Dolph Ziggler's Status, Mick Foley Praises SmackDown Star, More in WWE Roundup

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistJanuary 23, 2019

LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 09:  Dolph Ziggler attends the WWE SmackDown live show at The O2 Arena on May 9, 2017 in London, England.  (Photo by Eamonn M. McCormack/Getty Images)
Eamonn M. McCormack/Getty Images

Bleacher Report catches you up on the latest news from the WWE Universe.

    

Updates on Ziggler's Status With WWE

There is some uncertainty when it comes to Dolph Ziggler's future with WWE.

According to Paul Davis of WrestlingNews.co, there has been "talk" backstage regarding The Showoff finishing up with the company when his contract expires on Jan. 31.

More will reportedly be known about his status by the weekend, and WWE is interested in re-signing him.

While Ziggler hasn't appeared on WWE programming since losing to Drew McIntyre in a steel cage match on the Dec. 31 episode of Raw, he has been working live events.

There has been some speculation Ziggler will take part in the Royal Rumble match on Sunday since he lives in Phoenix, which is where the pay-per-view is taking place.

Recently, Ziggler changed his name on Twitter to Nic Nemeth (his real name) and has primarily focused on promoting his comedy shows.

While that could be a sign the 38-year-old veteran is set to depart the company, he has juggled multiple priorities before, and the door is seemingly open for him to continue doing so.

   

Foley Advocates for Ali

WWE Hall of Famer Mick Foley is loving what he has seen from SmackDown Live Superstar Mustafa Ali.

On Tuesday night, he tweeted about his hope that the main roster newcomer is put in advantageous positions by WWE moving forward:

Ali expressed his gratitude in a reply to Foley's tweet:

Since being moved from 205 Live to SmackDown, Ali has mixed it up with some of the top Superstars the blue brand has to offer, including WWE champion Daniel Bryan.

On Tuesday, he cut a strong promo before going toe-to-toe with Samoa Joe in a back-and-forth match that ultimately saw Joe prevail.

The manner in which Ali has been utilized thus far suggests he will have every opportunity to be a top star in the years ahead.

If Ali turns in a quality performance in the Royal Rumble match on Sunday, it could go a long way toward getting him to that next level.

      

Carlito Shoots Down Rumble Speculation

Those hoping to see Carlito as a surprise entrant in Sunday's Royal Rumble match may be disappointed.

In response to the yearly speculation about a Rumble return, the 39-year-old noted Tuesday it is unlikely considering he isn't even part of the alumni section on WWE.com:

During his time on the WWE main roster from 2004-2010, Carlito was a one-time United States champion, Intercontinental champion and Tag Team champion.

He has competed in Puerto Rico and on the American independent scene since leaving the company in 2010, and he hasn't had much involvement with WWE since then.

Carlito did induct his father, Carlos Colon, into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2014, though, and he also appeared on a recent episode of Edge and Christian's Show That Totally Reeks of Awesomeness on WWE Network.

While Carlito would likely get a nice pop from the live crowd, his fans shouldn't get their hopes up.

      

Free Match of the Day: Velveteen Dream vs. Kassius Ohno

Wednesday's free match of the day on WWE's YouTube channel was the bout between Velveteen Dream and Kassius Ohno at last year's NXT TakeOver: Philadelphia.

That match happened one year ago on the night before the Royal Rumble, and it helped launch Dream to superstardom, as he is now one of the most popular competitors in all of WWE.

Dream isn't scheduled for Saturday's NXT TakeOver: Phoenix, but Ohno will look to bounce back from last year's loss when he faces another up-and-comer in Matt Riddle.

        

Listen to Ring Rust Radio for all of the hot wrestling topics. Catch the latest episode in the player below (warning: some language NSFW).

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