It’s no secret Vince McMahon loves the body building industry almost as much as the pro wrestling business. In the early days of the WWE and when Raw first started showing up on TVs across America, Vince was always looking to combine the two, whether it was some weird weight-lifting competition or just simple advertisements by companies like ICO Pro.
Fair to say he wasn’t ever really able to meld the two together, but over the years he’s shown time and time again his affinity for big dudes with muscles on top of muscles. If you want to know what 80s wrestling was all about, that’s a great place to start, jacked dudes that were accepted because of their size and not their work rate. Who cares if he could flip off the ropes or work a thirty-minute match? The WWE was (and still is) always giving wrestlers with “presence” a chance, even if their skills are limited to punches, kicks, and body slams.
Sure, there have been notable muscle heads who have come through and shown they are just as talented as others, guys like Brock Lesnar and Triple H, just to name a few. Unfortunately, there have been a whole lot more that have passed through the curtain with much less talent and ended up finding other places of employment. So, with that said, here are eighteen muscle heads that WWE wants you to forget!
To give you a sense of his career, he’s most remembered for three things; his weird peanut butter colored teeth, kicking a fake baby into the crowd, and saying “It’s not my fault” as a catchphrase. At 6’8” and 286 lbs. Snitsky was one of those head-scratchers that managed to last in the WWE for five years, but managed to never do anything too significant.
Sure, he somewhat looked the part of a monster heel, but his gimmick and just overall look was too comical to really take him seriously. He eventually asked for his release from the company where he's now a pitchman for crap you don’t need.
16 Chris Masters
With his chiseled physique and unbreakable Master Lock, Masters was looking to make it towards the top of the WWE with the help of a dramatic entrance and a decent enough ability to talk on the mic. Unfortunately his pushes came to sudden halts for failing the WWE’s Wellness Program not once, but twice due because of (depending on which report you want to believe) painkillers, steroids, and even mental illness due to his addiction.
He went from solid mid-card to suspended, to injured, to suspended (again), and released in a matter of months in 2007. WWE took another chance on him in 2009, but he returned much leaner and WWE never really gave him a major push during the two years he was with the company. He now works the indy scene and for companies like TNA and GFW.
15 Nathan Jones
Pictures don’t do justice to how absolutely monstrous Nathan Jones was, so to compare; Brock Lesnar is billed at 6’3”/286 lbs. where Jones was an amazing 7’/351 lbs. Most of you can picture how Brock dwarfs most wrestlers, well Jones has a whole nine inches and sixty plus pounds on “The Beast.”
Jones had a ton of problems though which led to a very short lived relationship with the WWE. First, he had visa issues working in the U.S. (he’s Australian), WWE then nixed their original plans to make him Undertaker’s protégé, he was then sent down to improve his skills which cost him months of TV time. Finally, he quit the company (while they were touring in Australia) due to the rigorous travel demands that WWE required of their wrestlers. Jones is indeed the biggest man on this list, but his heart wasn’t in the business. These days, he’s been able to carve out an acting career playing mostly hulking brute characters.
14 Sean O’Haire
O’Haire was one of those big men who had talent, but didn’t quite reach the level that he should have, which wasn’t necessarily his fault. When WCW was bought up, he was one of the more talented young workers that WWE could have taken hold of but because he was a “WCW Guy” he wasn’t given the same respect. They kept him in a tag team (with Chuck Palumbo, who he teamed with in WCW) where he found mild success before being sent down for more training, returning in a Devil’s advocate gimmick, he would tell people to not go to church, commit adultery, and just be generally bad.
O’Haire only lasted three years in WWE before moving to the indy circuit and eventually MMA. Unfortunately, O’Haire had a history of depression/alcohol addiction and committed suicide (by hanging himself) at the age of 43, it was said WWE knew of these issues and sent him to rehab multiple times, but the demons were too strong.
13 Rob Terry
It might be tough to forget someone who wasn’t even around, which is the case of Rob Terry, the 6’5”/298 lbs. brute that couldn’t make it out of WWE’s development. In 2007, he was signed to the company and began his training, along the way he ended up being Nick Nemeth’s (also known as Dolph Ziggler) bodyguard.
