Sex, Lies, Videotape and Enzo: The Culture of the WWE Locker Room
I have been reading reports covered by the websites regarding Enzo’s ongoing behavioural problems. These problems have resulted in Enzo losing his placing as a prominent addition to the WWE Raw roster. Enzo’s escalating behavioural issues isn’t the only conduct of unprofessionalism in the WWE locker room. In the last year, there have been reports and even footage leaked online of WWE talent engaging in sexual activity and infidelity.
Earlier in the year, a sex tape involving WWE talents Paige, Xavier Woods and former WWE talent Brad Maddox was leaked online. Paige released a statement in which she expressed regret and took responsibility for her actions. Neither Paige nor Xavier were disciplined by the WWE over the footage.
Smackdown’s lead announcer Tom Phillips was exposed trying to have an affair, communicating with a woman on Twitter. The woman whom he tried to pursue decided to expose Phillips’ deception to the public when she realised that Phillips was engaged. Phillips responded to the publicity by temporarily deactivating the ‘tweets’ section of his Twitter account. Phillips was not disciplined, he was promoted as the lead announcer on Smackdown.
Samantha Rotunda, the estranged wife of WWE star Bray Wyatt – Windham Rotunda, had accused her husband of having an affair with WWE ring announcer, Jojo Offerman. Samantha Rotunda had proof of the alleged affair by obtaining phone records which showed that Windham and Offerman were in ‘continuous contact’ with each other.
Seth Rollins was also publically exposed on social media when his fiancée leaked nude photos of Rollins’ and Zahara Schreiber – a WWE female talent at the time. These photos revealed that Rollins and Schreiber were in a relationship. The nude pics which Rollins and Schreiber had exchanged to each other confirmed their affair.
It seems that the WWE has produced a locker room culture of infidelity and people who don’t respect locker room etiquette. The WWE has not addressed any of the stories involving their employees – even though the content of each incident is a severe contradictory to the company’s PG friendly image. Yet the WWE have fired Hulk Hogan over his use of the ‘n word’. Perhaps if Paige had repeatedly called Xavier Woods the ‘n word’ on their tape, the WWE may have terminated Paige’s contract?
Anyone can dismiss this behaviour by settling for the excuse that it just doesn’t happen in the WWE, that it’s the reality in pro wrestling, or sports, or even in life. There is also a valid argument that technological platforms and social media are to blame for publicising the personal matters of celebrities that were intended for privacy. But here’s my argument; the WWE through the WWE Performance Center are failing to educate their students about the integrity of being public figures for the company and learning how to take personal responsibility. Maybe the WWE should consider adding the teaching of values to align with the high standard of refined wrestling training that their people have been taught to excel at and exercise. The talent that are being exposed are young, inexperienced and naive, which makes them vulnerable, as they were born into the digital age where they have no clue of how damaging the internet can be to their image, nor do they know the difference between what is and isn’t appropriate.
The WWE are giving their young students the top level training in pro wrestling, but the WWE also need to teach their young talent the values that will look after them while on the road. This would also offer reassurance to their families at home. It’s really sad when the children of these wrestlers are left to deal with the emotional ‘bumps and bruises’ of not knowing whether their parents will reconcile or if their routines will be disrupted having to live between two ‘brands’. Instead of ignoring the matter, the WWE must act on the morality problem of their locker room.