Wrestling factions used to be among the more interesting aspects of wrestling back in the 90s. The New World Order, The Four Horsemen, The Hart Foundation and D-Generation X are all credited for being incredible groups that have lasting legacies. One faction that somehow flies under the radar as being one of the most underrated of all-time is The Nation of Domination. All longtime fans remember The Nation being a fixture in the WWE but it actually started in the smaller United States Wresting Association promotion. WWE took note of the idea and some of the wrestlers working there before building their own version with bigger names.
The group was innovative in the sense that it touched on social issues in America. Most of the NoD members were African-Americans feeling they were being held down and treated with disrespect by those in powerful positions in the wrestling business. A few stars were born in The Nation and almost everyone to join benefited from their time in the group. The thought provoking and overall entertaining of the faction should be remembered fondly for the content they provided to WWE television during the Attitude Era. We’ll look at the various members in both WWE and USWA’s versions to find out what The Nation of Domination stars are doing today.
17 Ahmed Johnson
Ahmed Johnson's WWE career will go down in wrestling history as one of the bigger disappointments. Johnson was meant to join Shawn Michaels, Bret Hart, Kevin Nash and Scott Hall as the new generation of stars the company was building around. The Nation of Domination initially feuded with Johnson. Faarooq and Johnson had numerous matches during their rivalry until Ahmed eventually joined The Nation.
Johnson suffered an injury that forced him out of the faction after a couple of months and his wrestling career continued to go downhill following the injury. After a failed run in WCW, Johnson realized the wrestling business was no longer for him. He returned to college to get a degree in criminology. Johnson has a normal life these days but found his name in wrestling headlines again as one of the many wrestlers to file a class action lawsuit against WWE for concealing the risks of injury.
16 Queen Moisha
The USWA version of The Nation of Domination did not have much success. As seen with the WWE, the idea obviously had potential but just never got off the ground. One member of the faction that not many are aware of is Queen Moisha. That name doesn’t stand out to wrestling fans, but she would later sign in the WWE under the name of Jacqueline.
WWE employed Jacqueline for many years as a staple of the women’s division during the majority of the Attitude Era and beyond. Unfortunately, she never joined WWE’s version of The Nation. She likely would have been used better with the faction as opposed to being a generic background player in the women’s division. Still, Jacqueline’s career ended well with an induction into the WWE Hall of Fame this year. The Hall of Famer claims she isn’t officially retired, so you never know if she’ll have another match one of these days. Apart from that, she says that painting and art keep her busy there days.
15 Shaquille Ali
The name Shaquille Ali doesn’t sound like anyone noteworthy until you realize the person who played that character. Tracy Smothers has wrestled over the past three decades and is still going strong with an active schedule. USWA’s version of The Nation of Domination saw Smothers join under the Shaquille Ali name (a mix of Shaq and Muhammad Ali). The stable never got over in USWA and it’s a shame because Smothers could have done well in the WWE as the token white guy in the Nation.
Smothers made his name later on in another faction when joining the Full Blooded Italians in ECW. The comedy timing of Smothers along with a credible in-ring repertoire helped him add to the F.B.I for a couple of years. Today, Smothers still works on the independent wrestling circuit all over the world. The most noteworthy promotions he wrestles for are Juggalo Championship Wrestling and AIW.
No, this sadly isn’t Elijah Burke. This Elijah was another forgettable member of USWA’s Nation of Domination. Harry Del Rios was the man behind the Elijah character and he worked under various other names throughout his career. The most memorable one had to be the bizarre magician gimmick in the WWE known as Phantasio. After just one televised match, the WWE decided to never use Phantasio again.
Del Rios has continued his career wrestling irregularly on the independent wrestling circuit to this very day, sometimes even performing as Phantasio. You have to feel for him watching The Nation of Domination stable come to the WWE. If he was able to come over with the gimmick, he could have finally had his big chance to shine in the wrestling world. It was never meant to be and Elijah will always be a journeyman in the industry.
Brakkus is another flop in the wrestling industry that hoped to become a big star. WWE signed him due to his bodybuilding background and incredible physique. Brakkus was sent to USWA in hopes of gaining experience that could lead to improvements before a successful WWE career. USWA aligned him with Elijah making him a member of The Nation of Domination by proxy. Thank goodness WWE never thought to put him in their version of the faction.
