WWE likes to own any name or property mentioned on their television programs. That way nobody can make money on those properties except for them. They recently changed another name for that very reason.
The company also put down a third party ban not too long ago. As of October 2nd, Superstars can only use their real names on streaming platforms with the company’s permission. A Superstar’s real name has a lot more value if it is the name that they use on television.
During Wrestling Observer Radio, Dave Meltzer explained that WWE changed Denzel Dejournette’s name to Desmond Troy because they wanted to have ownership of it.
“So Desmond Troy is formerly Denzel Dejournette you know college wrestler. [His old name] was better, but his old name was his real name and that’s why [they changed it.]”
WWE appears to be going away from the idea of letting Superstars keep their own names. This was the case for Matt Riddle, Keith Lee, and others, but WWE is still distributing their own custom names. It helped that Lee and Riddle established themselves on the indies first, but even that isn’t a guarantee WWE will let anyone keep their old name.
We’ll have to see if WWE lets another Superstar keep their real name in the future, but WWE obviously loves owning intellectual property.
Transcription by Ringside News