WWE Releases April 15, 2021 In Depth

Yes, exactly one year to the date after WWE’s mass talent purge due to COVID-19 it would seem they’re at it again. With seemingly no reason other than “budget cuts” The World Wrestling Entertainment has begun cutting a large and shocking mix of superstars which began on the evening of April 15th 2021 around 2pm eastern standard time. The following is the current list of all known releases at this time, check back for updates as the story progresses.

Billie Kay

The initial release reported by dirt sheets and WWE.com alike was for former Smackdown superstar Billie Kay. This release comes as a shock as Billie is fresh off a push that lead her to Wrestlemania in a losing effort as part of the Women’s Tag Team gauntlet match. With buzz already swarming around her abrupt firing, it seems it will not be long before we see Billie back inside a squared circle, the question now is where.

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Mickie James

Along side the aforementioned Billie Kay, WWE veteran and former Women’s champion, Mickie James was released from her WWE contract. Mickie had been very vocal about her opinions on “aging” women’s wrestles spot in the business as a whole in recent months but still thanked WWE Chairman Vince McMahon upon the news of her release for her time with the company and fond memories over the years. (Below)

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Tucker

One half of the former tag team “Heavy Machinery” alongside Otis, Tucker split from his long time partner in late 2020 following the Money In The Bank Pay-Per-View. Since then Tucker has largely been off TV, competing in the occasional multi-man match or appearing in backstage segments. It seems as though we’ll never get to see what Tucker’s singles run would’ve looked like in WWE. Interestingly enough, this release may be exactly what Tucker needed to get his singles career off the ground as following the break of his release, Tucker tweeter out this in response…

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Wesley Blake

Former member of NXT tag team “Blake and Murphy” as well as “The Forgotten Sons” Wesley Blake never got his fair shake at a main roster push. Seemingly always looked over in favor of his partners by WWE creative. Could we see the reunion of Forgotten Sons’s Steve Cutler with Blake relatively soon on the independent scene?

Chelsea Green

The release of popular NXT women’s main stay Chelsea Green came as a shock to many as the women’s wrestler appeared quite frequently on NXT TV and was highly regarded as one of the companies next big stars. Green’s partner former WWE superstar Matt Cardona, FKA Zack Ryder, took to Twitter upon the announcement to express his pure shock of the situation and to reassure Chelsea she is indeed a star! Ryder being one of last years “Black Wednesday” cuts and having appeared across a plethora of promotions since including Impact Wrestling, AEW, and a series of his own shows, should know a thing or two about success outside of the WWE umbrella.

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Kalisto

The man responsible for “good lucha things” is another interesting release on the part of WWE. Current member of the three man stable Lucha House Party, alongside Lince Dorado and Gran Metalik at the time of release, Kalisto is a former NXT Tag and United States champion in his own right. While not a regular feature on WWE TV, The Lucha House Party were one of few teams making up the current tag division. With the release of Kalisto, we only hope that his partners aren’t soon to follow suit.

Peyton Royce

The tag division once again in shambles as another team is out of the WWE picture. Peyton Royce, former member of the IIconics alongside Billie Kay, has also been released from her WWE contract. Peyton as well has her family have been very vocal over the past months starting their displeasure with the state of WWE’s women’s division and the idea that creative would rather have the same women become champion over and over again rather than affording opportunities to new talent. Could we possible see an IIconic reunion in a more “Elite” promotion int the near future?

Bo Dallas

Real life brother of Bray Wyatt and son of WWE legend I.R.S. Bo curiously survived last years cuts while his running partner Curtis Axel did not. This lead many to believe there were big plans in the world for Bo in relation to Bray’s new “Fiend” gimmick. While Bo has been missing from WWE programming since the 2019 Crown Jewel event, backstage sources report he may be in the process of transitioning out of wrestling and rather starting his own Real-estate agency. Whatever his plans are for life outside of the WWE, we genuinely do wish Dallas the best in future endeavors.

