Back when Mojo Rawley started off on NXT television, he was just a super-excitable guy with a polarizing dedicated rooting section of friends and family. He irked NXT fans a great deal from time to time with his limited offense and aggressively one-note character. That all changed over the past couple of years, as he grew by leaps and bounds after being paired with Zack Ryder as the Hype Bros.
The Hype Bros got introduced to the main WWE roster after Mojo Rawley got called up in the draft last summer, but they weren’t part of the Smackdown tag team division long before Ryder went down with an injury that will keep him out of action until much later this year. Rawley is still trying to find his way on the main roster, but he knows that his character could be a hard one to get behind, especially if fans aren’t familiar with his work in NXT.
In a profile by the La Crosse Tribune, Rawley talked about doing his best to win over fans who might not be receptive to him.
“It can be a little bit of a turnoff if I’m too over the top,” he said laughing as he traveled in a rental car to the next WWE Live show. “Right now it’s about finding the perfect balance of Dean Muhtadi and Mojo Rawley that’s easily digestible for the fans. Whether that’s being the serious me, or the fun and joking around me.
“Going out there and leaving my mark on the world,” said of his goals during his WWE run. “Sending that message of fighting for every inch, staying hyped. I know that’s how I had to be successful.
“I was a walk-on at Maryland, I had to earn my scholarship and starter spot, and the things that’ve come after. I took opportunities and made it work because I worked harder than everybody else. That’s really where ‘Stay Hyped’ came from, that’s my mantra because it’s about always being up and being ready to go. That’s what I’ve always had to do.”
It’s anyone’s guess how WWE will continue to use Rawley between now and Ryder’s return. But the guy seems to be very aware (perhaps HYPER-aware???) of how the fans perceive him, and what his shortcomings are. That’s certainly a very important part of the puzzle.