Mustafa Ali has recalled how it was Daniel Bryan who pushed for him to be brought on to WWE’s main roster from 205 Live.
Posting on Twitter, Ali said that Bryan commented that WWE needed to invest in the future and specifically asked to work with the high-flyer.
Mustafa Ali first appeared on WWE television back in 2016, taking part in the Cruiserweight Classic tournament. While Ali was eliminated in the first round by Lince Dorado, he impressed in his debut outing. Ali went on to enter the Dusty Tag Team Classic alongside Dorado, before heading to 205 Live.
The Chicago native continued to earn plaudits for his performances on the fledgling show, which eventually led him to SmackDown.
On the blue brand, the ‘New’ Daniel Bryan had recently returned to the ring, winning the WWE Championship for a fourth time. As Bryan sat atop the SmackDown mountain he requested to work with Ali.
Daniel Bryan goes “we need to invest in the future.” They go “who do you have in mind.” Bryan says “give me Ali.”
He may or may not have also called me a “hot, young babyface.” https://t.co/qYBI54p23Y
— Mustafa Ali / Adeel Alam (@AliWWE) April 24, 2021
On December 11th 2018 Mustafa Ali stepped in a SmackDown ring for the first time. During the show, “Hot, young babyface,” Ali confronted Bryan before going on to face him one on one later that night. Ali eventually lost to Bryan, but has remained a fixture on the main roster ever since.
Following the break-up of RETRIBUTION, Mustafa Ali last competed in the Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal on a special episode of SmackDown ahead of WrestleMania 37.
Meanwhile, Daniel Bryan is scheduled to take on Universal Champion Roman Reigns on the April 30th episode of SmackDown. However, if Bryan loses, Reigns’ said that he never wants to see him on SmackDown again.
The match comes after Bryan discussed feeling an “odd detachment” during his appearance at WrestleMania 37. Bryan later said that maybe that feeling is a sign that he should walk away from being a full-time wrestler.