Mustafa Ali recently asked WWE to release him from his contract. Ali has not been used by the company for quite a while. A backstage fight with Vince McMahon was the last straw for Mustafa. WWE is now denying his release. The entire story could have been very different.
Sometimes fate interevenes in professional wrestling. Brock Lesnar wasn’t supposed to beat Big E for the WWE Championship. Roman Reigns tested positive for COVID-19 and plans changed.
Bryan Danielson pushed extremely hard for Ali when he was working with WWE creative. A gauntlet match was set up where Mustafa Ali would last over an hour before being defeated with the idea that it would get him over with fans. Ali was injured just before it was set to take place. According to this week’s Wrestling Observer Newsletter, what happened next was history.
“When Bryan Danielson was in creative, he pushed hard for Ali and a gauntlet match was scheduled for him to go about an hour before losing with the idea it would get him over. He ended up injured in a match with Orton just before that match. Kofi Kingston took his spot in the match, got over and it led to Kingston being slotted to take the WWE title from Daniel Bryan at WrestleMania.
This isn’t to say Ali was going to win the title, as he was not scheduled, but once he returned, his ship sailed. He was given a gimmick as the leader of Retribution but that group failed before they started. At the end of the day, and there are always exceptions, but most people who have the drive to be top workers aren’t going to be happy at 35 while in their prime to not be used.”
Kofimania might not have happened if it weren’t for Mustafa Ali’s injury. Mustafa may have had an incredible gauntlet match that made him a star. Hindsight is 20/20. The situation now is far from what it could have been.
What do you think of this fateful accident? Let us know in the comments!