He re-debuted on the 18 September episode of Raw is War. His new character was Steven William Regal (soon shortened to William Regal), a stereotypical English snob. As a villain, Regal had much more success, winning the European Championship. He later became the on-screen commissioner and self-proclaimed "Goodwill Ambassador" of the WWF and was given a comedy sidekick in Tajiri. During the Alliance storyline, Regal became a villain by costing Kurt Angle the WWF Championship and joining The Alliance. He was fired as commissioner by Linda McMahon, but Shane McMahon hired him as the Alliance Commissioner. After the Alliance was defeated at Survivor Series in November 2001, Regal was forced to kiss Vince McMahon's buttocks so he could keep his job.
In 2002, after an absence due to surgery on his nose, Regal returned and feuded with Edge. He won the Intercontinental Championship from Edge at the Royal Rumble in January, where he began using a set of brass knuckles in order to win matches. Regal defended the title against Edge again at No Way Out in a brass knuckles on a pole match before losing the title to Rob Van Dam at WrestleMania X8. The same week, he beat Diamond Dallas Page for the European Championship on an episode of SmackDown! In mid-2002, the World Wrestling Federation was renamed World Wrestling Entertainment, and the roster was divided into two separate "brands". During this time he was drafted to the Raw brand by owner Ric Flair. He was defeated by Spike Dudley in a match for the European Championship, but won it back two weeks later to become a four-time champion. He later lost the title to Jeff Hardy and later held the Hardcore Championship three times. He formed an alliance with Molly Holly before joining The Un-Americans, an anti-American villainous alliance consisting of Canadian wrestlers Lance Storm, Christian and Test. On the 30 September 2002 episode of Raw, every member of The Un-Americans lost their matches, causing the group to separate later in the night and break away into separate groups. Regal began teaming with Lance Storm, Christian formed a tag-team with Chris Jericho, and Test branched off into single competition. Storm and Regal won the World Tag Team Championship from Booker T and Goldust thanks to Regal's brass knuckles. They lost the championship to The Dudleys (Bubba Ray and D-Von) at the Royal Rumble, but regained the championship twenty four hours later, thanks to an impromptu match set up by Chief Morley after Regal and Storm had put Bubba through a table. Regal would later have to give up his title due to a heart condition.
Eugene, the "mentally challenged" nephew of Raw General Manager Eric Bischoff, was placed in the care of Regal during his return to WWE. Initially dismayed at having to babysit Eugene, Regal eventually grew very fond of him and they became friends, becoming a fan favorite in the process. Regal was ordered by Bischoff to make Eugene lose so that he would leave WWE, but his friendship with Eugene caused him to try only half-heartedly to cost Eugene his match with Robert Conway. Despite this, Bischoff put Regal back on the active roster. Regal would later team with Eugene and win the World Tag Team Championship from La Résistance on the 15 November 2004 episode of Raw. Eugene legitimately injured himself at New Year's Revolution after botching a dropkick. This ultimately cost them the World Tag Team Championship, as Regal unsuccessfully attempted to defend the titles with announcer Jonathan Coachman as Eugene's stand in. The pair wrestled and lost a match against La Résistance at a house show, crowning them with their third reign. On 4 February 2005, Regal and old ally Tajiri defeated La Résistance to win the World Tag Team Championship on an episode of Raw, broadcast live from Tajiri's home country Japan. La Résistance entered in a feud with the champions, and repeatedly missed out on the titles during matches, mainly on Sunday Night Heat. During their last shot for the titles, La Résistance thought they had won back the championship, only to have the decision reversed by referee Mike Chioda due to the legal man not being pinned. After winning this match, an open challenge to any tag team was issued by Regal to try to win their championship. On the following episode of Raw, Regal and Tajiri successfully defended the belts against the debuting Romeo and Antonio, known collectively as The Heart Throbs. At Backlash in May, Regal and Tajiri participated in a Tag Team Turmoil match in which four teams competed for the World tag team titles. Regal and Tajiri were eliminated by La Résistance who, in turn, were eliminated by Rosey and The Hurricane, who became the new champions. Shortly after, the team of Regal and Tajiri split and Regal became part of the anti-Extreme Championship Wrestling faction which attempted to disrupt and invade the ECW One Night Stand pay-per-view.
