By now, everybody knows that the WWE brand split is coming back. On July 19, Smackdown will go live on Tuesday evenings with what the company has described as a unique roster and storylines, meaning that prior to that date, the promotion's roster will be divided in half. Raw and Smackdown will each be presented as separate promotions on TV.
Each of the new brands will need more talent. Some wrestlers will be brought up from NXT (meaning the developmental territory will need its own influx of talent), but recently, news has spread that the company is also looking for former stars to return to the roster.
There's no shortage of former WWE employees who would make great additions to the current company. Due to cost-cutting measures and a skewed eyed for talent, dozens of superstars have been let go without getting a chance to reach their full potential, and many of those men and women would still be able to contribute today. Here are 20 such wrestlers who should make their return for the brand split.
Just a note: I've purposefully left off wrestlers who are under contract to other major promotions, so Shelton Benjamin, Trent Barreta, and others aren't on the list. Likewise, I've left off stars who have retired or have been out of the business for several years.
20. Chris Masters
When Chris Masters debuted in WWE in 2005, fans weren't impressed. He was another generic muscleman whose skills were questionable. In his TV debut, he proved his worst detractors right by badly injuring Stevie Richards with a Polish hammer. Still, his body won him a lot of opportunities, and he was put into a feud with Shawn Michaels.
After WWE's wellness policy went into effect, Masters lost a lot of weight - and his push. He was released in 2007. In 2009, Masters was rehired, but the company had no interest in using him as anything other than an undercard worker. It was a shame, because by then, he had improved a lot. Masters had good matches on Superstars until he was fired again in 2011.
Many have expected "The Masterpiece" to get another shot by now, but it hasn't happened. Still, he's only 33, and he could still contribute to WWE. He's currently listed as working for Global Force Wrestling, but provided he's legally able, he could make a familiar and beneficial addition to WWE.