Windham Lawrence Rotunda (May 23, 1987) is an American professional wrestler, signed to WWE, where he performs on the SmackDown brand under the ring name Bray Wyatt. He is the current WWE Champion in his first reign and a former SmackDown Tag Team Champion as the leader of the Wyatt Family.
He previously wrestled for WWE as Husky Harris, most notably as a member of The Nexus. His younger brother Taylor Rotunda also performs in WWE, under the ring name Bo Dallas. Alongside his brother, he has held the FCW Florida Tag Team Championship twice.
He is a third generation professional wrestler, following in the footsteps of his grandfather (the late Blackjack Mulligan), his father (Mike Rotunda), and two of his uncles (Barry Windham and Kendall Windham).
World Wrestling Entertainment (2009–present)
He debuted in FCW in April 2009 with a victory, using the name "Alex Rotundo". He later changed his name to "Duke Rotundo".
On June 23, 2009, Rotundo teamed up with his younger brother Bo, and they defeated Justin Angel and Kris Logan to win the FCW Florida Tag Team Championship. At the November 19 FCW television tapings they lost the championship to the Dudebusters (Curt Hawkins and Caylen Croft).
NXT and The Nexus (2010-2011)
On June 1, 2010, Rotunda was announced as a competitor in the second season of WWE NXT under the name "Husky Harris", with Cody Rhodes as his mentor. Harris made his debut on the June 8 episode of NXT, competing in a tag team match with Rhodes against Montel Vontavious Porter and Percy Watson, which they lost. After a rocky start with his pro Cody Rhodes, Harris turned heel on the June 22 edition of NXT by attacking announcer Matt Striker, just as his pro did the previous week. The following week, Harris lost to Porter in a singles match, and was ranked seventh out of the eight rookies in the first poll. In the second poll, Harris moved up to sixth place, narrowly avoiding elimination. On August 9 the rookies appeared in a six-man tag team match on Raw, which Harris' team won when he pinned Kaval, but his team lost a rematch the following night on NXT. In the poll later that night, Harris climbed to fourth place out of the six rookies. Harris was one of two rookies eliminated from NXT on August 17. Following his elimination, Harris and Rhodes attacked Kaval, resulting in a brawl also involving Porter and Kofi Kingston. Harris reappeared in the season finale of NXT with the other eliminated rookies and joined in on the attack on the NXT winner, Kaval.
At the Hell in a Cell pay-per-view in October, a disguised Harris and Michael McGillicutty interfered in a match between John Cena and Wade Barrett, and helped Barrett win, forcing Cena to join Barrett's faction the Nexus per the pre-match stipulation. Harris' and McGillicutty's identities were revealed on the following day's episode of Raw, though Barrett claimed he had not asked for their help and refused to make them full-time members of The Nexus. The following week, Harris and McGillicutty cost Cena a match against The Miz, prompting Barrett to give them the opportunity to win membership in the Nexus. On the October 18 episode of Raw, Harris and McGillicutty failed to earn a place in the Nexus when they lost to Cena and Randy Orton in a tag team match. Despite of their loss, Harris and McGillicutty were inducted into the Nexus on Raw the following week. In January 2011, CM Punk took over the Nexus and had each of its members put through an initiation. Harris passed his initiation, a lashing from the rest of the group, and was allowed to remain a member of the New Nexus, alongside Punk, McGillicutty and David Otunga. Three weeks later, on the January 31 episode of Raw, Harris and McGillicutty unsuccessfully challenged Santino Marella and Vladimir Kozlov for the WWE Tag Team Championship. After the match, Orton attacked them as revenge for costing him the WWE Championship, and punted Harris in the head, which was used to write Harris off television "indefinitely".
Return to FCW (2011–2012)
Following the punt by Orton on Raw, Rotunda returned to FCW and debuted a new character in March 2011, that of the hockey mask-wearing Axel Mulligan, but the character never made it to FCW TV, and Rotunda continued to play the Husky Harris character on FCW TV. In August 2011, Harris became embroiled in his brother Bo's (the FCW Florida Heavyweight Champion) feud with Lucky Cannon and Damien Sandow; the brothers later teamed up to defeat Cannon and Sandow in a tag match. Later, Harris voiced his displeasure of Bo's relationship with Aksana, and when Bo suffered an injury, his title was vacated and a tournament set up to determine the new champion; Harris defeated Big E Langston to make it to the final, a fatal four-way match against Dean Ambrose, Leo Kruger and Damien Sandow. During the match, won by Kruger, Harris was superkicked by Richie Steamboat at ringside who was aiming for Ambrose. The next week, a scheming Aksana managed to get Steamboat to attack Harris again; Harris also won a triple threat match against Ambrose and Sandow to earn a match for the championship against Kruger, which Harris lost when he was distracted with Steamboat's interference. As a result, Harris and Steamboat began feuding, with their first match ending in a no contest. Kruger later defeated the pair in a triple threat match to retain his heavyweight title, and the following week, Harris defeated Steamboat in a No Holds Barred match. After the pair continued to frequently attack each other, they were suspended for 30 days. Upon their return, Harris defeated Steamboat in a Bullrope match to end their feud. On February 2, 2012, Harris and Bo defeated Brad Maddox and Eli Cottonwood to win the (vacant) Florida Tag Team Championship for the second time. The brothers successfully defended their titles against Antonio Cesaro and Alexander Rusev, but lost their titles to Corey Graves and Jake Carter on March 15.
