Evan Bourne’s second WWE Wellness Policy violation resulting in a 60 day suspension was known several days before the official announcement was made on 1/17, leading to the decision to take the WWE Tag Team Championships off Bourne and Kofi Kingston in favor of Epico and Primo. John Laurinaitis was sent to the 1/15 Raw house show in Oakland to oversee the title change.
Bourne’s return would put him back around 3/19 leaving his role at Wrestlemania in doubt in what could cost him not only a big payoff for the Royal Rumble, but also the biggest show of the year. Dave Meltzer of The Wrestling Observer Newsletter reports that the policy in WWE is that when a positive drug test comes in, if a storyline is in play, the talent’s suspension beings after the next television taping where an angle can be done to explain an absence or “tie up lose ends.”
It’s a policy designed to be implemented over a week, but in some cases (like Ron “R-Truth” Killings) it ended up being several weeks. This is the second suspension for Bourne (real name Matthew Korklan) following his first on 11/1 for a drug test failure for the use of Spice, a marijuana substitute. Spice, which has become popular among wrestlers, is treated just as seriously as cocaine or steroids in WWE’s drug policy. Testing positive for marijuana still results in a $2,500 fine – although repeated fines have resulted in some talent not being considered for stronger spots. Former WWE talent have claimed this doesn’t apply to talent already higher up on the card.