Maria Kanellis details how she felt upon hearing that she was released by WWE back in April.
Kanellis and her husband Mike Bennett were part of a long list of releases WWE announced months ago and it came just two months after Kanellis gave birth to her second child Carver. Both Bennett and Kanellis had a storyline in WWE surrounding Kanellis' pregnancy, but it was eventually dropped. Speaking on the ROHStrong Podcast, Kanellis spoke about her release and that she was getting in shape in time for WrestleMania.
“At the time, Carver was two months old. WWE, even though they finished our angle on Raw before we had expected to, I had planned and we had this conversation with WWE and WWE’s doctors and we were all on board, I was going to work until 26 weeks and then after that, I was going to get another doctor’s note. I knew that WWE had ended the angle early, but I thought they would continue my contract, have me back and complete my contract. I didn’t have any inkling [I would get released] because I didn’t ask for my release. My biggest concern was that I was having another child, but I was all ready to come back at WrestleMania. I had been getting back in shape. I had already lost 35 pounds. I was ready to come back at WrestleMania so when they started calling around, I thought that they were going to fire Mike because he had already asked for his release,” Kanellis said.
Kanellis would go on to say that she knew Bennett would be released given his history with asking for his WWE release. However, she didn't she would be gone from the company and was upset that the company would fire her just as she was done giving birth and that WWE never called her to ask how she has been recovering, but did call her to let her know that she was fired.
“I didn’t think they were going to fire the both of us,” Kanellis continued. “I was on my way back from my two-month appointment with Carver at the doctor when I got the call from Mark Carrano and I was fine on the phone, but at the same time, I realized that we were going to be in a world of hurt and they knew that and it’s just really hard for me to talk about because that was such an emotional day like, okay we just had this two-month appointment with Carver and he’s healthy, he’s big for his age, the doctor was impressed by how strong he was, how fast he was. At the same time, I was receiving a phone call from the company. I had all these conversations about my family and I had put this out on national television that I was having a second child and that I had put out on national television that I was having a boy and I was told over and over again that storyline was going to mean something. To be fired in a pandemic was just sad to me. From this company that prides itself on being a family-based company to be fired. I didn’t receive a phone call after I had Carver to see if I was okay, if the labor went okay. I didn’t receive a phone call seeing how my recovery was going with either of my children, but I received a phone call to be fired in a pandemic. I had given a lot of years to WWE and a lot of years to wrestling and that was not how my relationship with WWE was going to end. I didn’t think it was going to end in that whole way, especially after the five-and-a-half years I spent with WWE the first time."
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