As we told you earlier this week, Mauro Ranallo has returned to WWE, joining the NXT commentary team. Ranallo previously worked as an announcer on WWE Smackdown Live, but departed the company earlier this year after a rumored bout of bullying by fellow Smackdown Live commentator JBL contributed to a bout of depression for Ranallo, an outspoken advocate for bipolar disorder. When announcing their departure, Ranallo made a public statement claiming it had nothing to do with JBL, while JBL apologized for past behavior but admitted no guilt in the most recent round of bullying.
However, it looks like Ranallo has signed a new multi-year contract, according to Additionally, Ranallo began started his new job at last night’s NXT tapings, tweeting shortly before the show:
— Mauro Ranallo (@mauroranallo) June 23, 2017
According to Dave Meltzer’s Wrestling Observer Radio, Ranallo working at NXT keeps him away from JBL, reportedly a condition for his return, as well as from most key WWE’s management. While the reported bullying by JBL got most of the attention during Ranallo’s split from WWE, prompting coverage from major media outlets and “Fire JBL!” chants from fans at live events, many familiar with the wrestling industry believe it’s a systematic problem, a relic of the wrestling business’s carny origins, and encouraged by management.
Asked about his earlier issues with the company in an interview with the Associated Press, Ranallo said only, “I was willing to walk away from my dream job, let’s leave it at that. In order for me to do that, I had to be true to my convictions and what makes you a human being.”
By bringing Ranallo back on board and placing him at NXT, WWE can avoid Ranallo talking to the press about his experience with the company while Ranallo can avoid having to deal with that element of WWE. Meanwhile, fans can benefit from hearing a decent commentary team on at least one of WWE’s weekly televised programs.