Just when it looked like Cedric Alexander was getting a push, Vince McMahon reportedly squashed it at Clash of Champions. Alexander was defeated by AJ Styles in a match that didn't even last five minutes and then lost in a six-way tag match the next night on Raw.
Ryback speculated as to why this happened when Wrestling Inc's Raj Giri joined his podcast.
"My last two matches there, and I talk about everything in detail on this where it's supposed to be me and Vince have a handshake agreement with me winning the world title, signing the new contract, doing the heel turn and going all the way with it and it paying off. That was part of our handshake agreement with all of that and then with the contract with all of my trademarks that they wanted me to sign off on that I didn't want to do, we started butting heads and I got moved to the preshow," Ryback revealed. "Went from supposedly winning the world championship to now the US title, didn't sign the contract so then I put over Kalisto off of the main card at WrestleMania now on the preshow. I had received some backlash from the small portion of fans calling me a bulls****er and a liar, but no, I have been truthful from the beginning."
Ryback said that in Alexander's case, it could have been him simply inquiring about pay which set off the WWE higher-ups and led to them burying him.
"This is another example with Cedric Alexander, who supposedly they had big plans for, Paul Heyman liked him and wanted to do something with him. All it could have taken was for Cedric Alexander to ask one wrong question in the back regarding pay, just so everyone understands. I am not saying that this happened, but he may have asked one thing about him and they were not happy about him inquiring about it," Ryback said.
"Maybe, it was a payout for a live event so then they'll be like, oh, we have to show him and then they will do something like this, which nobody on the outside can understand. Wait, this is crazy, Vince McMahon soured on him? Vince probably didn't sour on him, it was [Director of Talent Relations] Mark Carrano and he asked something about a payout and it's like, this guy is asking questions and so we have to show him who is boss. That will typically shut talent up because they know that they are scared because they know that their pay is going to start going down and they are going to start getting jobbed out and their equity goes down and they become disposable. So, that is a way to control talent, that is just one example, that may not have happened, could have been where they just didn't want to push him anymore. But typically, I have seen this time and time again with people where they will crack the whip to give someone an ego check, and it's not even an ego check. It's just, the guy may have gotten paid $500 for a live event he main evented; it should have been $2,000.
"So, this is the inner workings that go on over there and how screwed up it is and how talent are handcuffed. You have to be really careful how much you speak up over there until you have a little bit of equity in you."
You can watch Ryback's comments about Cedric in the video above. If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Conversations with the Big Guy Ryback with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
Peter Bahi contributed to this article.