RIKISHI DEVELOPMENTAL
Name
Rikishi
Real Name
Solofa Fatu
Date of Birth
October 11, 1964
Place of Birth
...
Hometown
...
Debut
1985
Rikishi

Alexander Rusev, the developmental wrestler who made his debut at Royal Rumble 2014, was trained by Rikishi. His relationship with the former WWE star helped help progress in the industry a lot quicker than a lot of other guys who have tried to make it to the main roster.

January 29, 2014
Alexa Bliss
A lot of eyes stay focused on the developmental program in WWE because that is usually where the next star will come from. The latest person to be viewed as the next one to be elevated to the main roster is Alexa Bliss. The diva has impressed management over the last couple of weeks, and some are even saying that she has moved past Ashley Flair in line. She is already ahead of Bayley and Sasha Banks at the moment.
October 29, 2014
Undertaker
Good news for wrestling fans who hope that the Undertaker remains in the industry in some sort of capacity after retirement. The legendary performer has agreed to work as an adviser for the WWE developmental program. He will make the occasional trip to the WWE Performance Center and provide evaluations and advice to the performers and the trainers.
October 24, 2014
Bret Hart
Some interesting stuff came out of a recent interview that Mark Henry did with Newsday. The former world heavyweight champion revealed that he met Rock in Canada while he was playing professional football. Henry was up there training with Bret Hart and his family. Henry recruited Rock into joining WWE with him. While they were in developmental, the two of them even shared an apartment.
October 11, 2014
Maria Kanellis
Friday was a big day for Maria Kanellis. She is now a married woman. For those of you that do not know, her husband is ROH star Mike Bennett, whom she has been dating for approximately three years now. There were talks of WWE bringing him into their developmental program a while back, but nothing has surfaced since then, so the belief is that the ship has sailed on that.
October 11, 2014
Nick Dinsmore
Nick Dinsmore has been released by WWE yet again. This time, though, he was functioning as a trainer for the developmental program. Dinsmore, who formerly wrestled for the company as Eugene, spent a year with the company, and the belief is that management opted not to renew his contract once it expired. Some are saying that this move was done for budgetary reasons.
October 2, 2014
Kenta Kobayashi
Reports have surfaced that Prince Devitt and Kenta Kobayashi are going to be promoted to the main roster very soon. The two of them are established international stars, and management is not going to have them languishing in the developmental program. WWE knows that the promotion might upset some of the guys that have been in WWE NXT for a while, but it is a move that they want to do.
September 30, 2014
Prince Devitt
Since WWE likes to own the copyright to the names of their performers, most everyone is given a new moniker when they sign a contract. Prince Devitt is no exception. The international star will now be using the name Finn Balor while he works through the developmental phase. Depending on how fans react to the name, Devitt will more than likely be bringing that name with him to the main roster.
September 25, 2014
Ashley Flair
Earlier this month, it was revealed that WWE pays their developmental wrestlers approximately $25,000 a year. It has now been discovered that the amount is only for the male performers. The divas in WWE NXT, such as Ashley Flair, Bayley and Sasha Banks, are paid $50,000 a year, which is twice as much. The reasoning behind that is because management feels that the girls have more expenses in maintaining their looks.
September 18, 2014
Darren Young
While the hot rumors are pointing to Darren Young being eventually revealed by WWE as the man underneath the bunny suit, a lot of fans have been wondering who has been portraying the character on television as of late. Reports have surfaced that developmental wrestler Sami Zayn has been the one in the suit. He apparently portrayed the character on Monday Night Raw and at live events.
September 17, 2014
Triple H
Professional wrestling and football have long had a connection, as a lot of players from the gridiron have successfully made the switch to the squared circle. Triple H wants that tradition to continue, so WWE is now targeting more football players to join their developmental program. While there are a couple of guys already on the roster with athletic backgrounds, the company is looking for guys with more name value. WWE is also willing to pay these guys more money than the wrestlers.
September 15, 2014
Adrian Neville
Yesterday, it was revealed that a couple of the WWE NXT performers have been booked for upcoming episodes of Monday Night Raw and Smackdown. Some further details have now been reported. Sami Zayn and Tyler Breeze are only booked for a couple of weeks, while Adrian Neville, who is currently the heavyweight champion in developmental, is scheduled until the end of October.
September 14, 2014
Adrian Neville
Last week, wrestling fans were dazzled by Adrian Neville, Sami Zayn, Tyler Breeze and Tyson Kidd during a tag team match on Monday Night Raw. You can expect more of that in the near future, as the WWE NXT stars are being booked for more television appearances. Reports have surfaced that Triple H is the one pushing management to feature the developmental wrestlers more frequently.
September 13, 2014
Kenta Kobayashi
When he finally signed a developmental contract with WWE, many fans were under the impression that Kenta Kobayashi might be one of the rare exceptions who get to keep using their names. However, management opted against that and changed his name to Hideo Itami. The reason fro WWE doing this is because they want to be able to own the rights to the name in case he becomes a big star and leaves someday.
September 12, 2014
Kenta Kobayashi