The Wyatt Family (2012–2014)
In April 2012, Rotunda debuted a new character, Bray Wyatt, who initially associated himself with Eli Cottonwood while in FCW. When WWE rebranded FCW into NXT Wrestling, Wyatt debuted on the fourth episode of the rebooted WWE NXT, taped at Full Sail University, where he defeated Aiden English in a singles match. Wyatt is portrayed as an evil cult leader who believes himself to be more monster than human. The character drew comparisons to Max Cady of the 1991 film Cape Fear and Waylon Mercy. In July, Wyatt suffered a torn pectoral muscle and required surgery. Despite the injury, Wyatt continued to appear on NXT by founding a faction known as The Wyatt Family in November, with Luke Harper as his first "son" and Erick Rowan as his second. Wyatt had his first match back from injury on the February 21, 2013 episode of NXT, defeating Yoshi Tatsu. Wyatt suffered his first loss on the March 13 episode of NXT, when he was defeated by Bo Dallas. On the May 2 episode of NXT, Wyatt was defeated by six-time world champion Chris Jericho. On the May 8 episode of NXT, Harper and Rowan defeated Adrian Neville and Bo Dallas to win the NXT Tag Team Championships. The Wyatt Family went on to feud with Corey Graves and Kassius Ohno, with Wyatt defeating Graves on the May 22 episode of NXT. The following week, Wyatt eliminated both Graves and Ohno during an 18-man battle royal to determine the number one contender to the NXT Championship, although he was later eliminated by Neville. On the June 19 NXT, the Wyatt Family defeated the team of Graves, Neville and Ohno. On the July 10 episode of NXT, Wyatt pinned William Regal when the Wyatt Family faced Graves, Neville and Regal in a six-man tag match.
From the May 27 episode of Raw, WWE aired vignettes promoting the upcoming debut of the Wyatt Family. The vignettes showed the Wyatt Family's backwoods origins and Rowan wearing a lamb mask. On the July 8 episode of Raw, the Wyatt Family made their debut by assaulting Kane. The Wyatt Family continued their attacks on wrestlers like R-Truth, Justin Gabriel and 3MB (Drew McIntyre, Heath Slater, and Jinder Mahal) while sending cryptic messages to Kane asking him to "follow the buzzards". Following another assault, Kane challenged Wyatt to a Ring of Fire match at SummerSlam, which he accepted. On August 18 at the pay-per-view, Wyatt defeated Kane in the Ring of Fire match, following interference from Harper and Rowan. After the match, Harper and Rowan again attacked Kane and ended the segment by carrying him away. Wyatt's next target was Kofi Kingston, who he defeated at WWE Battleground.
The Wyatt Family's next feud began when they attacked Daniel Bryan and CM Punk in late October, leading to Bryan and Punk defeating Harper and Rowan at Survivor Series. The Wyatt Family continued their feud with Bryan as Wyatt attempted to recruit Bryan, and the trio defeated Bryan in a handicap match at TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs. On the final Raw of 2013, Bryan defeated Harper and then Rowan in a gauntlet match so that he could face Wyatt, whereupon Harper and Rowan interfered for a disqualification and beat him down. A frustrated Bryan finally gave up and gave in to join the Wyatt Family. However, after Bryan joined them, they could not find success. This caused Waytt to push Bryan, leading to Bryan attacking all the members of the Wyatt Family on the January 13 episode of Raw to signal him breaking free of the group. At the Royal Rumble, Wyatt defeated Bryan in a singles match, and later at the event, the wyatt Family's distraction cost John Cena his WWE World Heavyweight Championship match against Randy Orton. The family proceeded to attack Cena and left him lying in the ring.
On the January 27 Raw, The Wyatt Family attacked Bryan, Cena and Sheamus during an Elimination Chamber qualifying match against The Shield, thus awarding Bryan's team the disqualification win and costing The Shield a chance to enter the Elimination Chamber match at the eponymous event. Therefore, a six-man tag team matchwas set up between The Shield and the Wyatt Family at the event. The Wayatt's won the match at Elimination Chamber, diabling Dean ambrose in the stands and throwing Seth Rollins through the Spanish announce table before finally pinning Roman Reigns. Later, they interfered in the Elimination Chamber match, leading to John Cena's elimination.
