WWE's policy when AEW first burst onto the scene was to gobble up as many workers as possible and tie them down to ironclad contracts. Now, it appears, that approach has softened. Recent releases (some of whom were major stars) prove that, and it looks like Vince McMahon is no longer keen to talent hoard for the sake of it.
Changed days, but it'll probably change again the next time there's an influx of talent.
McMahon's head is often turned by newbies. Some signings he and his lieutenants made have even doomed others to an inescapable fate - one minute, they're hot property. The next, not so much. That's just how things work in pro wrestling's, 'what have you done for me lately' world. Nothing is certain, at least not for very long.
The big hires in question are included here, and they're accompanied (in brackets) by those they damned to lower-card mediocrity or eventual release. Their arrivals totally spoiled other's chances of catching the boss man's eye. Pushes were scrapped, feuds cancelled and focus went elsewhere.
You won't believe how quickly things can move on in WWE's world. It's actually quite scary how one signing can change everything...
10. Omos (Braun Strowman)
Land of the giants.
Traditionally, that's what WWE was. Hulking beasts with more muscles than moves stalked the hallways of arenas worldwide, and physical size was very much a prerequisite for instant success in Vince McMahon's promotion. 30 years on from that jurassic period, size still counts, but there isn't room for everyone.
Dave Meltzer claimed on Wrestling Observer Radio that the towering Omos played a part in Braun Strowman's recent release. According to Dave, AJ Styles' partner quickly became Vince's "new toy" due to his superior height and size compared to Braun. That left Strowman's 'Monster Among Men' guise redundant.
Of course, his expensive downside guarantee probably didn't help, but Meltzer's sources believe that McMahon didn't know what else to do with Braun creatively once Omos crashed the scene. He, not Strowman, became the go-to giant in WWE circles, and that accelerated one big man's exit.
Fair enough - WWE had burned through everything they had for Braun anyway.