It was barely a year before the WWE decided to release Terry, who (according to Chris Jericho) was originally supposed to become his protégé before getting released. TNA immediately scooped Terry up and was his home from 2009 until 2015; you might remember him as The Freak in the circus-like stable, The Menagerie.
12 The Warlord
Initially coming to the WWE in a tag team known as The Powers of Pain, he and Barbarian destroyed everyone in front of them becoming one of the greatest tag teams ever! Just kidding, they were basically fed to every tag team in the promotion, and were only somewhat watchable thanks to Barbarian’s skills.
After about two years, Warlord went solo coming out in the weird attire you see above, at 6’5”/323 lbs. of popcorn muscles, you can see why WWE gave him a chance. Unfortunately, he couldn't talk or do anything entertaining in the ring so his time with the company was short lived. His most notable clip is when he was eliminated from the 1989 Royal Rumble in two (yes, two!) seconds by Hulk Hogan.
11 Mike Knox
Was Mike Knox a muscle head? Well, at 6’6”/293 lbs. he definitely had the size and he was really unlikable, so let’s just toss him in here just for the heck of it. Starting out in WWE’s version of ECW, Knox was (somehow) given the role of being Kelly Kelly’s boyfriend who turned increasingly jealous of her striptease dancing and admiration of CM Punk.
Punk beat Knox in every match they had together, and he was eventually sent to developmental for training in the tag division and a gimmick overhaul. He eventually resurfaced (as a solo act) on Raw and SmackDown as basically an expert of human anatomy (and how to inflict pain) but ended up losing pretty much every match he was in until WWE released him in 2010. In case you’re not keeping tracking, nobody on this list has won a title with the WWE, wonder how long that will last?
10 Ezekiel Jackson
Ah well, looks like that non-champion streak will come to an end here, Jackson was able to capture both the ECW Heavyweight title and the Intercontinental title during his seven year run with the WWE. At 6’4”/309 lbs. Jackson made everyone look small in the WWE and overall had one of the better runs among the group of wrestlers on this list.
Jackson was moved to SmackDown where he formed a short lived alliance with The Corre (not a typo, WWE just loves to misspell things) and won the Intercontinental title, but fans never really latched on like WWE had hoped. The last two years of his time with WWE was spent mostly on the bench thanks to injuries, more recently he worked for Lucha Underground, known as Big Ryck.
9 Rob Conway
Rob spent the first part of his time with WWE in the tag team, La Resistance, a duo with the tired foreign heel gimmick that just never really took off with fans. WWE put the tag titles on them, but even with that, Rob wasn’t able to reach a high level of popularity.
So, WWE decided to have him go solo and give him an even worse gimmick as “The Con-Man.” Rob was a narcissist who loved to wear shades indoors and lose a stupid amount of matches. They tried dropping the gimmick, but he continued to lose (and not gain any fans along the way), eventually getting released all together after six years with the company.
8 Shawn Stasiak
Son of long-time wrestler Stan Stasiak, Shawn got his chance with the WWE in 1998 debuting as Meat, who was basically the boy-toy for Pretty Mean Sister (Terri Runnels, Jacqueline, and Ryan Shamrock), losing matches all along the way. While he had the look, there just wasn’t much else, he was fired for recording a heated conversation between two wrestlers without their knowledge.
A few years later, when WWE purchased WCW they also kept Shawn under contract, giving him the gimmick of just being clumsy and falling over himself all the time. Amazingly, he was given a third awful gimmick where he was known as Planet Stasiak, talking in rhymes and acting all insane, it was awful, he left amicably shortly after.
7 Sylvain Grenier
Starting with the WWE in 2001, it took two years before Grenier was brought into the tag division as part of La Resistance. Despite being a mediocre team, he was able to capture the tag titles four times (once with Rene Dupree and three times with Rob Conway) which could be considered a big thing, but in Grenier's case people barely remember him.
