WWE: Reason for Steve Austin Not Appearing at WrestleMania 40, Another Talent Relations Executive Departure, Zelina Vega Scamming Artists Allegations

WWE’s Talks with Stone Cold Steve Austin for WrestleMania 40 Update – Reason for Austin Not Appearing

As noted before, WWE had planned for Stone Cold Steve Austin, John Cena, and The Undertaker to make an appearance and be involved at this past weekend’s WrestleMania 40 event in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Both Cena and The Undertaker made an appearance and were involved in the Undisputed WWE Universal Championship match between Cody Rhodes and Roman Reigns on Night 2.

Dave Meltzer reported in this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter that his sources stated that the reason why Austin did not make an appearance was due to monetary-related reasons. Austin and WWE officials reportedly were not able to come to terms for a deal in time for the event due to both sides being far apart on monetary terms.

Meltzer reported that WWE officials had originally planned for Austin to be the person to take out The Rock during the match and replaced him with The Undertaker instead.

Another WWE Talent Relations Executive Departure & Update on Reason for Talent Relations Department Shakeup

As noted before, WWE Executive Vice President of Talent Dan Ventrelle was released from the company on Thursday.

PWInsider’s Mike Johnson reported that his sources stated that besides Ventrelle, WWE also had released Senior Vice President of Athlete ID & Development Trent Wilfinger from the company as well on Thursday.

Prior to his departure, Wilfinger had been working for WWE since Summer of 2021.

In regards to the reason for the recent Talent Relations department shakeups, Fightful Select’s Sean Ross Sapp reported that his sources stated that WWE President Nick Khan had sent an internal memo stating that the reasons were due to the company reorganizing its Talent Relations group. Khan stated that NXT head booker Shawn Michaels will now be the head of Talent Development and Recruiting.

WWE has begun the process of reorganizing its Talent Relations group. Moving forward, Chris Legentil, in addition to his role in Comms, will help us in leading this new group. Matt Altman, in addition to his role in marketing, will be working closely with Chris to help this endeavor.

Talent Development and Recruiting will now report to Shawn Michaels.

All of Talent, which includes Talent Relations, Development and Recruiting will continue to ultimately report into Paul Levesque.

As of today, Dan Ventrelle will be moving on from WWE. We thank Dan for his tremendous contributions.

Sincerely, Nick Khan.

Zelina Vega Responds to Allegations of Scamming Artists for Work Created for Her

Prop maker shop Mecha Musume recently accused Zelina Vega on Instagram of scamming the shop over commissioning work for her special attire at WrestleMania 40 and not paying the artist in full.

The shop claimed that they had dealt with several issues while working with Vega for the attire which included Vega receiving a custom Mecha Chancla “practically for free.” The shop also claimed that Vega gave the wrong address for other custom items made resulting in those items being destroyed by hot weather and the shop having to reship them which did not fit in the specific time frame that was asked of them. The shop also stated that Vega only paid $900 for all of her items despite the commission was valued at $2,500. It was claimed that Vega had told the shop that she would make up the difference by paying them in exposure.

It was also claimed that due to Vega’s time demand for the items, the shop had to refund a number of customers and decline new orders in order to get Vega’s order done in two to three weeks when normally the process would have taken months.

Following the allegations, another artist named Sangre went public on Twitter claiming that Vega did something similar to them in the past in regards to failing to pay in full for work commissioned for her.

Vega recently responded on Twitter denying the allegations made by Sangre and posted text messages claiming that the reason she did not compensate the artist was due to the artist declining the offer at the time.