In 2013, it was announced that Brandon Silvestry better known as Low Ki (Senshi in TNA…Kaval in WWE) had retired from pro wrestling. I immediately thought about what a shame it was that the ultra talented Low Ki…never really made it bigger in the states. Most of his success was in the independents and Japan. Nothing to be ashamed about certainly…but could it have been more? That’s what got me thinking about other talented wrestlers who either had a brief cup of coffee in the bigs or never made it up at all…
1. Brent Albright (Gunnar Scott WWE)
We are all aware that when Paul Heyman was booking OVW ( Ohio Valley Wrestling )…he helped get CM Punk to the main WWE roster. Perhaps what some of us forgot….there was another wrestler that Heyman booked strong in OVW…his name was “The Shooter” Brent Albright. A wrestling technician, Albright was involved in a heavy duty rivalry with CM Punk down in OVW. The two battled in countless 5 star matches and impressed both fans and WWE management. So much so, he was called up to the roster before Punk.
When he was called up in the Spring of 2006, he was sent to the Smackdown roster and given the name “Gunnar Scott.” His angle was that he was a protege of Chris Benoit. He even scored a couple of victories over Booker T. Then, inexplicably, he was released from the WWE. Since his release, he did manage to win the independent version of the NWA World title and a few other titles…but his career has been more cold than hot.
2. Jay Ross ( Blitzkrieg WCW )
At the height of WCW’s success…an unnoticed masked cruiserweight was stealing the show with an array of amazing acrobatic and aerial maneuvers. His name was Blitzkrieg and for a brief moment in time looked like a future star and champion for the company.
However, as was most of the cruiserweights and luchadors of that period…was not highly regarded. So while he was one of many cruiserweights stealing the show in the opening of shows….he was also being jobbed and made to look weaker compared to others. Blitzkrieg became so despondent, he retired from wrestling altogether and became a computer technician.
Scott Colton AKA Colt Cabana ( Scotty Goldman WWE )
Sure, Colt Cabana is a legend inside the squared circle. His matches have been top notch, wrestled all over the world…a fixture in Ring of Honor as well as several other indie promotions. He has a widely successful podcast called “Art of Wrestling” and is very good friends with WWE star CM Punk. When he signed a WWE developmental deal…fans naturally assumed he would bring those classic matches with Punk to a WWE ring. So what happened?
For starters he was given a boring, unimaginative name “Scotty Goldman” and for the most part was used as a jobber for other marquee names such as Umaga and Drew McIntyre. Poor Scotty never had a fighting chance with the WWE.
4. Steve Bisson ( Steve Bradley WWE Developmental )
He was at one point, a highly regarded prospect within the WWE’s developmental system. A champion in every promotion the WWE was affiliated with…OVW, Memphis Championship Wrestling….Power Pro…Heartland Wrestling…and the IWA based in Puerto Rico. Many fans and writers compared his style similar to Rob Van Dam’s. He could mat wrestle, he could utilize the top rope, he was exceptional on the microphone and had a tremendous mind for booking. He was for all intents and purposes a…5 tool wrestler.
Yet, he never made it to the main roster of the WWE as he was released after toiling in the developmental system for 6 long years. Whatever the reason, the WWE didn’t see his value to the company. Tragically, after a long battle with heroine addiction and in financial distress…Bisson was found dead in his car. The cause of death was never made public. Despite his unfortunate death, the gimmick that Steve Bradley created for himself while in developmental…”The Mofo” ….a white thug from the Boston area…some… including former WWE announcer Kevin Kelly…believed was the inspiration for the John Cena character.
5. Brett Dibiase
A third generation wrestler….grandson of the late “Iron” Mike Dibiase…son of “The Million Dollar Man” Ted Dibiase and youngest brother to fellow wrestlers…Mike and Ted Jr. Brett had the skills and the other intangibles to “make it.” He made a quick run in at Summer Slam 2009…helping Randy Orton defeat John Cena. It looked like Brett was on his way to joining Orton’s Legacy faction.
Then, out of no where…he was sent back down to developmental. After continued success down on the farm…Brett suffered a few injuries…including a bad knee…which required 4 different surgeries. Brett decided to retire instead of continuing his wrestling career.
There are several other talented wrestlers that never made it to “The Big Time”…too many to even name. These were just a handful that had all the ability in the world…but for several reasons…never lived out their dreams on the biggest stages.