Everything Brakkus did looked terrible and he showed no ability to thrive in the wrestling business. WWE eventually quit on him, realizing he couldn’t perform in the ring to back up his impressive look. Brakkus retired from the industry in 1999 due to injuries and the unlikelihood of success. The big man now has a family life with wife and kids, along with a career as a personal trainer and sports nutritionist.
12 Sir Mohammad
The forgotten USWA Nation of Domination featured another former WWE star in their version of the group. Sir Mohammad was an integral part of the group but more wrestling fans know him for his time as Mo, from the WWE tag team Men on a Mission. Mo and Mabel actually went on to have a run with the WWE Tag Team Championships before the company split them up to give Mabel a singles heel push.
Mabel's push led to Mo being a glorified manager before getting released from the WWE. Mo unfortunately did not get the call to return to the company for The Nation of Domination despite having a role in USWA. His wrestling career is still going on today, with occasional appearances at various independent wrestling shows. Mo was recently featured on Colt Cabana’s Art of Wrestling podcast and seemed to be in happy spirits nowadays.
11 Wolfie D
The tag team of PG-13 were the only members of The Nation of Domination in both WWE's and USWA’s versions of the group. Wolfie D served as a rapper in the WWE with his partner J.C. Ice. They weren’t showcased as wrestlers but did have a wrestling background that allowed them to take bumps. PG-13 would take a good amount of damage when face wrestlers tried to get at the NoD.
Following his WWE run, Wolfie D continued his wrestling career. Many know him for his run in TNA as Slash in the Disciples of the New Church faction. Unfortunately, his run in TNA also ended abruptly, but Wolfie D still finds places to wrestle. Today, he performs in Traditional Championship Wrestling under the name of Cerebus and teams with Roosevelt in The Hounds of Hell tag team.
10 J.C. Ice
Much like his tag partner Wolfie D, J.C. Ice spent time in both versions of The Nation of Domination. J.C. Ice had a terrible reputation for getting in trouble and never respecting those around him. His lack of reliability likely played a role in the WWE choosing to remove the PG-13 tag team from The Nation.
Dundee is not in the wrestling circles these days but has done quite a few shoot interviews. The perception of JD Ice is that he has a lot of personal issues along with addictions to various substances. His behavior saw him act like a fool and bury many of the people he once worked with. Dundee was actually arrested in 2013 for assaulting a woman outside of the venue of a Mick Foley speaking appearance in Kentucky.
The decision to have Crush join The Nation of Domination in the WWE was a bit surprising, but he was a good fit. Crush was a fixture in the company for many years with a stint in Demolition and various other gimmicks before getting arrested at his home in Hawaii. The bust was for illegally owning a hand gun and buying steroids. This led to the WWE using the real life incident and adding it to the character.
Crush returned from jail with a tougher look. His drastic change in appearance saw him look like a biker with a more intimidating presence than in the past. Crush’s physical stature allowed him to deliver beat downs in a credible manner. The Nation benefited from having him until he was kicked out to start his own biker faction known as The Disciples of Apocalypse. Crush unfortunately passed away at the young age of 43 in 2007, due to drugs in his system causing his body to fail.
8 Clarence Mason
The addition of Clarence Mason to The Nation of Domination was meant to be a play off of Johnnie Cochran. OJ Simpson’s trial was the hot story in America at the time and Mason was an aspiring attorney that happened to love pro wrestling. WWE hired him to defend heel wrestlers and try to use lawsuits to get his clients to the top of the wrestling world.
Mason worked with Jim Cornette and a few wrestlers before officially joining The Nation. The fit was fine and he added a cool dynamic. WWE eventually cut ties with him as they wanted to remove the non-wrestlers from the group. Mason went on to work for WCW before officially leaving the business to return to his career as a practicing attorney in Florida.
7 Savio Vega
WWE signed Savio Vega after he impressed in his home nation of Puerto Rico. The talented in-ring performer received a face push with a memorable feud against Steve Austin. Unfortunately, he could not get over to the point WWE hoped for. That led to the company turning him heel by having him join The Nation of Domination. Vega started to wear dark colors and joined the movement of the growing faction.
There’s no doubt Savio was among the best wrestlers in The Nation but he didn’t fit in as well as the core members. Vega ultimately left them to start his own faction known as Los Boricuas of fellow Puerto Rican wrestlers. Following his WWE departure, Vega has wrestled all over the world including a stint in TNA as a backstage agent and a return to Puerto Rico. At the age of 52, Savio is still going strong with appearances and matches at various shows.
