When WWE announcer Mauro Ranallo left the company, many believed it was mostly due to the JBL bullying rumors, both on-camera and behind-the-scenes. When Ranallo sent an email statement to Newsweek, he said that he has left the WWE but JBL was not the reason. Now, it turns out that there might be a lot more to the alleged bullying that just JBL and Vince McMahon might have a lot to do with the exit of Mauro Ranallo.
The Wrestling Observer Newsletter reports that the big reason that JBL began relentlessly bullying Mauro Ranallo was because Vince McMahon didn’t like the way that Mauro called matches on SmackDown Live. This is very interesting since one of the things that JBL bullied Ranallo about was him talking about winning the Wrestling Observer Announcer of the Year award for 2016.
The report indicates that the WWE hired Mauro Ranallo to come to the company and be himself when calling matches. He did it on the Cruiserweight Classic with Daniel Bryan and received a lot of critical acclaim for his work. He also did it on SmackDown Live and was a refreshing change from the typical commentating from Monday Night Raw.
However, it sounds like Vince McMahon was not a fan. After a few months of Mauro Ranallo calling SmackDown Live, McMahon wanted him to change his style and call matches more like Michael Cole does on Monday Night Raw. That is a large reason that Tom Phillips was called up to join the SmackDown Live announce table as a four-man team.
When Tom Phillips joined the announcer’s table, Mauro Ranallo did much less commentating during matches as the team was crowded with JBL playing the heel, David Otunga adding color commentary, Tom Phillips calling matches, and Mauro being the odd-man out. The word is that the move was done because Vince McMahon was frustrated because he didn’t care for Ranallo’s style even if the fans and critics enjoyed it.
This is also about the time that JBL began bullying Mauro Ranallo more and more on the air, making him the butt of jokes. Mauro has never hidden the fact that he suffers from clinical depression and bipolar disorder, so the fact that he was being squeezed out of his announcing duties and was becoming the butt of jokes started to weigh on him.
There is also word that many people backstage started to act like Mauro Ranallo was “weird” after Vince McMahon started to sour on his announcing. The atmosphere in the WWE locker room is still considered full of people who are “emotionally still in high school, ” and that made the WWE work environment difficult for someone like Ranallo.
There was also the controversial moment on Bring it to the Table, where JBL buried Mauro Ranallo on the show and ripped into him for being publicly proud of winning the Wrestling Observer Announcer of the Year award. According to JBL, Ranallo should only acknowledge awards given out by the WWE and no one else.
Interestingly, it is not just Mauro Ranallo who faced the brunt of the backstage WWE bullying when it comes to politics. Another non-wrestler had to take some time off when a close family member was dying, nd they needed a minor operation. JBL ripped into them face-to-face about it, saying he never took time off for surgeries. The sources indicate the person was in tears, and it was the wrong time for this sort of bullying, especially since their loved one was dying.
The name of this person was not listed but there are some thoughts is might have been Lilian Garcia, whose father died and has since left the company. Mauro Ranallo and Lilian Garcia have said nothing about their reasons for leaving the company but it is believed that both signed confidentiality agreements to leave their contracts and are not allowed to speak disparagingly of the WWE.
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