Carmelo Hayes, formerly known in Northeast Wrestling as Casanova, is the next rising star in the WWE. Shawn Michaels, the senior vice president of Talent Development Creative and overseer of WWE NXT, selected Hayes to enter the United States Championship Tournament as the number one contender in Smackdown. Hayes defeated Grayson Waller in the first round and advanced to the semifinals to take on Kevin Owens.
Kevin Owens can relate to Hayes because he was in a similar situation. Owens debuted in WWE and defeated John Cena. Now, Hayes and Owens will collide. Both former NXT champions will be scheduled to compete next Friday on Smackdown. The winner will take on the winner of the other match card, Bobby Lashley vs. Santos Escobar.Logan Paul is the current United States Champion.
On Sirius XM Busted Open Radio, Mark Henry acknowledged, "My experience tells me Carmelo Hayes is going to be the next one."