Earlier today Mustafa Ali announced that he has requested his release from WWE after six years with the company. He writes on social media, “I have a message that is much bigger than my dreams in pro wrestling. Despite my best efforts, I will not be able to deliver this message while working with WWE. Therefore, I am requesting my release from WWE.”
Fightful Select has an update on the Ali situation and some backstage news on why he has been absent from WWE programming as of late.
-Ali asked for some time off for paternity leave. The report reveals that it was only one show he asked to miss, but he was not backstage for Survivor Series, or the SmackDown prior.
-A source told the publication that they were surprised Ali was not used for the SmackDown in Chicago as that is his hometown. He has been available to return since the first week of December.
-Ali released a vignette weeks ago showcasing a “New America” gimmick that looked promising for the young star and had social media buzzing. The character was initially accepted, but “those in power in WWE” changed their mind. In its place there was a pitch from Vince McMahon for “something Ali would have never done,” which led to a heated argument between Ali and McMahon. Ali has not been around since the argument.
-A different source has told Fightful that WWE has been granting releases as of late because it would be difficult to justify them saying no with all the cuts they’ve been making.
-Many in WWE expressed their desire to work with Ali, and he was well-liked backstage. His main roster call-up was initially supposed to be a one-off. One talent believes that WWE saying they had nothing for Ali was Ali being punished.
As of this writing, WWE has yet to grant Ali his release.