On January 23, 2018, WWE fired Enzo Amore. This came as a huge shock as he was the reigning WWE Cruiserweight Champion and one of the biggest stars in the entire company. Enzo Amore was the best on the microphone in WWE, bar none. His promos were legendary and made fans have to watch him, even if his actual wrestling matches were generally sub par.
At first, WWE covered up for his inadequacies inside the ring by partnering him with Big Cass. Cass was 7 foot tall and an imposing figure in the ring. They were a perfect team, with Enzo Amore getting beaten up in the ring then hitting Big Cass with the hot tag to clean house.
It was the perfect combination. Fans went to watch their matches due to Enzo skills at hyping up the match with their opponents, and they went away thinking both men were stars based on how they both complimented each other in the ring.
Enzo and Big Cass were set to become WWE Tag Team Champions at Wrestlemania 34, but the plan was changed when the Hardy Boys made their long awaited return to WWE to claim the belts instead.The duo never won gold together. Soon after, Big Cass turned on Enzo and the pair went their separate ways.
Enzo Amore went on to become a star of the Cruiserweight division, holding the Cruiserweight Championship until the day he was fired from WWE. But why did WWE fire Enzo Amore? He was at the top of his game and one of the biggest names in the company.
The true story is shocking, and Enzo Amore has explained exactly what happened to lead to him being fired from the WWE.
Enzo Amore Was Meant To Be A Huge Part Of Raw 25
On January 22, 2018, WWE held a special edition of WWE Monday Night Raw. For the 25th Anniversary of Raw, RAW 25 was held as a special edition of the show to pay tribute to the past 25 years of WWE’s Monday night show.
Enzo Amore before he was fired was set to have a huge part to play in the celebration. He was supposed to take part in segments all the way through the show, interacting with multiple WWE legends and even lose his Cruiserweight Championship to “The Million Dollar Man” Ted Dibiase before winning it back later that night.
SI.com reported that Enzo Amore was supposed to wrestle against Goldust on Raw that night. Amore was going to lose the match, before The Dudley’s ran in to hit him with their iconic moves – most notably the diving “Wazzup!” headbutt.
However, none of that actually happened.
WWE Fired Enzo Amore Before Raw Began
WWE suspended Enzo Amore just hours before the show was due to air, due to sexual assault allegations coming to light. WWE claimed that Enzo Amore had been aware of the allegations for months and had not let WWE be privy to them, despite him learning about the accusations on the day of the show.
The assault was alleged to have occurred in October 2017, months before the allegations came out to the public. This was kept a secret from Amore until January 2018, on one of the biggest nights of the WWE Cruiserweight Champion’s career.
WWE suspended him and sent him home for the night – with Vince McMahon reportedly shouting at him to “get out!” – but WWE fired him the next day. They immediately released him “with cause” and stripped Enzo of the Cruiserweight Championship. He was never mentioned on TV again, and has been long forgotten about in the WWE’s version of history.
His suspension meant that the entire show had to be rewritten, with the various wrestlers and legends involved in his segments having to figure out something else to do on the show. The event faced huge criticism and is regarded as one of the most disappointing WWE shows in many years.
In an interview with “Stone Cold” Steve Austin, Enzo Amore revealed that he was planning a match with Goldust for Raw 25, as well as segments with The Dudleys, Ted DiBiase and Nia Jax, among a host of other legends.
“I was talking to you guys, and then I go on and do rehearsals with Goldust as me and Goldust have a match on Raw 25 and then The Dudleys will come out and will put me through a table, and they have all this planned. I am going to lose my title to Ted Dibiase and the APA in their poker game backstage with the Million Dollar Man,”
“Then, I come back, Nia Jax wins my title back for me because I lose it playing poker. She gives my title back to me at the end of the night. I had the longest thread on Raw 25. I was going to be on the show being featured more than any of them, and they had to rewrite that whole entire show at what, 5:30, 6pm.”
Enzo Amore was fired because WWE claimed that he knew about the rape allegations levied against him and the impending court case, but neglected to tell WWE. However, this was not the case. According to Enzo Amore in his shoot interview with Title Match Wrestling, he found out of the allegations the day he told WWE, and fervently denied any and all charges.
In the interview, Enzo Amore revealed that he found out about the allegations “like y’all did”, when the initial Tweet made it’s rounds of Twitter. He then received a phone call from his lawyer, and immediately informed Vince McMahon about the impending issue.
“I found out like y’all did. I was backstage, tweet goes out, I send up, you know, phone call over my f***ing lawyer right there on the spot. Vince McMahon pulls me to his office, go home. Next day, get fired, bang! On the phone from Mark Carano, and I quote, I said, ‘It’s your loss, not mine.’ And I’m gonna prove that every day of my life. I prove that every day, you know what I mean.”
