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WWE releases wrestlers and referee
By GREG OLIVER - Producer, SLAM! Wrestling

Somebody had better call his momma -- Brodus Clay needs a job! File photo by Mike Mastrandrea

The axe has come down on a number of WWE stars, some who had been actively pushed in recent memory, like 3MB members Drew McIntyre and Jinder Mahal, and others who you had forgotten were actually employed by the company.

On its website today, WWE announced: "WWE has come to terms on the release of the following Superstars as of today, June 12, 2014:

Drew McIntyre
Jinder Mahal
Curt Hawkins
Theodore Long
Brodus Clay
Evan Bourne
Yoshi Tatsu
Marc Harris (referee)

WWE wishes them the best in all their future endeavors."

Of the releases, Brodus Clay is probably the biggest surprise given that he had a serious push over the last couple of years with a lot of time and energy poured into his character. On his Twitter feed, @BrodusClay, he wrote: "Is it Better 2be held down, held back or let go I'm proud of all the obstacles I fought through wwe and now greatness is on me #MonsteousBC"

Drew McIntyre and Jinder Mahal were both regulars on TV with their 3MB gimmick, alongside Heath Slater.

WWE Diva Aksana was also a regular on TV, but never caught on with fans and always seemed uncomfortable in the ring.

Evan Bourne, though, had been on the shelf for seemingly forever with injury issues.

Curt Hawkins had been invisible. On his Twitter feed, @TheCurtHawkins, he kept things light with his first post: "My worst nightmare has come true... I now have to start paying for my own wrist tape again! Shit."

Of these announced WWE releases today, which is the biggest surprise?
Curt Hawkins - 3%
Teddy Long - 36%
Brodus Clay - 50%
Evan Bourne - 8%
Camacho - 2%
Yoshi Tatsu - 2%
JTG's name wasn't announced until later in the day. He was a part of the Cryme Tyme tag team years ago and has not been used much at all in recent years.

Yoshi Tatsu and Camacho were frequently seen on NXT, but that's about it.

Teddy Long was the one-time general manager figure on Smackdown, of course.

Dolph Ziggler, who was NOT released, commented on the firings @HEELZiggler: "sucks when ANYONE is fired, especially friends&family. some great wwe stars just got released, use their talents on your local show!"

And Jeff Jarrett ‏(@RealJeffJarrett) addressed the possibility of some of the released talent working for his new project, Global Force Wrestling: "Well, the Independent Wrestling talent pool just got deeper today... And, it's really deep already... #GFW"