6 Owen Hart
The legendary Owen Hart had a short stint in The Nation of Domination. Following Bret Hart and other members of the Hart family leaving the company in The Montreal Screwjob fallout, Owen was forced to work the rest of his WWE contract. Owen still delivered greatness and needed a new character change. The frustrated worker joined The Nation to try to get the credit he deserved in the big company.
As the only white member of the group when he joined, Hart was able to tap into the comedic aspect of his new role. The feud between DX and The Nation was helped by Owen once again being able to oppose his rival, Triple H. Things unfortunately took a terrible turn for Owen a few years later when out of The Nation and reverting to his Blue Blazer persona. Hart fell to his death from the rafters when attempting to be harnessed to the ring in 1999. Wrestling fans still miss him greatly to this day.
5 Kama Mustafa/The Godfather
Kama Mustafa may be the most underrated member of The Nation of Domination with his presence helping the group during its best days. With prior gimmicks as the silly Papa Shango and the MMA fighter Kama, he could not find a role that fit him until joining The Nation. The physical presence of Mustafa established him as the enforcer of sorts for Faarooq and later The Rock.
Another character change saw him achieve the biggest success of his career as The Godfather. WWE surprisingly inducted him into the Hall of Fame this year and he has a good relationship with the company. Godfather still makes occasional appearances at independent wrestling shows, but is basically retired at this point. His post-wrestling career sees him manage a strip club in Las Vegas.
4 D'Lo Brown
The slow ascension of D'Lo Brown in The Nation of Domination helped him breakout as a talented performer in the WWE. Brown was arguably the most consistent in-ring worker in The Nation to last through all the changes in the company. His finisher, the Frog Splash, was one of the best in the company. His body of work later propelled the wrestler to stints as both the Intercontinental and European Champion.
Brown had a strong career in the WWE for a few years before getting released in 2003. His wrestling life continued with him having a long run in TNA as both an on-air character and a backstage agent. For whatever reason, TNA let him go and he still makes appearances in various independent promotions. Brown mostly wrestles internationally. He’s also a Certified Public Accountant, giving him a life outside of the ring. In addition, the veteran was seen making a few extra bucks as a bouncer in Vegas a couple years back.
3 Mark Henry
WWE signed Mark Henry due to his background representing the United States in powerlifting during the Olympic Games. Henry had great potential but he struggled immensely in the early days. WWE could not get him over as a face even with a patriotic gimmick. The decision to have him join The Nation of Domination was a no-brainer as he was a great muscle to back them up.
Henry learned a lot working with Faarooq, The Rock and many other talented performers. It took him many more years but Henry finally improved enough to make an impact in the WWE. Mark won the WWE World Heavyweight Championship in 2011 and remains employed by the company today. The veteran still serves as a locker room leader that will likely retire soon and enter the Hall of Fame in a few years.
The original leader of The Nation of Domination was Faarooq. Ron Simmons signed with the company following a successful run in WCW as the company’s first African-American World Champion. Following early struggles in the company, WWE made him the leader of The Nation and the faction started to make an impact. Faarooq did a great job leading them with most of the promo responsibilities falling on his shoulders.
The Rock joining the faction saw him usurp Faarooq as the new leader and eventually kick him out. Simmons continued to thrive in the WWE teaming-up with Bradshaw to form the APA tag team. WWE inducted Simmons into the Hall of Fame and he makes the occasional appearance on television. The retired Simmons is well respected and is treated like a legend by fans. Most associate his time in The Nation as his best days in the WWE.
1 The Rock
No one benefited more from The Nation of Domination than The Rock. WWE signed him as a blue chipp prospect due to his third generation bloodline and the obvious talent he possessed. Under the name of Rocky Maivia, his original push as a babyface completely flopped with the fans loathing him. A heel turn joining The Nation changed his career forever.
Adopting the new name and persona of The Rock, we witnessed charisma like no other in wrestling history. The Rock went on to dominate the WWE as an all-time great and is now in Hollywood. This year saw him become the highest paid actor in the world with countless hit films per year. You have to wonder if The Rock would have achieved his potential as a wrestler and an entertainer if he never joined The Nation of Domination.