For the second time in less than two weeks, the WWE released another big superstar. WWE.com quietly announced the release of Umaga. The 6’4 350 pound Samoan was wished future endeavors on Monday afternoon.
The news was quite a shocker to say the least. This comes less than two weeks after releasing Mr. Kennedy. One could argue that Umaga was on the same level of superstar as Kennedy. Between losing Batista to injury and this, the WWE is down three top guys in a matter of two weeks.
The circumstances surrounding the departure of Umaga have yet to be revealed. Umaga is a repeat offender of the WWE Wellness Policy. One would suspect that a third strike would explain the immediate dismissal. Other than a third strike, there aren’t many other reasons to explain such a quick decision.
Umaga comes from the long line of Samoan wrestlers with lineage all the way back to Peter Mavia. Umaga is part of a third generation of Samoan wrestlers which include the Tonga Kid, Rikishi, and the Rock. Other than the Rock, this generation of Samoan wrestlers have a hard time keeping their jobs once they get to the WWE.
Earlier this year, Umaga’s cousin Manu was fired from the WWE after a short run in the Legacy. Umaga’s brother, the Tonga Kid had several runs with the WWE that never ended well. The shame of it is that most of the Samoan wrestlers are great workers who just have a hard time adjusting for whatever reason.
Umaga was always thought of as a top guy. A feud with the Undertaker had been in the works for months. It was rumored that Umaga and Undertaker would likely feud once Undertaker returned. Umaga has had several main-event runs which include John Cena, Triple H, and Batista.
I always liked the Umaga character. I find that most of the newer WWE wrestlers are too alike in today’s WWE scene. Umaga was a bit of a throwback to the old-school era of characters and monsters in wrestling. In addition to his look, I always found his matches exciting. One of the few times I ever looked forward to seeing John Cena wrestle was during his feud with Umaga.
For Umaga, he will likely be a big hit on the summer pro wrestling convention scene. Umaga could do multiple appearances reuniting with either his former manager Armando Estrada or his former partner Rodney of Three Minute Warning.
In the ring, Umaga won’t have a hard time getting work. Umaga could easily return to All Japan Pro Wrestling. Umaga could also return to TNA, where he once wrestled with Sonny Siaki. Umaga’s brother Rikishi books a very successful international wrestling company. Umaga could keep himself just as busy as an independent wrestler as he was in the WWE if he wishes.
For the WWE, this opens up a huge void. You can’t just replace a guy like Umaga with anyone. Umaga played a very unique role and character in the WWE. Umaga was able to pull off a monster heel character in 2009 to perfection. In a day where everyone is in on the secret, that is incredibly difficult. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Umaga back by next year’s Royal Rumble.
Man, I’d hate to be the guy that served him his walking papers.
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