The former NXT contestant had not appeared on WWE programming since the August 16, 2010 episode of Monday Night Raw. On August 18, 2010, during a Raw live event in Honolulu, Hawaii, he suffered a compound fracture of his ankle during a tag team match against David Hart Smith and Tyson Kidd. Reeves underwent three surgical procedures (the last one taking place in June) before recovering from the injury in late 2011. He competed in several non-televised matches since then.
Reeves could be in line for a huge promotion as Vince McMahon is said to be high on the hulking grappler. John Piermarini, who worked in WWE's creative department during 2009 and 2010, revealed last year that McMahon had at one point believed he could be the organization's number two babyface wrestler.