After over a month of rumors and denials from just about everyone involved, the story between the WWE and Mauro Ranallo might not be over with yet. Mauro Ranallo disappeared from WWE television shortly before WrestleMania 33 and it turned out that he was suffering from medical issues, possibly related to his clinical depression and bipolar disorder.
The news that just broke came from Dave Meltzer and The Wrestling Observer Newsletter, where Meltzer said that the WWE has not ruled out trying to get Mauro Ranallo back into the company.
The most recent announcement by the two sides came when the WWE said he was still under contract until August and Ranallo told Newsweek in an exclusive statement that the two sides had agreed to part ways.
For Mauro Ranallo, he has already called an MMA show and Showtime boxing since leaving his position as the SmackDown Live commentator, but he is not allowed to call any wrestling shows as long as he is under contract to the WWE and possibly for 90 days after the contract expires.
Mauro Ranallo not only said that he had agreed with the WWE to mutually part ways, but he also said that it has nothing to do with JBL and the bullying allegations that have arisen against the former WWE champion.
According to Meltzer, there was a lot more to the situation than just JBL bullying Mauro Ranallo. One instance of JBL getting out of line was when he ripped into Mauro on his WWE Network talk show Bring it to the Table. JBL said that Ranallo was unprofessional for mentioning an Announcer of the Year award he received from the Wrestling Observer Newsletter. According to JBL, only awards given by the WWE should ever be mentioned by WWE talent.
Sports Illustrated reported that Vince McMahon asked JBL to bury Mauro Ranallo in the Bring it to the Table segment. The fact that Mauro was "different" than long-time WWE talent also made many treat him as weird backstage. With his known bipolar disorder, Sports Illustrated made it seem like the WWE was promoting an unsafe working environment for Ranallo.
JBL, for his part, said that he was just playing the role of a heel when it comes to his "ribbing" of Mauro Ranallo. Many stories from the past involving names like The Blue Meanie, John Morrison, The Miz, and more started to pick up steam when it came to allegations of JBL bullying. Once again, JBL denied everything while saying he was involved in "pranks" in the past.
"Admittedly, I took part in locker room pranks that existed within the industry years ago. WWE addressed my behavior and I responded accordingly, yet my past is being brought up because of recent unfounded rumors."With that said, it seems strange that the WWE would have any desire to bring Mauro Ranallo back to the company unless they were planning to mend fences and repair their reputation after this ordeal.
While JBL has said he is innocent of any bullying and Mauro Ranallo said him leaving has nothing to do with JBL, former UFC champion Bas Rutten has made it clear that he knows otherwise and has called out JBL on Twitter.
"I have a bone to pick with you regarding strong arming my boy, Mauro Ranallo. Let's have a man to man discussion, Johnny."However, recent reports indicate that the WWE has left a possible return for Mauro Ranallo open, saying it is not a "dead issue" for the company. There were even discussions internally about the WWE bringing back Ranallo although they have not grown into serious discussions at this time.
Mauro Ranallo continues to call boxing and MMA fights and he said that he will call professional wrestling matches again in the future.
[Featured Image by WWE]