It has been a few months now since we last saw Kalisto on WWE television. Since being split from the Lucha House Party in the 2020 WWE Draft, Kalisto hasn’t been featured on SmackDown yet, save for a bit part in a Kevin Owens backstage segment. His former tag team partners Lince Dorado and Gran Metalik have recently been shining on Raw and NXT. While it is great to see them doing well, it reminds me that Kalisto is still missing.
Once a two-time WWE United States Champion, Kalisto looked like he could be on a similar path to Rey Mysterio. He quickly became a fan favorite and was putting out insane work in the ring. He was capable of doing insane moves and wasn’t afraid to put his body on the line. The moment where Kalisto hit the Salida Del Sol off a ladder at TLC 2015 is still in highlight reels everywhere.
During his time with The Lucha Dragons teaming with Sin Cara, the fans were all chanting “Lucha!” along with the team. The two were a standout team in NXT before shining on the main roster. In NXT, they won the tag team titles by ending The Ascension’s record 343-day reign. While Sin Cara was an entertaining and talented star himself, Kalisto looked primed to be the breakout star of the team.
Once a promising new talent, Kalisto has fallen down the WWE roster. However, he is still a superstar full of promise and potential.
During a feud with Alberto Del Rio, Kalisto beat the former World Champion twice to win the United States Championship. Kalisto was rising quickly up the card. Then, after losing the title to Rusev, it was all over. He joined the cruiserweight division and had a short run as the champion. Since then, Kalisto’s highest moments have been while teaming with Dorado and Metalik.
Despite still being shown love by fans during his time with Lucha House Party, everyone knew he deserved better. It has been clear for years that he was better than what he was receiving from the company. Now that he is back on his own after the draft, this is an opportunity to give Kalisto another shot at being a star. He has already won the United States Title twice in the past. He could easily be a player in the Intercontinental title picture.
I believe that he would be able to put on tremendous matches with the likes of current champion Big E, Apollo Crews, and more. He has the ability in the ring and charisma out of it to be a top star in the company. Kalisto could even return as soon as the Royal Rumble this year and be a standout in the match.
It would be a beautiful way to bring him back and instantly make him a big deal without having to win or lose decisively right off the bat. Either way, he can be a crucial part of SmackDown moving forward. We already know that he can be a top babyface. Could he possibly be repackaged as a heel for the first time?
In the history of WWE, the masked lucha libre star has usually been presented as a good guy. However, the bad guy or “rudo” is just as big in lucha libre culture. In Kalisto’s final interview with Lucha House Party, he showed heel tendencies. He didn’t seem interested in his partners and focused on himself. However, he hasn’t been seen on SmackDown since.
If the WWE follows up his actions from the interview, he could become one of the first major masked “rudos” in WWE. While many guys like Andrade and Santos Escobar shed their masks to turn, Kalisto can keep his on. However, if they forget the past and start over fresh with Kalisto, we know he will be able to get over with the crowd.
Many fans have been calling for a match between Kalisto and Rey Mysterio. Now that they are on the same brand, that could finally become a reality. Wherever Kalisto’s path goes next, I am still going to be making a case for Kalisto to be given a rightful push.