Who is the most likely to leave WWE next?
Whether for lack of opportunities, frustration with their current position, pursuits outside of wrestling, or just getting old, some wrestlers are looking for the exit. Here are a few wrestlers who might leave very soon. Some of these names are tried and true veterans beloved by millions, others are guys (and gals) who are just not what WWE is needing right now.
This list talks about names big and small. We’ve saved the best and most controversial names for last!
Let’s start off with a 20 plus year veteran who is still destroying foes. But obligations outside of WWE might mean he is on the way out.
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While the Big Red Machine just returned to WWE for a brief run against Braun Strowman, Glenn Jacobs is still running for mayor of Knox County, Tennessee. I don’t expect this current return to last for long, and if he is elected mayor he’ll be gone from the roster permanently.
Up next is a star who has talked openly about taking some time away from WWE and hanging up his boots.
[tps_title]Mark Henry [/tps_title]
The world’s strongest man has been with WWE for a long time. The former Olympian and record-breaking powerlifter has wowed audiences with his amazing feats of strength. But Henry is older and wants to take a big step back. He’s said he’s looking to retire soon and even promoted the 2016 Royal Rumble as his “last.” But, Henry did once swerve the entire WWE Universe in a fake retirement angle, so who knows?
While Mark Henry is a talented and respect vet, this next WWE talent is new to the wrestling world – and it really shows.
Dana Brooke’s call-up to the main roster was a questionable decision, to begin with. She’s done little more than act as a lackey for a rotating cast of heels. Her in-ring skills haven’t improved, and she is not very good on the mic. Currently, she is in a weird position as the “statistician” for Titus Worldwide. I think Brooke will move back down to NXT before she leaves, however.
Our next pick may be a bit of a surprise because you’ll be shocked at how old he is. I know I was.
This one isn’t based on more than that R-Truth is 45 years old and has been used sparingly on TV in the last year. He’s had a successful career and can still go in the ring. Not only that, but he is beloved by fans and by his fellow wrestlers. Like fellow journeymen, Mark Henry and the Big Show, perhaps Truth will fade into a part-timer who makes occasional marquee appearances?
The indies are calling a lot of wrestlers, and this next guy might answer.
This is also a question about the Cruiserweight crew in general. There is still a lot of talent being underutilized. This includes inaugural Cruiserweight champ TJ Perkins (TJP). TJP seems to be out of the loop in the new feuds on 205 Live. Recently he voiced a desire to compete for the Intercontinental Championship. But it seems more likely that the Purple Brand expands rather than contracts. If that is the case, perhaps TJP will feel pushed out. He was a big draw on the indies and could take advantage of the booming indie scene soon.
Speaking of “who knows,” here are two talents that don’t have a direction or place in WWE, it seems.
[tps_title]Primo & Epico[/tps_title]
Hard to think of a tag team that has had more failed gimmicks than these two. From cholos to matadors to Puerto Rican timeshare con-artists, everything has failed. The two are big draws for WWE in PR but is that enough to keep them around? They seem to be off TV more than on it, and I honestly can’t remember which brand they are on at the moment because they’ve been off television for that long. Perhaps with WWE’s new push into Latin America, they’ll be sticking around, but who knows?
This next tag team were big stars overseas and might be looking to go back.
[tps_title]Gallows And Anderson[/tps_title]
Since coming from Japan, former Bullet Club members Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson have floated around the periphery. They finally captured the Raw Tag Titles last year before losing them to the returning Hardys rather quickly. Since then they’ve been involved in a few nothing feuds and at one point seemed to team-up with Elias. One reason to think they aren’t leaving is that they’re both veterans and considered “good hands” who will go out and put on a good match regardless. Anderson worked for over a decade before getting to WWE. However with Bullet Club hotter than ever, perhaps they see it as an opportune time to go back out on their own.
Next, the other Edgehead!
