WWE has several selfless Superstars who give back to pro wrestling and the company by helping younger stars grow in the business. One such legend is Daniel Bryan, who has helped stars backstage in WWE and played a part in helping them develop as performers.
Mustafa Ali, the leader of RETRIBUTION, has benefitted from the experience and knowledge of Bryan. Ali debuted on the main roster in December 2018 and immediately began a feud with Daniel Bryan, who was then the WWE Champion.
Mustafa Ali on his WWE main roster debut and Daniel Bryan helped him
On a recent appearance on the After the Bell podcast hosted by Corey Graves, Ali spoke about his swift rise in WWE and how Daniel Bryan played a part in it.
Corey Graves asked Mustafa Ali about the transition from 205 Live to the main roster and SmackDown and how he felt when he was called up.
"I remember, I was the last one to be invited into 205 Live, but I was the first guy to leave. It was a lot of pressure as you just don't know. I show up to TV one day and they go 'hey, you're wrestling the WWE Champion Daniel Bryan on SmackDown and it's the first segment... and you have an in-ring promo with him, and this, and then the aftermath.' And you're just like 'you know I'm Ali, right?'
"At the time Road Dogg was producing SmackDown and it was very clearly explained to me - 'this is a one-time deal, you're not full-time on SmackDown, this is just an opportunity'. Bryan being as gracious as he always is, made sure that I made an impact. And that's another guy man, he'll never really confirm to me what happened, and then yeah I made the most of that opportunity and that turned into coming back into TV the next week and then being told there that 'hey, you're no longer on 205, you're a full-time member of SmackDown."
Ali said that the move to the main roster and then challenging for the WWE Championship happened very quickly and that he was surprised by it.
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