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In 1994, Droese was signed to a contract by the World Wrestling Federation. Droese was given the gimmick Duke "The Dumpster" Droese, a garbage man who carried a trash can to the ring. He debuted in late 1994 as an opponent for color commentator Jerry Lawler. In the course of a confrontation with Lawler, Droese was struck in the head with his own can, one of the first instances of hardcore wrestling on WWF Monday Night Raw. Lawler was obliged to apologize legitimately for "demonstrating such a brutal amount of violence".

Droese took part in the 1995 Royal Rumble and the 1995 King of the Ring, but did not win at either event. Later in 1995, Droese began feuding with Hunter Hearst Helmsley (later known as Triple H). At the 1996 Royal Rumble, Droese handed Helmsley his first WWF loss by disqualification in a match with the stipulation that the winner would enter the Royal Rumble match at number 30, while the loser would be obliged to enter at number one. Despite entering at number 30, Droese failed to win the Royal Rumble, and was eliminated by Diesel and Kama. The feud culminated in a match that Helmsley won at In Your House 6: Rage in the Cage on . Droese left the WWF in the summer of 1996, when he and Vince McMahon mutually agreed on a contract release due to the toll that extensive touring was taking in Droese.

In 1997, Droese appeared with the European Catch Wrestling Association under the ring name Marshall Duke. On in Vienna, Austria, Droese defeated Ulf Herman to win the vacant CWA World Heavyweight Championship. The title was later vacated.

In the late 1990s, Droese began wrestling for Florida Championship Wrestling. In 2000, he won the FCW Heavyweight Championship. Droese went on to form a stable with Drake Dexton, Hack Meyers, and Tony Carlone. Droese and Dexton teamed together as "The Beach Bullies" and competed in the FCW tag team division.

Droese returned to the WWF for a single night on April 1, 2001 at WrestleMania X-Seven, reprising the Duke Droese gimmick in the "gimmick battle royal", which was won by the Iron Sheik.

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