It takes a lot to get blacklisted from the WWE. A company run by Vince McMahon, WWE is known to have issues with talent from time to time but almost everyone is given another chance, especially if its best for business. This is a company that had Bret Hart leave for WCW in a huff after he refused to drop the WWE Heavyweight Title. This is a company who had Stone Cold Steve Austin walk out because he wasn't happy with the storyline and how he was being used. This is a company who made peace with Hulk Hogan, The Ultimate Warrior, Kevin Nash and Scott Hall and many more who cost the promotion hundreds of thousands of dollars or almost put them out of business. If fans want these guys back, Vince and the WWE tend to make it happen.
But this isn't the case for everyone. There is a short list of professional wrestlers, promoters and behind-the-scenes personalities who will never be invited back to the WWE. From employees and contractors the WWE no longer believe provide something of value to people who have burned so many bridges the WWE is simply done with them, these folks will have to find employment elsewhere.
Who is on this short list? We've come up with 10 talents that WWE will likely never bring back. We've also included five talents that could be close to that status. The unlucky ten are done with the WWE. The other five either need to watch their step or consider changing their attitude if they think WWE is going to give them another shot.
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15 Blacklisted: Jeff Jarrett
After he held up Vince McMahon for somewhere in the neighbourhood of $300,000, it was pretty certain Jeff Jarrett wasn't at the top of the WWE's Christmas card list. Seeing the company forget to get the Intercontinental Title off of his waist and then letting his contract expire, Jarrett realized he could make an easy buck by threatening to take the title with him wherever he went to. Vince was forced to pay him a hefty sum to get him to drop the strap to Chyna.
Of course, after all this and up until recently, Jarrett has been the driving force behind TNA, Impact and Global Force Wrestling, all of which tried to take business from WWE. As it stands right now the closest Jarrett will get to the WWE is the sponsored rehab he entered after seeking help for personal problems.
14 14.Blacklisted: CM Punk
If CM Punk changed his tune on wrestling and the WWE his status as blacklisted might change to a maybe, but as long as he keeps talking junk about pro-wrestling, namely WWE, Vince won't bring him back. This change of attitude may change too since Punk's MMA career has not really gone according to plan.
He seems capable of making a living outside of wrestling and from most accounts he did well to save what he made when he was a top star for Vince's company but there may come a time since he's still a huge draw that he wants back in and the WWE would take him if things were different. Right now, Punk is still too sour about his time in WWE. As long as that's the case, he'll never be back.
13 Will Be Next: Bret Hart
To say Bret Hart will never be back with the WWE is probably premature but what we do know is he's constantly making remarks about the current product (often not fond remarks) and he offered to come back and help as a writer, which WWE rejected.
Bret Hart has such a huge legacy in the WWE that never say never is fair with him but he's also a potential detriment to the company because he can't seem to get past his bitterness and in one breath he says he wants to help and in the other he's trying to damage the company's reputation. Hart is far too willing to blab about whatever crosses his mind and that's not something the WWE wants to associate itself with. Might we see him again? Yes. If he keeps talking trash, it likely won't be anytime soon.
12 Blacklisted: Ryback
Nobody in the WWE seems to want to feed any more of anything to Ryback (especially a paycheque) who has quickly worked himself out of favour with those responsible for hiring talent. He was quickly released when he made it publicly known he didn't feel the pay structure was fair and that there were no benefits made available to performers. McMahon didn't need anyone rocking the boat, especially not someone like Ryback who wasn't really a draw to begin with.
Since then he's defended his stance and weird comments at every turn, using a podcast and other media to trash the current product and storylines. Not something one should openly do if looking for a second run with the company. WWE really doesn't have time for his antics, wouldn't put up with him then and definitely won't now.
11 Blacklisted: Ashley Massaro
In 2016, Massaro joined a class action lawsuit against WWE. If you want to never come back to WWE, this is a good way to get things headed in that direction. Massaro is alleging the WWE concealed risks of injury which caused them neurological damage (concussions) and that she was at risk. She's also been vocal about being assaulted while on tour with the WWE during a Tribute to the Troops run in Kuwait. The speculation is that the WWE convinced her not to report the situation and try to keep things tight-lipped.
She's no longer keeping quiet and that's got her on the naughty list in WWE's book. If these things actually happened to Massaro, it's pretty unfair treatment but WWE won't want to be anywhere near her as this situation proceeds.
10 Will Be Next: Cody Rhodes
Cody Rhodes asked for his release from the WWE because he was unhappy with the direction the company wanted to take him and his character. No longer wanting to play Stardust, Rhodes was granted his release and looked to try and make it on the independent circuit. Not only did he do that, he became one of independent wrestling's biggest draws.
Working in New Japan and Ring of Honor, he received ROH's biggest contract ever. He's making big bucks working outside WWE and while he does, he takes very public shots at the company to further his image as an underground, independent darling. WWE might see this as an opportunity to bring him back with quite a fanbase since he's now a bigger star than WWE ever made him. That said, he'll have to tread carefully that he doesn't completely burn that WWE bridge.
9 Blacklisted: Alberto Del Rio
In how many ways can one person describe what it's like to run out of chances. Perhaps no one more than Alberto Del Rio knows that feeling. He's so on the outs with most companies and promotions that he's actually contemplating retirement from wrestling because he "hates the darker side of the business."
