Periodically the WWE has to shed wrestlers whom they don’t feel are part of the long-term success of the company (occasionally short-term), and so their releases are announced on the company’s website. The practice has become known as “future endeavor’ing”, in line with the phrase almost always used in wishing a wrestler well on their departure (whether or not it’s sincere is another story).
So who’s on the cut list this year? We put together a round table, and here are the names we came up with (names you can vote on at the end of the article):
Robert Aitken (@RobertAitkenBR): Already a victim of Tensai, Riley has been his own worst enemy. A pay-per-view victory over The Miz could not even help the young Riley. A lot of potential was shown, but his own personal issues could have had him fired a while ago.
Rob Belote (@GNWrestling): I don’t know what Alex Riley did other than find a way to get the fans HUGELY behind him, moreso than R-Truth or Daniel Bryan were even able to do against The Miz, but the writing is on the wall that the front office doesn’t have anything productive for him to do.
Robert Aitken (@RobertAitkenBR): The Japanese supetstar has a lot of excitement in his arsenal of moves, but fans have not latched on to him. A match with Lord Tensai is coming before Yoshi is going.
Rob Belote (@GNWrestling): It’s disappointing, given the talent Tatsu has, but it’s not surprising. This is hardly the first time WWE has failed to capitalize on a highly talented individual from Japan. He can now be added to the list including Tajiri, Taka Michinoku, Jinsei Shinzaki (Hakushi), Kenzo Suzuki and The Orient Express as competitors who were highly under-valued.
Robert Aitken (@RobertAitkenBR): Where is Trent is a question asked by some superstars, but not by fans. I’m not sure they can release him while injured, but we will see.
Nathan: Seriously when was the last time he was on any WWE programming? They plenty of options on who to job to someone up the card.
Rob Belote (@GNWrestling): If WWE drops him before at least giving him a shot to be part of a tag team with an established Superstar, such as Kofi Kingston or The Miz, it will be a huge failure on their part. The kid’s got a lot of tools at his disposal, but the only one they’ve let him put on display is his ability to bump and make other talent look good. I’m holding out hope that he’ll get moved in the WWE Draft in two weeks and he’ll have at least one more shot.
Robert Aitken (@RobertAitkenBR): Question: JTG is still employed? Answer: Believe it or not, yes. We haven’t seen him in months and nothing is wrong with him. When he cannot even crack the NXT card anymore, there is a problem.
@AnotherIWCJerk: An afterthought after the break-up of Cryme Tyme and release last year of Shad Gaspard. I’m pretty sure his only TV appearance in an entire year was getting squashed by Brodus Clay.
@Save_Us_GSM: He hasn’t been relevant since his tenure in Cryme Tyme two years ago, and has been merely worthless since. His mic skills and in-ring ability have hardly improved and isn’t even used that much any WWE programming has to offer.
Nathan: Like Barreta, he hasn’t done much of anything lately, which is a sure sign you’re on the list of possible cuts.
Rob Belote (@GNWrestling): With looking at all the other guys on this list, JTG seems highly likely and is the least of my worries.
@AnotherIWCJerk: Probably the most obvious one. Made his TV debut on the same episode of WWECW as Sheamus, and that’s where the comparisons end. The “Midcard Mafia” cartoon series probably didn’t help his career, either.
Rob Belote (@GNWrestling): If he’s let go, it’s a sure sign that WWE doesn’t care about the tag division. He and Curt Hawkins are working great together on NXT and could easily be more entertaining with the tag titles than Primo & Epico currently are (Rosa Mendes aside). At the very least, they could be built up briefly and used to put over more established talent in a thick tag division.
@AnotherIWCJerk: Was the most useless member of Nexus/The Corre, and hasn’t done anything but job and become an IWC punchline since then.
@Save_Us_GSM: What importance does this guy play to the roster? His gimmick is horrendous and jobs week in, week out.
Rob Belote (@GNWrestling): I have said it time and time again, with that goofy haircut, the kid’s going nowhere in WWE. No one’s going to take him seriously. And the One Man Rock Band nickname isn’t helping either. Getting thrown around by Flo Rida at WrestleMania wasn’t a good sign for his longevity.
@AnotherIWCJerk: There’s always a diva released, and Layla is most likely to go. Just recovered from an injury, but they really didn’t do anything with her post-LayCool.
Rob Belote (@GNWrestling): I will be seriously disappointed if this happens. She showed tremendous growth on the mic and in the ring as part of Lay Cool, and I’m hoping for a serious revival once she’s back on the scene. There are far too many Divas I’d cut before Layla.
@AnotherIWCJerk: Hate to make this guess, but Big Zeke just hasn’t lived up to his potential. Hasn’t done much but lose on TV since his face turn last year.
Nathan: Ezekiel Jackson or Mason Ryan. They’re basically the same wrestler, big and buff, so one of the two will get the ax, though I’m leaning towards Jackson.
Rob Belote (@GNWrestling): The arrival of Brock Lesnar, Lord Tensai, Ryback and the continued emergence of Brodus Clay makes Zeke Jackson expendable. He’s had his chance, and the verdict is in.
@Save_Us_GSM: He once showed major potential, but they dropped the ball on him big time. He’s outrageously boring, and doesn’t seem to be getting over with the crowd whatsoever.
Nathan: They had a decent story going with him and Khali, but they dropped the ball and Mahal hasn’t done anything of note lately.
Rob Belote (@GNWrestling): The in-ring work just isn’t sufficient enough to justify the lack of mic skills, and WWE hasn’t used managers consistently on a regular basis aside from Vickie Guerrero, and she’s not going to be taking him on as a client anytime soon (though it could be interesting).
Robert Aitken (@RobertAitkenBR): Bourne is incredibly talented. Two Wellness Policy violations and a serious foot injury, all since November, is enough for most to watch Bourne fly away.
Nathan: I can’t believe they’ll keep him around after his Wellness violations and now his foot injury. He just hasn’t done anything to help his case with management.
Rob Belote (@GNWrestling): I don’t think he would be out of a job very long if WWE does cut him, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they decided to cut their losses and let him go. He has a few moves that electrify the crowd, but there are better options for people to tag with Kofi Kingston, and WWE has made it clear they’re not going to utilize him as a serious competitor in any other division.
@Save_Us_GSM: It’d be big risk letting him go since Triple H was the one who signed him last year, but it’s a risk that must take. His in-ring ability is hindered by the WWE style and is currently on the shelf for the foreseeable future.
Rob Belote (@GNWrestling): I thought this was going to happen shortly after they split the Sin Cara character in two. As far as I’m concerned, Hunico is a great wrestler and a superior character to Sin Cara, and in the emerging landscape of the WWE, there’s not much room for this mostly-boring luchador. The only thing that might save him is the return of Rey Mysterio and one final feud for Sin Cara.
@Save_Us_GSM: They’ve failed to repackage him correctly and is a waste to the main roster. A move to SmackDown might help, but other than that, he’s doomed to fail.
Rob Belote (@GNWrestling): His work on NXT has been inspiring, but I tend to think that might be waning. I’d love to see him work together with Ted DiBiase as a Young Turks style tag team of second generation competitors, but they’ll need to do something quick.
Rob Belote (@GNWrestling): I don’t know whether he’s injured or WWE Creative doesn’t have any ideas for him or whether the front office thinks his work is subpar (my guess), but he hasn’t been utilized on either of the two main shows in 6 months, and his record on Superstars isn’t very good over that span. I’ve yet to see anything impressive in his ring work, and he seems to have just two facial expressions. The only reason he wasn’t mentioned in the thick of this article is because my fellow Round Table members likely over-looked him.