The wrestling landscape is leading to many big changes for the talent. All Elite Wrestling (AEW) becoming a major new addition to the wrestling world is giving the talent more opportunities to showcase their skills and make a great living. WWE was once the only promotion for wrestlers to have stability and have the platform show their talent. Ring of Honor and Impact Wrestling are still trying to thrive as alternatives. New Japan’s expansion has made them a viable alternative.
The wrestlers doing poorly in WWE could use a change for an upgrade in their careers. Multiple reports have featured talents unhappy enough to either request a release or wait until their contracts expire. WWE struggles to find television time or competent stories for most of their wrestlers. We will look at the top ten wrestlers that badly need to leave WWE along with the promotions they should join.
10 The Revival: AEW
One of the most blatant instances of wrestlers being unhappy in WWE features the booking of The Revival. Following their NXT success, Scott Dawson and Dash Wilder have failed to capture the same magic on the Raw roster.
Reports circulated that The Revival requested their release and are now waiting until their contracts expire. WWE is responding by humiliating them in a storyline with The Usos that make them look like jokes. All Elite Wrestling is the obvious choice for Dawson and Wilder, given their online feud with the Young Bucks that could create a dream match.
9 Apollo Crews: ROH
Apollo Crews is a candidate for the most underutilized wrestler in WWE. The signing of Crews to NXT was a huge move at the time given his athleticism, potential, and incredible matches on the independent circuit.
Crews fell out of favor with WWE on the main roster due to the lack of charisma and rarely gets any television time. Ring of Honor is desperately in need of new talent to build around. Crews would fit in perfectly and could improve his standing in the wrestling business.
8 Kalisto: Impact
Not all wrestling promotions know how to use luchador talent, given many of them wear masks. Impact Wrestling, however, booked Pentagon Jr. and Fenix as arguably their biggest stars before they left to sign with All Elite Wrestling.
Kalisto is a very underrated talent for WWE that is trying to rise up the rankings as a talented luchador. WWE does not see his potential and his momentum continues to slip away. Impact Wrestling adding Kalisto would help both parties in a major way.
7 Chad Gable: AEW
Chad Gable is another talented wrestler that does not have much television time despite showing his potential many times. The tag team run with Bobby Roode was the most recent stint of relevance, but the split in the superstar shakeup has seen him struggle to break out on Smackdown.
Gable’s great in-ring skills would help any of the other promotions. All Elite Wrestling is hoping to only pick the former WWE stars that can rise to a higher level with them. Gable has nowhere near hit his potential and could become a major player for AEW if he can ditch WWE.
6 Mike and Maria Kanellis: ROH
The couple of Mike and Maria Kanellis found success in Ring of Honor, Impact Wrestling, and New Japan together. Many predicted similar success stories in WWE, but it never happened, with a few variables taking them off television.
A return to 205 Live has not provided much progress, as they still struggle to gain momentum. Social media posts have hinted at Mike and Maria each wanting to end their time in WWE. A return to ROH is the best bet since their close friend and former Kingdom teammate Matt Taven is ROH Champion. Both talents would improve the company since they need new talents following their losses.
5 Luke Harper: NJPW
Luke Harper is the latest wrestler to reveal that he did request his release from WWE. The company did not grant his request to return to television after coming back during WrestleMania weekend. Harper wants to prove he’s still an asset to the wrestling business.
New Japan would be the ideal place to sign Harper whenever he does end up a free agent. The size and agility of Harper make him the perfect talent for NJPW. Harper can hit as hard as the strong style wrestlers, fly with the juniors, and impress the audience enough to move up the card quickly.
4 Robert Roode: Impact
The name change from Bobby Roode to Robert Roode led to fans wondering if Roode was going to get a bigger push on Raw. WWE ended the tag team between Roode and Chad Gable in hopes of finding more success with the singles runs, but neither man is getting much television time.
Roode leaving WWE would give him one more run with another promotion before his time in the business passes him by. A return to Impact Wrestling would be the wise move. Roode would get a hero’s welcome as an Impact legend and Impact would get another respected main eventer back.
3 Lio Rush: ROH
Controversy has followed Lio Rush on his main roster run during his time as Bobby Lashley’s manager. Backstage stories about Rush having heat for disrespecting veterans and turning down a big contract in desire of a bigger one led to him getting removed from television.
Rush reportedly wants a release to prove to WWE how valuable he can be and return for a bigger contract. WWE will likely make him wait, but Ring of Honor is the best place for him. Rush was on pace to become an ROH main eventer before signing with WWE. ROH now values a young rising talent more than ever, and Lio could rise to the top easily.
2 Sasha Banks: AEW
Sasha Banks has not appeared on WWE television since reportedly requesting her release following WrestleMania 35. The decision to end the tag team of Banks and Bayley and having them lose the Women’s Tag Team Championship without much of a plan moving forward angered her.
WWE will likely make Sasha wait until her contract ends unless she decides to return. The unhappiness in WWE could make All Elite Wrestling the perfect place for Banks to move to. AEW wants to have a credible women’s division, and Sasha would be the centerpiece to make it relevant the second she joined. It would give her the chance to live her dream of making history for women’s wrestling.
1 Shinsuke Nakamura: NJPW
Shinsuke Nakamura has become an afterthought on the WWE roster, just a few years removed from being considered one of the biggest signings in company history. The amazing work of Nakamura in New Japan put him on the radar of the North American wrestling fan base.
Nakamura has regressed quickly during his time on the main roster and is currently in a pointless tag team with Rusev. A move back to NJPW would add more excitement to the main event picture there while reminding the wrestling world that Nakamura is a legend. Ending his career in WWE would just diminish the legacy of Nakamura.