Ultimo Dragon On His Brief WWE Run: They Wanted To Unmask Me And Change Who I Was

Ultimo Dragon says WWE wanted to change who he was, and the company even wanted to unmask him.

The legend signed with WWE in 2003 after he previously competed for WCW. He was one of the top stars in the Japanese wrestling scene, and while he was a featured member of the cruiserweight division during his time in WWE, he asked for his release in June 2004. He subsequently returned to Japan, and he has continued to build on his remarkable list of accolades.

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Speaking with Steve Fall on Ten Count, Ultimo Dragon was asked to share his thoughts as to why his WWE run was so short. He described how the company wanted to change his look, and he wanted to protect who he was.

"WWE wanted to change his image and his look and remove who he was, so he requested to leave because he wanted to maintain who he was. He stayed, there were no bad terms, but he wanted to be who he was and did not want to change who he was," Ultimo Dragon said via a translator.

When asked, Ultimo Dragon stated that WWE wanted to remove his mask. As for the reasoning, he stated that the company didn't see the need for two masked wrestlers when Rey Mysterio was so popular at the time. He noted that he was open to it, but it wasn't what he wanted to do.

“Yes, they wanted to take his mask off. He said he wasn’t against the idea, but they had a lot of ideas for him to remove his mask. They just figured it was something that would be better for them and him, but he was open to it. But there wasn’t something really there for him. So what they said is, being that Rey Mysterio was so popular, they didn’t see a need to have two masked wrestlers. So they wanted to keep Mysterio as the only mask and then remove him from people masked. He says he understands. He’s like as a promoter, I understand why, and I agree with them, but it wasn’t what I wanted to do," Ultimo Dragon said via a translator.

Fall noted that WWE could have made more money with two masked wrestlers and asked whether Ultimo Dragon agreed. In response, he emphasized that those in charge ran WWE the way they wanted, and it was his job as an employee to do what they asked.

“He says in the end, it’s their company, and they have their own decisions on how they want to make it work, and I will follow suit. I’m their employee, they’re the employer, so I’ll do what they need me to do. That’s how every wrestler should be. Listen to what the boss wants, and do. Obviously if it doesn’t work for you, then you can discuss, but in the end, without the boss, then there’s no work, and there’s no wrestlers," Ultimo Dragon said via a translator.

When asked whether anything had been promised to him when he signed with WWE, Ultimo Dragon stated that there wasn't. He noted that he was treated well during his time with the company, and he had nothing bad to say about it.

"There was nothing promised. It was a good contract to come wrestle. He says [during] his time there, he was treated very well. He learned a lot from being there, so he had nothing but good times while he was there," he said via a translator.

In a previous interview, Ultimo Dragon stated that he wants to face Chris Jericho in AEW, and he thinks he's too old for WWE. Check out his comments here.

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