2016 has been quite the hectic year for the WWE, as they have seemingly done it all with all the changes to the system, which culminated in the brand extension earlier this year which split the roster into two. Even though the roster is now equally distributed, making for more people to get chances at stardom, there have been some underwhelming wrestlers who have remained with the company after the extension even though they offer little or nothing to the product at the moment.
WWE needs to make some roster changes in the next year. They have to remove those who don't provide anything to the company and are wasting their precious segments on WWE TV or valuable spots on the roster. Those who have failed to adapt and thrive in "The New Era" are likely to be fired come next year to make room for someone who actually has something to offer to the company.
The Independent scene in wrestling is booming right now with extremely talented wrestlers. WWE has a chance to sign some of the best talent from around the world in the next year. This will help build the promotion into an even stronger unit by replacing the wasted wrestlers with fresh new faces.
Let's take a look at 10 wrestlers WWE will fire by 2017 and 10 they'll hire.
30 FIRE: Summer Rae
Summer Rae has been ruined by the WWE beyond repair on the main roster, as she was quite the budding wrestler when she was promoted as Fandango's dance partner and became more like eye-candy instead of having the chance at wrestling. Rae has since been part of some bizarre, romantic storylines, the last of which was as the valet of Rusev when he was getting over Lana, as well as becoming the manager of Tyler Breeze when he initially debuted on the main roster. Rae has since been sporadically appearing in WWE, as she was drafted to the Raw brand during the WWE Draft but has since been invisible due to injury. With the women's wrestling scene becoming more and more contested, Rae's time seems to be up at the moment as she's got nothing more to offer and will probably be let go in the next year.
29 HIRE: The Young Bucks
Matt and Nick Jackson have taken the wrestling community by storm in recent years, as The Young Bucks are definitely the hottest tag team in the Independent Circuit as their popularity has reached an absolute peak. Although the Bucks are very hesitant at going to the WWE as they just don't want them to get changed by the company, WWE need to sign this team in order to add some more power and relevance to their tag team division which isn't really that good right now, as it is mostly made up of random superstars. The Bucks might be signed to a contract in Ring of Honor, but a big money call from WWE could persuade them to join the company in 2017. WWE should do all it can to acquire their services, as the awesomeness of these two will definitely help raise the bar of the tag team scene in the company.
28 FIRE: Jinder Mahal
Jinder Mahal was the least likely option to be considered by the WWE Universe when it was discovered that WWE would be bringing back ex-superstars for the Brand extension, as his return wasn't really met with much excitement. Ever since "defeating" Heath Slater for a spot on Monday Night Raw, Mahal has been treated like a jobber who barely even wrestles in the company and his gimmick of "Shanti doesn't make any sense either. Mahal is a massive waste of space right now (even for a jobber) as he has nothing to offer for the product and will mostly see himself out of the company again in the next year. The gamble of bringing him back has backfired badly for WWE, who have realized their mistake and are now making minimal use of him on TV.
27 HIRE: Kurt Angle
Kurt Angle is now finally a free agent after completing his time in TNA, which consisted of almost a decade of wrestling for them. The Olympic Gold Medalist should be brought back by the WWE now that he has no contractual obligations anywhere. Though rumors have surfaced, WWE is hesitant at bringing him back as a part-timer but Angle cannot wrestle full time at this age. Maybe the WWE can help Angle get a deal like Goldberg, where he'd be on the cover of the WWE 2k game and then sign on with the company, as the former WWE Champion is someone who can raise the reputation of the show he is in because of his own popularity. Watching him wrestle some of the big stars right now in WWE can definitely make big bucks for the company, who should finally bring him back to the company and give him one last hurrah before he rides off into the sunset.
26 FIRE: Fandango
It's rather bewildering to discover that someone like Fandango has been with the WWE for almost a decade now, as he spent a lot of years in developmental for the WWE before debuting as this dancing sensation who shocked everyone by defeating Chris Jericho at WrestleMania 29. But it has been all downhill from that peak, as his spark ran off quickly and not many we're really entertained at his dancing skills anymore and he has remained as a jobber for a number of years now, barely being seen on WWE TV. He's currently a part of a team with Tyler Breeze, but even though his tag team partner might get another shot in the near future, his time seems to be up with the company who has kept him for the last 10 years and hasn't really delivered anything great and will probably be replaced with someone better in 2017.
25 HIRE: Ivelisse
Ivelisse was actually signed to the WWE before, as she was part of their "Tough Enough" program back in 2011 and even spent some time in developmental in FCW and NXT later on. She was released later on, but she only got more encouraged by this as she went to the Independent Circuit and became quite the wrestler. She wrestled in the Indy scene and even in TNA for a while, before moving to Lucha Underground where she's one of the most exciting female wrestlers and has proved her ability to fight it out with anybody in the ring. Ivelisse is someone who can bring something more to WWE's Women's Division, as she needs to be brought back and given some time in NXT before taking the big step as she has shown that she is ready for the WWE right now and the company should go back calling for her soon enough and sign her in 2017.
