Shawn Michaels Comments on Mandy Rose's WWE Release

Mandy Rose was suddenly released by the WWE on Dec. 14, one day after she dropped the NXT Women's Championship to Roxanne Perez on an episode of NXT. It was initially reported that Rose was fired by the online fan page she had on the subscription site FanTime was starting to feature content WWE higher-ups considered to be "too explicit." Rose has since stated in interviews that she was fired because of the FanTime account itself and not necessarily its content, but she has continued to produce content for the page ever since and generated over a million dollars from subscriptions before the end of the year. 

Shawn Michaels, who oversees the NXT brand, commented on the situation on Thursday during a media conference call to promote this weekend's NXT Vengeance Day event. He claimed he was not responsible for Rose's firing and spoke incredibly highly of her. 

"Well look, obviously (it was) not the ideal situation. I guess if I'm allowed to say it for the record,  I didn't fire her. I can't fire her, I can't fire anybody. The only thing correct about that is I handle creative. But no, look, it was unfortunate obviously. I think Mandy was fantastic for us, I absolutely enjoyed working with her. She was a phenomenal champion. We would have loved for things to have gone differently and been able to build our story with Roxanne, but obviously I was put in a position where I had to make a call creatively and so we did that," Michaels said.

"It's one of the things that I've learned doing this job is that nothing comes before the brand and we have to put those things forward. Roxanne is certainly where we were going regardless, we just went there a few weeks earlier than expected. The great thing is now we're right back on course. And I will say I think the world of Mandy Rose. She was nothing but phenomenal with us. We'll miss her, but we are thrilled about Roxanne Here being the NXT Women's Champion and taking us into the future," he added.

Perez will defend her championship at Vengeance Day against Rose's former Toxic Attraction stablemates in Gigi Dolin and Jacy Jane. The event takes place this Saturday at the Spectrum Center in Charlotte, North Carolina.