WWE has come to terms on the release of several Superstars this afternoon including former WWE Universal Champion Braun Strowman.
Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful broke the news on Twitter that releases were coming and has reported that several surprising names are among those leaving the company. Strowman is leaving alongside Aleister Black who has been prominently featured on SmackDown in recent weeks as well as Ruby Riott, Santana Garrett, Lana, and Buddy Murphy. The news has since been confirmed by WWE.
Braun Strowman recently competed in a triple threat match for the WWE Championship at WrestleMania Backlash against Bobby Lashley and Drew McIntyre. Lashley retained the title and is set to defend it against new number one contender McIntyre soon.
Black’s wife Zelina Vega was released from WWE in November 2020 but recent reports had suggested she could be in line for a return to the company.
Riott’s last match came on the 28th of May edition of SmackDown where she and Riott Squad teammate Liv Morgan were defeated by Natalya and Tamina. The news of Riott’s release leaves Morgan as the only original Riott Squad member left in WWE.
Lana’s release comes as she was in the middle of a tag team run with Naomi. Lana’s husband Miro left WWE where he competed as Rusev in April 2020. He has since joined All Elite Wrestling where he is the current TNT Champion.
These releases come after the April 15th releases that saw stars such as Samoa Joe, The IIconics and Mickie James leave the company. These were then followed by a clearout of NXT in May when several WWE developmental talent were released along with controversial referee Drake Wuertz and former NXT North American Champion Velveteen Dream.