speculation brewing that Sami Zayn had gone from full-time in-ring competitor to Shinsuke Nakamura’s manager in 2019 because Vince McMahon saw him as being too injury-prone to be considered reliable, but it sounds like this was false.
Per Dave Meltzer on a recent episode of Wrestling Observer Radio, the decision to re-position Zayn was a creative one, and had absolutely nothing to do with any injury concerns.
This is the role that the writing time has for him at the moment, apparently.
They see him as a manager, not a wrestler, and there’s no word on when that might change. Zayn serving as Nakamura’s mouthpiece is both a negative and a positive.
Sami is tremendous in the role and has added great value to Shinsuke’s act by his side, but WWE had to sacrifice one of its most well-rounded in-ring performers as a result of this.
It is simultaneously a benefit to Nakamura and Zayn’s characters but a detriment to the former ‘Underdog from the Underground’ as a pure wrestler.
Sami has wrestled just one televised bout since August 2019, with him, Cesaro, and Nakamura losing to Braun Strowman and The New Day on SmackDown’s 27 December episode.