From the WWE Rumour Mill: Backstage details reveal how Kurt Angle's in-ring return happened
Kurt Angle was, and always has been, cleared to compete in a WWE ring
What's the story?
Kurt Angle made his shocking return to in-ring action at WWE TLC 2017, after an eleven-year absence from competing inside a WWE ring.
It was a move that shocked the WWE Universe, but now PWInsider.com have revealed backstage details surrounding TLC's biggest moment.
In case you didn't know...
Kurt Angle competed alongside Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose in a 5 vs 3 handicap Tables, Ladders and Chairs match against The Miz, The Bar, Braun Strowman and Kane, with the outnumbered 'Hounds of Justice' plus 'Olympic Gold Medalist' coming out on top.
Angle's inclusion in the match was a last-minute decision following the announcement that Roman Reign's was no longer able to compete in the match, after suffering from a viral illness. The same illness also took Bray Wyatt off of the card, who was replaced by SmackDown LIVE's AJ Styles.
The heart of the matter
One of the big question surrounding Angle's involvement in the TLC 2017 match was if, and when, he was medically cleared to compete, as Angle has various health issues.
PWInsider.com revealed that Angle was medically cleared when he returned to the WWE and received another medical check before he was announced as a participant.
Sources indicate that while Angle had been previously checked out by WWE when he was initially brought back to the company, Angle was given a physical on Friday in Pittsburgh to make sure he was medically fit to compete at the PPV.
As soon as Angle was given the thumbs up, we are told that WWE made the official announcement minutes later. So, if it felt last minute in how the announcement was made, it literally was a "down to the wire" announcement.
It is also reported that whilst Kurt Angle was always lined up as one of the possible replacements for Roman Reigns, as soon as the WWE found out he wouldn't be able to compete, the idea to add him to the match came down to Vince McMahon himself.
The idea for Angle to compete was first proposed internally on Thursday when WWE realized that Roman Reigns was not going to be able to compete as he had been pulled for illness. We have been told adding Angle to the match was a Vince McMahon idea.
The news that Angle was medically cleared to compete from the moment he returned to the WWE will excite most of the WWE Universe, but as of now, PWInsider reports that the WWE has no further plans at this point for Angle to return to the ring.
We are told that as of last night, Angle being in the ring was just a one-time attraction, but obviously, the door is wide open for more going forward.
Kurt Angle's big-return didn't fail to disappoint, even though it was clear that the Raw General Manager could not contain his happiness and goofy smile during the main event.
Credit needs to be given to both Kurt Angle, and the WWE officials for coming up with a very quick solution that would satisfy fans in a small amount of time.