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The Grapevine (1/18/19): Releaseamania Is Running Wild


Good morning, and this is the Grapevine! This section of Smark Henry is where we round up all the founded and unfounded rumors abound the pro wrestling scene that you may have missed over the week. Remember to take everything with a grain of salt!

Many WWE superstars have reportedly recently asked for their release:

  • The Revival, Mike and Maria Kanellis, and Goldust have apparently asked for their releases recently, and no requests are being granted for "obvious reasons." The Revival reportedly made their request backstage on RAW, while the Kanellises had decided on theirs a few weeks back. (Source: Wrestling Observer Radio, Pro Wrestling Sheet)
We say: Well, it would make sense for the more underutilized main roster guys to make this request, but it also makes sense for the WWE to not grant them. Everyone wants to jump to the new ship, and if WWE wants people to stop wanting to do that, they'd find a better way to make use of the deep talent pool they have. That's really all there is to it.
  • Braun Strowman was removed from the WWE Championship match due to a number of reasons, such as not being cleared to compete yet. He is still recovering from his elbow surgery from last month, but it is also because Vince McMahon wanted to protect Strowman from another loss. Brock Lesnar's matches with smaller opponents were highly-rated, which also factored into the choice to go with Finn Balor. (Source: Wrestling Observer Radio)
We say: This isn't a bad choice, and at least Vince is mindful about Braun. We're just hoping the day Seth Rollins wins the championship comes sooner than later, so they can finally get to continue fixing the RAW main event scene before Roman Reigns had to take a step back.
  • Vince McMahon is booking the new NXT callups in backstage segments just to get them exposure. The feeling is apparently that many casual fans don't know all of them from NXT, and that once they start coming up with real plans for them, they would know who they are. (Source: WON)
We say: Well, even if this batch of callups don't have much star power outside of EC3, that's just plain underestimating your fanbase. People watch NXT, and it's on Creative to give them compelling stories that would get them to stick in the fans' consciousness.
  • Kevin Owens could return after WrestleMania 35. Despite vignettes saying he's coming back soon, the plan might be to hold off until April. Owens has been injured since October, where he got surgery on both knees. (Source: WON)
We say: That might just be for the best, as both rosters are pretty loaded right now. We're pretty excited, though.

Let us know what you think of today's news in the comments!

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