Prior to Being the Megastar, What Was LA Knight’s Previous Gimmick?

Published 10/07/2023, 10:30 AM EDT

Follow Us

Friday’s SmackDown was explosive as LA Knight started the show and mocked the entirety of The Bloodline, including Paul Heyman. Every time the crowd chanted “LA Knight”, The Wiseman expressed his utter disgust. And this same energy continued all the way to the end of the promo. All this is a normality for Knight today, but it has taken years of hard work to reach this stage.

America’s Favorite Video Today

So let’s take a look at all the different gimmicks Knight has donned that have helped him reach here.

LA Knight has had 5 character changes to date

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

LA Knight’s real name is Shaun Ricker, and he has been in the wrestling business since the age of 21. He started his career in the independent circuit at Heartland Wrestling Association (HWA). There he wrestled under the ring name Deuce. Knight even won the HWA Television Championship during his time with the promotion. Post that, he moved to the National Wrestling Alliance and was with them for close to 3 years till 2013. He wrestled with his original name and had quite a successful stint, even winning the NWA Heritage Tag Team Championship within just a month of joining the promotion.

After that, he had his first stint in WWE and was signed onto the NXT brand as an enhancement talent. He was given the ring name Slate Randall and stuck with the brand for more than a year. After getting released from the WWE, he went back to the independent circuit and wrestled under the name Eli Drake. Then, from 2015 to 2019, he was with TNA Wrestling (now called Impact Wrestling). This is the longest he has ever been with any wrestling promotion in his entire career. He continued wrestling with the name Eli Drake and found a good amount of success in TNA winning the Impact World Championship.

Trending

Get instantly notified of the hottest WWE stories via Google! Click on Follow Us and Tap the Blue Star.

Follow Us

Rhea Ripley Drops Ruthless Emoji Response, Days After Jey Uso Publicly Declares His Feelings For Her on Raw

Then he joined NWA again for a couple of years before finally joining the WWE. He debuted in the NXT brand with the now world-famous ring name LA Knight. After spending a year on the brand, he was moved to the main roster on RAW. Knight appeared as a villainous manager of the now laid-off Mace and Mansoor under the ring name Max Dupri. Then, after just 6 months, he ended his relationship with Mace and Mansoor and reverted to his LA Knight gimmick that the fans so dearly adore now.

The respect that Knight currently commands from the crowd is no less than that of Dwayne Johnson from the Attitude Era. And that’s exactly how the crowd cheered him tonight, in spite of interference from Solo Sikoa during his match. But what happened after that match?

John Cena, Cody Rhodes, Jey Uso and LA Knight teamed up to fight against The Judgement Day and The Bloodline in a dark match

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Post the match, the unholy alliance of The Judgement Day and The Bloodline took place. They then went on to attack an outnumbered Cena and Knight. But Cody Rhodes and Jey Uso came to their rescue and put both the villainous factions in place.

After the full-on brawl in the ring, there was an eight-man tag team match. John Cena, Cody Rhodes, Jey Uso, and LA Knight on one side, and Jimmy Uso, Solo Sikoa, Dominik Mysterio, and Finn Bálor on the other.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

The villainous tag team put on a good fight, but Cena and Co. eventually emerged victorious. What’s your opinion on Knight’s progression from a regular wrestler two decades ago to fighting alongside the biggest names in the industry?

Watch this story: Fans Call for a Change as Rhea Ripley Is Spotted in a Rare Look on a Live Show

SHARE THIS ARTICLE :

ADVERTISEMENT

Written by:

Christopher Lazarus

463Articles

One take at a time

Christopher Lazarus is a WWE writer at EssentiallySports with over 12 years of experience in radio, television and music streaming. After completing his Bachelors in Chemistry, he moved on to media for his love for the creative aspect. He has been an avid fan of WWF/WWE since the dawn of cable TV in India when main events like 'King Of The Ring' and 'Royal Rumble' were aired on Sundays through VHS cassettes.
Show More>

Edited by:

Donna Eva

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

EDITORS' PICK

America’s Favorite Video Today