10 Failed WWE Stars Who Re-Invented Themselves In Japan

When at first you don't succeed, try your hand at puroresu...

WWE don€™t have a particularly good track record when it comes to giving rookies good gimmicks and keeping fans interested in them for long periods of time. For every great gimmick they come up with it seems as though there are five gimmicks that last only a short while before the wrestlers portraying those gimmicks are lost in the shuffle and, eventually, given their walking papers. For many of those failed stars, their post-WWE career is a difficult one. Going from wrestling in front of crowds of 15,000 in large arenas to wrestling in front of 150 people in a high school gymnasium has to be incredibly demoralizing, and even though there are hundreds of independent wrestling promotions out there desperate to book a WWE alumnus, the prospects are a bit bleak. Of course, there is another option for these failed WWE stars: Japan. Although many promotions in the orient are slowly beginning to emulate WWE€™s entertainment-oriented approach, at their core is a philosophy that emphasizes athleticism more than promos and storylines. Because of that different mentality, many wrestlers that didn€™t manage to succeed in WWE went to Japan and managed to achieve a great deal of success. The ten wrestlers on this list were all employed by WWE at one point or another, were let go because they couldn€™t succeed in management€™s eyes, and flourished while wrestling in Japan.

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Alexander Podgorski is a writer for WhatCulture that has been a fan of professional wrestling since he was 8 years old. He loves all kinds of wrestling, from WWE and sports entertainment, to puroresu in Japan. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Queen's University in Political Studies and French, and a Master's Degree in Public Administration. He speaks English, French, Polish, a bit of German, and knows some odd words and phrases in half a dozen other languages.