Del Rio has a terrible reputation backstage and despite causing all sorts of trouble he's been given chance after chance. Now, with Paige finally back in the fold in WWE and her having broken off her relationship with Del Rio, WWE won't want them anywhere near each other and he's old news at this point. Del Rio might get a few more gigs with Impact or internationally, but he'll probably burn those bridges too.
8 Blacklisted: Sunny
Adding Sunny to this list we realize WWE brought her back to add her to the WWE Hall of Fame. But, if you asked those that put her there, secretly, it would be a good bet they wished they'd never done so. Sunny is absolutely a mess. She's caught up in legal troubles, criminal charges, drugs, alcohol and sex scandals and this is no longer an Attitude Era WWE. The company wouldn't touch Sunny with a ten-foot pole.
This all outside of the fact that she never was a wrestler and today's WWE is focused on females who can actually offer something in the ring. Sunny was a valet that looked good and offered eye-candy to the WWE audience. Outside of that, she served no purpose.
7 Will Be Next: Neville
There are rumours that Neville might actually be coming back to the WWE. After allegedly walking out due to unhappiness with the company and how he was being written into the show, along with a lack of pay he thought he was entitled to, the two sides may have worked things out and Neville could return. That said, no one has heard a peep from Neville since he left so fans aren't really sure what's going on.
If Neville came out and told his side of the story, which many are speculating wouldn't shed a positive light on the WWE, that would likely be it for any chances of him coming back. It would also mean the company would hold out on his contract, not release him and make him sit and rot when he wants to move on and find employment elsewhere.
6 Blacklisted: Vince Russo
If you ask Vince Russo, he'll tell you he was single-handedly responsible for the WWE's greatest successes during the Attitude Era. A writer for the WWE, Russo has taken credit for so much of what happened with the WWE during that time, he actually used that reputation to get the head writers job in WCW. It was a job he got paid handsomely to do and then immediately proved he was full of hot air as WCW saw it's worst times, lost all sorts of money and eventually closed shop.
Vince has asked to come back and offered his services to which the WWE consistently responds "sorry Vince, we have nothing at this time." WWE has no interest in bringing in Vince Russo who they publicly say had way more terrible ideas than he ever had good ones.
5 Blacklisted: Scott Steiner
"Big Poppa Pump" is about as firey a wrestler as there ever was. He's also a very bitter individual who has a lot of negative things to say about some very high-ranking individuals in the WWE. It's his mouth, his attitude and the reputation he has for being unwilling to work with people like Triple H that have almost guaranteed he'll never be back with the WWE. In fact, it was surprising when he showed up back with Impact Wrestling.
He's got very little left to offer in the ring and his physique is hardly that of a star that can be promoted as the genetic freak. There's also probably a very strong chance he wouldn't last more than a couple weeks with the WWE Wellness Policy in place. Steiner would probably take the paycheque if offered but WWE absolutely wants nothing to do with him.
4 Will Be Next: Young Bucks
The Young Bucks are the most talented tag team not in the WWE. They've built a reputation on the independent scene that WWE could capitalize on and in fact, there is word that on a couple of occasions, WWE has offered work on video games and other projects that could have led to employment. It would be a match made in heaven if these two sides could come together.
Right now, the Young Bucks seem more content to trash-talk WWE and steal the gimmicks and move-sets of some of the company's bigger names. Every time WWE sends a cease and desist letter, the Young Bucks make some money off of it. This can only go on for so long before WWE stops considering them as a viable option for talent.
3 Blacklisted: Justin Roberts
There are a few reasons the WWE and ring announcer Justin Roberts may never work together again. First, he wasn't nearly as big a name as someone like Howard Finkle. There isn't a nostalgia to bringing him back the WWE could capitalize on. Second, the WWE has moved almost exclusively to female announcers and interviewers. Finally, Roberts wrote a book chronicling his time in the WWE and some of it isn't very flattering.
Telling very specific stories about the bullying that took place backstage in the WWE while he was there, it's made the WWE look very bad at a time that this sort of behavior is not accepted. WWE wants to distance itself from any connection to that sort of stigma.
2 Blacklisted: Jim Cornette
The only person more toxic that Vince Russo is a guy Russo is constantly feuding with and that's Jim Cornette. In fact, Cornette is feuding with almost everyone and because of his big mouth and tendency to use more curse words that normal words, he's a danger to have around the company. When he came back for one night and was part of the WWE Hall of Fame ceremony, everyone was on edge wondering exactly what he'd say.
He's not the kind of guy that offers much to the WWE these days. He's old school in the way he thinks wrestling and he's far too negative with too many enemies inside the business to ever be considered for future employment. His Cornette's big mouth, it's a huge surprise anyone brings him in for anything.
1 Will Be Next: Hulk Hogan
He may come back and if he does, don't be surprised. But, Hulk Hogan will forever be one step away from getting uninvited to WWE events for good. Right now, he's on the outs with the company due to his recent reputation for saying racial and sexist things and the WWE probably doubts he can really offer anything of value.
That said, he is Hulk Hogan. Hogan, despite all his flaws, is a huge name in wrestling and likely always will be. A lot of what has happened to him might be deserved but some of it isn't and to date, he still has some supporters that would like to see him come back. The best way to view Hogan now is like a cat who's shed eight of its nine lives.
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