On February 16, 2010, after numerous dark matches on both Raw and SmackDown, it was announced that Otunga would be wrestling on the first season of WWE NXT, with R-Truth as his mentor. He made his debut on the inaugural episode of NXT on February 23, quickly defeating Darren Young. Young defeated Otunga in a rematch on the following week's broadcast, thanks to interference from Young's mentor, CM Punk. After the match, R-Truth tried to offer his support, only to be shoved away by a frustrated Otunga. R-Truth took exception, confronting and brawling with Otunga backstage. On the March 30 episode of NXT, Otunga won an 8-man over the top rope battle royal against the other NXT Rookies to earn the right to guest host Raw the following week. On the April 5 episode of Raw, Otunga put himself in a tag team match with John Cena for the Unified WWE Tag Team Championship against ShoMiz (The Big Show and The Miz). Later in the match, however, he refused to tag in and walked out, allowing ShoMiz to retain. On May 11, in the second Pros Poll, he was moved to second place. During the season finale on June 1, Otunga came in second place overall in the competition, losing out to Wade Barrett. The following week on Raw, Otunga and the other NXT rookies from season one interfered in the main event match between John Cena and CM Punk, attacking the competitors, the announce team, and the ring announcer Justin Roberts, before dismantling the ring area and surrounding equipment. On the June 14 episode of Raw, the rookies attacked General Manager Bret Hart, when he refused to give them contracts. The following week on Raw, Vince McMahon fired Hart and announced the hiring of a new General Manager, who had signed all seven season one NXT rookies to contracts. The following week, the group was named The Nexus. On the July 12 edition of Raw, The Nexus, excluding Daniel Bryan (who was fired by Vince McMahon after the Nexus' first night on Raw in part due to choking ring announcer Justin Roberts with his own tie.), competed in their first match together, defeating John Cena in a six–on–one handicap match. The Nexus continued to feud with Cena and the Raw roster, resulting in a seven-on-seven elimination tag team match at SummerSlam. Otunga was the fourth member of The Nexus eliminated, when he submitted to Chris Jericho, and The Nexus went on to lose the match.
Cena was later forced to join The Nexus, as a result of losing to Barrett at Hell in a Cell. At the following pay-per-view, Bragging Rights on October 24, Otunga and Cena teamed together to win the WWE Tag Team Championship from Cody Rhodes and Drew McIntyre. The next night on Raw Otunga and Cena lost the Tag Team Championship to fellow Nexus members Justin Gabriel and Heath Slater when Barrett ordered Otunga to allow Slater to pin him. On November 5, Otunga, who had been questioning Barrett's leadership in the past weeks, led Nexus, minus Barrett and Cena, to an invasion of WWE SmackDown|SmackDown. Barrett did not approve of Otunga's decision to lead The Nexus to SmackDown and as a result forced him to defend his spot in the group a week later. On the November 12 edition of SmackDown Otunga defeated Edge in a lumberjack match, after Kane interfered, to keep his spot in Nexus. About a month later, Otunga started to rebel against Barrett with the rest of Nexus behind him. After the group disobeyed direct orders and walked away from Barrett, Otunga told Barrett to rehire Cena the following week or be banished from Nexus.
In January 2011, Barrett was exiled from Nexus and CM Punk took over his spot as the leader of the group. While Justin Gabriel and Heath Slater chose not to follow Punk's orders and left Nexus, Otunga agreed to take his initiation test, a beating from the Big Show, and remain with the group. In late February, it was announced that Punk would face Randy Orton at WrestleMania XXVII, with each member of The Nexus facing Orton to win the right to accompany Punk to the ring in the weeks leading up to WrestleMania. Otunga faced Orton on the March 7 episode of Raw, but lost. Following the match, he was punted in the skull by Orton. Otunga was absent from television for over a month, returning on the April 11 episode of Raw with the other New Nexus members, and preventing Orton from earning a WWE Championship match.
On the May 23 episode of Raw, Otunga teamed with fellow Nexus member Michael McGillicutty to win the WWE Tag Team Championship from Kane and The Big Show with the help interference from fellow New Nexus members Mason Ryan and Punk. They made their only successful title defense against The Usos on the July 29 edition of SmackDown. After CM Punk left the New Nexus when his WWE contract expired on July 17, Otunga and McGillicutty competed against Santino Marella and Zack Ryder on the August 1 edition of Raw without any Nexus gear or armbands, and with all Nexus logos removed from their TitanTron, effectively signaling the end of the New Nexus. On the August 22 episode of Raw, Otunga and McGillicutty lost the Tag Team Championship to Air Boom (Kofi Kingston and Evan Bourne).
