There was slaughter at WWE HQ on April, 15 2020. WWE released Superstars, Producers, Members of the Writing team, Technicians, Backstage personal and countless other good people who loss their jobs this week due to the effects the corona virus has had on our lives, families, jobs and our world.
Many of these former WWE Employees went into work during the pandemic risking themselves and their families lives just to be told via text that they were being laid off from the same job.
- Drake Maverick (James Curtin)
- Curt Hawkins (Brian Myers)
- Karl Anderson (Chad Allegra)
- Luke Gallows (Andrew Hankinson)
- EC3 (Michael Hutter)
- Lio Rush (Lionel Green)
- Eric Young (Jeremy Fritz)
- Heath Slater (Heath Miller)
- Aiden English (Matthew Rehwoldt)
- Kurt Angle
- Sarah Logan (Sarah Rowe)
- Referee Mike Chioda
- Erick Rowan (Joseph Ruud)
- Primo (Edwin Colon)
- Epico (Orlando Colon Nieves)
- Mike Kanellis (Mike Bennett)
- Maria Kanellis (Maria Kanellis-Bennett)
- Zack Ryder (Matthew Cardona)
- No Way Jose (Levis Valenzuela)
- Rusev (Miroslav Barnyashev)
- Deonna Purazzo
- Aleksandar Jaksic
The following producers were furloughed by the company which means they can be brought back when business runs back to normal.
- Billy Kidman
- Mike Rotunda
- Dave “Fit” Finlay
- Pat Buck
- Shawn Daivari
- Scott Armstrong
- Sarah Stock
- Shane Helms
- Lance Storm
The following coaches were furloughed or released
• Serena Deeb
• Kendo Kashin
• Ace Stee
The following announcers were furloughed or released
• Aiden English
• Jerry Soto
The following referee was released
• Mike Chioda
This would bring the the total amount of WWE layoffs to over 50 people in one day as there are other personnel not listed here. This layoffs effect so many people and their families that it was something so many people were shocked to see happen given the current state of times.
Early Wednesday morning WWE had a conference call to announce changes being done to their staffing, reducing executive and board member compensation, decreasing operating expenses, cutting talent expenses, third party staffing and consulting. WWE also suspended spending on the build of the Company’s new headquarters for at least six months and both layoffs and furloughing of a portion of their workforce immediately. That includes some of the talent roster.
All of this comes after the XFL filed for bankruptcy and WWE was deemed a essential business by Florida which many looked at Linda McMahon’s working relationship with Donald Trump as a factor.
For those who don’t know Linda McMahon is a former member of the Trump administration having served as the Small Business Administrator from 2017 to 2019. She now runs a pro-Trump Superpac called ‘America First Action’ which reportedly had agreed to donate $18.5m to Trump’s reelection campaign in Florida.
Originally Vince McMahon claimed WWE was separate from XFL which turned out to be false as WWE owns 23.5 percent of the XFL. Vince McMahon lost tens of millions of revenue with the XFL. These mass layoffs and the bankruptcy filing of the XFL make this a truly banner week for the WWE and that is not including the news coming out of Vince McMahon allegedly helping covering up a murder.
This week the Vice documentary series Dark Side of the Ring aired an episode looking into the 1983 murder of Nancy Argentino, who was alleged to have been killed by her boyfriend, Jimmy ‘Superfly’ Snuka, one of the WWE’s biggest stars of the 1980s and a subsequent Hall of Fame inductee.
Although Snuka was eventually charged with involuntary manslaughter and third-degree murder in 2015, the judge dismissed the charges against the wrestler as he was deemed “not mentally fit to stand trial”.
Snuka died in 2017 but during the documentary, it is alleged that McMahon accompanied Snuka to his second interview with detectives. Shortly after this meeting, the case was seemingly forgotten about and wasn’t reopened until 2013. According to the assistant district attorney at the time, Robert Steinberg, McMahon had pulled strings during this meeting.
The bottom line is this company is a large stakeholder in the XFL, the new-model football league shepherded by WWE chief Vince McMahon. The XFL declared bankruptcy this month in the wake of the coronavirus wiping out the league’s debut season. In January, the co-presidents of the company abruptly departed, shortly before a disappointing quarterly earnings report and now WWE is laying off employees to save face for horrible business decisions made by Vince McMahon.
In total the amount of money the company saved with the cuts was approximately $8 million, as they all earned around that much altogether every year. The company is expected to make a profit of almost $1 billion, but they still decided to let go of more employees in order to help with that goal.
WWE is doing most of these layoffs to present a solid financial standing to investors on the April, 23rd quarterly earning conference.
There is more reasoning behind the decision to make these cuts like the possibly reality that WWE will have to tape at the Performance Center for the rest of 2020 and we have a special report coming up on that.
To let go this many people at a time when they cannot go join another wrestling company due to everything being shut down shows that WWE has to do major work on their ethics and character but we have a feeling that won’t be happening. Stay tuned to Slice Wrestling for the latest updates.