The brand split in WWE has opened up competition like never before. Both shows feature credible talent up and down the card. Another significant change with the brand split is the number of titles increasing. The WWE Championship and Universal Championship are both meant to be equal titles signifying the top prize for Smackdown Live and Raw respectively. Both shows also have women’s titles and tag team titles for each of their divisions. Raw has the United States Championship as a midcard title and Smackdown has the Intercontinental Championship.
Most wrestlers on the roster have already been held championships on the WWE main roster or will at some point. There is however a small group of wrestlers not anywhere near the level of being successful enough to reach the status of champions. It is hard to envision things changing for these performers to reach that status. We will look at wrestlers currently on the main roster that will never ultimately reach the top of any respective division in the company. Hopefully they can prove us wrong by turning their trajectory around for the better but it remains a fat chance. These are fifteen WWE stars that will never hold a championship on the main roster.
15 Tyler Breeze
Tyler Breeze has the best chance of proving this list wrong, but it is impossible to currently envision him ever holding a title on the main roster. The talent of Breeze saw his career peak in NXT. A few early wins over Dolph Ziggler on the main roster showed potential for a relevant run as a singles star. Breeze instead had his stock fall immensely within a month or two losing all momentum following the call-up before turning into a forgettable act.
Rumor has it Vince McMahon doesn’t see anything in Breeze aside from a lower tier comedic character. This was proved correct when WWE placed Breeze in a pointless tag team with Fandango. The aptly named Breezango frequently will take the loss for the more important stars on Smackdown Live. Breeze is likely never going to change McMahon’s mind in the current tag act, especially not enough to become a champion.
14 Eva Marie
The controversial Eva Marie has not been on WWE television over the past seven months but is still under contract. WWE clearly loved the potential of Eva to become a star for their women’s division at some point. Marie sadly struggled to ever pick up the wrestling part of the job and often remained the worst performer on the main roster.
The standing of Eva in WWE hit a low when she was suspended for violating the Wellness Policy during the biggest push of her career as a heel on Smackdown Live. Marie has not returned to television since the suspension and is rumored to be in the doghouse of WWE. The company is expected to let her contract run out. Even if she does return or sign a new contract, there is no way WWE allows to become a champion given the importance of the Women’s Championships being credible.
13 Drew Gulak
The cruiserweight division on 205 Live and Raw has been met with mixed results. Most of the cruiserweight stars are still struggling to stand out but show some promise. One guy in the division that clearly won’t be able to breakout is Drew Gulak. The bland wrestling style and persona of Gulak just doesn’t cut it in a division badly needing excitement.
Talents like Rich Swann, Cedric Alexander, Jack Gallagher and Mustafa Ali still have work to do but have shown the ability to raise their game with potential to break out. Gulak fails to ever show his promise in the cruiserweight division and is arguably the least relevant full time member of the group. WWE will definitely never risk putting the title of a growing division on the shoulder of someone that has no chance of getting over as a champion. Gulak is an odd fit in WWE in general but even worse in the cruiserweight division.
12 The Ascension
Diehard NXT fans remember the glory days of The Ascension but it was sadly the height of their careers. The tag team work allowed them to shine in the smaller atmosphere of NXT. A call-up to the main roster led to instant failure. JBL buried them on commentary and other veterans publicly ridiculed them before a segment featured the old guys beating them down.
The Ascension have yet to rebound from this and most likely never will. Smackdown Live badly needs tag team depth following the brand split. That should have meant The Ascension would have an opportunity to shine once more. It has not happened yet proving WWE flat out doesn’t believe in them to ever get over. The Ascension may be on the bubble in regards to remaining under contract with WWE for much longer. We can forget about them ever winning gold on Raw or Smackdown Live.