After a minor feud with Jerry Lawler, Otunga and McGillicutty's team ended. Otunga would then start a new storyline which would focus on his law background, as Randy Ortonh his legal knowledge to plan a lawsuit against Triple H, WWE's Chief Opperating Officer. On the September 30 episode of SmackDown, Otunga and Laurinaitis sat down with Dolph Ziggler, Jack Swagger, Cody Rhodes, Alberto Del Rio, Christian, and Vickie Guerrero to discuss the matter. The following week on Raw, Otunga walked out on Triple H with other wrestlers, Divas, and referees after a "vote of no confidence" for Triple H as COO. He returned to in-ring action on the November 29 SmackDown Holiday Special where he was defeated by Randy Orton in a Miracle on 34th Street Fight match. On the December 23 episode of SmackDown he cancelled a #1 Contender's match between The Big Show and Mark Henry due to the latter's leg injury; he was knocked out by Show as a result. Otunga faced Big Show on the December 26 episode of Raw and the December 30 episode of SmackDown, but lost both matches. He obtained his first win since returning to singles competition on the January 13, 2012, episode of SmackDown, defeating Santino Marella. He captured back-to-back wins against Ezekiel Jackson on the February 20 episode of Raw and the February 21 episode of Super SmackDown. On the March 12 episode of Raw, it was announced that Otunga would be the captain of Laurinaitis' team for the battle for control 12-Man Tag Team Match at WrestleMania XXVIII. Team Johnny was victorious at WrestleMania. On the April 16 edition of Raw SuperShow, Otunga unsuccessfully challenged Santino Marella for the United States Championship. He took a leave of absence soon after.
He returned to action at Over The Limit in a battle royal to face either the US Champion or the Intercontinental Champion, but was eliminated by The Miz and Christian, who later went on to successfully challenge Cody Rhodes. At No Way Out on June 17, 2012, Otunga lost to Brodus Clay via count out. The next night on Raw, Otunga teamed with The Big Show and John Laurinaitis in a 3 on 1 handicap match. Before the match started, Big Show walked out on Otunga and Laurinaitis. Otunga walked out as well during the match, allowing Cena to make Laurinaitis submit to the STF after 3 AA's. The next week on SmackDown he delivered a low blow sneak attack to Brodus Clay as Clay was fighting Show.
Otunga posted on Twitter that he was going to take time off due to him filming WWE Studios new movie, The Call. On August 20th, 2012 Otunga returned to Raw, confronting Raw General Manager AJ Lee. He was then put into a match against Big Show, ultimately losing the match. On September 3rd, 2012 Otunga was seen with Alberto Del Rio, who told Matt Striker that his client (Del Rio) won't talk to him. On September 7th episode of WWE SmackDown, he represented for Alberto Del Rio & Ricardo Rodriguez to win the case to ban Sheamus' Brogue Kick, just as Otunga was facing Sheamus at the night's main event, although the Brogue Kick was later reinstated. At Survivor Series, Otunga was made a part of Team Ziggler, filling in for the injured Cody Rhodes, he was eventually eliminated by Daniel Bryan. On the November 29th edition of Superstars he lost to Santino Marella. He lost to The Great Khali on the 30th November edition of SmackDown. He lost again to Brodus Clay on 6th November Superstars with The Great Khali as Special Guest Referee, Hornswoggle as bell ringer and Natalya as commentator. The next week he received a gash while wrestling Khali at a live event. He returned at the Royal Rumble but was quickly eliminated by Sheamus.
Otunga returned on October 28 when he conducted an interview for WWE.com after Big Show sued WWE and Triple H for defamation, discrimination and wrongful termination of contract, turning Otunga face.
After several more months absence on WWE TV, Otunga returned on April 6, 2014, were he competed in the André the Giant Memorial Battle Royal at WrestleMania XXX, but failed to win as he was eliminated by Big E. Otunga did not make any WWE appearances again until he returned to live events on January 9, 2015.
Otunga would make his return on television on February 2, 2015 doing the Raw Pre-Show. Following this he offered his legal services to former New Nexus teammate Curtis Axel regarding his Royal Rumble 2015 controversy.