What’s the story?
As reported by Cagesideseats, the WWE may not be bringing back Shelton Benjamin, and the 41-year old has now been taking dates with independent pro-wrestling promotions after being cleared to compete by doctors last month.
In case you didn’t know...
Shelton James Benjamin performed for the WWE from 2002 until his departure from the company in 2010. He has also competed for Ring Of Honor (ROH), New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW), as well as other promotions, and was rumoured to have signed with WWE last year.
The 6’2” former WWE Intercontinental, United States and tag-team champion suffered a torn rotator cuff in August of last year and recently addressed the fans regarding the same, claiming on March 30th that he’s been medically cleared to return to the ring.
The heart of the matter:
The Gold Standard has reportedly confirmed the fact that he isn’t under contract with WWE and asserted that he’s been a free agent all this time, whilst stating that he’s ready for bookings and appointments from other promotions. Here are a few tweets regarding the same-
After 9 of the hardest months of my life, I'm happy to announce I have been OFFICIALLY CLEARED to return to action. Effective Immediately!— Shelton J. Benjamin (@Sheltyb803) March 30, 2017
Sydney Australia let's try that again pic.twitter.com/GKNt7PieWd— Shelton J. Benjamin (@Sheltyb803) April 17, 2017
Benjamin is scheduled to appear for several professional wrestling promotions including shows in the US as well as events in Chile, Australia and South Africa.
Johannesburg South Africa ill see you May 7th at the Arnold Classic!! pic.twitter.com/rK6i3XbeKJ— Shelton J. Benjamin (@Sheltyb803) April 17, 2017
Chile it's been a loooong time see you June 4th pic.twitter.com/PEWCdXPt25— Shelton J. Benjamin (@Sheltyb803) April 17, 2017
Benjamin’s amateur wrestling credentials as well as his pro-wrestling persona and charisma are undeniable and, in my humble opinion, severely underrated. Although I’d love to see the Gold Standard come back to the WWE and go on yet another run with the world’s premier pro-wrestling organisation, it’s good to see him finding success outside the company as well.
Nevertheless, this is the pro-wrestling business after all, and given the fact that his former mentor, Kurt Angle, is now playing a significant role in WWE’s on-screen programming, don’t be surprised if Benjamin returns to the company to re-unite with his Team Angle benefactor. Ain’t No Stoppin The Gold Standard!
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