The WWE superstars released back in April are currently waiting to return to the ring, but one already has a fresh new name. Erick Rowan was among the nearly two dozen superstars cut due to the coronavirus pandemic economic hardship, but he’s not letting it get him down. Upon heading out onto the independent scene or another promotion, Rowan will go by the ring name Erick Redbeard.
The former multi-time SmackDown Tag Team Champion has chosen a very fitting new ring name that suits him well. It appears as if WWE had no sort of trademark on the “Erick” name. He added “Redbeard” to the end of it for the next stage of his career.
Wrestling Inc. reported that Rowan, whose real name is Joseph Rudd, is paying tribute to his WWE gimmicks with his new name.
His new name was unveiled early on Wednesday as several T-shirts appeared on the Pro Wrestling Tees website. It is evident in all of them that he is not necessarily honoring his old WWE gimmicks, but he’s making them a thing of the past.
— Joseph Ruud (@ErickRedBeard) May 13, 2020
One shirt has a tombstone with the letters “ER” on it for Erick Rowan and his release date. The words “Redbeard Lives” are also scribbled across it to represent his new moniker.
Another shirt details almost every single gimmick that he had in WWE surrounding the head of a sheep. It says “Recycled” at the top of it and features the words “Brother,” “Firefly,” “Spider,” and “Genius” in a circle.
Rowan spent most of his WWE time in The Wyatt Family stable with Bray Wyatt, Luke Harper, and Braun Strowman. Eventually, he would have time on his own as well as in tag teams with Harper and Daniel Bryan.
In the months leading up to his release, Rowan went solo and had a weird gimmick where he carried a covered cage to the ring. When the cover finally came off the cage, the reveal showed a giant spider inside, and it seemingly spoke to Rowan.
Rowan’s former tag team partner Luke Harper went back to his old ring name of Brodie Lee upon his release and signed with All Elite Wrestling. Lee is currently feuding with Jon Moxley (Dean Ambrose in WWE) over the AEW World Championship.
There has been no word on where Erick Redbeard will perform next, but his old WWE ring name is now a thing of the past.