Rami Sebei is a 36-year-old wrestler from Laval, Quebec, Canada. He wrestles for the WWE and currently performs on SmackDown under the ring name, Sami Zayn.
Sebei made his wrestling debut on July 14, 2002 as El Generico for the promotion International Wrestling Syndicate at Scarred For Life in a count out victory. His El Generico persona was a character of a luchador from Mexico with the catchphrase “Olé!”
On November 15 at IWS’s Payback’s A Bitch, Generico defeated Kevin Steen (Kevin Owens) in their first-ever singles match against each other. The following June, Generico defeated PCO in an IWS title match for his first IWS World Heavyweight Championship only to have Kevin Steen reclaim his number one contendership won earlier in the night against Excess 69. Generico lost to Steen for the IWS World Heavyweight Championship.
In 2004, he started making regular appearances for Pro Wrestling Guerrilla and held PWG World Tag Team Championship five times with four different partners. In 2007, he also became the PWG World Champion. Sebei also wrestled for Chikara and Ring of Honor from 2005 to 2012. Starting in 2007, he traveled to Japan and worked for Dragon Gate and DDT Pro-Wrestling.
Sami Zayn’s WWE Debut & Contract
In 2013, Sebei signed with WWE and was assigned a new ring name: Sami Zayn. He had his first match for WWE’s NXT in May 2013 where he defeated Curt Hawkins. Zayn competed in numerous matches against Cesaro, Leo Kruger, Jack Swagger, Neville, Tyson Kidd and others.
On December 11, 2014, Sami Zayn defeated Neville to win the the NXT Championship at NXT TakeOver: R Evolution. After his win, Zayn was congratulated by many wrestlers including Neville and Kevin Owens. The show ended however with Owens powerbombing Zayn onto the ring apron which sparked a new feud.
At NXT TakeOver: Rival, Kevin Owens defeated Sami Zayn, having powerbombed Zayn five times, ending his NXT Championship reign at 62 days. In May 2015, Sami Zayn accepted John Cena’s United States Championship Open Challenge, but he lost the match. He had his last NXT match at NXT TakeOver: Dallas when he lost to Shinsuke Nakamura.
Sami Zayn’s Main Roster Debut
Zayn competed in the 2016 Royal Rumble but had his official main roster debut in March 2016 where he teamed with Neville in a winning effort over Kevin Owens and The Miz. Zayn has had many feuds with various talent including Kevin Owens, Chris Jericho, Braun Strowman, Samoa Joe, Shane Mcmahon, and Daniel Bryan.
In 2019, Zayn aligned himself with Shinsuke Nakamura and Cesaro and they faced Braun Strowman at Elimination Chamber 2020 in a 3 on 1 handicap match for the Intercontinental Championship. Sami won the title by pinning Strowman. Sami Zayn had to vacate the title due to his concerns about wrestling during the COVID-19 pandemic.
At the end of August 2020, Zayn returned with his Intercontinental title, the title he refused to drop, following Jeff Hardy’s successful title defense against Nakamura and attacked Jeff Hardy declaring himself the “real” Intercontinental Champion. At Clash of Champions on September 27, Zayn defeated Hardy and AJ Styles in a triple threat ladder match to reclaim the Intercontinental Championship.
Career Championships and Accomplishments
- Association de Lutte Féminine
- Sensational Sherri Memorial Cup Tournament (2007)
- Britannia Wrestling Promotions
- PWI:BWP World Catchweight Championship (1 time)
- Rey de Voladores (2011)
- DDT Pro-Wrestling / Union Pro Wrestling
- DDT Extreme Division Championship (1 time)
- KO-D Openweight Championship (1 time)
- Best Foreigner Award (2012)
- Elite Wrestling Revolution
- Elite 8 Tournament (2004)
- GBG Wrestling
- GBG Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
- International Wrestling Syndicate
- IWS World Heavyweight Championship (2 times)
- IWS World Tag Team Championship (1 time)
- Monteregie Wrestling Federation
- MWF Provincial Championship (1 time)
- North Shore Pro Wrestling
- NSPW Championship (1 time)
- Pro Wrestling Guerrilla
- PWG World Championship (2 times)
- PWG World Tag Team Championship (5 times)
- Battle of Los Angeles (2011)
- Dynamite Duumvirate Tag Team Title Tournament (2010)
- Pro Wrestling Prestige
- PWP Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
- Puerto Rico Wrestling Association
- PRWA Caribbean Championship (1 time)
- Ring of Honor
- ROH World Television Championship (1 time)
- ROH World Tag Team Championship (1 time)
- STHLM Wrestling
- STHLM Wrestling Championship (1 time)
- Westside Xtreme Wrestling
- wXw Unified World Wrestling Championship (1 time)
- 16 Carat Gold Tournament (2012)
- World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE)
- NXT Championship (1 time)
- WWE Intercontinental Championship (1 time)
- Slammy Award (1 time)