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  • Photo: Tony Rotundo

    Photo: Tony Rotundo

    WWE Releases Gable Steveson

    This morning, multiple sources have confirmed that the WWE has released 2020(1) Olympic gold medalist Gable Steveson. 

    Shortly after winning his second NCAA title, in 2022, Steveson turned his attention to the professional wrestling/sports entertainment industry and signed with the WWE. 

    In 2023, Steveson was granted permission to wrestle in the US Open, which he won, and then Final X. At Final X, Steveson defeated Mason Parris, 5-2 and 5-0 in consecutive matches to secure a spot on the World team. Shortly before the World Championships, Steveson had to withdraw from the team to focus on business with the WWE. Parris took his place and came home from Belgrade, Serbia with a World bronze medal. 

    During his time at WWE, Steveson was promoted on several marquee pay-per-view events and “drafted” to Raw; however, he did not have much mat time in front of the camera.

    No specific reason was given for Steveson’s release; however, longtime pro wrestling journalist Dave Meltzer suggested that an “inability to connect with the audience” may be a factor. 

    While the timing of Steveson’s release is unfortunate; two weeks after the Olympic Trials, he wasn’t the only one let go by the WWE. At least 11 other members of WWE’s developmental NXT brand were released on Friday, as well. One of them is a 2022 NCAA DII national champion Darrell Mason of Minnesota State. 

    Steveson should have plenty of options available in the future. If he wants to continue pursuing a career in pro wrestling, he could hone his craft in a smaller promotion. Steveson has trained in the past with NCAA/WWE/UFC star Brock Lesnar and has hinted at a future in mixed martial arts. Of course, with the Final X wins over the eventual world bronze medalist in 2023, Steveson still is capable of beating anyone in the world if focused on freestyle wrestling.

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