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Samoa Joe

Definitely the most shocking of the bunch released was wrestling veteran Samoa Joe. Joe is widely credited as one of the best wrestlers of his generation and has held the major title in almost every company he’s been a part of, ironically enough, excluding WWE. While Joe has been on the sideline with an injury for most of this past year, he has still remained a staple of weekly WWE programming serving as a play by play commentator for Monday Night Raw. Even more shocking, Joe’s last appearance with the company would be his role as a main commentator throughout both nights of Wrestlemania. With such a prime role and being such a hot acquisition, many are question the decision to release Joe. One thing remains certain, wherever he goes, Samoa Joe is sure to make an impact on their world title picture with fans already clamoring on Twitter for AEW and other wrestling promotions to sign the now free agent!

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These have been the releases from WWE on April, 15th 2021 thus far. Be sure to check back for updates as this story progresses. Let us know what you think of this batch of releases below or join in on the conversation as it continues on Twitter, where many superstars and companies alike remain very vocal as seen below!

UPDATED

Mojo Rawley

Mojo Rawley is the most recent member of the WWE roster released. Mojo was released on April 15th, 2021 around 7pm Eastern Standard Time.

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TNT Title Retired

All Elite Wrestling has officially retired the TNT Championship.

This week’s episode of AEW Dynamite showcased the life and career of the recently deceased Brodie Lee. Mr. Brodie Lee was a well respected and loved member of the AEW roster as well as the wrestling community. The evening was a beautiful display of wrestlers, friends, and family all joined together in honor of the former TNT Champion, Jon Huber. The match card presented was heavily influenced and designed by Brodie’s eight year old son, Brodie Jr who had quite the night himself. In the pinacol of the evenings celebration of life, AEW’s President Tony Khan as well as Vice President Cody Rhodes joined the Huber family in the ring to retire the boots of the beloved family man. Along with the symbolic retirement, Tony Khan also awarded Brodie Jr. the TNT Championship stating, his father was the greatest TNT Champion and will be known as “TNT Champion for life.”

In addition to the TNT Championship, Brodie Jr. was signed to an AEW contract. The contract states once the eight year old is of age to compete he will receive the proper training and a guaranteed spot on the roster.

You can watch the full segment below:

All Elite Wrestling – YouTube

The news of the title was broken by AEW commentator and veteran Tony Schiavone after the show went off air. According to All Elite Wrestling is is NOT the retirement of the championship but rather the current design which was held by the late Brodie Lee. The future design and current status of championship holder Darby Allin‘s title reign is currently unknown.

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Image courtesy of AEW’s Twitter

McMahon, Jonathan. “Tony Khan Announces TNT Title Is Retired And Gives The Title To Brodie Lee Jr.” BodySlam.net, 31 Dec. 2020, http://www.bodyslam.net/2020/12/30/tony-khan-announces-tnt-title-is-retired-and-gives-the-title-to-brodie-lee-jr/.

Quarrinton, Posted By: Norm. “AEW Retires Original TNT Championship Design In Brodie Lee’s Honor.” Pro Wrestling Sheet | Insider Wrestling News and Reports, 31 Dec. 2020, http://www.prowrestlingsheet.com/aew-retires-original-tnt-championship-design-in-brodie-lees-honor/.

Wrestling Rules That Are Completely Ignored

Completely Ignored Wrestling Rules

If you’ve sat in front of your TV set watching the weekly spectacle that is sports entertainment for the better part of a quarter of the last century, you’d probably think you’ve got a pretty solid grasp of the rules right? Legal men, tag ropes, the Shawn Michaels rule, all that good stuff! However, if then following rules have slipped past your radar over the years then fret not, the all mighty World Wrestling Entertainment seemingly doesn’t know about them either. The following are the most completely ignored wrestling rules of all time.

