WWE News: ‘Friday Night SmackDown’ Star Quietly Gets His Name Changed Again

An image of the WWE Friday Night SmackDown logo.
WWE

It appears that WWE has again changed the name of one of its wrestlers, this time doing so to a performer who had gotten such a tweak earlier in the year. According to new reports, Friday Night SmackDown superstar Mustafa Ali is now going by his full ring name once again, months after WWE made the decision to drop his first name going forward.

As reported by WrestlingNews.co, a number of fans noticed this week that WWE had updated Ali’s Superstar page on the company’s website, changing it to reflect his full name. The publication shared a screenshot of the page, which showed the wrestler’s photo, the Friday Night SmackDown Logo, and the same ring name Ali debuted with three years ago when he joined WWE soon after taking part in the company’s Cruiserweight Classic tournament.

In addition to the multiple observations from eagle-eyed fans, Ali himself took to Twitter on Wednesday to confirm the change, updating his information to reflect his full name and mentioning it in both his tweet and the accompanying photo.

It’s not clear whether the name change will lead to greater exposure on SmackDown, but WrestlingNews.co noted that WWE officials have been quite “high” on Ali since he moved from 205 Live to the main roster late last year. At that time, he was placed in a quick feud with Daniel Bryan, who had recently turned heel. The former WWE Champion would, later on, praise the 33-year-old Chicago native for having “a lot of potential,” as pointed out by WrestlingNews.co.

As further noted by the publication, Ali’s most noteworthy match of 2019 took place in March, when he and Kevin Owens unsuccessfully challenged Bryan for the WWE Championship in a three-way match at Fastlane.

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According to a previous report from The Inquisitr, it was also in March when Ali got his name shortened without any explanation, making him the latest in a long line of wrestlers to lose his first or last name while on WWE’s main roster.

“Mustafa means the ‘chosen one’ with an emphasis on being chosen from amongst the people. Name or not, nothing has changed. I fight for the people. I am one of them,” Ali explained at the time, as quoted by Wrestling Inc.

However, recent months have seen WWE do the opposite with some wrestlers whose names were previously shortened. This happened earlier this year to both Erick Rowan and Luke Harper, who both competed under their surnames only while teaming together in 2018 as The Bludgeon Brothers but got their first names back during their recent SmackDown angle with Bryan.