It looks like Alberto El Patron’s situation at GFW has gone from bad to worse, and it might not entirely be in relation to his controversial public spat with on-again, off-again girlfriend Paige. Either way, the former Alberto Del Rio is no longer GFW Unified World Champion, as confirmed earlier this morning by the company in an official statement.
In a new update posted this morning on the GFW website, the company announced that based on internal investigations, Del Rio may have been unfairly implicated as the aggressor in the Orlando airport incident where he was accused of domestic abuse following a loud argument with Paige. But as a result of the manner in which he handled himself in that incident, GFW made the decision to strip him of their top belt, the Unified World Championship.
GFW added in the official statement that officials have yet to decide when to reinstate Del Rio to the roster, and that the conditions of his indefinite suspension are a “private matter” between him and the company.
The controversy surrounding the 40-year-old star, who currently wrestles under the name El Patron, began in July when TMZ shared leaked audio of a loud verbal altercation with Paige at the Orlando airport. While the domestic violence accusations against the wrestler led GFW to suspend him soon after, it was eventually revealed by Pro Wrestling Sheet that Paige might have been the aggressor and that Orlando police have “probable cause” to charge her with battery.
In addition to the airport incident, the Wrestling Observer’s Dave Meltzer also pointed out in the latest issue of his newsletter that there have been “other things” between Alberto El Patron and GFW that haven’t been reported, stating “constant issues” left the company fearing another untoward incident might happen in the future.
Even with Paige potentially being more at fault in last month's altercation, GFW's decision to strip El Patron of its top title further solidifies his reputation as a train wreck. Obviously, WWE was in the wrong when they fired Del Rio in 2014 for punching an employee who cracked a racist joke about him, but since his 2015 WWE return, he's been in all sorts of backstage trouble of his own making, not only with WWE and GFW, but also with other promotions, including those in his native Mexico.
This latest development also suggests that GFW may be running out of patience with El Patron, but if he and the company part ways, GFW could have someone (Rey Mysterio) waiting in the wings to replace him as a top draw for Latino audiences. And if that isn't enough potential star power and name recall for the coming months, there's also Rey's fellow WWE alumnus and Lucha Underground colleague John Morrison, who's been rumored to be making his GFW debut sometime in August.