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Meltzer speculated on Twitter that basically anyone in the WWE with an expiring contract over the next 18 months will be in play.

So that brings up the question of how much does the WWE throw at guys just to keep them away? (Even if they don't plan on using them)

Also - reading between the lines - seems like Khan is at least willing to go a couple of years before pulling the plug (if unsuccessful)

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3 minutes ago, RIPPA said:

Meltzer speculated on Twitter that basically anyone in the WWE with an expiring contract over the next 18 months will be in play.

So that brings up the question of how much does the WWE throw at guys just to keep them away? (Even if they don't plan on using them)

Also - reading between the lines - seems like Khan is at least willing to go a couple of years before pulling the plug (if unsuccessful)

To go along with this, the word is that either Penta, Fenix, or Scurll were given a gigantic offer to go to NXT. More money than had been offered to anyone else before, which could really skew NXT deals going forward.

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They ran a bit on BTE a few weeks back where they teased the idea of bringing in Jimmy Havoc as a replacement for Scurll. Don’t know what his contract status is, but that might be a guy to watch for.

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It's a good year to be The Colons.

PAC is another guy you would imagine they would want who isn't really signed to anyone. Is there scope in a Dragon Gate relationship if NJPW won't bite?

Havoc's semi-regular in MLW I think, but whether he has a contract I'm not sure.

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PCO literally just started full time with ROH so he isn't going anywhere for at least a year

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1 hour ago, ComingToAmerica said:

I doubt he'd go for it, but I feel they really need Jim Cornette as the heel manager and mortal enemy of The Elite. He doesn't even need to do ringside necessarily.

Better yet they swerve us all, and the Bucks + Cornette start up another version of the Midnight Express format.

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Longer term, there are guys on the NXT rosters who are good but who I think it's hard to imagine really breaking out on the main roster. Lorcan and Mastiff stand out, but a lot of the NXT UK guys currently getting TV experience are potentially good pickups long-term.

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1 minute ago, FlaeBlazer said:

 

I am not quite sure what Bix is talking about (though I am sure its in regards to the WOR show) but the guy from Fightful is doing a really poor job of masking his thoughts that Meltzer is being paid by AEW to work for them.

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3 hours ago, ComingToAmerica said:

If you can't get Cornette involved, then another obvious heel manager is Enzo. Not without his problems obviously (& you clearly don't want him to 'wrestle'), but he's draw nuclear heat and probably put eyes on the product.

I'm mentioning heel managers, because obviously that can be used as a crux for using lesser known guys to start with whilst they look to peel off disgruntled guys from other promotions.

Chris Masters is unsigned right? I wonder if he's still any good?

 

 Colonel Parker actually made his return to wrestling this past year. Honestly you need more managers who sweat profusely at ringside, dab their foreheads with a handkerchief, and say “Lordy... Lordy...”.

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10 minutes ago, LoneWolf&Subs said:

Better yet they swerve us all, and the Bucks + Cornette start up another version of the Midnight Express format.

You can sort of tell Cornette's really conflicted, you can tell he really loves the idea of Dusty's son starting an alternative product - he just wishes he hadn't surrounded himself with a bunch of goofs. But I think he was pretty restrained on Talk Is Jericho recently.

Of course, the full circle would be him managing 'Serious Gigolo' Joseph Ryan. Or Ryan & Kenny King.

 

 

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BJ Whitmer seems to be affiliated with them (and not Adam Pearce)

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The bigger thing than the money is how many disgruntled WWE workers will take a pay cut to jump and get featured here.  And how many of then will flip out when they all realize there are only so many slots to go around.

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The last thing people want to watch is WWE 'cast-offs' - people shat on TNA for this; it isn't any different if AEW do it. Where there's a guy who is clearly able to fulfill a bigger role, then people will dig it (e.g. Christian Cage) but otherwise not so much.

Harper would be a good steal if they can pull it off. Maybe Cesaro at a pinch. Because they're 39 and 38 and won't be getting singles pushes in WWE.

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28 minutes ago, ComingToAmerica said:

The last thing people want to watch is WWE 'cast-offs' - people shat on TNA for this; it isn't any different if AEW do it. Where there's a guy who is clearly able to fulfill a bigger role, then people will dig it (e.g. Christian Cage) but otherwise not so much.

Harper would be a good steal if they can pull it off. Maybe Cesaro at a pinch. Because they're 39 and 38 and won't be getting singles pushes in WWE.

