Author’s note: The original headline of this article was changed to more accurately reflect its content. The intention was not to compare Odyssey Jones to Mark Henry based on their race, but to indicate WWE is using several aspects of Henry’s presentation to introduce Jones as a similar kind of talent - a highly successful, universally respected and admired one, at that.
205 Live only got one week as the home of NXT Breakout Tournament qualifiers before WWE went ahead and announced the entire field this past Tuesday night.
On the July 9 episode of the streaming cruiserweight show, they did set aside their weight limit once again in order to showcase a pair of Breakout Tournament entrants. In the case of Odyssey Jones, they broke it by 200 pounds.
Jones, who played offensive line in Division I college football before signing with WWE in 2019, seems to be someone the company has high hopes for. Before getting the nod for the Breakout Tournament, he worked a SmackDown dark match with other potential main roster call-ups. He certainly fits the mold of wrestler Vince McMahon is reportedly interested in pushing - big.
It’s also pretty easy to see the narrative shorthand they’ll use to introduce him to the audience. If the singlet look and Nigel McGuinness bringing up his powerlifting stats in that clip don’t convince you, check out Jones’ finisher.
The didn’t call it the World’s Strongest Slam, obviously, but that’s what it is.
It makes sense. Mark Henry’s legacy is as a powerful badass (and the father of a hand, but let’s set that aside for the moment). We get that just looking at Odyssey Jones, but crafting him in the WWE Hall of Famer’s image really drives the point home.
From what he showed in his 205 Live win over Grayson Waller, Jones is a faster, more agile version of a powerhouse. Which isn’t surprising given how athletes have evolved in the year’s since Henry Olympic powerlifting days. But it could bode well for WWE.
What do you make of Odyssey Jones’ in-ring television debut?