With WWE 2K23 being released on March 17th, 2023, the question in our minds is: who will and won’t be playable in the game? After all, there were 228 different wrestlers to choose from last year. However, WWE is a business, and there are certain pro wrestlers from WWE 2K22 that clearly won’t be in this one.

Now before we get into the list of those not involved in the game I want to mention two things.

  • First, I won’t be including legends on the list, as there have been few clear updates on certain wrestlers being in the game. Some have already been confirmed for the WWE 2K23 roster, but others have not.
  • Second, I will include rebrands of Pro Wrestlers focused on their names.

Now that that has been said, lets get into the list of Pro Wrestlers in WWE 2K22 that won’t be in WWE 2K23.

Wrestlers Not Coming Back In WWE 2K23

Stone Cold WWE 2K23

Alexander Wolfe – Wolfe was released by WWE in 2021. While he was in the game last year, WWE 2k22 took multiple years to years to develop compared to other games. His release will not make him available to play in the game.

Ariya Daivari – Davari was released by WWE in 2021. He currently wrestles for AEW and since he is wrestling in a different company, he will not be in the game.

Billie Kay – Kay was released by WWE in 2021.

Cesaro – Cesaro’s contract expired with WWE in 2022. He now wrestles for AEW/ROH as Claudio Castagnoli. He will definitely not be in WWE 2k23.

Danny Burch – Burch was released by WWE in 2022.

Ember Moon – Moon was released by WWE in 2021. She has since signed with AEW/ROH and is currently the Ring of Honor Women’s World Champion.

Fabian Aichner – Aichner is still employed with WWE but has since rebranded to Giovanni Vinci.

Fandango – WWE released Fandango in 2021. He currently wrestles for Impact Wrestling and the NWA. Unfortunately, his association with both companies is why he won’t be playable in the game.

Gran Metalik – Metalik requested to be released in WWE in 2021, which was eventually granted to him. He also has been seen wrestling in AEW and ROH. Metalik will not be in WWE 2K23.

Isaiah “Swerve” Scott – WWE released Scott in 2021. He has since signed with AEW and is wrestling in the ring name “Swerve” Strickland. Heck has even won the AEW tag championships there as well. However, with how better booked he is with AEW, he can only return to WWE if his contract expires in a few years.

Jeff Hardy WWE 2K23

Jeff Hardy – Hardy parted ways with WWE in 2021. He currently works for AEW and will not be a part of WWE 2K23

John Morrison – Morrison was released by WWE in 2021. He has since wrestled with multiple promotions including AAA, AEW, MLW and the independent circuit. With being a part of other promotions, Morrison won’t be a part of the game.

Jordan Devlin – Devlin is still with WWE, but his ring name is now JD McDonagh

Kacy Cantanzaro – Cantanzaro is still with the WWE but has been rebranded. Her new ring name is Katana Chance.

Kalisto – WWE released Kalisto in 2021. He has since made appearances wrestling in AEW, MLW, and many in the Independent Circuit.

Keith Lee – WWE released Lee in 2021. He is now working with AEW and even, at one point, won the AEW Tag Team Championships there with Swerve Strickland. However, he will not be in WWE 2K23.

Kushida – Kushida’s contract expired in 2022. He has since worked with NJPW and AEW since. Unfortunately, his affiliation with both means he will not be playable in WWE 2K23.

Kyle O’Reilly – O’Reilley’s contract expired with the WWE in Late 2021. He has since signed with AEW. As AEW is the competition he will not be appearing in this game.

Lana – WWE released Lana in 2021. Lana has seemingly transitioned out of the wrestling business into acting roles.

Lince Dorado – WWE released Dorado in 2021. He has since worked with other promotions, including NJPW, MLW, etc. He will not be a part of the video game, for sure.

Mandy Rose – Rose was released from WWE in 2022. With how controversial her release was, she is a long shot of even being in the game.

Marcel Barthel – Barthel is employed with WWE but has rebranded to Ludwig Kaiser.