TNA never deserved the shit they caught for this. At least not until the Hogan years.

Me personally, I’m gonna need some WWE cast-offs with some profile. Otherwise, all we have is another small-potato fed leaning on Cody, Marty, Penta, Fenix, etc. 

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Well, there's a difference between getting in guys like Steiner and Booker T, who are there mostly for a last paycheque than there would be somebody like Cesaro, who is there to prove he can do so much more than what he's allowed in WWE. Different circumstances and it'll only get worse as WWE hoards more and more talent that will be disgruntled with being underused. We all know Cesaro, Rusev, Balor (well maybe not as much), and Harper are amazing but aren't getting the big push in WWE because of reasons. IF they were to come to AEW and get a real run, then that would be way different than the TNA route. I imagine they won't be in a rush to do a weekly TV show and will lead off with Double or Nothing in March or April at the earliest so as to let things settle and start to see contracts come up. That would then give them time to establish their main crew and then slowly bring in outside talent bit by bit before you get sick of Young Bucks vs. Washington Generals take 249.

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Balor is making real good money and I don't see him jumping.

Rusev is an interesting case but it's a big risk. He's decent enough (is he amazing?), but the name and the gimmick wouldn't go with him. Are you going to bring in Lana too? 

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Maybe they will try to get the good brothers.

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If the money and schedule were right I think they could be able to grab Nakamura. More time to surf and hang with his fam seems like something he’d go for

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2 hours ago, alstein said:

Here's the question, would Kenny (and likely Ibushi) in a non-NJPW Japanese ring be a draw in Japan?

They were both established draws in DDT, and are way, way bigger stars now. There’s no question they’d draw for DDT, NOAH, AJPW, et al. I honestly think a full Sumo Hall and/or Budokan would be in play for nearly anyone who got both on a card. Which... I think New Japan knows that, and will try very hard to keep it from happening. And both Kenny and Ibushi seem to have ambitions that would keep them around in some capacity. But if not, and they both ended up signing with/freelancing for AEW, then the promotion would be a really popular partner in Japan.

It is interesting though that Kenny, for all of his social media activity, hasn’t commented on the announcement. He hasn’t even retweeted the BTE episode, which he always does. 

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1 hour ago, RIPPA said:

Meltzer speculated on Twitter that basically anyone in the WWE with an expiring contract over the next 18 months will be in play.

So that brings up the question of how much does the WWE throw at guys just to keep them away? (Even if they don't plan on using them)

Also - reading between the lines - seems like Khan is at least willing to go a couple of years before pulling the plug (if unsuccessful)

I mean if I was a WWE Superstar, I wouldn't go to a place unless I see it having a long-term future not just because they are an upstart organization with some cool people I like involved and some money marks to throw money around. This isn't exactly a WCW option here. They still have no TV deal. 

I mean look, all this sounds nice, but it still doesn't feel real to me. For one thing, no TV deal. Meltzer is clearly frothing at the mouth and ready to jizz his pants over the possibility because he thinks this is going to be a real competitor to WWE and start a new Monday Night Wars. 

I can't imagine NJPW and ROH being OK with this because they already sold out one show in Chicago. 

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I would think that giving up being champion and a major focus for the #2 promotion in the world to go hang in your pal's vanity project is a little nuts, even for Kenny.

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1 minute ago, TheVileOne said:

I mean if I was a WWE Superstar, I wouldn't go to a place unless I see it having a long-term future not just because they are an upstart organization with some cool people I like involved and some money marks to throw money around. This isn't exactly a WCW option here. They still have no TV deal. 

I mean look, all this sounds nice, but it still doesn't feel real to me. For one thing, no TV deal. Meltzer is clearly frothing at the mouth and ready to jizz his pants over the possibility because he thinks this is going to be a real competitor to WWE and start a new Monday Night Wars. 

 I can't imagine NJPW and ROH being OK with this because they already sold out one show in Chicago. 

This is absurd. When he does his 45 minute AEW rants the past few months, he's stated over and over and over again the exact opposite of this. The goal is to firmly establish themselves as an alternative. Not direct competition (yet if ever) but a place where the wrestlers are likely treated as employees with a good schedule and good pay. The market has been craving this since WCW shutdown. 

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Can’t see AJPW wanting to team up with AEW. There’s still Wrestle 1 and BJW they could partner with instead.

Doesn't seem like Omega is part of this. Unless he joins later.

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