Tye Dillinger has requested his release from WWE. Dillinger revealed on his Instagram that he asked for his release this evening.
"Before rumors being to spread, let me set things straight ahead of time," Dillinger wrote. "This evening, I requested my release from WWE.
"In the past 5 and a half years with them, I have seen and done some wonderful things. Things that I am proud of and will never forget. I have met and worked with unquestionably, some of the greatest talent on this earth and the pleasure has been all mine."
Dillinger noted that he felt the decision was best for himself and WWE, and that he wishes to grow as a performer.
"I feel at this time this decision, as extremely difficult as it was, is what is best for myself and WWE. I wish to continue to grow as a performer and offer those paying hard earned money to watch a show I'm performing on, a little more of myself.
"To the male and female locker rooms, coaches and producers, to the production/ring crew, all the way up to the very top of WWE and most of all the fans… l wish you all the very best and thank you from the bottom of my heart for everything."
Dillinger did not specify if his release was granted, although it would appear to be the case with his post. We have reached out to WWE and will post any updates.
As noted, Dillinger turned 38 years old today. In an Instagram post earlier this afternoon, his longtime girlfriend Peyton Royce suggested that they were now engaged.
Dillinger had originally signed with WWE in 2006 and was trained at Ohio Valley Wrestling. He was released from his contract in January 2009. He re-signed with the company in 2013 and worked in NXT through 2017, before moving to the main roster on the SmackDown brand in April of that year. During that time, he was never really featured.
Dillinger was last seen on television in a match with then-United States Champion Shinsuke Nakamura on an episode of SmackDown Live last September. He suffered a hand injury that required surgery the following month at a WWE live event in Macon, Georgia. He returned to action at live events earlier this month, however had not been used on television.
Below is Dillinger's full statement:
Mustafa Durrani and Cade Galey contributed to this article.