Akam and Rezar of the Authors of Pain released by WWE

Originally published at https://www.postwrestling.com/2020/09/04/akam-and-rezar-of-the-authors-of-pain-released-by-wwe/

On Friday afternoon, WWE announced that they have released Akan and Rezar, who competed as The Authors of Pain (AOP).

WWE has come to terms on the release of Akam and Rezar (AOP). We wish them all the best in their future endeavors.

Akam (Sunny Dhinsa) and Rezar (Gzim Selmani) began teaming together in 2016 during their time together in NXT. They became the NXT tag champions in January 2017 defeating Tommaso Ciampa & Johnny Gargano at TakeOver: San Antonio and held them until August losing to Alexander Wolfe & Eric Young.

The two were called up to the main roster in April 2018 where they appeared on Raw the night after WrestleMania 34 along with manager Paul Ellering. Immediately, Ellering was eliminated from the act and they were later managed by Drake Maverick.

The two won the Raw tag titles in November 2018 beating Seth Rollins in a handicap match and held them for a month when they lost to Bobby Roode & Chad Gable.

Injuries hurt their momentum as Akam missed the first six months of 2019. The two had been paired with Seth Rollins as part of his faction but an injury to Rezar led to both being off television since March this year.

Selmani, 26, has a background in Mixed Martial Arts with a 6-2 professional record including fights with Bellator and BAMMA. He last competed in October 2014 and holds a victory over Oli Thompson. Prior to MMA, he competed in kickboxing.

Dhinsa, 27, was a high-level freestyle wrestler in Canada and was in the qualifying tournament for the 2012 Summer Olympic Games. He signed with WWE in 2014, which ended his amateur career and any hopes of qualifying for the 2016 Olympics.


1 Like

Yeah, they seriously need to unify their tag belts and have them work the same way the women’s tag titles work because they only have enough tag teams for one tag division rather than for 4 divisions. At least cut it down to one set for the main roster and one set for NXT & NXT UK.

1 Like

Akam spent four years in developmental, Rezar spent three - only to get called up and mismanaged.

What a total waste of time. NXT and the entire developmental system just makes no sense


Sucks to see anyone get released right now, but I was never a fan of them once the bell rang. Characters were good, I really liked the promos they did with the subtitles, but I always found myself fast forwarding through their matches.

I owe my friend 5$ they were retribution. Maybe they will show up with Elring and be the next team in AEW With an old manager.

1 Like

Yes but they were good on NXT meaning, for NXT, it worked out fine and the way it works continues to work out fine for NXT and that’s why it’s the only consistently good wrestling show. WWE main roster not capitalising on it hurts them, not NXT.

I think they would have worked well in that role actually, they are the perfect for the bodyguard archetype. Like I said above, its when the bell rang they became hard to watch.

They worked well with experienced guys. DIY match comes to mind. And War Games. It’s crazy they were a huge part of a period of NXT people love.

But main roster TV matches the style was never a good fit.

Also note my edit above. Rookie mistake.

1 Like

I didnt see a ton of their NXT stuff, but I can see that. Gargano and Ciampa are two of the best in ring workers in NA. Makes sense why those matches were good. I cant say for sure what the reason was, but something didnt click on Raw.

Coming into AEW with Elring could be really cool, switching him for Drake was the biggest botch on them IMO by the WWE.

I thought Ellering left on his own, didn’t want the main roster travel schedule. But agreed that it never worked with Drake, through no fault of their own. Injuries coupled with their most memorable moment being Drake pissing himself.

Getting rid of Ellering did hurt them but WWE could’ve gotten anyone in to do the manager role well as long as they were treated seriously. A comedy goofball as manager was only going to lead AOP down one path. I did like them with Rollins though, don’t know why WWE didn’t think more of that.

1 Like

To be fair, both times they began getting a big push, a major injury was suffered. I dont think they ever would have been separated from Rollins had Rezar no torn his bicep.