Shelton Benjamin is one of the most accomplished athletes on the WWE roster, and its great to finally have him back with the company.
Following a successful collegiate wrestling career, Benjamin began pursuing a career in professional wrestling, and was immediately scooped up by WWE. He was sent to the company's developmental territory of Ohio Valley Wrestling (OVW) in 2000, before making his main roster debut on SmackDown in 2002. During his run in WWE he racked up three Intercontinental Title runs, two Tag Team Championship wins, and a United States Title win. In April of 2010, however, Benjamin was one of many Superstars who were released form their contracts, opening up the door for him to work the indie scene.
Benjamin worked for promotions such as Ring Of Honor (ROH), New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW), and Pro Wrestling Noah (PWN), before resigning with WWE last year. He was expected to make his in-ring return to the company last year, however, a shoulder injury delayed that return.
He now teams with former American Alpha member Chad Gable, forming a tag team of tremendous athletes with extremely impressive ammeter wrestling backgrounds. As for how the ball got rolling for Benjamin to return to WWE, he noted in a recent interview with WWE.com that former ring announcer Lilian Garcia actually played a huge part in his return (quotes via IWNerd):
“WWE: When did you first start talking with WWE about a potential return?
BENJAMIN: I had always been waiting for the call, instead of pursuing the call. And, this is going to be very out of left field for anyone that hears this, but me coming back actually started with a conversation during WrestleMania 32 weekend that I had with Lilian Garcia.
WWE Wow. What did she say to you?
BENJAMIN: I ran into her and we were just talking. Basically, she slapped some sense into me. She said, “Put yourself in a position to succeed. Don’t be afraid to initiate.” You’re never too old to learn something new. When someone is giving you wisdom, the source can come from anywhere.
WWE: And then what happened?
BENJAMIN: Later that same afternoon, I ran into [WWE Talent Relations VP] Mark Carrano. We had a little quick chat. He basically said, “Are you interested in coming back?” And I was like, “Well, of course.
"I didn’t actually hear from him again until June when I’d just returned to Japan for a month-long tour. Of course, then I got home and that’s when things started to unravel”
What are your thoughts on Benjamin claiming that Garcia is responsible for getting the wheels turning on his WWE return? Have YOUR say in the comments section below, and the fourth episode of GiveMeSport’s WWE podcast is here!
Check it out via this link: https://soundcloud.com/user-818579649/gms-wwe-podcast-money-in-the-bank-fallout
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