24 FIRE: Curtis Axel
The Son of "Mr Perfect' doesn't seem to be that perfect himself, as Curtis Axel has long become a lost cause in the WWE who is being used as this under-dog jobber by them for a couple of years now. Even though his "Axelmania" and "Never Eliminated" stints were really entertaining, he doesn't seem to be that top level material which his father was as the former Intercontinental Champion cannot be saved at this moment. Also his constant bickering on social media on the lack of opportunities provided to him definitely won't be helping his cause, as Axel seems to be set to be axed by the WWE in the next year and will have to prove his talent somewhere else in the near future.
23 HIRE: Jay Lethal
Jay Lethal has now reached that stage of his career that he honestly has nothing to achieve in the Independent scene anymore, as the former Ring of Honor champion had a very successful stint in TNA before moving back to the Independent circuit where he was solid as well. Lethal has bags of wrestling experience with him and is quite the entertaining character, and the WWE could do with someone like him who can not only put on entertaining matches with his diverse wrestling style, but could also blend himself with their "sports entertainment" part. Lethal is someone who should be the next big signing for NXT where he can spend some months before making his way to the man roster, as this extremely talented superstar needs WWE's success to become a bonified legend and should be given the opportunity to become a world-wide star in the WWE.
21 FIRE: Apollo Crews
Apollo Crews had quite the reputation in the Independent circuit as he travelled all around the world before making it to the WWE, but his time in the main roster has been a massive waste of his potential. Ever since being drafted to Smackdown Live!, Crews has been getting chances at sporadic events and just can't seem to get over with the crowd either. Things got even more humiliating for him sometime back when he lost to Curt Hawkins on a recent episode of Smackdown, as Crews doesn't seem to have convinced creative enough to push him as a star and going by how he's being wasted by the company and doesn't have much to offer, he'll probably be let go (for his own good as well) in 2017 so that he could go back to the Indy circuit which made him a star.
20 HIRE: Will Ospreay
One of the most exciting talents in the world, Will Ospreay can pull of some moves which not many other wrestlers can right now, as the sensational British wrestler is the perfect material for the WWE to take under their wing and mould into a superstar. Ospreay has wrestled all over the world in the likes of New Japan Pro Wrestling(NJPW), Ring of Honor(ROH) and all across Britain as he already has a ton of experience in him and he's only 23! Ospreay could be a perfect candidate for WWE's Cruiserweight Division, as he should be signed by the company next year and given the opportunity to make it big and as far as we've seen of him in the ring, he can definitely take the Cruiserweight Division to new heights with his amazing talent.
19 FIRE: Simon Gotch
Simon Gotch is having a real hard time ever since debuting in the main roster after having a rather successful time at NXT, where he was an NXT Tag Team Champion with Aiden English, but The Vaudevillains have failed to see gold in their main roster stint. Gotch hasn't exactly been that impressive in the ring either, but he really hampered his reputation when he had a backstage fight with Sin Cara, which he lost as well. This put a black mark on his name as Gotch doesn't seem to be doing anything great for making up for this mistake either, as the half of the Vaudevillain's future in the WWE doesn't look so bright as they are jobbing badly right now on Smackdown and Gotch will see his end of days in the WWE next year because of his incapability of making it in the main roster.
18 HIRE: Kenny Omega
The bonified leader of The Blueet Club right now, Kenny Omega has developed himself into an amazing wrestler in the past few years as he has also shown his superb entertaining skills and is one of the most complete superstars, something which the WWE missing right now. Omega was in the WWE before in their developmental territory but couldn't impress then, but he's one of the hottest talents in the Indy circuit right now as the WWE should really look to sign him on for them. Omega has already been teasing a feud with Xavier Woods on social media, as he can bring that entertainment factor with him as well and is someone who can definitely raise the level of the feuds he'll be in. Omega is too good for the WWE to pass on right now, as they should look to get him onboard as soon as possible and let him entertain us with his amazing skills in and outside the ring.
16 FIRE: Jack Swagger
"The All-American American" Jack Swagger seems to be lost right now in the WWE, as he appears at times in WWE TV and then leaves not to be seen again for weeks. The Former World Heavyweight Champion was on top of the world during his early days in the WWE, but has been going through a rough patch in the past few years as his patriotic gimmick can only get him so far in the WWE, as it's mostly used to get some cheap reactions off fans at times or take on Anti-American wrestlers. Swagger's transfer to Smackdown Live! a few months back didn't pay off either, as his time definitely seems to be coming to a sad end in the WWE as Swagger had a lot of potential in him, but a few bad career moves and a lack of a personality held him back from making it big.