It has now been revealed that WWE pays their developmental wrestlers approximately $25000 a year. There's usually a two or three year commitment involved as well. An established guy like Kenta Kobayashi may be receiving a higher salary, however. The average amount is definitely less than what some of these guys with name value can make on the independent wrestling circuit.
September 11, 2014
Ashley Flair
There are rumors floating around that a title change could be taking place in WWE NXT very soon. Bayley might be given the women's title during the middle part of September. Reports are floating around that Ashley Flair is on the verge of being given a promotion to the main roster in about a month, so she would need to drop the belt to someone else in developmental.
August 28, 2014
Kevin Steen
After finishing off his commitments, Kevin Steen has now officially reported for duty with WWE. The former ROH champion posted on Twitter that it was his first day at the WWE Performance Center. While he is viewed as one of the best performers on the independent wrestling circuit, the belief is that management will keep him in developmental, so he can simplify his in ring style to suit the audience.
August 25, 2014
Yoshi Tatsu
When Yoshi Tatsu was given a release by WWE, he was devastated by it because he had been working so hard in developmental to get back to the main roster. However, he is not one to give up on a wrestling career. Reports have surfaced that he will be heading back overseas to sign a contract with New Japan after he finishes up his commitment on the independent circuit.
August 24, 2014
Kevin Steen
While online fans are quite aware that Kevin Steen was one of the best performers on the independent wrestling circuit over the last couple of years, WWE is not treating him any more special than other performers that they have in the developmental program. Management views him as just another wrestler, and they're going to keep pushing for him to lose weight before giving him much of a chance at a promotion.
August 13, 2014
AJ Lee
Rumors are going around that Ashley Flair has moved to the front of the line for a promotion from developmental to the main roster in WWE. There are some roadblocks in her way, though. Total Divas is set to become a major focus again very soon, so the writers will put an emphasis on them when writing Monday Night Raw. Flair might also have to wait a bit longer if Paige picks up more momentum in her feud with AJ Lee.
August 12, 2014
Kevin Steen
Rumors have persisted over the last several months that Kevin Steen was set to sign a developmental contract with WWE. It looks to be official now, as the former ROH champion has posed for a picture with Triple H while wearing a WWE NXT shirt. The belief is that he will be focusing more on his weight and physique than actually training for the in ring stuff.
August 12, 2014
Mickie James
Earlier this month, rumors surfaced that Mickie James and Rikishi were candidates to join the Rock at the hall of fame induction ceremony during Wrestlemania 31. Another name that WWE has reportedly been discussing is Kevin Nash, even though the former world heavyweight champion has been vocally against being inducted.
May 17, 2014
Naomi Knight
Another interesting name that has surfaced in the rumor mill as a potential hall of fame inductee at Wrestlemania 31 is Rikishi. The belief is that including him in the same class as the Rock, whom WWE is hoping will be the centerpiece induction at the event, makes a lot of sense. There is also the chance that a reconciliation and reunion with Naomi Knight and Jimmy Uso could be a big story.
May 14, 2014
Rikishi
On Total Divas this week, some drama unfolded when Rikishi failed to show up at the wedding of Jimmy Uso and Naomi Knight. Earlier in the episode, a reconciliation was shown between the two sides, and Rikishi agreeing to attend. The former WWE star took to Twitter afterwards to defend himself, stating that reality television shows aren't entirely factual.
April 21, 2014
Naomi Knight
In a rather shocking bit of news, Rikishi did not show up at his son's wedding. On Total Divas, the wedding of Jimmy Uso and Naomi Knight was the focal point of the episode this week. The two of them reached out to Rikishi backstage when he made a return on Monday Night Raw. The former WWE star agreed to attend, but decided to skip the event later.
April 20, 2014
Rikishi
A video of Jimmy Uso and Naomi Knight asking Rikishi to attend their wedding on an upcoming episode of Total Divas. Apparently, there was a bit of a rift within the family over the marriage. Details were not given in the footage, but the awkwardness of the situation makes it evident.
April 18, 2014
Rikishi
After winning the WWE tag team championship from Billy Gunn and Road Dogg, the Usos decided to pay tribute to their fallen uncle. Through Twitter, Jimmy Uso and Jey Uso posted this special message and picture about Umaga, who is the younger brother of their father Rikishi.
March 5, 2014
Heath Slater
There are talks backstage that Heath Slater has grown really frustrated with his role in WWE. He has only had one televised win since November of 2013. He has also been utilized just once on Monday Night Raw this year, teaming with Jinder Mahal and Drew McIntyre in a losing effort to guest stars Rikishi, Brian Christopher and Scotty 2 Hotty.
March 4, 2014
Jimmy Uso

While watching Royal Rumble 2014, Rikishi expressed his frustration with WWE by posting a message on Twitter. He asked what the company was doing with his sons, Jimmy Uso and Jey Uso. He also stated that the "writers suck" and ended the statement with "bullshit".

January 29, 2014
Rikishi
In a sad bit of news, Rikishi has lost his mother Vera. Her death comes after battling cancer for approximately seven years. She is also the mother of WWE star Umaga.
April 27, 2008
Tensai

Chris Benoit shocked the wrestling world when he was able to win the Royal Rumble and earned himself a shot at the World Heavyweight Championship at Wrestlemania. He was successfully able to eliminate the Big Show to win the match.

January 25, 2004