The WWE drug suspension of William Regal has hit the wires as it’s being reported by the Associated Press. WWE spokeswoman Jennifer McIntosh declined to comment on what drugs triggered Regal’s suspension, although she did say that there have been more than 30 suspensions since WWE introduced the Wellness Policy in 2006. The article also notes that WWE performers are drug tested at least four times per year.
If you’re wondering about the names of the 30+ WWE suspensions, here is an updated list of the history of the program’s drug offenders (at least that became public knowledge): Randy Orton (in August 2006 for failing a drug test due to steroids; continued receiving packages from Signature Pharmacy until February 2007, but wasn’t suspended again because he had to wrestle John Cena for the WWE title at Unforgiven 2007 and WWE felt that he had “already served his time;” also, openly smoking marijuana backstage at a show in March 2006 was a behavioral suspension and didn’t count as a strike), Joey Mercury, Rene Dupree (two-time offender), Kurt Angle, Rob Van Dam (due to a drug possession arrest), Kid Kash, Ryan Reeves, Ryan O’Reilly (call-up to ECW roster relinquished), Balls Mahoney (for painkillers), Drew “Festus” Hankinson (when in developmental in late 2006), Andrew “Test” Martin (later fired), referee Chris Kay (two-time offender, later fired), Jeff Hardy (two-time offender), Chavo Guerrero (may be a two-timer, as he returned as soon as 60 days passed in November 2007), Chris Masters (two-time offender, later fired), Edge, Funaki, Gregory Helms, Booker T (two-time offender), Charlie Haas, Mr. Kennedy, Umaga, William Regal (two-time offender), John Morrison, Gene Snitsky (apparently a drug failure as his name never came up during the Signature Pharmacy scandal), Harry “DH” Smith, Derrick Neikirk (later fired), Neil “Chet the Jet” Bzibziak (later fired), and Afa, Jr. (for attempting to cheat on a drug test with a realistic prosthetic penis). By my count, that’s 27 Wellness Policy offenders (at least that we know of) and at least 32 individual drug suspensions, so the WWE spokeswoman was being truthful when she said that there have been over 30 suspensions in the policy’s history.
Starting on November 1st of last year, WWE tweaked the Wellness Policy so that all future drug failures would be publicly announced by the company. Before then, WWE never publicly announced drug suspensions, and the only way to find out about them was through insider wrestling websites. Since that time, there have been a total of seven Wellness Policy violations; Harry “DH” Smith, Chris Masters, Derrick Neikirk, Neil “Chet the Jet” Bzibziak, Jeff Hardy, Afa, Jr., and William Regal. Seven months in, it averages out to about one WWE drug suspension per month.