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So, the short answer for this is yes, but let's go into more detail.
Mike Kanellis had a pretty good run in Ring of Honor, where he would spend just about seven years. Kanellis, under the real name Mike Bennett, was an ROH Tag Team Champion among his other accolades. Bennett would depart ROH with his wrestling valet and wife, Maria Kanellis, who had previously spent several years in WWE.
The two would join TNA Impact Wrestling in very early 2016 and were immediately given a strong push. TheyMaria would be featured very prominently on Impact programming, which included Bennett occasionally challenging for the World Championship, feuding with top Impact talent like Drew Galloway, EC3, Cody Rhodes and more, and would also become the TNA X Division Champion. After just over a year as a superstar of Impact Wrestling, Mike and Maria Kanellis Bennett parted ways with the company and signed contracts with WWE in 2017.
Many fans wondered how the two would be featured on WWE TV. Would they make reference to Maria's previous run as her 'ditsy' character? Would reference be made to how Mike and she had since become big stars elsewhere? Would they rule over NXT as the new top heels? These thoughts were soon cast aside.
Strangely, WWE decided to not have Mike and Maria feature on NXT, but directly on the main roster instead. An unusual decision, but not a crazy one as AJ Styles did not debut in NXT the previous year and rose to incredible new heights in his career. Could the same happen for Mike Bennett?
That question was answered with his debut segment at WWE Money in The Bank, where he and Maria entered in attires covered in hearts, proclaimed their love for each other, and of course, Mike had taken his wife's maiden name. It was a career killer before his first match.
Although Kanellis had a successful debut match over Sami Zayn on SmackDown, he would lose the rematch the following week, which would pretty much be the beginning of a near year-long losing streak. You know things were not going to pick up when the highlight of his first year was being happy that his quick Royal Rumble elimination did not break the record for fastest ever.
After months of inactivity, and strong rumors that their release request rejected, the pair would resurface on 205 Live in October 2018. However, their appearances became pretty sporadic. In May 2019, Maria Kanellis announced that both of their contracts were set to expire towards the end of June, and it looks like they are finally ready to leave WWE. So, should they leave?
But of course, Mike had a great run in ROH and was a major player in Impact Wrestling, and went from that to become an afterthought in WWE. It's time to leave WWE and move onto other things. Who knows what's next for Maria Kanellis and Mike Bennett, which will probably be great for him to hear again, but it will be a lot better than the last two years of his career.
While working in Impact Wrestling, All Elite Wrestling Executive Vice President Cody Rhodes had requested a feud with Mike Bennett, so who knows, maybe he still thinks highly of him to welcome them both to AEW.Published 02 Jun 2019, 18:38 IST