The rumored WWE releases coming Friday turned out to be accurate as the company continued their recent paredown of the roster, focusing on both NXT and 205 Live talents.
The final list as of Friday night: Fandango, Tyler Breeze, Tony Nese, Ariya Daivari, August Grey, Ever-Rise (Chase Parker and Matt Martel), Curt Stallion, the Bollywood Boyz (Sunil and Samir Singh), Arturo Ruas, Marina Shafir, Killian Dain, and Tino Sabbatelli.
The majority of the releases were first reported by Fightful or PWInsider.
The 39-year-old Fandango (Curtis Hussey) had been with the company since 2006 when he signed a developmental deal and started with Deep South Wrestling. Wrestling as Johnny Curtis, he won the fourth season of NXT with R-Truth as his mentor but was only up on the main roster for a short period of time.
He developed the Fandango character and was called up to the main roster in 2013, eventually forming Breezango with Tyler Breeze in 2016. They eventually found their way back to NXT in 2019 and won the Tag Team titles — his only gold in WWE over his 14-year run. He thanked Vince McMahon, Stephanie McMahon and Paul Levesque in a tweet.
Breeze had been in the system since 2010 and spent five years in FCW/NXT before being called up to the main roster, paired with Summer Rae in a feud with Dolph Ziggler. The 33-year-old had opened a Florida-based wrestling school with Shawn Spears in 2019.
The 35-year-old Nese started with WWE in 2016 as part of the cruiserweight division and held the Cruiserweight title in 2018-19. He was a 205 Live fixture with some NXT appearances sprinkled in. He did appear once on SmackDown in 2020, losing to Matt Riddle.
Similar to Nese, the 32-year-old Daivari was also a 205 Live and cruiserweight division fixture since starting in 2016. He never held a title during his five years. His brother, Shawn, was recently rehired in a producer role. He tweeted it was time to put sports entertainment behind him and get back to professional wrestling.
Parker and Martel (Jeff Parker and Matt Lee) signed in 2019. They had also been working in both NXT and 205 Live. After nearly two months off, they returned on this week’s NXT in a losing effort to Hit Row (Ashante Adonis and Top Dolla).
Grey (Anthony Greene) signed with WWE in August 2020 and also worked both 205 Live and NXT. In a bit of irony, he will be on Friday’s 205 Live in a match with Grayson Waller while the aforementioned Daivari will face Ikemen Jiro. Grey joked on Twitter that his match is now a loser-leaves-town affair.
Stallion was signed in October 2020 and also was featured on 205 Live. He had recently been cleared to return to action following a wrist injury.
The Singh brothers (Gurvinder Sihra and Harvinder Sihra) started in 2016 and were paired up with then-WWE Champion Jinder Mahal on the main roster in 2017. After nearly two years, they were back on 205 Live. They did each hold the 24/7 title in 2019.
A freestyle wrestling and Brazilian jiu-jitsu ace, Ruas (Adrian Jaoude) signed in 2015 and was in NXT for nearly his entire run, save an appearance on Raw Underground last year. He has been on the sidelines with an injured bicep and hasn’t been in action since last November.
Shafir, a friend of Ronda Rousey and part of the Four Horsewomen group, signed in 2018 along with Jessamyn Duke. Similar to Ruas, she was in NXT for nearly the duration of her run but made her own Raw Underground appearance. She is married to current NXT roster member Roderick Strong.
Ther 36-year-old Dain (Damian Mackie) signed in 2016 and was part of the Sanity faction that started in NXT and eventually called up to the main roster. After the group was disbanded, he returned to NXT in 2019. He tweeted a lengthy thank you and “see you in 90 days.”
Sabbatelli (Sabatino Piscitelli) was the final name reported Friday, released in his second stint with WWE. Signed in 2014, he was best known for teaming with Riddick Moss in NXT. He was cut in April 2020, re-signed in October but didn’t actually wrestle after he returned. In the between time, he worked one match on AEW Dark.