Mickie James – WWE released James in 2021. She made a brief appearance in the 2022 Royal Rumble, but since she is signed with Impact, it is unlikely she will be a part of the upcoming game.

Murphy – Murphy was released by WWE in 2021. He has since signed with AEW and is in the faction called The House of Black.

Naomi – Naomi walked out of WWE along with Sasha Banks. As of now, there has been speculation that she is likely to return to the WWE soon. Even if she does, it’s unlikely there will be enough time for Naomi to be a playable character in the game.

Nia Jax – Jax was released from WWE in 2021. Unless she is brought back in the company (Royal Rumble surprise, anyone?), Jax will not be a part of the game.

Nikki A.S.H. – The Nikki A.S.H gimmick is no more in WWE. She has since been rebranded and went back to her former gimmick and name, Nikki Cross.

Oney Lorcan – Lorcan has actually transitioned into a coaching role with WWE. He has not wrestled for the company for awhile and unless he has a voicing role as a coach in the game, then he will not be in the game

Peyton Royce – Royce was released by WWE in 2021.

Reckoning – Reckoning was a character played by current WWE Superstar Mia Yim when she was in the Retribution Stable. Retribution was a tremendous flop in WWE, and the group was disbanded. So Reckoning will not be in the game, and knowing how the stable panned out, that is probably a good thing.

Samoa Joe – WWE released Joe in 2022. He has since signed with AEW/ROH. He is the current Ring of Honor World TV Champion as we speak. Unfortunately, because Joe is involved with ROH, he will not be anywhere near WWE 2K23.

Sasha Banks WWE 2K23

Sasha Banks РWhen Sasha Banks walked out of the company along with Naomi it was pretty much expected that she was not going to be involved with WWE anymore. Her debut in NJPW as Mercedes Mon̩ pretty much sealed her not being in WWE 2K23 which before her NJPW debut was from 99.98% to 100%

Shane McMahon – McMahon was released after the 2022 Royal Rumble was over. He will likely not be available to play in WWE 2K23 unless he will be part of a DLC.

Slapjack – Slapjack was also a part of the Retribution faction. When the faction broke up that was a clear sign Slapjack was not going to be in a future WWE game. It was solidified when he was released by the company in 2021.

T-Bar – T-Bar is no more in WWE. Not only due to Retribution disbanded, but he has been rebranded. T-Bar is no more as he is now Dijak on NXT.

The Brian Kendrick – Kendrick has mainly worked as a producer the past few years but is currently not under contract with WWE. With the disgraceful conspiracy theory controversy lingering with Kendrick, he is a very long shot to be involved with WWE 2K23.

Toni Storm – Storm was released from WWE in 2021, and she requested her release. She is one of the notable names in AEW’s women’s division now. Unfortunately, there is no way she will be a part of WWE 2K23.

Trent Seven – WWE released seven in 2022. He has made appearances with AEW and it looks unlikely that he will be in the game.

Tucker – Tucker was released by WWE in 2021

Tyler Breeze – WWE released Breeze in 2021. He has returned to the company but in a coaching/trainer role. Unless he has a few lines in WWE Performance Center in training sessions during the game, he likely won’t be involved in the game.

William Regal – Regal returned to the company in January 2023 and is the current Vice President of Global Talent Development. However, it is late to include him in the game when it releases in March. Plus, I have a feeling in AEW’s conditions of allowing Regal’s release that he can’t be in the upcoming video game.

In total, 41 wrestlers from the last game won’t be on this one. So it stinks that I won’t be able to play certain characters in this game—especially Jeff Hardy, Sasha Banks, Cesaro, Murphy, and etc. However I have an understanding as to why WWE and 2K decided to not include any of them in the game as if they are either not under contract or part of a DLC.

I am still very excited when this game comes out and will be delighted to see the new changes to the game. Along with new pro wrestlers that are added to this years game.

WWE 2K23 will be released in March 17th, 2022 and will be playable on PS5, PS4, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, and PC.

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