In the weeks following Elimination Chamber, Wyatt continued to torment and antagonize John Cena (including saying that Cena's heroic image was nothing more than a facade), to the point of interrupting his request to enter the Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal to Hulk Hogan. Cena would then issue a challenge to Wyatt for a match at WrestleMania XXX, which was accepted. With Cena successfully resisting the urge to become a "monster" and overcoming interference from Harper and Rowan to defeat Wyatt at WrestleMania. The feud continued after WrestleMania based on the story that Wyatt was capturing Cena's fanbase, which was exemplified by Wyatt leading a children's choir to the ring on the April 28 episode of Raw, with the children later putting on sheep masks. At Extreme Rules, Wyatt defeated Cena in a steel cage match, after repeated interference from the rest of the Wyatt Family and a demonic child. Cena's feud with Wyatt continued with a Last Man Standing match being set up for Payback. At the pay-per-view, Cena buried Wyatt under multiple equipment cases to win the match and end the feud. On the June 13 episode of SmackDown, Wyatt defeated Dean Ambrose to qualify for the Money in the Bank ladder match for the vacant WWE World Heavyweight Championship, which John Cena won. The following night on Raw, the Wyatt Family attacked a returning Chris Jericho which led to matches between Wyatt and Jericho at Battleground, where Jericho won and at SummerSlam, where Wyatt won. On the August 25 episode of Raw, Wyatt was utterly dominated by John Cena in a singles match. Harper and Rowan caused a disqualification, leading to a six-man tag pitting the Wyatt Family against Cena, Show and Henry. Cena submitted Harper to win, then delivered AAs to all three members of the Wyatt Family. On the September 8 Raw, Wyatt defeated Chris Jericho in a steel cage match by escaping the cage. Beginning from September 29, vignettes were shown of Bray Wyatt "setting Luke Harper and Erick Rowan free".
Singles run and feud with The Undertaker (2014-present)
Wyatt returned alone at Hell in a Cell in October, during the main event match between Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins. Just as Ambrose was about to defeat Rollins, the arena lights cut out and Wyatt's lantern appeared in the middle of the ring, spraying out smoke and projecting an image of a ghostly specter while the sound of Wyatt reciting an incantation was heard. Wyatt emerged from the smoke and blindsided Ambrose, who was then pinned by Rollins for the victory. After the match, Wyatt attacked Ambrose. In the following weeks, Wyatt would taunt Ambrose while offering to "fix" him like he had done with Harper and Rowan. Wyatt eventually defeated Ambrose at Survivor Series by means of disqualification after Ambrose used a steel chair to attack Wyatt. The following month at TLC: Tables, Ladders and Chairs, Wyatt once again defeated Ambrose, this time in a TLC match. After being defeated by Ambrose at Tribute to the Troops in a Boot Camp match, Wyatt would defeat Ambrose on the December 22 episode of Raw in a Miracle on 34th Street Fight. This would lead to an Ambulance match on the January 5, 2015 episode of Raw, which Wyatt won, effectively ending their feud. At Royal Rumble, Wyatt competed in the Rumble match, entering at #5 where he lasted for almost 47 minutes, eliminating six other contestants before being eliminated by Big Show and Kane.
Over the next few weeks, Wyatt began a series of cryptic promos which led to Fast Lane, where Wyatt challenged The Undertaker to a match at WrestleMania 31, which Undertaker accepted on the March 9 episode of Raw. On March 29 at WrestleMania XXXI, he was defeated by The Undertaker. Before the event, Wyatt suffered a sprained ankle, causing his match with The Undertaker to be worked with a slow pace.
Wyatt would air a series of vignettes in the coming weeks which would eventually turn into a feud with Roman Reigns.
Rotunda is a third generation professional wrestler; his grandfather Blackjack Mulligan, father Mike Rotunda and uncles Barry and Kendall Windham were all professional wrestlers. He has a younger brother, Taylor, who is also a professional wrestler, and a younger sister, Mika. Rotunda was named after Barry Windham.
Rotunda attended Hernando High School, where he won a state wrestling championship at 275 lb in 2005. He graduated from high school in 2005. He also played football as a defensive tackle and guard. Rotunda played at the College of the Sequoias for two seasons, earning second-team All-American honors as a sophomore offensive guard. He earned a football scholarship to Troy University, where he played collegiate football for two years. He left Troy University 27 hours before earning a bachelor's degree after deciding to become a wrestler.
"Follow The Buzzards"
"Go Down With The Machine"
"He's Got The Whole World In His Hands"
- Finishing moves
- Signature moves
- Half-Nelson Slam
- Body Avalanche
- Short- Arm Clothesline
- Side Slam
- Drop Suplex
- Running Body Block
- Running Crossbody
- Swinging Gutbuster
- "The Army Tank with a Ferrari Engine"
- "The Angle Of Dirt"
- "The Reaper"
- "The Eater of Worlds"
- "The Monster"
- "The Man of 1,000 Truths"
- "The New Face of Fear"
- "The Pied Piper of Terror"
- Entrance themes
- "Broken Out In Love/Live in Fear" 2013 - Present (Composed by Mark Crozer)
- "He's got the whole world in his hands" (June 23, 2014-)
- "Broken Out In Love/Live in Fear" 2013 - Present (Composed by Mark Crozer)
Championships and accomplishments
- World Wrestling Entertainment
- Pro Wrestling Illustrated
|CM Punk • David Otunga • Husky Harris • Mason Ryan • Michael McGillicutty • Skip Sheffield • Daniel Bryan • Darren Young • Heath Slater • John Cena • Justin Gabriel • Michael Tarver • Wade Barrett|