June 9, 2016
WWE News: Luke Harper Potentially Separating From The Wyatt Family

Half of the Wyatt Family went down with injuries over the last three-and-a-half months, but even with two healthy bodies still available, that was enough to keep the entire group off of television. Luke Harper was forced out of action right before WrestleMania, while the patriarch, Bray Wyatt, went down right after it. But even with Erick Rowan and Braun Strowman healthy enough to compete, missing the family's leader and second in command was too damaging to put them out there on their own.

Earlier Thursday, the Inquisitr reported that Bray Wyatt has been medically cleared to return to the ring and was even backstage at this past week's taping of Monday Night RAW. It's conceivable that Strowman and Rowan were also in Oklahoma City, but that hasn't been confirmed and WWE decided not to use them anyway. However, Wyatt's return is imminent and could happen as early as next Monday night in New Orleans. Harper is still rehabbing his knee after undergoing surgery, but Bray's return will likely include Rowan and Strowman as well.

luke harper wwe
[Image via WWE]In addition to the rehabilitation of his knee, Harper is also set to co-star in an action-horror movie currently filming in his hometown in upstate New York. When Luke went down with a freak injury on March 21 during a RAW dark match, the initial prognosis was that he'd miss five to six months. The diagnosis was a torn medial patellofemoral ligament and a dislocated patella. So the earliest Harper could return to the ring (to wrestle, anyway) would be sometime in August. But the rest of the Wyatt Family may not wait around for him, even when he makes his way back.

Ringside News is reporting that there have been talks of removing Harper from the Wyatts even when he is healthy enough to return. If Bray, Braun, and Erick do in fact appear next Monday night, it'd be two months of that iteration of the family until Harper rejoined the fray. Harper has often been looked at as a potential future star on his own, and though it didn't quite work out that way the first time he went at it alone, perhaps this injury will allow WWE to repackage him or give him more of a creative direction on the second go-around.

luke harper wwe
[Image via WWE]The Wyatt Family has yet to fully-realize their potential in the WWE, despite being cast as the new faces of fear in an era occupied less and less by characters. The first separation seemed rushed and ill-advised, which was supported when they were brought back together less than a year later. Harper did experience some measures of success apart from the Wyatt Family though. His most memorable singles feuds came against Dolph Ziggler and Dean Ambrose, and even included a run as Intercontinental Champion, albeit for only 27 days. His main WrestleMania experience came during a seven-man ladder match for that IC title to open WrestleMania 31, which was ultimately won by Daniel Bryan.

It seems like WWE has had plans for the Wyatt Family, but many have those have been scrapped, either due to injury or a change of direction. Bray Wyatt's rumored SummerSlam match with Brock Lesnar seems to be up in the air, as does the family face-turn that started after this year's WrestleMania designed to ignite a program with the League of Nations. There was even a time when Braun Strowman was being discussed as a potential opponent for Lesnar at a big show, but online backlash quickly squashed that. Bray should still be booked strong with Strowman and Rowan by his side, but what awaits Harper upon his return is unclear.

[Image via WWE]