Backstage Details On Former NJPW Star Tama Tonga Signing With WWE

The Bloodline saga took another turn on "WWE SmackDown," as former NJPW star Tama Tonga arrived to become the latest member of the group. Tonga had been a mainstay in NJPW for 14 years, becoming best known as a founding member of the Bullet Club, as well as winning multiple sets of tag team gold with his cousin and adopted brother Tanga Loa. Fresh off his WWE debut, Fightful Select released a report with some backstage details on how Tonga's deal with the company came to be.


The report claims WWE had been interested in signing Tonga for a number of years, so much so that they considered bringing him in back in 2016 as part of the string of NJPW signings WWE made that year. WWE signed AJ Styles, Shinsuke Nakamura, and The Good Brothers within the space of a few months, but Tonga opted to stay in Japan to work with his family. There was also interest in signing him in 2023, as well as his brother Hikuleo, but neither signing came to be due to the hiring freeze that happened after Vince McMahon forced his way back in as Executive Chairman. As for interest outside of WWE, there was reportedly little to no communication between Tonga and AEW, despite AEW having a working relationship with NJPW, and that his WWE debut has seemed like an inevitability for a long time.


While the former NJPW star might not have his brothers with him in WWE, at least not yet, there has been an idea to pair him with another recent signing in Jacob Fatu, who is still yet to make his televised debut. The reasoning for this being that their fathers, Haku (Tonga) and Tama (Fatu) teamed together as The Islanders back in the 1980s. However, Tonga will be paired with Solo Sikoa for the time being after helping him kick Jimmy Uso out of The Bloodline.