11 James Ellsworth
WWE signing James Ellsworth after a memorable role as a jobber against Braun Strowman was a huge surprise. Ellsworth showed enough in his defeat to earn the attention of Vince McMahon. It landed him a role in the main event feud of Smackdown Live featuring AJ Styles vs. Dean Ambrose. Ellsworth helped Styles defeat Ambrose at TLC 2016 but fell out of that storyline and the main event picture altogether.
The current role of Ellsworth has him playing the comedic role of Carmella’s boyfriend with minimal wrestling. WWE signing Ellsworth to any deal at all was a huge win for the unconventional wrestler. Don’t expect Ellsworth to ever get an actual push as a wrestler or move out of the comedic side of things. As charming as the story is, Ellsworth is not at the level of the other in-ring performers in WWE. There’s no chance in hell he ever holds WWE gold.
The talent of Emma is very deserving of being a future champion but it sadly won’t ever happen. Emma has been in WWE system for many years now as one of the original stars of NXT’s women’s division. A few various character changes have already taken place for the young woman with nothing sticking just yet. The recent vignettes of her “makeover” to Emmalina turned out to be a swerve when she announced she was no undergoing the makeover back to Emma.
Reports circulated that WWE believed Emma didn’t commit enough to the Emmalina character so they completely dropped it after months of hype. At the end of the day, that should be a great thing since her heel work as “evil” Emma is stellar. However, failing to execute what the company wants is usually a negative strike. Don’t expect Emma to reach the championship level at any point in her WWE career.
9 Tony Nese
Tony Nese was one of the first signings for the cruiserweight division. Triple H and WWE management were impressed with the work of Nese in the Cruiserweight Classic. The look and talent of Nese makes him a clear choice that would be worth taking the chance on. Unfortunately, Nese has lacked the personality needed to get over on the WWE main roster and it shows with the lack of crowd interest in him.
Fans at the live events rarely show interest in Nese’s matches. Austin Aries, Jack Gallagher and Neville have shown you need the personality to get over in the struggling cruiserweight division. Nese is significantly below the top level of cruiserweight stars. The charisma of Nese has always been his weakness on the independent circuit for many years now and it is going to hold him back from winning the Cruiserweight Championship or any other gold on the main roster.
8 Sin Cara
The career of Sin Cara has gone downhill gradually through the years. WWE hoped to find success with the Lucha Dragons tag team of Sin Cara and Kalisto. The clear talent of Kalisto outshone Sin Cara and they were split up. Sin Cara has not been able to stand out as a singles performer. WWE tried to position him in the cruiserweight division despite the questionable weight limit.
A few backstage controversies led to Sin Cara declining in the WWE power rankings. Sin Cara got into a fight with Simon Gotch that made headlines but was forgiven for it. The bigger incident saw him get involved in a verbal exchange that almost became physical with respected veteran Chris Jericho. WWE clearly has Sin Cara in the doghouse with no end in sight and he’s not going to get a big push anytime soon, especially towards any title picture that exists.
7 The Vaudevillains
Simon Gotch and Aiden English have struggled immensely to fit in on the main roster. The Vaudevillains are members of the Smackdown Live brand but are rarely ever on television. Vince McMahon is reportedly not a fan of their gimmick and it shows in the writing. The only times Gotch and English are used are when WWE needs someone to take a decisive pin or lose quickly. Anyone watching could decipher they are the lowest team on the totem pole.
If The Vaudevillains had any chance of being featured in a more high profile role, the signs would have shown it by now. The NXT run of Gotch and English was by far the high point of their careers as a tag team. There is the chance that they split up and one of them makes it to a midcard title, but they will never hold tag gold together on Raw or Smackdown Live.
6 Dana Brooke
The women’s division in WWE is more important than ever with the company finally trying to present them as equals. However, that leaves little room for error of the female performers hoping to become stars on Raw and Smackdown Live. Dana Brooke is one of the women that are not able to keep up with the top stars of the division due to her subpar in-ring skills and lack of personality.
