WWE Releases a Bunch of Wrestlers, Furloughs Some Staff

WWE has announced a series of roster cuts and will furlough a portion of its workforce, even after it was declared an essential business and allowed to continue operating amidst the coronavirus pandemic.

In a statement on its official website, WWE announced it has released several high-profile wrestlers including Kurt Angle, Rusev, Zack Ryder, Curt Hawkins, Karl Anderson, Luke Gallows, Drake Maverick, Heath Slater, Eric Young, Rowan, Sarah Logan, No Way Jose, Mike Chioda, Mike Kanellis, Maria Kanellis, Ec3, Aiden English, Lio Rish, Primo, and Epico.

According to ESPN, WWE also released a press release announcing a series of cuts and furloughs as part of a financial restructuring of the company. Along with temporary furloughs, executives will have their salaries reduced and the construction of a new headquarters has been paused.

Some big WWE stars were released in today’s cuts, including Hall of Famer Kurt Angle who retired in 2019 but stayed on as a producer backstage. Rusev, Gallows, and Anderson were also prominent mainstays on the show in the past decade.

Maverick released a video on his Twitter account talking about his cut from the roster. In an emotional video, Maverick revealed that while he’ll still be partaking in the NXT cruiserweight tournament, it will likely be the end of his wrestling career.

The state government of Florida declared WWE an “essential business” earlier this week, meaning the company was allowed to continue filming shows out of its Orlando training facility. Flordia’s governor Ron DeSantis said services declared essential are “critical to Florida’s economy.”

WWE is currently airing taped episodes without fan attendance. Other wrestling programs like AEW are also hosting shows without fans in attendance.


Matt Kim is a reporter for IGN.

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