The past seven years in wrestling have given us some incredible Superstars to change the industry. Top stars like John Cena, Randy Orton and others have continued to dominate the company. CM Punk and Daniel Bryan stepped up into the top spots. New names like Kevin Owens, A.J. Styles and Finn Balor became World Champions over the past year. WWE is home to many tremendous talents and success stories. However, the company has also been home to numerous horrible wrestlers. Before changes started to occur in terms of the talent upgrade, there were many terrible performers that struggled to find success.
We'll take a look at some of the worst names that failed to impress in the ring. These talents couldn’t keep up or stand out in a manner needed to keep up with their peers. Most of these wrestlers had horrible careers that ended in disaster. A few have remained employed by WWE with different outcomes. This list will not only name the worst wrestlers in recent memory but we'll also take a look at where they are these days. WWE’s worst twenty wrestlers since 2010 will be examined here along with what each person is up to today.
19 Eva Marie: Model & Actress
You can’t discuss the recent awful wrestlers of WWE without adding Eva Marie to the list. The gorgeous bombshell was signed based off her looks. WWE signed Eva in time for the first season of Total Divas hoping it would improve her star power. Marie would get multiple chances on the main roster and always failed due to being horrible in the ring.
18 The Great Khali: Part-Time Wrestler/Promoter
The Great Khali spent many years in WWE due to Vince McMahon loving having him as an attraction. Khali’s ridiculous size made people stare in awe. An international fan base in India viewed him as their version of Hulk Hogan adding more value to him for WWE. The problem is, he was one of WWE’s worst wrestlers of all time with his size working against him.
17 Rosa Mendes: Mother/Runs Home Workout App
Rosa Mendes never appeared to be a great fit as a wrestler. The stunning woman had the look but her matches were very difficult to watch. WWE tried using her as a manager working with the likes of Primo and Epico, Adam Rose and Fandango. Mendes even tried her luck as a broadcaster doing interviews backstage but nothing worked out in the long run.
16 Vladimir Kozlov: Actor & Stuntman
Vladimir Kozlov is someone WWE tried to push right away on the main roster almost a decade ago. The tired anti-American gimmick was used to try to get easy boos. Kozlov would face off against top names like Triple H and Jeff Hardy in the WWE Championship picture. No one bought him as a serious contender and WWE sent him down the card.
Another guy pushed hard in WWE due to his physique and nothing more was Mason Ryan. Fans viewed him as a poor man’s Batista due to having a very similar look to the top star. Ryan however never achieved the same success. The peak of Ryan’s career was being an extra body in Nexus during its dying days. WWE realized he wasn’t progressing to a higher level needed to thrive in the company and he was released.
15 Brodus Clay: Fox News Personality & Part-Time Wrestler
WWE loved the athleticism of Brodus Clay for a bigger man. Vince McMahon however threw him and the viewers a curveball when debuting him with a surprising character. Following weeks of vignettes and teasers portraying Brodus as a tough guy, he was introduced with a dancing gimmick for comedy. Clay struggled to find long term success with this character culminating in his WWE time ending.
14 Adam Rose: Part-Time Wrestler Heading Towards Retirement
Adam Rose had a chance to break out in WWE following his success in NXT. The character of the partying, fun fan favorite with his incredible Exotic Express of partiers accompanying him to the ring was unique and interesting. WWE tried to replicate it on the main roster but there was zero charm to it. They clearly didn’t commit to it.
13 Rob Van Dam: Semi-Retired
The legacy of Rob Van Dam will always be remembered for his peak run in ECW during the 90s and WWE during the early 2000s. RVD left WWE in 2007 but made a few returns after a horrible run in TNA. WWE tried to use his former name value to create interest multiple times following 2010. Van Dam no longer had the hunger or desire to be the “whole f’n show.”
12 Titus O'Neil: WWE Manager
Titus O'Neil is one of the few names on this list still employed by WWE. The former football player received a WWE opportunity thanks to his connection as a friend of Batista. O’Neil impressed with his athleticism and well-spoken nature. We have seen the latter displayed as one of WWE’s best talkers outside of the ring at various promotional events and working with numerous charities.