Like most unpopular tag teams go, Grenier was given a shot on his own, where he basically was a French raver, before going to the overused foreign heel gimmick. For whatever reason, WWE reformed La Resistance for a short period before Grenier was released; he then headed to the indies to continue wrestling. Stories from an ex-head WWE writer said he was an absolute nightmare to work with, as he was always late and had zero social skills backstage.
6 Matt Morgan
Have to give it to WWE for jumping on Matt early on, he was a 7’/300+ lbs. guy who could actually move, something that is very difficult to find. Known as “The Blueprint” in WWE’s development promotion (Ohio Valley Wrestling) Matt held their title for six months.
Initially meant to tag with Nathan Jones (who suddenly quit the company), Morgan was paired with Brock Lesnar for a period of time, before getting his own terrible gimmick where he had a stutter and was super defensive about it. That obviously wasn’t going to work and he was released soon after where he went to work in Europe, Japan, and TNA where he found better success. Also, if you’re wondering, yes that’s a very young Zack Ryder in the ring with Matt.
5 Mark Jindrak
Yet another WCW contract that WWE decided to keep when they bought out the company, Jindrak was immediately sent to developmental for additional training for almost two years. When it was time for his big call up he was penciled to be included in Evolution, yes, that Evolution! Along with Triple H, Randy Orton, and Ric Flair, Jindrak was supposed to be the muscle of the group and at 6’6”/265 lbs. he fit the bill.
They went as far as to shoot vignettes including him, but later on Jindrak admitted he was too immature at the time for such a big jump and that he dropped the ball, while also saying Batista was a much better fit. His WWE career was pretty forgettable from there, but he has been able to make a nice home in Mexico working for AAA and CMLL.
His time with The Oddities is probably the only gimmick you might remember him from, but Kurrgan actually had an amazingly long wrestling career that began in 1990 and lasted until 2011. His time with the WWE wasn’t that long as he worked also worked as Kurrgan The Interrogator as a member of The Truth Commission.
It seemed like he was only in the WWE because he was a sizable 6’10”/350 lbs. as his in-ring work was nothing to go wild about and he barely received any time on the microphone. Interestingly, his post-wrestling career became acting where he landed roles in 300, Sherlock Holmes, Hercules, and The Strain.
3 Rene Dupree
Dupree’s father was a wrestling promoter who in turn got Dupree into the business at a very young age, in fact he began wrestling at 14 which helped him get into the WWE at an incredibly young age. He’s most known for winning the WWE Tag titles at only 19 years old, being the youngest to hold any title in the company’s history, as well as the only teenager to hold a title (he was still learning as he's holding the title upside down in the picture).
WWE tried to push him as a solo act, even putting him in title matches, but he just never quite caught on with fans to put him on that next level. As the years went by, Dupree had injures (in particular, a recurring hernia) and a suspension that led to him requesting his own release from the company. Since 2007, he’s made a living on the European and Japanese wrestling scene.
2 Mason Ryan
In 2009, Ryan signed a five-year contract with the WWE and he got exactly five years with the company when he was released in 2014. A mountain of a man, Ryan spent about two years in development before he was debuted as a member of the Nexus group (led by CM Punk at the time). Due to storyline and real injuries Ryan missed quite a bit of time right off the bat, slowing his impact with fans.
When NXT was re-branded as the current developmental brand we know today, Ryan was sent back down in 2012 to re-work his gimmick. He showed up on TV from time to time, but overall couldn’t improve enough for the company and was let go. He then moved to the indy scene for a few years, but is now working for Cirque du Soleil.
Brakus (or Brakkus) was signed by the WWE, but through their working relationships with USWA and ECW, he was sent there to build up his skills and reputation. Working dark matches with the WWE, he finally received some vignettes to build up his debut calling out Triple H and Vader (he faced neither).
Brakus began losing in quick fashion when he was given TV time and was also included in the “Braw for All” tournament (which was a legit boxing match between wrestlers and it was awful). Brakus didn’t know it was supposed to be somewhat real and lost to Savio Vega, while also receiving a bloody nose in the process. He was a body builder who didn’t translate to wrestling at all, so his time was short with the company was extremely short.