According to an Aug. 7 report from SB Nation, Alberto Del Rio has been fired from the WWE, after close to half a decade in the promotion. Del Rio, 37, reportedly had an altercation with a WWE employee that the promotion deemed unprofessional. No word yet from the WWE if it was a verbal altercation, or if it was physical in nature. More details are sure to emerge in the days and weeks ahead.
The WWE released a short statement on Del Rio's dismissal, essentially noting that it was due to unprofessional conduct. Del Rio apparently got into some kind of altercation with a WWE employee, and the promotion decided to let him go after details emerged about what happened. So far, the public has not yet been informed exactly what Del Rio did to deserve getting fired. Del Rio was let go just two weeks prior to the Aug. 17 SummerSlam pay-per-view set for the Staples Center in Los Angeles.
He didn't have a match set for the card, but he has been used in recent weeks to help hype the event. Just this week on WWE Monday Night Raw, Del Rio was used in a Beat The Clock challenge to hype Dean Ambrose's SummerSlam bout with Seth Rollins. Del Rio didn't win the match, but he performed well in a 15-minute bout that got Ambrose fully over with the crowd. The WWE has been going through some budget cuts over the past few months, as they released a slew of high-level superstars.
However, Del Rio's release doesn't appear to be budget-related. Del Rio is undoubtedly the biggest name the WWE got rid of this year. He is a former Money in the Bank winner, and he also reigned supreme in the 2011 Royal Rumble. Over the course of his WWE career, Del Rio defeated superstars such as Kofi Kingston, Jack Swagger, The Miz and R-Truth. He became one of the most popular wrestlers in the WWE, because he had a bright personality and excellent charisma in the ring.
Fans came to love his high-flying wrestling style, and his natural ability to sell his opponents' moves. Del Rio, a five-time WWE world champion, hasn't yet commented on his release. No word yet from Del Rio on what his next move will be, but he can rule TNA out of the equation. The promotion was recently axed by Spike TV, so he probably won't end up there. Time will tell how the situation pans out.