For over a decade, Highspots has presented some of the world’s best pro wrestling conventions with their series of WrestleCon events. Traditionally held during WWE WrestleMania weekend in the event’s host city, the gatherings typically include dozens, if not more, of pro wrestling’s top stars from multiple eras meeting fans and signing autographs. This year, WrestleCon has decided also to run WWE SummerSlam weekend and will be in Detroit on August 4 and 5.
Along with announced talent like AEW’s Sting and WWE Hall of Famer Bret “Hitman” Hart, one announcement caught fans by surprise and has created outrage on social media: The Steiner Brothers. Earlier this year, WrestleCon hosted its annual event during Mania weekend, this time in Los Angeles, and Impact’s Gisele Shaw reported that an altercation with Rick Steiner had occurred at the event where he hurled transphobic insults towards her. WrestleCon found out about the incident and pulled Rick from the following day’s signings.
WrestleCon appears to have been prepared for the blowback to Rick returning to their fold, as Michael Bochicchio, the owner, released a statement regarding his booking shortly after the announcement. Revealing Rick had issued an apology to “members of the Wrestlecon staff,” along with fellow wrestlers, and “members of Impact Wrestling staff that chose to hear from him at a private mediated event.” They did note that Shaw did not accept Rick’s invitation to meet for an apology.
While some were satisfied with Bochicchio’s statement, many were still left enraged by the event’s decision to stand by Rick’s booking, especially since it does not seem Shaw is willing to move the past incident. Earlier this morning, WrestleCon released its first talent guide for the weekend featuring the cost for photos and autographs with talent, but The Steiner Brothers were absent from it.
Some speculated that Rick had been removed from the event following the backlash, so Haus of Wrestling contacted WrestleCon for comment on why the WWE Hall of Fame tag team was not advertised as part of the talent guide. We were sent the following statement.
“After the feedback we got yesterday about Rick Steiner, we felt it would be better to put out a pricing list without his name so people that need the information could focus on it.”