No Choke Holds

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We’re kicking it off with a duzy! You’re probably thinking to yourself, I’ve seen hundreds of choke holds! There are choke hold finishers! The Sleeper, Hell’s Gate, The Million Dollar Dream! The WWE officially banned choke holds due to the extreme risk involved with the legitimacy of the litany of choke hold varieties. However, the WWE later defined what exactly they consider a choke hold as, “a hand around the throat for a prolonged period of time”(sportskeeda.com) in order to preserve the use of widely known and famous move such as previously discussed.

30 Day Defense Rule

WWE.com

We’re looking at you 2013 Dean Ambrose US title reign. According to the official WWE rule book, a title must be defended at least once every 30 days, failure to do so may result in the championship in question being vacated. A rule seemingly forgotten about in recent years, oddly enough it began to become a talking point during the 2013 United States Championship run of Dean Ambrose. During his 351 day title reign, the internet wrestling community began to grow aggravated at the lack of title defenses by one Dean Ambrose. Citing the 30 day title defense rule, the community’s general consensus even became a throw away gag in WWE weekly programing as Dean’s fellow shield members as well as on screen authority figures began speculating when he would next defend the belt. Since then it would seem this rule has been once again quietly pushed under the rug.

The Outlaw Rule

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Originating on a June 8th 1998 episode of Monday Night Raw, The New Age Outlaws found themselves defending the WWE World Tag Team Championships in a three way tag match against LOD 2000 and the D.O.A. During the match both Road Dogg and Mr. Ass found themselves as the respective legal man. Taking advantage of a newly found loophole in the match, Road Dogg laid down to Billy fo the 1-2-3 to retain the tag straps. In light of this, the following week WWE rolled out “The Outlaw Rule” stating that in the instance of two members of the same team being tagged in, a pin could not decide a victory. (Ironically enough, technically there is still a loophole about submission based victories.) Once again, WWE’s hazy memory has bested them as now seemingly a regular spot in any high profile three way tag match is the obligatory partner pin attempt.

The Power of Attorney Rule

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Only ever mentioned once on an episode of WCW Nitro, The power of attorney rule grants a title holder the ability to transfer their championship to a fellow superstar upon a lengthy injury rather than be forced to vacate their belt. DO NOT BE MISTAKEN, THIS IS A TERRIBLE RULE. The grandest prize in the game should never be treated like a hand me down, and quite literally, be given to a competitor without properly earning it. Over in the WWE however, we have only ever seen one instance that vaguely resembles this. Upon the injury of WWE Tag Team Champion,Edge in the summer of 2009, tag team partner Chris Jericho claimed he would defend and hold the belts by himself. Unfortunately for Y2J, WWE on screen authority ruled he would either have to find a new tag partner to fill the spot of The Rated R Superstar, or be forced to vacate the belts. Enter The Big Show.

The Mask Rule

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You’ve heard it time and time again, typically during any Rey Mysterio match of the past two decades. “A Luchador’s mask is a symbol of his heritage and honor.” It would appear the WWE’s research of the art of Lucha Libre stops there however. In lucha culture, not only is the mask the previously mentioned symbol, it is HEAVILY protected. While in public, luchadors remain under the mask and some even go as far as to be buried in them. In order to showcase this importance, it is highly illegal to remove the mask of another fighter if not previously agreed upon in a match stipulation. The removal of a mask not only results in the disqualification of the match but typically is followed by a hefty fine, suspension, or termination. While WWE is no stranger to the mask vs. mask or mask vs. hair stipulation, they are also no stranger to the random shock removal of a mask just for cheap heat.

Those were just a handful of commonly ignored rules in the WWE, did you know about them? Let me know if you think these rules should be enforced, or any other rules that should have made the list below! Be sure to check out more blogs just like this one right here as well!

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Morrell, Jack. “10 Oddest Rules In Wrestling.” WhatCulture.com, WhatCulture.com, 4 Oct. 2018, whatculture.com/wwe/10-oddest-rules-in-wrestling.