You’re a wrestling fan, reading about wrestling online. Someone in your brain you’re wondering, “Is this Dean Ambrose thing legit? Or is it a story?”
Well, we probably won’t get any answers to confirm or silence your suspicions until at least next Monday’s Raw. But in the meantime, know that you’re not alone in wondering whether the now confirmed-by-the-company reports Dean Ambrose has given notice to WWE and will be leaving when his contract ends in April are a shoot or a work. According to Dave Meltzer on Wrestling Observer Radio (subscription required) there are people backstage at WWE wondering the same thing.
From the Jan. 30 episode of WOR:
“They [WWE] released it [confirmation of Ambrose’s exit] to the media and they put it on their website, which immediately made people think it was a work. As far as I know it’s not. People within wrestling - I mean, I know some of their talent thinks it’s a work, because they put it on the website. Some talent knew last night [Monday], but most didn’t. But last night when I was trying to confirm it with people, they didn’t know.”
According to Meltzer’s sources, some writers didn’t know either, and as such didn’t know the real motive behind Ambrose’s segment with Nia Jax on the Jan. 28 episode:
“I know that on the creative team, and there may have been the top guys on the creative team that knew, but most of the creative team had no idea. And they had no idea that this stuff was being scripted to, you know, whatever, humiliate him or bury him on the way out or whatever it is. They didn’t know any of that, so they’re even wondering.
The fact the company reported on Dean (real name Jon Good) and his contract status themselves sounds like it’s throwing everyone, including Meltzer, off. The WWE.com story makes it impossible to rule out kayfabe...
“But I can’t imagine - yeah, WWE is doing some weird storyline stuff when it comes to playing all this stuff out, but as far as I can tell this is legit.”
So, the answer to the “work or shoot?” question here is shoot. Almost certainly. Unless it’s a work.
Regarding those comments about getting thrown from the ring by Jax as a “burial”? Debate those among yourselves.