The athletic ability is there but Brooke just can’t stand out or fit in with the workhorses of the Raw women’s division right now. Charlotte Flair, Sasha Banks and Bayley are on a completely different level. A move to Smackdown Live wouldn’t help either with the plethora of names all being better than her. NXT also featured numerous ladies that will get called up. Brooke is significantly below the rest of her competition and won’t be a future champion.
5 Bo Dallas
The young age of Bo Dallas at 26 years old gives him a chance to resurrect his career. Dallas did hold gold in NXT when winning the NXT World Championship as the top heel in the promotion. WWE called him up to the main roster to continue the “Bolieve” character. It didn’t connect with the larger audience and Bo became one of the biggest flops to succeed in NXT but flop on the main roster.
WWE has continued to use him in an enhancement if he ever appears on television. The skills of Dallas just don’t translate to major success on a higher level of competition with the best in the world on the active WWE roster. Unless something drastically changes in WWE, there’s no chance in hell of Bo becoming a champion. The best bet may be going back down in NXT to be a big fish in a small pond.
4 Jinder Mahal
Jinder Mahal is back in WWE for a second run and is already as irrelevant as he was the first time. WWE actually believed there was potential in Mahal during his first tenure. Rumors revealed that Vince McMahon viewed Mahal as a future top heel. The inability to get over showed how wrong he was and WWE quickly gave up on Jinder relegating him to a lower card act as a member of the jobber group 3 Man Band with Drew McIntyre and Heath Slater.
WWE decided to hire him again following the brand split in need of talent depth. Mahal had one of the most lackluster returns in recent memory quickly becoming a forgotten man. The physique of Jinder is the only thing about him that stands out. Mahal is still below average in every other aspect of wrestling and should not be anywhere near the title pictures in WWE.
The best chance of success for Fandango was his early time in WWE with the character. Fandango defeated Chris Jericho at WrestleMania 29 and fans fell in love with singing and dancing along to his entrance theme. The crazy of “Fandango’ing” appeared to be money the night after WrestleMania but WWE went overboard marketing it to the point where it became uncool. The stock of Fandango gradually dropped through the years somehow starting at the height of his popularity.
Fandango has not been able to find relevance since that time period. The majority of his work comes in comedic matches to put over the bigger stars. Smackdown Live currently shows Fandango in a tag team with Tyler Breeze that is going nowhere. Aside from depth and comedic use, Fandango has no purpose on the show. WWE clearly doesn’t view him as a future champion and his time may be running out.
2 Mojo Rawley
Mojo Rawley’s football background and ties to NFL star Rob Gronkowski made him a valuable commodity to the Performance Center. WWE called him up following the brand split to continue Hype Brothers tag team with Zack Ryder. An injury to Ryder has forced Rawley to work on his own on Smackdown Live right now. The problem is Mojo fails to improve or put out performances that show he belongs on the main roster.
Someone like Baron Corbin sets the example of how to progress in wrestling with minimal experience. Rawley is going the opposite direction as a lackluster performer. The odds are against Moji progressing enough to ever become a champion in WWE. Rawley will get his fair share of opportunities but there’s no shot he proves enough to capture gold (and we're talking belts, not battle royal trophies). His best bet is Ryder returning and the Hype Brothers somehow finding popularity that wasn’t there during the entire run up to this point.
WWE still wants Lana to become an actual wrestler on the main roster at some point in the near future. Lana has only been in one televised match and it took place on WrestleMania 32. That shows just how much WWE values Lana as a future star. Lana trains at the Performance Center and has appeared in quite a few matches on the NXT live events.
The hopes are for Lana to become a good wrestler and huge star for the company. WWE may want her to become a future Women’s Champion but the lack of progress says otherwise. Lana is nowhere near ready to be a full-time member of the women’s division on the main roster. As much as her personality and looks may be marketable, Lana just doesn’t possess the wrestling ability to truly become a credible wrestler in the current WWE landscape. The role of Lana will likely remain a manager rather than a women’s wrestling champion.