On Thursday, the first significant WWE Releases of superstars since the company’s recent merger with the UFC into TKO Group Holdings will take place. These include previous champions and seasoned employees.
The job layoffs came less than a week after WWE started firing Stamford-based workers amid rumors that the merger could result in the loss of up to 100 jobs. As a result, a number of well-known employees were fired on Friday.
The list of celebrities cut loose by WWE on Thursday includes both main roster and NXT athletes. News will be added to this list as it becomes available.
1. WWE Releases Dolph Ziggler
On September 21, 2023, Dolph Ziggler was let go by WWE, ending a nearly two-decade tenure with the organization. In addition to being a former World Heavyweight Champion, two-time Intercontinental Champion, six-time United States Champion, and two-time Raw Tag Team Champion, Ziggler was one of the WWE Superstars with the longest tenure.
Many people were surprised by Ziggler’s release because he was still a part of an ongoing plot. Recently, Ziggler and Bron Breakker engaged in conflict for the NXT Championship.
Why WWE decided to let Ziggler go is unknown. Some think it was an attempt to minimize costs, while others think it was a move to make room for fresh talent.
WWE’s roster suffers as a result of Ziggler’s release. One of the most skilled and adaptable Superstars in the organization was Ziggler. He was well-liked by fans and well-known for his humorous talents and his capacity to put on entertaining matches.
The future of Ziggler is currently up in the air. He might contract with a different professional wrestling organization or start his own business. But it is obvious that Ziggler is a gifted performer with a lot to contribute to the wrestling industry.
2. WWE Releases Shelton Benjamin
On September 21, 2023, WWE release Shelton Benjamin. He had previously been released in 2010, and he had worked for the corporation for 17 years. Benjamin has held the titles of WWE Tag Team Champion, Intercontinental Champion, and American Champion in the past. Additionally, He has also won Money in the Bank twice.
WWE’s decision to fire Benjamin remains unknown. He enjoys popularity among fans as a Superstar. Benjamin might join a different professional wrestling organization or seek other opportunities. However, it is evident that Benjamin is a gifted performer with a lot to contribute to the sport of wrestling.
3. WWE Releases Mustafa Ali
On September 21, 2023, Mustafa Ali was let go by WWE, capping a six-year tenure with the organization. Ali was a well-liked Superstar who was well-known for both his outspokenness on social media and his high-flying style. Ali was still a part of an ongoing plot when he was released, which surprised many people. Dominik Mysterio and Ali recently engaged in conflict over the NXT North American Championship.
It is also important to remember that in January 2022, Ali asked WWE for his release, but his request was turned down.
The WWE roster has been damaged by Ali’s release. One of the most gifted and charming Superstars in the organization was Ali. He served as an inspiration for many fans as one of the few Muslim wrestlers in the WWE.
At this time, Ali’s future remains uncertain. He might contract with a different professional wrestling organization or start his own business. However, it is evident that Ali is a gifted performer with a lot to contribute to the sport of wrestling.
4. WWE Releases Elias
Elias spent six years working for WWE until being let go on September 21, 2023. Elias was well-known for his musical prowess and sense of humor. Many people were surprised by Elias’ release. After an absence of several months, Elias has recently rejoined WWE and was engaged in a conflict with Kevin Owens.
Elias’ release by WWE is unknown for what reason. But it’s also important to remember that Elias had long been on the outs with WWE management. Elias allegedly received a 30-day suspension for improper actions in 2022. WWE’s roster suffers as a result of Elias’ release. His musical performances never failed to win over the audience. But it’s obvious that Elias is a gifted performer with a lot to contribute to the wrestling industry.
5. WWE Releases Emma
WWE released Emma, aka Tenille Dashwood, for the second time. This happened after WWE announced an event in Australia in 2024. Emma joined WWE in 2011 and competed on the NXT brand as a clumsy dancer. She was released in 2017 and wrestled for Ring of Honor and Impact Wrestling, where she won the Impact Knockouts World Tag Team Titles. Emma returned to WWE in 2022 but was released again recently.
In other words, Emma was released from WWE twice, once in 2017 and again in 2023. She had a successful career on the independent scene in between, winning the Impact Knockouts World Tag Team Titles.
6. WWE Releases Aliyah
WWE let Aliyah go on September 21, 2023. Aliyah was a well-liked Superstar among the audience, and she was well-known for her agility and adaptability in the ring.
In August 2023, Aliyah and Raquel Rodriguez had recently won the WWE Women’s Tag Team Championship. Aliyah, though, had not been on television since she and Rodriguez lost the championship the following month.
Why WWE chose to release Aliyah is unknown. It is important to keep in mind, though, that Aliyah has recently had trouble winning over her admirers. Although still quite young, Aliyah had a lot of potential. Aliyah could join a different wrestling organization or pursue other opportunities.
7. WWE Releases Dana Brooke
Ashley Sebera, a former Arnold Classic bodybuilding and fitness competitor, joined WWE in 2013 and was given the ring name Dana Brooke. She was a regular performer on NXT, and was promoted to WWE’s main roster in 2016. She has been involved in several high-profile matches and comedic backstage segments, and has won the WWE 24/7 Championship 15 times.
9. WWE Releases Rick Boogs
Eric Bugenhagen, a former NCAA Championships qualifier, joined WWE in 2017. He went through many name changes before becoming Rick Boogs, a guitar-playing, working-out superstar on WWE TV. On the main roster, he tore his quadriceps/patellar tendon, but returned after nine months in January 2023. Boogs is a two-time 24/7 Champion.
