There have been more than a few performers in WWE over the years who squandered their massive potential.
These people should have been major, long-term stars in the industry, but they sabotaged themselves. Whether it was attitude problems, drug abuse or just plain stupidity, these folks never managed to live up to expectations.
With this in mind, let’s have a look at the five most notorious offenders.
On paper, Jack Swagger had everything you need to be a main event player in WWE. He’s tall, got a decent physique and, thanks to his real-life amateur wrestling background, has a genuine tough-guy credibility that allows fans to take him seriously.
But, for whatever reason, WWE management never seemed that keen to push him for much of his run.
After years of stop-and-start pushes, Swagger finally did get a true chance to shine earlier this year when he was paired with Zeb Coulter and pushed into a title feud with World Heavyweight champion Alberto Del Rio.
So, what was Swagger’s response to his shot at the bit-time?
Eh, he proceeded to get himself arrested for DUI and drug possession. What an idiot. No wonder WWE management kicked him back down to the midcard soon after.
Ken Kennedy had charisma. He had a catchy catchphrase. He had a good look. Management seemed willing to invest in him too.
On paper, he had everything it takes to be a big star. So, what happened?
Well, he was injury-prone for one thing. His habit of saying foolish things in interviews was also a problem (like insisting to Fox News the WWE roster was drug-free, only to get busted for steroids soon after).
But the final straw seems to have come in May 2009 when he accidentally dropped Randy Orton on his shoulder during a suplex (Orton was visibly furious). He was released from the company only days later.
Debuting to much fanfare in 2011, hopes were high that the masked Sin Cara, formerly Mistico in CMLL, could be a star in WWE, a younger, healthier Rey Mysterio essentially.
His in-ring performances aren’t what they once were either. He doesn’t look like he cares and, really, why should he?
OK, so Jake “The Snake” Roberts is a fairly big name in wrestling. But think how huge Roberts—a master psychologist in the ring—could have been if he had only managed to keep himself drug-free? He could have surely been a top heel headliner for many years.
On the bright side, Roberts has seemingly turned his life around, with the help of former WCW champion Diamond Dallas Page. Let’s hope it can last.
Thanks to her stunning good looks and charisma, Tammy “Sunny” Sytch rose to the top of WWF in 1997. Indeed, despite not being an active wrestler, Sytch became more of a star in her own right than many of the main eventers.
Sadly, in a common story, alcohol, drugs and attitude problems ruined her wrestling career. Indeed following Sytch’s controversial departure from the company in 1998, Rena “Sable” Lesnar ended up taking her place as wrestling's No. 1 sex symbol.
Considering her personal and legal problems over the past couple of years, any type of a WWE comeback can be firmly ruled out.
Now that management have come out and said they will no longer pay for the star's rehab after she trashed them in interviews really does signal that WWE, and maybe even the wrestling business in general, has finally washed their hands of the troubled valet.