Nikki Cross. Missing the entire month of February, Taynara returned on March 24, teaming with Aliyah and Vanessa Borne in a tag match won by Dakota Kai, Jessie Elaban & Rhea Ripley. Five days later on March 29, she defeated Jessie Elaban in a singles match. She finished the month with a loss to Kairi Sane on March 30. Taynara returned on April 8, entering the Women's Battle Royal at WrestleMania 34, that was won by Naomi. She returned to NXT on April 14, teaming with Adrian Jaoude & Cezar Bononi in a mixed tag match lost to Jessie Elaban & The Authors Of Pain. Five days later on April 19, Taynara teamed with Adrian Jaoude, Cezar Bononi in a second mixed tag match, defeating Chinese recruits Big Boa, Rocky & Xia Li. On April 20, Taynara lost to Dakota Kai in singles competition. She finished the month with a match eight days later on April 28, losing to Kairi Sane.
Returning the following month, Taynara wrestled during the May 10 NXT tapings, teaming with Reina Gonzalez & Vanessa Borne losing to Dakota Kai, Kacy Catanzaro & Steffanie Newell. Seven days later Taynara lost to Dakota Kai in singles competition. During her last three matches of the month, Taynara teamed with Reina Gonzalez and Shayna Baszler in a different tag matches lost to Kairi Sane & Nikki Cross. On June 1, Taynara teamed with Reina Gonzalez in a tag match lost to Dakota Kai & Steffanie Newell. During the June 22 house show Taynara teamed with Gonzalez in a tag match lost to Kacy Catanzaro & Kairi Sane. On the following week during the June 29 house show Taynari lost to Kairi Sane in a singles match. She finished the month appearing at the June 30 house show where she teamed with Adrian Jaoude in a mixed tag match lost to Kacy Catanzaro & Otis Dozovic. On July 18, Taynara entered the 2018 Mae Young Classic winning a Qualifying Match after defeating Vanessa Borne. During the July 20 house show, Taynara entered a Number One Contendership Battle Royal for the NXT Women's Championship. The match was finally won by Candice LeRae. She spent the remainder of July in a series of tag matches, finishing with a match on July 29, teaming with Shayna Baszler in a loss to Candice LeRae & Kairi Sane. On the August 2 house show, Taynara returned to team with Adrian Jaoude in a mixed tag match lost to Candice LeRae & Johnny Gargano. Two days later at the August 4 house show Taynara teamed with Adrian Jaoude & Cezar Bononi in a mixed tag match lost to team Heavy Machinery & Jessie Elaban. After qualifying for the Mae Young Classic, Taynara competed during the August 8 NXT Tapings of the tournament. She advanced in the first round after eliminating Jessie Elaban. On the following day of NXT Tapings, Taynara was eliminated in the second round by recent NXT recruit Lacey Lane. During the August 25th house show, Taynara teamed with Reina Gonzalez in a tag match lost to Kacy Catanzaro & Lacey Lane. Returning during the September 7 house show, Taynara won a singles match defeating her frequent tag partner Reina Gonzalez. Two weeks later September 21, Taynara lost to Vanessa Borne. A week later during the September 28 house show, Taynara competed in a Number One Contendership Battle Royal for the WWE United Kingdom Women's Championship. During the following night's house show, Taynara teamed with MJ Jenkins in a tag match lost to NXT newcomers Jessamyn Duke & Marina Shafir. Returning on October 12, Taynara teamed with MJ Jenkins in defeating Deonna Purrazzo and NXT newcomer Kavita Devi. She made her televised return during the November 7 episode of NXT, losing a singles match against Dakota Kai. She finished the year in houses shows during the month of November.
Conti returned in 2019 for the February 13 episode of NXT in a singles match lost against Aliyah. She made her next televised appearance during the February 27 episode of NXT, teaming with Xia Li in a tag match lost against Aliyah & Vanessa Borne. Four months later, Conti returned to television on the June 19 episode of NXT, losing a singles match against Xia Li.
All Elite Wrestling (2020-present)
On August 3, 2020, the official AEW twitter account announced Taynara, under the name Tay Conti, would be participating on the AEW Women's Tag Team Cup Tournament along with Anna Jay. Her first match with Jay was won against Nyla Rose and sister WWE alumnus Ariane Andrew.
Carvalho is a multi-level martial artist holding a Black Belt in Judo and a Blue Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
- Finishing moves
- Step-up Rolling Cross Armbar (sometimes while jumping from the top rope)
- Tayogoshi (Utsuri goshi to swinging side slam)
- Brazilian Kick (Wristlock Bicycle Kick with the opponent seated)
- Signature moves
- Ipponzei (Over the shoulder arm drag)
- Rolling Judo Throws
- Mid-rope Diving Crossbody
- Tomoe-nage (sometimes followed by high Double Knees and by a handstand to a seating pinfall)
- Bicycle Kick
- Jumping Knee
- Gory Special twisted into a Knee Lift
- Heel Hook (Kneebar)
- Fujiwara Armbar
|WWE Mae Young Classic 2017 contestants|
Abbey Laith • Ayesha Ray • Bianca Belair • Candice LeRae • Dakota Kai • Jazzy Gabert • Kairi Sane • Kavita Devi • Kay Lee Ray • Lacey Evans • Marti Belle • Mercedes Martinez • Mia Yim • Miranda Salinas • Nicole Savoy • Piper Niven • Princesa Sugehit • Rachel Evers • Reina Gonzalez • Renee Michelle • Rhea Ripley • Sage Beckett • Santana Garrett • Sarah Logan • Serena Deeb • Shayna Baszler • Taynara Conti • Tessa Blanchard • Toni Storm • Vanessa Borne • Xia Li • Zeda
|Mae Young Classic 2018 contestants|
|Aerial Monroe • Allysin Kay • Ashley Rayne • Deonna Purrazzo • Hiroyo Matsumoto • Io Shirai • Isla Dawn • Jinny • Kacy Catanzaro • Jessica Elaban • Kaitlyn • Karen Q • Kavita Devi • Killer Kelly • Lacey Lane • Meiko Satomura • Mercedes Martinez • Mia Yim • MJ Jenkins • Nicole Matthews • Priscilla Kelly • Rachel Evers • Reina Gonzalez • Rhea Ripley • Taynara Conti • Tegan Nox • Toni Storm • Vanessa Kraven • Xia Brookside • Xia Li • Zatara • Zeuxis|