A week is a long time in the coronavirus. Six days ago, Dana White was forced to cancel UFC 249 despite endless assurances that the event would happen. A week later, the UFC's woes have been long forgotten about as people focus on the dumpster fire encircling Vince McMahon and the World Wrestling Entertainment company.
This afternoon, the WWE announced he was releasing a bevy of talent in order to save $4 million. Kurt Angle is the most recognisable name on that list. The statement read:
WWE has come to terms on the release of Kurt Angle, Drake Maverick (James Curtin), Curt Hawkins (Brian Myers), Karl Anderson (Chad Allegra), Luke Gallows (Drew Hankinson), Heath Slater (Heath Miller), Eric Young (Jeremy Fritz), Rowan (Joseph Ruud), Sarah Logan (Sarah Rowe), Mike Chioda, EC3 (Michael Hutter), Aiden English (Matthew Rehwoldt), Lio Rush (Lionel Green), Primo (Edwin Colon) and Epico (Orlando Colon Nieves). We wish them all the best in their future endeavors.
The cull goes deeper, however. McMahon and co also released a number of well-known producers, including wrestling legend Fit Finlay, who's been a massive supporter of women's wrestling over the years.
As far as producers go, WWE have let Shane (Hurricane) Helms, Fit Finlay, Lance Storm, and Mike Rotunda go.
Finlay was HUGE for the women in WWE. Storm had only made his way back to WWE last November.
— Alex McCarthy (@AlexM_talkSPORT) April 15, 2020
This all comes 24 hours after Vice's Dark Side Of The Ring documentary series looks into the role former wrestler Jimmy 'Superfly' Snuka played in the death of Nancy Argentino, and how the WWF may have helped cover it up.
It was at Nancy Argentino’s funeral when her family began to question the circumstances around her untimely death.
“Jimmy Snuka and the Death of Nancy Argentino,” is tonight, 10p on @VICETV and @CraveCanada. pic.twitter.com/k2dChXMpi2
— Dark Side of the Ring (@DarkSideOfRing) April 14, 2020
Yesterday, McMahon's American football gambit the XFL threw in the towel for a second time and declared bankruptcy.
And a week ago, there was more shadiness around McMahon's wife Linda, the Pro-Trump Super PAC she runs, $18 million in advertising and the Florida governor declaring wrestling an essential business.
The timeline for the last week in WWE is ugly as sin. Named an “essential business” by DeSantis the day Linda McMahon drops $18.5 million into the lap of Florida GOP, then Vince puts his workers at risk for COVID-19 to protect his TV deals, and now layoffs. McMahon Family Values. pic.twitter.com/m24KbrhIFo
— Dave Zirin (@EdgeofSports) April 15, 2020
And yet amazingly, McMahon was named to the Great American Economic Revival Industry Group by US president Donald Trump today. McMahon joined a cadre of America's top sports executives on the panel and no doubt will have all kinds of important advice to pass on to the president.
It's just another day in the world of professional wrestling and just another day in America, formerly the world's greatest country.
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