Roderick Strong may have suffered an ankle injury.
Strong and Damon Kemp were scheduled for a non-title match against NXT Tag Team Champions Pretty Deadly on tonight’s WWE NXT 2.0 episode, but the match did not happen.
WWE instead aired a backstage segment with The Diamond Mine, featuring Kemp on the phone with WWE officials, informing them that Strong rolled his ankle and is unable to compete.
The Creed Brothers and Ivy Nile then appeared and Kemp broke the news, but wasn’t sure why Strong didn’t inform them of the injury. This played up the recent tension between Strong and the other members of the group, minus Kemp.
Julius Creed mentioned how Strong’s ankle “better be hanging by a thread” because The Diamond Mine goes out and laces up their boots, no matter what, because that’s who they are and what they do. Nile added that there are no excuses in The Diamond Mine. Kemp commented that he’s not there to argue, just earn his spot and follow orders. Kemp walked off to check on Strong, leaving Brutus Creed upset over the fact that Pretty Deadly always gets lucky. Julius promised him that Pretty Deadly will get what they deserve at In Your House.
There’s no word yet on the severity of Strong’s injury, if it’s even legitimate. While Strong has appeared on recent NXT 2.0 episodes, he has not wrestled on TV since losing to NXT UK Champion Ilja Dragunov on the April 7 NXT UK episode, which was taped back in early March. Strong’s last match actually took place on the March 29 edition of NXT 2.0 when he and A-Kid came up short against current NXT North American Champion Cameron Grimes.
Strong has reportedly requested his WWE release multiple times in the past several months, but the company denied the request and has him factored into upcoming creative plans. Strong, who worked a few main roster dark matches earlier this year, reportedly inked a new WWE contract shortly before The Diamond Mine debuted last year. Regarding the release request, the veteran pro wrestler is said to be frustrated with many things within WWE over the past year. WWE reportedly pitched a name change to Strong, but he was opposed to the idea. There were many people within WWE who were surprised that Strong was not included in the NXT releases made in late April as he’s made it clear he wants out of the company. Former Diamond Mind manager/leader Malcolm Bivens was included in those releases as he also had made it clear he wanted out of the company. Shortly before Bivens’ release, WWE began a storyline where tension was building between members of the group, mainly Bivens and Strong, who said he wanted to make changes to The Diamond Mine so they didn’t fail like The Undisputed Era did.
Strong has reportedly remained professional in his handling of creative week-to-week. It was also reported that WWE officials currently have no plans to release Strong as he is factored into upcoming creative plans.
The NXT In Your House event on Saturday, June 4 is scheduled to feature Pretty Deadly defending the NXT Tag Team Titles against Brutus and Julius. There’s no word yet on what WWE has planned for Strong and Kemp, but we will keep you updated.
Stay tuned to WrestlingHeadlines.com for more. Below is footage from tonight’s NXT segment with The Diamond Mine: