WWE has had a lot of issues trying to connect with the Hispanic audience. This audience grew exponentially in the days of Eddie Guerrero, but WWE also had Rey Mysterio to work with and even Chavo Guerrero. Sadly, Eddie passed away, and it was a big hit to all of us, especially the Hispanic audience that WWE loves to cater to. Rey Mysterio was someone people got behind and WWE knew it. He was Eddie’s best friend and a guy we all loved, so we got behind him on his big run to his first WWE World Title.
Rey then became a huge part of WWE’s Hispanic audience but was just as big with kids around the world. Rey was the last real Hispanic star WWE had, but former WWE Champion Alberto Del Rio was gaining steam during his WWE run. WWE saw that fans began to love him, so they ended up using him in various ways from winning Money in the Bank and Royal Rumble matches to having him become a multi-time World Champion.
While Del Rio expressed in interviews that WWE was racist toward him, the success WWE allowed him to have tells another story. WWE reportedly wants him back, but the backstory on his departure makes many wonder if WWE and Del Rio could come to an agreement.
Del Rio was released from WWE following an incident with one of WWE’s social media managers in 2014. The guy said something racist toward Alberto Del Rio, and Del Rio told him to apologize. When the man refused and began to smile at him, Del Rio hit him. To avoid lawsuits, WWE released Del Rio, and a little while down the line, the company let the social media worker go. Del Rio claims that Triple H told him when he was releasing him that WWE wanted to let everything settle down and then they would love to re-sign him.
According to the Wrestling Observer, Alberto Del Rio is likely not going to be part of the second season of Lucha Underground that will return in January of 2016. It is looking now more than ever that Del Rio will be back and could be in WWE before WrestleMania 32.
This is making it seem like almost a guarantee that Del Rio returns to WWE. WWE and Del Rio were at each other’s throats at this same time in 2014. In fact, Del Rio had to go to court against WWE to get out of the no-compete clause they had with him. He won the case, and the no-compete was dropped. Del Rio ended up working with various Indy companies after this and has performed with AAA and Lucha Underground as well as House of Hardcore since leaving WWE.
Del Rio also knows going into this that WWE “needs” him, but he doesn’t need them. That said, the money to bring him back might border on top star territory. This means we can expect Del Rio to be inserted into major rivalries on day one of his return if he does indeed return to WWE.
While Alberto Del Rio easily could choose not to come back, the money WWE offers is once in a lifetime. He can always make money on the Independents but at 38 years of age, he won’t always have a chance to work with WWE. It makes more sense now more than ever to work with WWE even for a short term rather than not, just to pad the bank account.
[IMG via WWE and Lucha Underground]