Baron Corbin seemed destined for a successful career after he first made his debut on the WWE main roster by winning the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal at WrestleMania 32. He was everything that the WWE usually loves in a wrestler — he’s big (6’8″), strong, and makes a pretty obnoxious heel. All signs pointed to a big push in Corbin’s future.
The push came in the form of winning the Money in the Bank ladder match back in June, meaning that the WWE had 12 months to figure out a way to work Corbin into championship contention over on SmackDown Live. Everything was looking up for the Lone Wolf until he tried to cash in his guaranteed title shot against Jinder Mahal on an episode of SmackDown in August. He was distracted by John Cena and lost the match via roll-up in an embarrassing few seconds.
He’s not the first person to lose their Money in the Bank cash in, but it was definitely the most feeble attempt. Fans instantly starting asking questions. What was the point of wasting a story mechanic like a guaranteed title shot on a failed attempt with no advertising? News started to leak out that Corbin was being punished for something, but details were hard to come by.
PWInsider recently put up a report that sheds more light on the subject. According to them, Corbin got into a verbal argument with Dr. Joseph Maroon, a guest speaker the WWE invited in to talk to their talent about head injuries and concussions. Corbin, a former NFL player, apparently made quite the scene in disagreeing with some of Dr. Maroon’s information.
PWInsider was told by multiple sources that Corbin, a former NFL player, cut off Maroon and expressed an opinion, as a former NFL football player, that challenged Maroon. We are told that Corbin argued that there would be some form of head trauma with every play as football helmets are always cracking against each other. During the exchange, Corbin noted he is part of a concussion-related lawsuit against the NFL and said that he knew Maroon was against CTE [ … ]
We are told that Maroon did agree with Corbin that CTE was a problem, but was trying to make the point that the study did not mean 99% of NFL players actually had CTE and that everyone has to put things into a proper perspective. Corbin, obviously, disagreed with Maroon’s stance, and for several minutes, the two went back and forth.
The entire scene was described to PWInsider.com as “awkward”, “time standing still” and “an awkward moment that led to awkward laughter” by three different sources who were at the meeting. A fourth source pointed out that it wasn’t a case that Corbin was yelling or being belligerent, but was perhaps expressing his opinions in “the wrong time and the wrong place” to truly have that discussion. The fourth source noted their feeling that Corbin would have been better served by pulling Maroon over privately after the meeting, as that wouldn’t have taken the attention away from the matter at hand.
Corbin didn’t get a total demotion, though, since he’s still working with A.J. Styles and the United States Championship. Chances are that the WWE have ordered him to keep his head down and stop being a distraction. If can refrain from ruffling feathers, there’s still a good chance we see Baron Corbin wear World Championship gold in the WWE someday.