He was a Wookiee banished from his home for using his claws in aggression when he discovered that his brother collaborated with slavers of the Czerka Corporation.
He eventually left for Taris where he stumbled upon Mission Vao. Members of the Black Vulkar gang tried to fight Zaalbar, prompting Mission to fight the Vulkars. When one of the members knocked her out, Zaalbar scared them by grabbing one of them by the throat. They became friends because of this encounter.