For most wrestlers, the WWE is the place to where you have the best chance to be a star. That isn't the case for Alberto El Patron.
The man formerly known as Alberto Del Rio was fired by WWE in 2014 after an incident involving a WWE employee who made racist comments toward the former heavyweight champion. He returned to the company in Oct. 2015 and when his contract was up the following fall. In his time outside the WWE, El Patron has gone on to compete for promotions like IMPACT Wrestling, AAA and Lucha Underground. Many wrestling fans have said that since he's departed WWE, he's been better utilized and become a bigger star in the process. The Mexican star told Fightful that the fans are correct in their assessment.
"(Laughs) Well, I think because that company has been doing things the same way for years and years and things aren’t going to change. They really don’t care about promoting people from other nationalities. And I understand that part because the name of the business is money and they go where the money is. They care about the people that can bring money to the company because they know the country will be there to buy the product to money to that company. Like in my particular situation, when I joined the company, Mexico was the biggest market for WWE. And unfortunately Rey (Mysterio) was getting hurt a lot and they needed a Latino, Mexican star. And that’s when they found me and they were like, ‘Damn, this guy is a fantastic wrestler. We just need to give him the right name, the right TV character and he will do the rest because he’s fantastic in the ring’. That’s exactly how it happened. That’s why they were pushing me and giving me the ball for awhile. But in the moment, the Mexican market dropped and took the ball away from me. They moved on to the UK because the UK was then the next most important market for that company. They were still using me because they needed me to help new talent and to have me in the ring to have good matches. They didn’t do what they did with me in the beginning never again.
I don’t respect that but I understand that. It’s the business world. It’s the entertainment world. It’s a difficult pill to swallow for a lot of people but not for me because I was born in the business and I completely the nature of how our business is. But, I’m lucky to be one of the ones with the guts and cajones and the opportunity because the economy is good to say, ‘I’m not going to take. I don’t have to be here. You aren’t going to use my talent. If you going to treat me this way, I don’t want to be here, so see you later’. That’s exactly what I did. There’s a lot of guys in that company who don’t have any other place to go. They have to swallow it and eat crap everyday because they don’t have a place to go."
The "gentleman's agreement" that El Patron was under with IMPACT Wrestling has now transitioned into an actual contract, and he's in attendance at this weekend's tapings.