To this day, he denies any allegations against himself and claims they were false. However, this was never proven to be false or true in court, as the investigation was soon dropped due to an overwhelming lack of evidence on the alleged victim’s part.
However, despite being deemed innocent, Enzo Amore was not welcomed back to WWE with open arms. WWE continue to distance themselves from Enzo Amore after firing him in 2018. He has not appeared on WWE since then.
He did make appear in the crowd during Survivor Series 2018 to promote his new album, but he was swiftly removed. He has also appeared in Ring of Honor and MLW, although is unlikely to appear again for ROH after Tony Khan’s purchase of the company.
Enzo Amore was fired for controversial reasons which in the end were not true, and he did nothing wrong. While he was rumored to have rubbed people up the wrong way backstage, that hardly seems a fair reason to fire a champion who was one of the most popular wrestlers on the roster.
Enzo Amore’s Last Match In The WWE
Enzo Amore lost to Cedric Alexander in his last WWE match, before his untimely release from the company.The Certified-G defended his Cruiserweight Championship against Alexander on the January 8th, 2018 episode of WWE Monday Night Raw.
Amore had won the belt from Neville (AEW’s PAC) some months prior, and was going on a tear through the 205 Live roster. While he wasn’t the best wrestler in the ring, his mic work set him apart from the rest. The segment where he tore down the entire division was a personal highlight of his title run.
Enzo Amore defended the belt numerous times before his last match in WWE. On Raw, he took on Cedric Alexander, putting the Cruiserweight Championship ont the line against one of WWE’s most exciting prospects. The match was decent, but Enzo was suffering with both the flu and a foot injury in the match. He was lethargic and could barely string a sequence of moves together (although, not as if he could do that well before).
Both he and Alexander hurt their legs on the outside of the ring, and battled to climb into the ring before the ten count. Alexander made it in while Enzo didn’t, giving the challenger the victory in the title match. However, Cedric Alexander didn’t win the title. Due to the champion’s advantage, the title cannot change hands on a count-out or disqualification.
Due to this, Enzo Amore lost the match but retained the title – although this was to set up some kind of stipulation match between the two later on. Sadly, we never got to see the rematch between Enzo Amore and Cedric Alexander, as Amore was forced to vacate the Cruiserweight Championship just two weeks later, after being fired from the WWE.
Is Enzo Amore Retired?
Enzo Amore is not retired, and made his debut for New Japan Pro Wrestling in 2023 after a hiatus to continue making rap music. He also wrestled briefly in MLW in 2023, wrestling in some fairly disappointing matches before being released earlier this year.
Enzo Amore (under the name “REAL1”) will made his NJPW debut in 2023. The former WWE Cruiserweight Champion was chosen to wrestle at NJPW’s All Star Jr. Festival USA 2023.
The event is a showcase of various Junior Heavyweight wrestlers from NJPW and across the globe. It features stars from NJPW, AEW and a variety of indepedent promotions – as well as free agents like Enzo. Amore was chosen to wrestle in a six-man tag team match at the event. Wrestling as Real1, he is teaming with Jack Cartwheel and Starboy Charlie to take on the trio of Rich Swann, Ryusuke Taguchi and The DKC.
34人目のエントリーは…FKA Enzo Amore！
『LEC Presents ALL STAR Jr. FESTIVAL U.S.A. 2023』
PPV購入はコチラから↓ https://t.co/j4aKfCNoWc#ASJF2023 #njpwworld pic.twitter.com/lHcxGjGJHU— ALL STAR Jr. FESTIVAL 2023 OFFICIAL (@ASJF2023) August 13, 2023
Enzo spoke to Busted Open Radio about his NJPW debut, comparing himself to Eminem in 8 Mile, claiming that nobody could do anything to stop him in the ring.
“What are you going to do, knock me out? What are you going to do, drag my name through the mud? Run my name through the dirt? I’m like Eminem in 8 Mile; there’s nothing you can say about me that hasn’t been said yet. I don’t give a f**k. Don’t you understand that thing about me?”
Sadly, Enzo Amore lost his NJPW debut, but drew huge heat from his pre-match promo (which you can click below to watch it).
Hamish is a writer and podcaster and wrestling fan who is a key part of the Atletifo team.
After playing countless hours of WrestleMania X8 on the Gamecube, he discovered Rey Mysterio getting his head crushed by The Great Khali, and thus a love for professional wrestling was born.
He is also a Media Graduate, as well as writing for multiple sites about Premier League football and the culture of Wales – his home country.