Kurt Angle Announces Matt Riddle Will Join WWE Friday Night Smackdown

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorMay 30, 2020

LAS VEGAS, NV - FEBRUARY 04:  (R-L) Matt Riddle kicks Henry Martinez during the UFC 143 event at Mandalay Bay Events Center on February 4, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  (Photo by Nick Laham/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
Nick Laham/Getty Images

Former UFC welterweight and NXT tag team champion Matt Riddle has joined the Friday Night SmackDown roster, per Olympic gold medalist and ex-WWE champion Kurt Angle:

Riddle went 8-3 with two no-contests during his professional MMA career, which ended in 2014. He then switched gears and became a professional wrestler, working on independent circuits through 2018. Riddle got his big break, though, when he signed with WWE that year.

He was assigned to the NXT roster and rose up the ranks quickly, even getting a title shot against NXT champion Adam Cole one year after his debut.

Riddle then did work in the tag team division, competing with Pete Dunne as one half of the BroserWeights tag team that won the 2020 Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic before defeating Bobby Fish and Kyle O'Reilly for the NXT belts.

Their run at the top last only a few months, however, as COVID-19 traveling restrictions prevented Dunne from traveling to the United States from his home in England.

Riddle then teamed up with Timothy Thatcher, but the two dropped the belts to Imperium on May 13 after Thatcher walked out on his partner and left Riddle to face two opponents alone.

He's now received the call to the main roster, however, so it will be interesting to see where the Super King of Bros takes his opportunity from here.

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Ryan Satin of Pro Wrestling Sheet is bullish:

Angle obviously is as well, and there's certainly reason to be after Riddle's successful NXT run.

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