It’s been a decade since former WWE World Heavyweight Champion Kurt Angle has been seen on WWE television, and it doesn’t look like we’ll be seeing our “Olympic Hero” return to the company that helped make him a star anytime soon.
WWE is planning to do another brand-extension this coming summer, and because of that, they’re looking to hire talent from around the world to help staff both SmackDown and Raw with superstars who are ready for the main roster. However, it looks like Kurt Angle isn’t on WWE’s radar.
According to Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer, WWE Chairman Vince McMahon is “real strong” on not hiring Kurt Angle due to Angle’s history of substance abuse even though the former WWE Champ has been clean and has stayed out of trouble for over two years.
“It’s doubtful that WWE will bring in Kurt Angle. Vince is real strong on not hiring him, and he’s got his reasons why. He feels if something bad happens to Kurt it’ll really hurt the company because of his status as a gold medalist, and a real sports figure, and then people will start asking questions, and they’ll have sponsor issues. But, if Kurt isn’t under their watch and something happens, then they’ll be fine.”
Vince McMahon has decided to bring back ex-WWE stars with troubled personal lives in the past, but he only decided to bring them back after they had cleaned up their lives. As such, the door isn’t completely closed on Kurt Angle.
Angle is no longer a part of Impact Wrestling, better known as TNA, and he’s not currently under contract with anyone else, so he could go back to WWE if they offered him a deal. But, as of this writing, that hasn’t happened.
There aren’t very many examples of someone who has left WWE that wasn’t allowed to return. Even people who left under worse circumstances than Angle were allowed to return to the company at some point for either a Hall of Fame induction, one last match, or both.
Angle has gone on record to say that it would be honored if WWE ever decided to induct him into the Hall of Fame. But, with Vince McMahon being adamant about not bringing him back, it doesn’t look like the Olympic gold medalist will be going into the company’s Hall of Fame anytime soon.
If Angle does end up going into the WWE Hall of Fame, it would make sense for his induction to happen in 2018, when WrestleMania goes to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, as Angle is a Pennsylvania native, hailing from Pittsburgh.
Like with everyone else who has left WWE, it’s only a matter of time before Angle is brought back to the company. There does seem to be a good amount of fan interest in a possible Kurt Angle WWE return.
Most are hoping for a Kurt Angle retirement match if he returns, but due to Angle’s injury history, it doesn’t seem likely that WWE will allow him to step into the ring one last time. Of course, Angle does want to have at least one last WrestleMania match, and he’s named Daniel Bryan, Brock Lesnar, and Seth Rollins as guys he’d like to face.
Angle has also said that he’d like to form a new Team Angle with NXT Tag-Team Champ’s Jason Jordan and Chad Gable, aka American Alpha. It’s a great idea on paper, but will it ever happen? That’s up to Vince McMahon. It’s been a decade since Angle left, and Vince hasn’t changed his mind on bringing him back. But, you can never say never, and there’s a good chance that we’ll be seeing Angle back in WWE at some point in the future.
[Image via WWE]