WWE released a number of wrestlers last week, including Dolph Ziggler, Emma, and Shelton Benjamin. While there were definitely some surprises, most of the Superstars ousted from the company haven't appeared on television for weeks, if not months.
However, it's now been confirmed that Matt Riddle has also been fired.
He's been a big part of RAW lately, teaming with Drew McIntyre as part of what looked to be a new tag team (with McIntyre likely turning heel by attacking his partner based on what we've been hearing about original creative plans).
Riddle had all the makings of a top star in WWE, but this news doesn't come as a surprise. He first generated negative press after a number of accusations were levelled at him during the #SpeakingOut movement. The former United States Champion has been suspended on multiple occasions due to failed drug tests and recently made headlines when he accused a TSA agent of sexually assaulting him at an airport.
This is not the kind of press WWE wants, particularly during a week which has seen them acquired by Endeavor and merged with UFC to form TKO Holdings.
After fighting in UFC, Riddle signed with WWE in 2018 and later won the NXT Tag Team Championships with Pete Dunne/Butch. He'd also go on to hold the RAW Tag Team titles with Randy Orton and was United States Champion for a time.
WWE treated him as a mid-card/main event level talent, but it seems Riddle's personal issues got the best of him. According to Fightful, the decision to release him was made because he has "burned through too many chances while in WWE."
In a statement on social media, Riddle said, "Just wanted to inform everyone that I’m no longer with WWE. Thank you for the memories and opportunities also thank you to all the fans for the support and love you give me every time I go out to the ring. See you all soon."
It's unclear what the future holds in store for him or whether AEW would take the risk of hiring him. We'll have to wait and see.