WWE comes to terms on release of Big Cass shortly after returning from injury

WWE announced on Tuesday it has come to terms on the release of Big Cass, the nearly 7-foot tall superstar whose real name is William Morrissey. No further details were released by the company. The 30-year-old Morrissey, a former co-captain of the New York University basketball team, took part in Sunday night's Money in the Bank pay-per-view in Chicago, losing a singles match in what appeared to be the final chapter of his feud with Daniel Bryan. 

A native of Queens, New York, Morrissey returned to SmackDown Live immediately after WrestleMania 34 in April following an eight-month absence due to surgery on his left knee. According to a recent report from Pro Wrestling Sheet, Morrissey angered WWE officials in May by disobeying a directive given him during a segment on SmackDown involving a little person dressed as Bryan. Morrissey, according to the report, went too far in terms of physicality. 

Morrissey signed a promotional deal with WWE in 2011, and built his name in a tag team opposite the trash-talking Enzo Amore in NXT. Although the duo never won a championship in WWE, they became one of the company's biggest merchandise sellers and were called up to the main roster in 2016. 

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Last summer, the duo parted ways during an on-screen split that led to a feud against each other. Morrissey went on to suffer his knee injury during a match on Raw in August against Amore, whose real name is Eric Arndt. After briefly being moved to 205 Live where he was given the cruiserweight championship, Arndt was fired by the company in January amid rape allegations that were eventually dropped. 

Arndt returned to the public eye earlier this month when he broke his silence by launching a rap single, which took shots at everyone from his accuser to WWE, the fans and the pro wrestling media. Arndt was publicly critical of Morrissey for not finishing their match after injuring his knee and both admitted that their friendship has dissolved because of it. 

Immediately after news of Morrissey's exit from WWE hit social media on Tuesday, Arndt sent out a curiously timed tweet using a catchphrase both he and Morrissey had made famous as a duo. 

Originally billed as Colin Cassady, Morrissey quickly became a fan favorite while paired with Arndt in NXT. The duo originally had WWE superstar Carmella -- who is currently the SmackDown women's champion -- as their valet. This led to her and Morrissey embarking on a romantic relationship outside the ring (one that was often captured by WWE cameras for the WWE Network "Breaking Ground" series) which ended in 2017. 

Morrissey's exit comes at an interesting time, when it appeared he was being pushed as a top heel. 

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Brian Campbell covers MMA, boxing and WWE. The Connecticut native joined CBS Sports in 2017 and has covered combat sports since 2010. He has written and hosted various podcasts and digital shows for ESPN... Full Bio

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