On 30 June 2005, Regal was sent to SmackDown! as part of an eleven person trade during the draft. His first match on SmackDown! was on 7 July against Matt Morgan, in what was to be Morgan's final WWE match. It was interrupted before Regal was even able to enter the ring by The Mexicools. His first full match as part of the roster was a loss to Chris Benoit in a catch wrestling match on the 16 July episode of WWE Velocity. Having applied the Regal Stretch which Benoit managed to escape from, Regal eventually submitted to the Crippler Crossface.
On 4 August, Regal was scheduled to go one on one with Scotty 2 Hotty, but the Mexicools came in and attacked both men. Two weeks later, they teamed up on SmackDown! against Psicosis and Super Crazy with Juventud in their corner. Halfway through the match, Regal betrayed Scotty by refusing to tag him and walked out of the ring with a smirk on his face, turning heel as a result and allowing the Mexicools to pick up the win. Two days later, Regal cut a promo telling the crowd that he had returned to his former self, referring to himself as a "scoundrel" and a "rogue". The promo ended when Scotty ran to the ring and attacked Regal. The following week, a match between the two was cut short when another Englishman, the debuting Paul Burchill, interfered to aid his countryman. Regal went on to take Burchill under his wing and tag with him on the hunt for the WWE Tag Team Championship, but the teams biggest exposure was a loss in a handicap match against Bobby Lashley at Armageddon.
On the 3 February episode of SmackDown!, Regal and Burchill told the "network representative" Palmer Canon that they no longer wanted to be a tag team so they could go their separate ways. During this discussion, Burchill informed Canon that his family heritage traced back to the pirate Blackbeard, and that he wanted to turn this into a pirate gimmick. Burchill, with this heroic persona, started a rivalry with former team mate Regal, who would try to convince Burchill to return to his ruthless ways. Regal faced Burchill, his first match as a pirate, and was defeated following Birchill's Walking the Plank move. Burchill once again defeated Regal in a match with the stipulation that Regal would have to dress like a "buxom wench" if he lost the match. Lady Regal, as SmackDown! announcers jokingly referred to him, had no choice but to dress up like this until Burchill lost a match. This stipulation ended after Burchill abandoned Regal during a match that saw Regal and Burchill defeated by the Gymini tag team.
Regal continued to wrestle in a lower mid-card status, the highlight of which saw Regal turn face for one night only as he faced the United States Champion John "Bradshaw" Layfield in a losing effort while in England. Soon after Booker T became King Booker after becoming King of the Ring and Regal joined King Booker's Court, playing the role of a town crier. As a member of the Court, Regal helped Booker in his feud against Bobby Lashley, occasionally teaming up with fellow Court member Finlay in tag team matches. However, during this time, Regal also feuded with Finlay for the United States Championship. Regal was knighted by King Booker and was given the title of "Sir". At No Mercy, Regal lost to a returning Chris Benoit, resulting in Regal turning his back on the Court afterwards by knocking down King Booker with a punch to the face after Booker slapped him and called him useless.
Twelve days after No Mercy, Regal stated that while he had once been one of the world's greatest wrestlers, he had since become a doormat for other SmackDown superstars. He referred to being dressed as a buxom wench for a pirate and being knighted by a false king as examples. After announcing he was finished being a whipping boy, he introduced his tag team partner Dave Taylor, and the two went on to easily defeat the team of Scotty 2 Hotty and Funaki. However, the team was quickly put into jeopardy in their second match together when Taylor suffered a torn meniscus in his left knee leaving him injured. Taylor took a more relaxed role for a couple of weeks as a corner man for Regal and only wrestled in a few short house show matches. Taylor quickly healed from his injury and the pair feuded with the Tag Team Champions Paul London and Brian Kendrick. After defeating London and Kendrick on several occasions, at Armageddon, they took part in a 4-way ladder match alongside Johnny Nitro and Joey Mercury and The Hardys. London and Kendrick coming out on top after Joey Mercury suffered a serious facial injury. On the May 25 episode of SmackDown!, Regal and Taylor competed in a number one contenders match for the WWE Tag Team Championship against London and Kendrick, which they lost after Deuce 'n Domino interfered, making both teams the number one contenders. This interference led to a triple threat match the next week on SmackDown!, in which Deuce 'n Domino retained the title.
On 17 June, Regal was drafted back to the Raw brand during the Supplemental Draft, ending his tag team with Dave Taylor. On 2 July, Regal served as Interim General Manager of Raw, filling in for Jonathan Coachman. While General Manager, Regal introduced the Beat the Clock Sprint to Raw, which was used to determine who would challenge John Cena for the WWE Championship at the 2007 Great American Bash.
