On Wrestling Observer Radio, Dave Meltzer gave some backstage details on Andrade’s WWE wellness policy suspension. Specifically, he talked about the timing of the suspension and who did and did not know about it.
Oftentimes, wrestlers are not immediately suspended after WWE officials find out that someone failed a test. They do this because sometimes they need to tie up loose ends with storylines before they send the wrestler home to serve the suspension. Bobby Roode was not immediately suspended until they were able to write him off TV.
In the case of Andrade, it’s not known when WWE officials knew that he failed a drug test but nobody, including Andrade, knew that he was going to be suspended when he wrestled on the Royal Rumble Kickoff show. Andrade was not told until a few hours before Raw and creative had no idea on Sunday at the Royal Rumble. That is likely why he was booked to beat Humberto Carrillo on the Royal Rumble Kickoff show.
Meltzer said, “They tell nobody. Literally, until the day of the [announcement], nobody knows. As far as when the Andrade test came in, I don’t know that it was [on Monday]. Vince may have known and Paul Levesque may have known [on Sunday] but literally nobody else. The writing team would not have known until [Monday]. This was done at that point. They didn’t know [on Sunday].”
Meltzer said that Vince McMahon may not have been told about the wellness failure until after the Royal Rumble because if he did know then he would have sent word out to not have Carrillo take a clean loss on the Kickoff show.
“Nobody knew in the morning [before Raw]. In the afternoon they did know and then they adjusted from there.”
So, the finish where Carrillo took out Andrade with a DDT on the floor was something that they came up with just a couple of hours before they went live on USA. Click here for news on why the decision was made not to take the United States Championship off of Andrade.