16 former WWE Superstars become freeagents on 21 December as their non-compete clauses expire. The WWE released many talents on 21 September and Wrestling News' Andrew Ravens is reporting they will be available to work wherever they want. Let's look at the list compiled by Ravens:
Ali, Aliyah, Shelton Benjamin, Rick Boogs, Dana Brooke, Dabbo-Kato, Elias, Quincy Elliot, Yulissa Leon, Mace, Mansoor, Riddick Moss, Riddle, Shanky, Top Dolla, Ziggler
H/T Wrestling News
While NXT Superstars are normally under a 30-day non-compete clause, Ravens noted:
Although most NXT stars are under 30-day non-compete clauses, there were some main roster stars still under their same deals who were working in NXT and had to wait out the 90-day non-compete with the rest of the main roster stars from Raw and SmackDown.
H/T Wrestling News
Most of the talent have years of experience working in the WWE. Likewise, they suffered the same fate as their colleagues; a lack of a sustained push. In at least one case (Riddle), it seemed repeated disciplinary problems led to the decision to release them.
Every one of these Superstars have something to offer to wrestling organizations whether they're indie promotions, smaller promotions such as the NWA and IMPACT (soon to be TNA) Wrestling, or larger promotions such as New Japan Pro Wrestling or AEW. There are other promotions as well. The biggest questions for each wrestler are:
Do They Want to Work a Full-Time Schedule?
Some wrestlers are more inclined to work a part-time schedule. They may have outside projects. They may be tired of the WWE's full-time schedule and want a lighter schedule. They may feel a part-time schedule benefits their physical and mental health.
Can They Get the Amount of Money They're Used to in the WWE?
Anyone who signs with AEW likely won't have this problem, especially the high-demand talent. As WrestleLamia has pointed out before, wrestlers ranging from mid-card to upper-card talent can often command surprisingly good money on the indie scene.
How Important a Push is to Them
Some wrestlers want to use this new opportunity to prove they can draw and succeed, given the right push. History has shown released Superstars who thrived outside the WWE after their release and were invited back to the WWE. Some wrestlers may want to return, while others just want to prove themselves. In some cases, a wrestler doesn't care about their push and subscribe to the "pay me, pin me" school.
Whether They're Still Interested in Wrestling
Some released wrestlers have been competing for decades and may not want to return to any competition (part-time or otherwise). There are opportunities for wrestlers (especially former WWE Superstars), including convention appearances, working in non-competitive activities such as training or producing, and jobs that have nothing to do with wrestling.
Fans will likely see some of these former Superstars on TV soon or at a wrestling show. You may recall that Dolph Ziggler is already scheduled to compete in Puerto Rico's World Wrestling Council.
Where would you like to see these former WWE Superstars wrestle?
Photo Credit: WWE