On the 6 August episode of Raw, Regal became the new General Manager after winning an over the top rope battle royal featuring other participants from the Raw roster. He began incorporating game shows into Raw while general manager. On the 3 September episode of Raw', Regal was attacked by WWE Champion John Cena in retaliation for rewarding Randy Orton with a WWE title shot after Orton had kicked John Cena's father in the head the previous week. Regal was missing from Raw programming for one month due to this attack, making his return by siding with Vince McMahon. On New Year's Eve, Triple H was scheduled to face Ric Flair, in which Flair's win or retire ultimatum was still active. Regal announced that if Triple H lost the match in any way, he would not participate in the Royal Rumble match at the 2008 Royal Rumble. This was to give Triple H a reason to want to win the match rather than avoid ending the career of his best friend and idol. Regal was scheduled to compete against Hornswoggle that night with Mr. McMahon at ringside. McMahon tossed Regal some brass knuckles during the match and encouraged him to use them on Hornswoggle, but he let Hornswoggle go and left the ring. During the Flair versus Triple H match, Triple H performed the Pedigree on Flair and appeared to be going for the pin when Regal suddenly punched Flair in the face with the brass knuckles. This gave Flair the win by disqualification, ensuring that he could continue to wrestle and that Triple H would not be part of the Royal Rumble. As a result of Regal's actions towards Triple H, the following week on Raw Roulette, Regal lost a First Blood match to Triple H after several right hands to Regal's forehead. A few weeks later, he made the Raw Elimination Chamber match for No Way Out. He later turned face for one night only while on a European tour, by facing Randy Orton in a match to try to teach him some respect.
The following week, Regal won the 2008 King of the Ring Tournament, on a special three-hour episode of Raw, where he defeated Hornswoggle, Finlay and CM Punk all by submission, also the first man to make Punk submit. Regal's coronation ceremony the next week was interrupted by the returning Mr. Kennedy. A few weeks later Regal lost a Loser Gets Fired match to Mr. Kennedy, after which, Regal was kayfabe forced to leave WWE. In reality, Regal was suspended on 20 May 2008, for sixty days for his second violation of the company’s Substance Abuse and Drug Testing Policy. On 28 July, Regal returned from his suspension as a "free agent" during an episode of Raw, where he was defeated by then World Heavyweight Champion CM Punk.
Regal began a mini-feud with Jamie Noble after he took an interest in Noble's romantic interest Layla, prompting him to attack Regal. Both men picked up victories in consecutive weeks, before Regal won their third match, departing with Layla at his side. Regal's feud with Noble escalated the subsequent week when Layla declared that Noble was a loser and that she found a man worthy of her in Regal. However, the feud was short lived.
On the 3 November episode of Raw, Regal won an over-the-top battle royal to face Santino Marella for the Intercontinental Championship, and the next week in Manchester, England, Regal defeated Marella in a 40 second squash match to win his second Intercontinental Championship. Later, he entered into a feud for the title with number one contender CM Punk. On the 5 January 2009 episode of Raw, Regal lost to Punk via disqualification after he grabbed the referee's shirt. Due to this, Stephanie McMahon awarded Punk a rematch the following week, with the stipulation that if Regal was disqualified, Regal would lose the Intercontinental title, but this time Punk was disqualified. McMahon awarded Punk another rematch, this time a No Disqualification match on the 19 January episode of Raw, Punk won the match and the championship. Regal got a rematch but lost the match when Punk hit the Go To Sleep.
Following the Draft, Regal was left alone on the Raw brand as his on-screen manager Layla was drafted to the SmackDown brand. At Extreme Rules, Regal unsuccessfully challenged Kofi Kingston for the WWE United States Championship along with Montel Vontavious Porter and Matt Hardy, Kofi Kingston retained the United States Championship by pinning Regal.
Regal was traded to the ECW brand on 29 June 2009. In his first match on ECW on Syfy the next night, he teamed with Vladimir Kozlov to defeat Tommy Dreamer and Christian.
On the 11 August episode of ECW on SyFy, Regal defeated Tommy Dreamer to become number one contender for the ECW Championship. A week later, Regal teamed with Vladimir Kozlov to face Christian and Ezekiel Jackson, with the end of the match involving Jackson turning on Christian, allowing Regal to pin Christian for the victory. The end result of a new stable, referred to as "The Ruthless Roundtable". At SummerSlam 2009, Regal challenged Christian for the ECW Championship, but was unsuccessful after losing to Christian in just eight seconds. Regal then challenged Christian to a rematch for the title at WWE Breaking Point, but was once again unsuccessful. Regal received another shot for the ECW Championship on the 10 November episode of ECW on SyFy in Sheffield, England, but was once again unsuccessful. Regal and Jackson eventually turned on Kozlov for being the 'weak link'. Regal's interference led to Jackson winning the ECW Championship on the final episode of ECW on SyFy on 16 February 2010.
