Mauro Ranallo

WWE commentator Mauro Ranallo has found himself recently silenced, but that doesn’t mean his fight for awareness ends. 

Rich Mancuso

Mauro Ranallo is a colleague and friend. He is good at what he does, a commentator for WWE NXT on USA Network and calling the blow-by-blow for Showtime Championship Boxing. And for those who suffer from mental illness, Mauro is a friend.

You see, Mauro Ranallo is the advocate for mental health awareness and suffers from bipolar disorder that was well documented last year on a Showtime documentary, Bipolar Rock ‘N’ Roller.

And now, Ranallo is a victim in the workplace that has sidelined him from calling WWE NXT Wednesday night on the USA Network.

They are saying on WWE broadcasts that Ranallo is not in his chair, “blowing out his voice,” after broadcasting the WWE NXT Takeover event Saturday night at the Allstate Arena in Chicago.

He sat out calling some of the WWE Survivor Series matches Sunday night and, in conjunction, deleted his Twitter account.

Mauro Ranallo has been silenced. For the moment, the Canadian-American broadcaster, known for his thrilling ringside calls, is shying away from the controversy.

Saturday night, Corey Graves, a WWE broadcaster, criticized Ranallo. On his Twitter feed, Graves, though not mentioning names, claimed that Ranallo was more into himself and not giving his colleagues time to interject during the War Games matches.

Graves, days later, apologized.

“It was maybe not the most professional way to go about things,” Graves said on his podcast. “And it was never meant to offend or disrespect or disparage anybody. That was not my intention.”

Intended or not, the damage was done. You see, there is no room for this in the workplace. Graves, like many, are aware that Ranallo continues his fight. He has become the spokesperson for mental illness.

Yet, Graves goes about his business and the WWE has not leveled any harsh criticism at Graves. The round-about attack on Twitter sparked awareness.

Fans have been calling for the WWE to fire Corey Graves, the former WWE competitor who quit the ring after sustaining injuries. In defense of Graves, the tweets made no mention of the condition that causes Ranallo to fight the daily battle of mental health awareness.

But the remarks were derogatory. Ranallo deserves better.

As of Wednesday morning, Ranallo could not be reached for comment. He has not restored Twitter and, now, there is concern.

This goes beyond the issue of a “bully” in the workplace. This is worse than the reality of a wrestling feud that goes beyond the storyline.  This is an issue of disparaging the credibility of a role model to those who confront a similar situation.

The documentary explained that daily fight to confront the issues of mental illness. Ranallo was upfront and behind the scenes was on camera.

The successful and talented broadcaster of combat sports was seen in pain. There was sobbing, leading to the painfully obvious notion of how his bipolar disorder takes its toll on a daily basis.

But knowing Mauro Ranallo, as yours truly does, he will rebound.

Last year, adjacent to the Barclays Center press room, and prior to going on the air for a Showtime broadcast, he said this was a battle but there is that awareness to help others.

He vowed as always, to never quit.

Next Saturday night, Ranallo is scheduled to call the bouts for the Showtime Boxing broadcast at the Barclays Center. By then, the hope is this latest setback will not keep him from ringside.

“Mamma mia,” a phrase of enthusiasm is his call. And the tight boxing family will welcome Mauro back to ringside next Saturday night.

There is no need to use social media as a forum to criticize a colleague who is fighting his battle. The only positive on the other end of things is the cause to confront the awareness of mental illness.