In other words, Bugenhagen is a talented wrestler who has overcome a serious injury to return to WWE. He is also a two-time 24/7 Champion, which is a comedic title that is contested 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
10. WWE Releases Top Dolla
Top Dolla, a member of the wrestling group Hit Row, has been released from WWE for the second time. He was first released in 2021, along with the rest of his group. In 2022, Hit Row returned to WWE, but was released again recently.
Top Dolla is a former football player who signed with the Miami Dolphins in 2013 as an undrafted free agent. He had 20 total tackles before being released. In 2020, he signed with WWE.
11. WWE Releases Dabba-Kato
Dabba-Kato (Babatunde Aiyegbusi) played American football in Poland before joining WWE. He was signed by the Minnesota Vikings in 2015 but was released later that year. He made his WWE debut in 2020 as Dabba-Kato in a Raw Underground segment. In 2021, he teamed with Apollo Crews and was reintroduced as Commander Azeez. He divided his time between NXT and the main roster. In 2023, he used the Dabba-Kato name again and competed in several bouts in NXT before being released.
Dabba-Kato is a versatile athlete who has competed in both football and wrestling. He had a brief stint in the NFL before joining WWE, where he has been involved in several storylines. He was released from WWE in 2023, but he may return to the company in the future.
12. WWE Releases Mace and Mansoor
Mace and Mansoor, two members of the wrestling group Maximum Male Models, were released from WWE a few hours after the initial release list was announced.
Mansoor was the first wrestler born in Saudi Arabia to compete in WWE. He was discovered by WWE during a tryout in 2018. Mansoor was a regular competitor when WWE held events in Saudi Arabia, and he joined the main roster in 2021. He teamed up with and feuded against Mustafa Ali. In 2022, Mansoor and Mace joined LA Knight’s stable, Maximum Male Models, and have been together since.
Mace, also known as Brennan Williams, was drafted by the Houston Texans in the 2013 NFL Draft. He joined WWE in 2016 and initially worked as a member of the WWE commentary team. In 2020, Williams joined Retribution and was renamed Mace. He kept this gimmick until he joined Maximum Male Models.
13. WWE Releases Shanky
On September 21, 2023, WWE released Shanky, capping a three-year tenure with the organization. With his stature, power, and dance prowess, Shanky was a beloved Superstar among his audience. For the Intercontinental Championship at the 2023 WWE Superstar Spectacular, Shanky had recently challenged Gunther.
Why WWE chose to release Shanky is unknown. But it’s also important to remember that Shanky had been sidelined for more than a year owing to an injury. But it’s obvious that Shanky is a gifted performer with a lot to contribute to the wrestling industry.
14. WWE Releases Quincy Elliott
Quincy Elliott, also referred to as Congo Crush on the independent scene, joined WWE in 2022 and has only made appearances on NXT Level Up and NXT.
15. WWE Releases Bryson Montana
WWE Release Bryson Montana go on September 21, 2023. He had participated in NXT Level Up competitions and had been with the company since 2021. Montana was renowned for his agility, charisma, and capacity for relating to the audience.
16. WWE Releases Yulisa Leon
Yulisa Leon is a second-generation wrestler, following in the footsteps of her father, Bronco. She signed with WWE in 2021 and was given the ring name Yulisa Leon. She competed on 205 Live and NXT, but suffered a torn ACL in 2022. She returned to the ring in May 2023 and reportedly requested her release from the company shortly thereafter.
In other words, Leon is a talented wrestler who was sidelined by a serious injury. She returned to the ring in 2023, but it seems that she is no longer interested in working for WWE. It is unclear why she requested her release, but it is possible that she was unhappy with her booking or that she has other opportunities in mind.
17. WWE Releases Ikeman Jiro
WWE Release Ikemen Jiro on September 21, 2023. He had competed on NXT and had been employed by the business since December 2020. He mostly engaged in wrestling at NXT house shows and on episodes of Level Up. Jiro was still entangled in a tale that was going on. The NXT Cruiserweight Championship was the subject of his most recent conflict with Cameron Grimes.
At this moment, Jiro’s future remains undetermined. However, it is evident that Jiro is a gifted performer with a lot to contribute to the sport of wrestling.
18. WWE Releases Brooklyn Barlow
Yes, Brooklyn Barlow and a number of other Superstars were let go by WWE on September 21, 2023. She had wrestled on NXT Level Up and had been a part of the organization since 2021. NXT TV had not yet featured her.
It’s also important to remember that WWE has been launching a number of young Superstars recently.
Although Barlow’s departure is a setback for her own career, it also serves as a reminder of how cutthroat the wrestling industry is. WWE is a competitive industry, and it is challenging to enter and remain there.
But it’s obvious that Barlow is a gifted performer with a lot to contribute to the wrestling industry.
19. WWE Releases Riddick Moss
Michael Rillis is a former college football player who became a professional wrestler. He joined WWE in 2014 and wrestled under the name Riddick Moss. In 2020, he made his debut on the main roster as Madcap Moss and won the 24/7 Championship. After a year away from wrestling, he returned in 2021 and feuded with Baron Corbin. Before he was released from WWE, he teamed up with his real-life partner Emma and won the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal
Hardy was released from WWE.
Contrary to Aew the WWE, the WWE added so much talent that it struggled to consistently hook viewers. Additionally, Vince McMahon appears unwilling to retain Talent on his payroll if they aren’t being used. It’s an issue that many of the released wrestlers are facing.