When it comes to the WWE, there is no lack of controversies. Since taking over the company in 1982, Vincent Kennedy McMahon has had to deal with one controversy after another.
In the 90s, WWE came under fire for Steroid use. In the 2000s, WWE had to establish a wellness policy after the deaths of Chris Benoit and Eddie Guererro. Over the last 30 years, these two issues were rarely talked about on WWE TV shows but many within the industry and fans outside knew about these controversies.
However, there is one existing controversy that WWE chose to use for storylines rather while still sweeping it under the rug: WWE’s Vince McMahon’s infidelities and behavior with women in and out of the company.
Prior to the WWE merger with TKO, Vince McMahon and WWE were being investigated by the US government for settlements Vince McMahon had made with past accusors. This investigation led to Vince McMahon’s first retirement from WWE in June of 2022.
Less than a year later, Vince McMahon returned to WWE on the grounds it was to procure a deal to sell WWE. In April of 2023, a deal was announced that WWE would be merging with UFC to form TKO. It was rumored that McMahon’s role as executive chairman on the TKO board had a behavioral clause.
Earlier this week, we covered that Monday Night Raw would be moving to Netflix in 2025 and that Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson would be joining TKO’s Board of Directors.
Not even a week later, new allegations by Janel Grant have been brought up against Vince McMahon and John Laurinaitis. These new allegations have led to Vince McMahon tendering his resignation from his positions as TKO Executive Chairman and on the TKO Board of Directors.
The Lawsuit Claims
Grant’s lawsuit accuses Vince McMahon of sexual trafficking, alleging that he pressured Grant into having sex with him and another WWE employee in exchange for her job.
In 2020, according to the lawsuit, McMahon allegedly pressured Grant into threesomes with other men, including McMahon’s physical therapist and another WWE executive, John Laurinaitis, who is also named as a defendant in the lawsuit.
Grant’s lawyer, Ann Callis, provided a statement: “Today’s complaint seeks to hold accountable two WWE executives who sexually assaulted and trafficked Plaintiff Janel Grant, as well as the organization that facilitated or turned a blind eye to the abuse and then swept it under the rug.
“She is an incredibly private and courageous person who has suffered deeply at the hands of Mr. McMahon and Mr. Laurinaitis. Ms. Grant hopes that her lawsuit will prevent other women from being victimized. The organization is well aware of Mr. McMahon’s history of depraved behavior, and it’s time that they take responsibility for the misconduct of its leadership.”
If you want to read more about the full allegations, click here.
On Friday before Smackdown, Vince McMahon tendered his resignation; this was confirmed by Nick Khan, president of the WWE, with a statement:
“Vince McMahon has tendered his resignation from his positions as TKO Executive Chairman and on the TKO Board of Directors. He will no longer have a role with TKO Group Holdings or WWE.”
“Grant’s lawsuit is replete with lies, obscene made-up instances that never occurred, and is a vindictive distortion of the truth,” Vince McMahon said. “I intend to vigorously defend myself against these baseless accusations, and look forward to clearing my name. However, out of respect for the WWE Universe, the extraordinary TKO business and its board members and shareholders, partners and constituents, and all of the employees and Superstars who helped make WWE into the global leader it is today, I have decided to resign from my executive chairmanship and the TKO board of directors, effective immediately.”
These allegations have reportedly led to Slim Jim pulling its sponsorship tonight before WWE’s Royal Rumble.