Pro wrestling fans have had a lot to grapple with this week, from superstar injuries and surprise absences to contract termination lawsuits. Let’s take an in-depth look at everything that has unfolded recently in the WWE world.
First off, international sensation Sheamus has been notably absent from the ring since his high-profile match on August 18th. His fans noticed his absence following the Smackdown show, which saw him compete against WWE superstar Edge in Toronto, Canada. Wrestling expert Dave Meltzer notes Sheamus’ absence is due to a severe shoulder injury. Currently, no additional details on this injury have been given, leaving Smackdown viewers curious about the extent of his injury and the potential timeline for his return to the ring.
While injuries are a common occurrence in the high-stakes world of wrestling, it doesn’t come close to the shake-up that occurred recently in the talent pool. Last Thursday, the news broke out about contract terminations and voluntary releases, notably involving NXT pro Yulisa Leon. In a heartfelt post on Twitter, Leon revealed she asked for her release due to personal reasons. Her NXT tag-team partner, Valentina Feroz, commented on Leon’s departure and expressed hope for a future reunion.
In the light of these recent events, there’s been a legal fracas between WWE and sports and collectables merchandise manufacturer, Panini Group. Panini filed a lawsuit against WWE regarding a contract termination claim by the latter, citing a supposed “breach of contract”. This stems from WWE terminating their deal with Panini, demanding to be paid over $5 million in royalties upfront; an amount originally agreed to be paid over four years.
Judge Lorna Schofield of a New York court denied WWE’s restraining order against Panini Group, which intended to prevent the company from continuing to sell WWE’s trading cards. According to the lawsuit presented, the WWE accuses Panini of failing to deliver on the stipulation of producing WWE-branded digital trading cards or physical card games by June 1, 2022. While Panini insists they fulfilled the contract with Pack Wars and Box Wars at conventions, WWE counters this claim stating images of cards do not qualify as digital trading cards.
What does this mean for the WWE? Ongoing legal disputes and restructuring within the organization hint at upcoming changes. As far as the wrestlers are concerned, their future in the industry is unpredictable, with injuries, releases, and reunions looming large.
Please stay tuned as we dig deeper into these events and bring you more updates on the wrestling scene.