Another day, another WWE Superstar on the operating table. This year alone, we’ve seen Nikki Bella, Emma and Paige, among others, go under the knife — now they’ll be joined on the IR by Smackdown midcarder Erick Rowan, who just had surgery to repair a torn rotator cuff. ProWrestling.net reports that the surgery was scheduled for this morning and was helmed by Dr. Jeffrey Dugas in Birmingham, Alabama, the go-to surgeon for much of the WWE roster.
Torn rotator cuffs have become incredibly common in WWE in recent years: It’s the exact same injury that sidelined John Cena and Cesaro at the end of 2015, and what prevented Shelton Benjamin from returning to Smackdown earlier this summer.
Rowan has been serving as Bray Wyatt’s henchman on Tuesday nights for the past few weeks, getting heavily involved with Wyatt’s ongoing feud with Randy Orton. However, the average recovery time for a torn rotator cuff is four to six months, meaning Wyatt will be on his own for the foreseeable future — that is, unless WWE wants to bring back fellow Wyatt Family member Luke Harper, who has previously stated he should be cleared to return to the ring between August and October. The former Intercontinental champion has been reported as being backstage at recent WWE events, so it’s entirely possible he may show up as early as tonight on Smackdown.