After ECW was cancelled to be replaced by WWE NXT, Regal returned to the Raw brand, but he also became the Pro to Rookie Skip Sheffield on the first season of NXT. Regal made his debut on the 2 March 2010 episode of NXT, teaming with Sheffield in a losing effort against Matt Hardy and Justin Gabriel. On the 13 April episode of NXT, Regal won his first match on the show, defeating Daniel Bryan. On the 10 May episode of NXT, Sheffield was eliminated from the competition.
Regal would be mostly involved in lower-card feuds after returning to Raw, while also regularly appearing on NXT and Superstars. In 2010, Regal would also regularly find himself on the losing end of tag team matches against Santino Marella while trading wins with Goldust. Regal would face Darren Young in three matches on Superstars in October and November 2010, defeating Young at every turn.
In March 2011, Regal took up the role of the color commentator for the fifth season of NXT. On 26 April, Regal was drafted to SmackDown as part of the 2011 WWE Supplemental Draft. On NXT, Regal began a feud with Rookie Jacob Novak after Novak taunted him as old and washed up. On the 3 May episode of WWE NXT, Regal was set to face Novak, but Novak's Pro JTG stepped in to replace Novak. While Regal had the match won, Novak interfered, attacking Regal and causing a disqualification. This attack would make Regal a face (for more than one day) for the first time since 2005. On the 10 May episode of WWE NXT, Regal would face Novak, defeating him by submission, and the feud ended when Novak was eliminated on the next episode of NXT.
After Regal came to the aid of NXT host Matt Striker, saving him from an assault by Darren Young, Young challenged Regal to a match on the 6 September episode of NXT, and Regal duly defeated Young. On the 13 September episode of NXT, Regal teamed with Striker against JTG and Darren Young in a losing effort. On the 10 November episode of Superstars taped in Liverpool England, Regal faced his protégé Daniel Bryan. Regal was pranked when his old "Real Man's Man" theme song was played. Bryan managed to secure a victory after submitting Regal and both wrestlers showed respect after the match. Regal appeared on the 20 January 2012 episode of Sin City SmackDown, where he was challenged by Brodus Clay to a dance off. While Regal was dancing, Clay delivered his finisher to Regal.
On the 15 February episode of NXT Redemption, Regal temporarily took charge as NXT host from Matt Striker to set up all of the matches on the show, which led to him being made NXT Official Match Coordinator two weeks later on its February 29 episode. After being appointed as an authority figure, Regal would be at loggerheads against NXT's perennial troublemakers, Curt Hawkins and Tyler Reks, while Maxine would attempt to get close to Regal so that she would be able to get off NXT.
After several months of inactivity in terms of singles competition, Regal returned on September 22 episode of Saturday Morning Slam, where he was defeated by Zack Ryder. On the November 6 episode of SmackDown in Birmingham, Regal teamed with Sheamus in a loss to Big Show and Wade Barrett.
On December 5, Regal started a feud with his former disciple, Kassius Ohno when he saved Tyson Kidd from an assault by Ohno and Leo Kruger. The feud grows personal when Ohno was mocking Regal's legacy of his 30 year professional wrestling career only to get punched by Regal in the face. The pair then exchanged assault on commentary spot on the following weeks. The feud culminated in a match on April 11, edition of NXT where Regal defeated Ohno.
Regal appeared on the April 22, 2013 edition of Raw in London, losing in a match against Fandango. On the April 26 episode of Smackdown, also in London, Regal lost to Wade Barrett. On the June 26 taping of NXT, Regal tried to help Ohno, Corey Graves, and Adrian Neville from a joint assault by The Wyatt Family, Garrett Dylan, and Scott Dawson, but were unsuccessful. On the July 10 episode of NXT, Regal was pinned by Wyatt when he teamed up with Graves and Neville against the Wyatt Family. Regal's next feud on NXT was against Antonio Cesaro due to Regal saving Byron Saxton from Cesaro's bullying, which culminated with Cesaro defeating Regal on the 25 December NXT.
In July 2014, Regal was named NXT General Manager.