The WWE is the top of the mountain in the world of pro wrestling. Every wrestler should aspire to perform there. It’s the largest, wealthiest, and to lots of people, most important wrestling company on earth. There are some superstars, however, that willingly leave the WWE. Notable performers include Chris Jericho and CM Punk, but why would any superstar walk away from the most prestigious wrestling promotion in the world? This article investigates the reasons.
The WWE creative team has gone through periods where… well you know… they’re unable to create a good story to save their lives! The WWE creative team has struggled the last few years to book and create new angles and stars. Vince McMahon claims he listens to the fans and always gives them what they want, but this just isn’t true. There are also continuity errors found throughout WWE story lines. For example, during the buildup to Wrestlemania 32, Triple H was holding back Roman Reigns for over a year. So why would Triple H grant Roman Reigns a number one contenders match at Fastlane, give him a chance to main event Wrestlemania, and win the World Heavyweight Championship? The women have no storyline either. There aren’t really faces or heels anymore, or at least WWE doesn’t care if they work together. Smackdown Live sees Women’s tag matches where heels team with faces and vise versa. So ultimately, WWE creative is a massive reason why stars leave the company. With a locker room so full of talent, not everybody will be showcased correctly and this frustrates people greatly. Former WWE stars have also credited the creative team with “not thinking ahead” or putting wrestlers in story lines that they don’t deserve/want. (i.e. CM Punk dropping the title to The Rock). As WWE has no real competition, I assume Vince doesn’t feel the need to pack the most eventful show into his 2-3 hour TV slot every single week.
Holy hell. WWE travel schedules are absolutely ridiculous. WWE performs live television for three hours every Monday and Tuesday night in a different city than the previous show. Wednesday and Thursday they have nothing except appearances, interviews, signings, photo shoots, movies, workouts and other things. Then Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, most WWE superstars travel to yet another new city and perform live events. And once a month on Sundays, WWE has a 3-4 hour live PPV show in yet another city. Not to mention the half-hour of “dark matches” before and after the shows! Almost every WWE superstar describes the travel as “fun” and “rewarding” but at the same time, “ridiculously hard, hellacious, and long”. All WWE superstars can also testify that they spend over 300 days a year on the road. That’s a lot of hotels, a lot of missing your family, a lot of sleeping in a bed that isn’t your own. WWE superstars don’t only do U.S. shows. A few times a year, Superstars travel to places like Mexico, Japan, the UK, and much, much more. Kurt Angle says, “One reason why I left was the travel schedule. When Vince wants you to be the top guy, which I was for about 3 years, you miss everything.” Kurt Angle missed his daughter’s first words, steps, and more because he was on the road.
Superstars also report that unless they are traveling “a really long way, or to another country,” they will drive to the next city. WWE’s top superstars, like John Cena, have their own private travel bus, but most superstars drive in their cars for hundreds of miles. You better have friends in the company if your a wrestler. You don’t want to find yourself driving alone!
Now do I even need to explain why a person would leave a company that requires you to travel 300 days a year? The travel schedule is brutal and can lead to superstars feeling stressed, bored, or even homesick. Sometimes this is just too much for the normal person and the travel schedule plays a major role in WWE politics and why wrestlers have quit in the past. There is no offseason. There are no days off.
Pain And Danger
Every day, WWE Superstars risk their lives in the ring and put their bodies on the line for the entertainment of the fans. Superstars like Dolph Ziggler have said, “the ring isn’t soft,” and Seth Rollins can tell you “Landing on the ring, there’s no bones about it.” A Wrestler like Chris Benoit could have told you about concussions. Wrestlers like Mick Foley, Jeff Hardy, and Sabu could tell you about “extreme spots” they put their bodies through and probably a thing or two about the ER. RVD and Randy Orton could tell you about cuts, break, tears, bumps and bruises. And a wrestler like Dean Ambrose can tell you about the infamous “Death Match.”
For some people, the pain and danger of wrestling can be too much and very overwhelming. Superstars like Cactus Jack have said that even 10+ years into retirement, there is still daily pain to be felt. Dolph Ziggler also once said, “It always hurts. Sometimes it hurts more though.” Wrestlers face real dangers in the ring and a combination of being slammed on a ring that feels like a wooden floor, and hit/kicked can amount to a ton of pain! Which is why wrestlers always HATE when people call it “fake.” This brings me to my next point.
Negative Stigma And Stereotypes
Salary Issues And Disputes