Yoshi Tatsu, Ricochet and Latest WWE NXT Developmental News
Yoshi Tatsu is working to restore his career in WWE's developmental system, while Ricochet's flight path is headed elsewhere.
The shifting tectonic that is the NXT landscape saw Tatsu work to find his way off the bench and into the ring far more consistently. Even after a recent tryout, Dragon Gate star Ricochet won't be joining him. The latest reports explain why WWE passed on the high-flyer.
Other NXT news looks ahead to who will next make it to the main roster.
Of those reported to be near a call-up, there are a number of unsurprising names. On that list is the woman who again appeared on Raw this week but remained in the audience.
For the second week in a row, Emma showed up on Raw. The NXT Diva appeared in the crowd during Fandango's win over Xavier Woods.
The next night she got into the ring at the SmackDown tapings in Grand Rapids, Mich., where she competed in a dark match against Naomi, per WrestleZone.com. The angle where she holds up a fan sign is a way to introduce her to fans, while this recent bout against one-half of The Funkdactyls is preparation for working on a bigger stage.
Emma's popularity has grown exponentially at NXT, and it appears that WWE is ready to see if her dance-happy act translates to Raw and SmackDown.
Next Prospects Headed for Main Roster
Emma's recent appearances on Raw are clear indications of her making the main roster soon. She is set to be joined by her rival at NXT and a foreign power couple.
Wrestling Observer, via WrestlingInc.com, reports that "the NXT stars slated for call-ups the quickest are NXT Women's Champion Paige, Emma and the team of Rusev and Lana."
Alexander Rusev's imminent rise to the main roster is no surprise. He has been working several WWE live events as well as tussling with main-roster Superstars on NXT, including Kofi Kingston.
It's logical to have him and Lana come up as a pair, as she provides sex appeal, depth to his character and can serve as his mouthpiece.
NXT fans have to be thrilled that Paige will soon be a part of WWE as well. She is a compelling performer who would make for a great rival opposite Natalya or AJ Lee. Having Emma come up with her is a smart move, as those two have had some standout performances together.
With those additions, the WWE Divas division is going to dramatically improve.
Word on Ricochet's Tryout
"The Future of Flight" was one of many independent wrestlers to attend a series of WWE tryouts in December, per WrestleZone.com. New word has since emerged on why Ricochet didn't get a deal.
He reportedly impressed officials, but his size didn't. Wrestling Observer, via WrestlingInc.com, writes that WWE didn't extend him an offer because "he was too short and they already have guys on their roster who can do the high-flying that he does."
Not being big enough was also a major factor in why the company didn't sign Davey Richards and Eddie Edwards, per Wrestling Observer, via WrestleZone.com.
WWE passing on that tag team and the dazzling Ricochet is a sign of what shape the company wants the developmental roster to take. After signing guys like Kalisto and Sami Callihan earlier, the recent trend is to shy away from wrestlers under six feet tall.
Indy stars of smaller stature like Ricochet (5'10'', 163 lbs) are still getting tryouts, but it's going to take something massively impressive during those to convince WWE to take a chance on them.
Tyler Breeze Works House Show
Alexander Rusev isn't the only NXT prospect receiving big opportunities. Tyler Breeze has been working against WWE Superstars as well.
On Jan. 18, Breeze took on Justin Gabriel at an event in Hammond, Ind., which was described as "a boring, slow match," per ProWrestling.net. Working that show in itself isn't a promise that he'll be on the main roster. It is, however, a chance for the company to evaluate him.
He's grown into his self-absorbed character, but as the fans who saw his recent bout against Adrian Neville on the Jan. 15 NXT show know, he's more than just a gimmick. Breeze showed great potential in that match.
The next step for him is maximize every minute he has in the spotlight, on NXT or at future WWE live events.
Fans may have forgotten that Yoshi Tatsu works with the company with as rarely as he's a part of WWE programming. Like a major league pitcher heading down to Triple-A, he is now working on his skills at the developmental level.
Tatsu is a speedy, athletic and exciting in-ring performer, but he has struggled thus far to gain traction in WWE. His fans will be hoping that his dedication and added training will earn him new opportunities.
Earning a consistent spot on WWE TV is tough enough with the amount of big names on the roster. NXT prospects on the rise like Alexander Rusev are going to make Tatsu's journey an even more toilsome one.