WWE Superstars get released from the company either by surprise or not, and some even ask for their release from WWE. Typically, you hear some of the talent talk negatively about WWE whenever they get the chance to do it. Whether they do it because they’re upset over the recent release or because they have had long-term issues, it does occur more often than it should.
Interestingly, you have not heard a lot about WWE from some of the recently released stars, this made many fans wonder. However, Fightful.com was able to find out why this wasn’t occurring. The reason is because WWE has a “gag order” on the former WWE Superstars. Legally, they could not grant any interviews to talk about WWE or their release from the company. This was apparently a late addition to some deals and will take place similar to a no-compete clause.
It is said that Cody Rhodes was on the list of those put under the gag order, and while he was able to take on bookings from independent companies, he was not granting interviews due to the order. Rhodes asked for his release primarily due to his frustration in playing the Stardust character. He wanted to go back to the old Cody Rhodes, which may have still been accompanied by a gimmick.
Before Stardust, Rhodes played a variety of different characters in the WWE. Most fans grew tired of his Stardust gimmick after a while and were asking to see him take the paint off. However, the WWE did not allow it. Most believe the reason is because of merchandise and the fact that WWE owns the Stardust name and character rights, while Rhodes owned the other material. Despite his real name being Cody Runnels, it is believed he owned the Cody Rhodes name and simply allowed WWE to use it similar to what CM Punk did when he was with WWE.
He is going by this name on the independent scene, which makes most believe he owned the name. On top of all of this, WWE reached out to Cody about a deal to sell merchandise. It is widely assumed that the people under the gag order will eventually grant interviews after this expires. Rhodes’ gag order is believed to be expiring at the end of the month.
It was uncertain who was involved, but Rhodes’ wife, Brandi, has not done any interviews, and neither has Wade Barrett, all of whom were released around the same time as Cody was. However, the likes of Hornswoggle, Rich Brennan, Santino Marella, Damien Sandow, and Cameron have all participated in interviews since their release from the WWE.
This an interesting thing to see with the WWE. Adding gag orders to WWE Superstar contracts so they do not talk negatively about the company seems to be over the top. It is interesting too that those who asked for their release from the WWE seem to be the ones who were given the order. This sort of thing happens in businesses all over the world, but it is a rarity in the world of pro wrestling.
It does make sense to think that WWE would not want some Superstars to talk, as they may have delicate information that the company doesn’t want to be released. However, once the order expires, they’ll be able to talk. So what did the entire thing solve really? They’ll talk and be just as newsworthy as they would have been if they could have spoken out the very day of their release from the company.
In fact, one would imagine that WWE would want to just take all of the hate and get it over with, rather than having it show back up a few months later. Especially in this case when they’re coming up on their second biggest event of the year in WWE SummerSlam. Cody Rhodes does not seem to be broken up by much. He’s getting a great deal of money on the independent scene and will make an appearance on the CW series Arrow this Fall with friend Stephen Amell.
[Image via WWE]