15 HIRE: Kazuchika Okada
Kazuchika Okada is one of the most devastating "strong style" wrestlers in the planet right now, as the Japanese Sensation is something who can be perfect for WWE NXT right now with Triple H looking to get in more Japanese "Strong Style" wrestlers in his product. Okada has done it all in New Japan Pro Wrestling, as the IWGP Heavyweight Champion is ready to take the big leap into the WWE where he can show everyone just how devastatingly good he is. Maybe a call from buddy Shinsuke Nakamura could tip him to join the WWE , as Triple H should really focus on persuading Okada to join his promotion as he can bring such a unique style with him to the WWE and show the whole world exactly how "strong" his style of wrestling is.
14 FIRE: Titus O'Neil
2016 hasn't really been that kind to Titus O'Neil, as the superstar was suspended earlier this year for apparently "shoving" Mr. McMahon after Daniel Bryan's retirement speech as he was almost fired by the company, only for Triple H to save it for him. Titus hasn't really been impressive ever since coming back from suspension, as he was given a shot at Rusev's United States Championship but failed to gain that and had a rather bizarre, unconvincing feud with Darren Young later on. His current gimmick of the "Titus Brand" is absolutely horrible as well, as O"Neil seems to be done in the company as he'll definitely be fired next year as his contract is running up and will have to go through some humiliation for crossing the boss before his dismissal.
13 HIRE: Adam Cole
Adam Cole is too charismatic and entertaining to not be in the WWE, as the company just needs to sign him in 2017 as they are in dire need of someone like him. Cole has excelled in the Independent circuit all over the world in the past few years, as the 2 time Ring of Honor Champion is not only very solid and diverse in the ring, but a great entertainer and amazing talker as well. The member of the Bullet Club is someone Triple H needs to persuade to join NXT, as Cole could really help raise the bar in NXT as he's already so good both in the ring and in terms of talking as well. Cole has a year to remember in 2016, as it can only get better for him in 2017 which should be the year he joins WWE and shows the greatness of Adam Cole to the whole world!
12 FIRE: Sin Cara
Sin Cara might be this mystical, superhero-like character in the WWE right now, but Hunico has had quite the horrible reputation backstage and his bad reputation is going to get him fired soon enough. Currently stuck in a limbo, Cara's a part of the Cruiserweight Division but isn't really promoted ahead of the actual cruiserweights and has found life to be very difficult after being drafted apart from Kalisto in the WWE Draft. Sin Cara's horrible backstage attitude which has led him to get into fights with Simon Gotch and Chris Jericho in the past few months will mean the end of him soon enough, as 2017 will be the year in which the Sin Cara character is finally pushed out of the WWE as it was a massive failure after all the initial hype some years back.
11 HIRE: Ricochet
Ricochet has to be one of the most amazing, high-flying wrestlers in the world right now as he has the amazing physique which makes his wrestling even more impressive, as "Prince Puma" from Lucha Underground has quite a lot of eyes on him after impressing as a Luchador. Ricochet is currently a free agent after recently leaving Lucha Underground and this is the perfect time for the WWE to pounce on him and get him to the company, as he could really shake things up with his amazing talent in the ring and could be a real revelation in the company. He could do with their Cruiserweight Division or even beyond that, as Ricochet needs to be signed by the WWE in 2017 so that everyone can witness the sensational wrestling style for which he has gathered much praise recently.
10 FIRE: Paige
Paige had the potential to lead the "Women's Revolution" into success in 2016, but she screwed up her own career by making some horrible mistakes in the year. Her blind love for Alberto Del Rio reached new heights when she was suspended alongside Del Rio for violating WWE's Wellness Policy earlier this year, as she accompanied him as he left the company for a new adventure. She again violated the Wellness Policy just as her 1st suspension was coming to an end, making for another suspension and is now recovering from injury. Paige wrecked her own career in the WWE and with the heights in which the Women's Wrestling has reached right now, she doesn't seem to have a place remaining in WWE anymore as she's probably going to be fired for her horrible attitude this year and shown the door early next year.
1 HIRE: Broken Matt Hardy
Matt Hardy was almost a forgotten figure in the wrestling community before 2016, as he decided to change things up and came up with this "Broken" gimmick where he dyed his hair and started to act really weird. This slowly got over by the fans who were really digging into his senseless yet hilarious feud with Jeff Hardy, rendering him "obsolete" and making him become "Brother Nero". Hardy has been arguably one of THE best things to happen to wrestling in 2016 and the WWE need to capitalize on this hype and sign him up in 2017. Even though he is contracted to TNA, a persuading offer and letting him keep his "Broken Brilliance" alive in WWE could make him return to the company as Hardy could be amazing in the WWE. He could become the top star he couldn't in his previous stints as his Broken Brilliance needs to be utilized by the WWE who need to sign up this amazing madman as soon as possible.