Why is WWE releasing wrestlers? Reasons for WWE letting go of superstars like Braun Strowman revealed

Joshua Rogers June 3, 2021
Why is WWE releasing wrestlers? Reasons for WWE letting go of superstars like Braun Strowman revealed
Photo by Lukas Schulze/Bongarts/Getty Images


Why is WWE releasing wrestlers? WWE has released a number of superstars in 2021, including Braun Strowman. Here’s why the company could be letting so much talent go.

WWE’s released superstars in 2021

On 2 June, it was revealed that WWE had released even more superstars in 2021.

Those listed as being let go from WWE were:

  • Braun Strowman
  • Aleister Black
  • Ruby Riott
  • Lana
  • Santana Garrett
  • Buddy Murphy

This follows on from a number of other talent let go by WWE in 2021.

In April, WWE released stars such as Samoa Joe, The IIconics and Mickie James.

This was then followed by a clearout of NXT talent in May.

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Why was Braun Strowman released?

Braun Strowman was one of the surprise names on the list of athletes released from the WWE.

Strowman recently competed in a triple threat match for the WWE Championship at WrestleMania Backlash against Bobby Lashley and Drew McIntyre, and had been used regularly for WWE media engagements.

According to Fightful’s Sean Ross Sapp, Strowman’s release came down to the terms of his contract.

Sapp reports that Strowman signed a deal in 2019 that would keep him locked in until 2023 that reportedly paid him more than one million dollars annually.

According to the report, Strowman was released due to this contract.

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Why is WWE releasing so many wrestlers in 2021?

Sapps’ report adds that some of the recently released talent had actually requested for a release, although it is not known if Strowman was one of them.

Strowman was reportedly “very private about negotiating the deal until it was finalized.”

However, the earlier issue of finances is an important one.

Like many other organisations and sports leagues around the world, the WWE has been hit hard by the pandemic.

The financial cost of fans being away from events for so long is likely to have had a huge impact on WWE.

Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images

Still, it’s hard to say exactly why WWE has come to its recent decisions. However, it’s likely WWE is keen to reduce its overheads on talent it doesn’t see a future with.

Whether certain wrestler’s story arcs have naturally fizzled out, or they simply haven’t made the impact WWE envisioned, it’s clear the company wants to move in a new direction.

Sadly, the likes of Braun Strowman and Aleister Black just aren’t part of those plans.

The saving grace is that the money recuperated by letting wrestlers leave may well be put into unearthing talent and nurturing the next generation of WWE superstars.

Fans can only hope that’s the case.

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Joshua is a senior sports writer with over four years' experience in online writing. He graduated with a BA in Ancient History from The University of Manchester before receiving an MA in Sports Journalism from The University of Central Lancashire. He became a trending writer for a leading social publisher and later spent time covering the 2018 World Cup for The Mirror Online. He then moved to a social marketing agency where he acted as website editor. His specialties on The Focus include F1, tennis, NBA, NFL and combat sports.