[tps_title]Curt Hawkins [/tps_title]
Perhaps his unprecedented losing streak will finally get to him ? Hawkins also runs a wrestling school on Long Island, New York. But he’s probably making great money just “doing the job” right now. And there’s a reason he does it: he’s good at it. Hawkins truly is a “star maker.”
Next up, this giant may be heading for retirement.
Big Show has been around for a long time. He’s currently sidelined with a pretty serious injury that may end his career. Also, he doesn’t have a lot left to prove. He’s won titles and proven himself to be one of the most durable wrestlers in modern history.
Another star from Japan is up next.
Hideo Itami was touted as a big signing – and at the time he was. Itami was a superstar in Japan and was the first of several foreign stars to come to NXT. Unfortunately, while Itami has been pushed he’s also been plagued with serious injuries that have kept him off TV for nearly a year of time combined. He went to 205 Live, which a lot of fans might see as a demotion. Itami has also had to tune down his “strong style” striking for the WWE, so he might want to go back to Japan just so he can hit someone again.
Our next star is not only big in Japan too, but is probably the biggest name in the world!
[tps_title]John Cena [/tps_title]
I know, I am as shocked as you are. But John Cena’s days of big-time wrestling are behind him. He’s moving to Hollywood and is becoming a big-time actor. He has the charisma and the comedic timing to make it. I think he has more range than The Rock, really. Cena has what it takes to make it big. He still loves wrestling and WWE. But like The Rock, Hollywood might not allow him to wrestle if he becomes too bankable. Expect him to do a lot more guest appearances like this .
Our next wrestler has been given so few opportunities that every time he gets one it is a huge deal. But they never seem to last. Maybe he’s tired of it?
Zack Ryder has been signed with WWE in one form or another since 2006. He has won several titles and received several pushes. But he’s also been at the bottom of the barrel more times than not. He was even sent down to NXT a few years ago. Granted, that helped revitalize his career but he’s never really moved beyond the lower mid-card. Ryder has to be frustrated, I suspect. He’s a big enough name that he could leave WWE and make decent money. But after all this time, he is still popular with fans and is used by WWE for a variety of social media ventures.
Next is another long-time fan favorite who may be testing the waters soon…
It seems that Dolph Ziggler is always on the verge of leaving WWE. But this time it might be happening. It doesn’t help that he’s playing a character who is increasingly frustrated with his place on the roster and with other more successful wrestlers. He has voiced a desire to give Hollywood a try. He has already tried out stand-up comedy to mixed reviews. We will see, but I would bet Ziggler sticks around for a while longer.
Next up, a meteoric legend who isn’t done with wrestling quite yet.
[tps_title]Daniel Bryan [/tps_title]
Even though he recently returned to action in WWE, Daniel Bryan could be eligible for a return to indie wrestling once his WWE contract expires. He’s all but admitted that he’s training to return to the ring after WWE . I don’t know how wise this is. He’s confessed to a dozen concussions, a lot of them before he even came to the WWE. I know Bryan loves wrestling but he has a wife and daughter to think about. I don’t want him to be 50 with Parkinson’s and a failing memory. But it is his decision. However, if he stays in WWE he will have a company watching out for him. I don’t know who watch out for him on the indies, though.
From one small star to the biggest star of them all!
[tps_title]Brock Lesnar [/tps_title]
Lesnar’s return to WWE has had its up and downs. His match quality has decreased significantly in the last two years, though. Lesnar also is considering a return to UFC. Lesnar is notoriously a hermit who lives in isolation on a farm in rural Canada. He’s made millions for just showing up and sporting the belt. It wouldn’t shock me if when his current contract is up, Lesnar heads back to his farm.
Up next, Brock’s greatest rival.
Who knows with the Underatker? We all thought Roman Reigns retired him at Wrestlemania 33. Instead, the Deadman returned at WrestleMania 34 and the Greatest Royal Rumble. He is also wrestling in July for WWE at Madison Square Garden. Taker may never retire.
Did we miss anyone on our list?
Does Dolph Ziggler leave first? Share your thoughts in the comments below.