11 Bull Dempsey: Independent Wrestler
NXT has given us many success stories like Finn Balor, Sami Zayn and Neville on the main roster. However, there are a few wrestlers to receive opportunities in NXT that completely flopped. Bull Dempsey is one that got a huge push out of nowhere decimating his opponents for a few months. The NXT fans even bought into him for a while until he started working against credible performers.
10 Yoshi Tatsu: NJPW Wrestler
The majority of wrestlers to work with Yoshi Tatsu hated wrestling him. Tatsu’s reputation in the locker room was primarily about how terrible he was in the ring. Another running gag by wrestlers focused on how many great wrestlers in Japan never had a chance in WWE but Yoshi was the one with a roster spot. Things have completely changed over the past seven years.
9 Original Sin Cara: CMLL Wrestler
The original Sin Cara was played by Mexican wrestling legend Mistico. WWE signed him to portray the masked character they initially hoped would replace Rey Mysterio. Sin Cara flopped badly with Mistico botching in memorable fashion quite often. The new wrestler turned into a complete joke instead of the luchador star they hoped for. Between the botches, injuries and a bad backstage attitude, WWE gave him the boot.
8 Cameron: Model
One of the women hired from the old era of models being preferred over talented wrestlers was Cameron. WWE paired her with Naomi to portray dancers for Brodus Clay that would participate in matches as a tag team every now and then. Eventually, both women had to become full-time wrestlers. Naomi was always great and ready for the role, but Cameron was a disaster.
7 Brad Maddox: Off The Grid
Brad Maddox had potential that made WWE try to elevate him into a bigger name. The initial introduction to Maddox saw him get involved in a main event storyline as a referee costing Ryback his title shot against CM Punk. Maddox then moved into a General Manager role showing just how much faith WWE had in him being a bigger star.
6 Hornswoggle: GFW & Independent Wrestler
WWE used Hornswoggle as an attraction for many years. The younger audience loved Hornswoggle at live events going from Finlay’s manager to a part of DX. Hornswoggle would have many other roles but things definitely peaked with D-Generation X. WWE however grew tired of him when he violated the Wellness Policy. Following his suspension, he was kept off television until getting fired.
5 Jinder Mahal: WWE Champion
The most shocking story about a bad wrestler in WWE is the redemption of Jinder Mahal. WWE initially soured on Mahal during his first tenure with the company. The lack of in-ring talent and personality led to him getting exiled to the 3 Man Band comedy act before getting fired. Mahal didn’t even do much on the independent circuit but WWE still felt he was worth giving a second chance.
4 Ezekiel Jackson: Independent Wrestler & Promoter
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Ezekiel Jackson is yet another story of someone with a massive physique that Vince McMahon wanted to push. The high points of Jackson’s career saw him get the last ECW Championship reign before the brand closed and later becoming Intercontinental Champion. Both wins were meant to give him the momentum to move up the card.
3 David Otunga: WWE Broadcaster/Actor
WWE expected David Otunga to become a future top star due to his background. Otunga went to school at Harvard, had an impressive physique and has been in a relationship with mainstream star Jennifer Hudson. Many people thought Otunga would have the strongest career of NXT’s season 1 competitors but he fell way behind the likes of Daniel Bryan and Wade Barrett.
2 Alex Riley: Actor
The look of Alex Riley made him a perennial Vince McMahon favorite before he even wrestled on the main roster. Riley was paired with The Miz during Miz’s WWE Championship reign as an apprentice. It allowed Riley to participate in segments with the likes of The Rock and John Cena. Riley however completely flopped when he was given the chance to succeed on his own.
1 Ryback: Podcast Host & Indie Wrestler
Ryback will go down in WWE history as one of the biggest busts. The company badly wanted him to enter the top tier with John Cena and CM Punk. It was obvious with an undefeated streak similar to Goldberg lasting months, before Ryback entered the main event picture. The lackluster in-ring work and overall mediocrity as a personality doomed him.
Following a few chances to move up the card, Ryback consistently proved he would never be what WWE envisioned for him. Things ended ugly when Ryback trashed the company before his contract expired in 2016. Ryback claimed he would show his value in the wrestling world after leaving WWE. Instead, he only wrestles on the lowest tier of independent shows and hosts a podcast taking shots at all of his old peers.
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