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2022 WRESTLERS LEAVING COMPANIES THREAD (Releases, FAs, etc...)


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I feel like I'm the only one to read this one bit from the big Meltzer write-up

 

Quote

Khan had said in the past that he had options on all the key talent for 2022. Rhodes did have an option year, and possibly a two-year one, so it would have been Khan’s call not to exercise it.

While we don’t know if the Rhodes’ deals are different, the big key original deals with the Young Bucks and Chris Jericho were all for three years, meaning they would end this year, plus an option period. The Bucks and Jericho’s options were picked up and they are still with the company.

 

A lot of people are writing up how this is Cody's call or how he was demanding "Roman money" and this reads like he was basically offered either a pay cut or "demotion" of some degree (perhaps less freedom with his own angles?) and after a lot of negotiating wouldn't agree to it. I don't know Meltzer's sources but if he's not wrong if seems like if Tony Khan wanted Cody in AEW with the exact same contract he had it seems like he'd still be there.

 

EDIT: Ha at Matt noticing the same thing literally a few seconds before I did and reading it a completely different way 🙂

Edited by username
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2 hours ago, A_K said:


I think this is off base. The incredible skill of Vince & co in the 90s was identifying under-developed talent in other promotions who had not been given the platform to shine (the held-down cruisers like Jericho; Austin)

This is revisionist history. Remember that WWF brought in Austin as THE RINGMASTER and saddled him with Ted DiBiase. Austin wasn't brought in to be a headliner, he was brought in to be a mechanic.

 

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21 minutes ago, Ace said:

This is revisionist history. Remember that WWF brought in Austin as THE RINGMASTER and saddled him with Ted DiBiase. Austin wasn't brought in to be a headliner, he was brought in to be a mechanic.

 

No it isn't. "Saddled" with DiBiase? DiBiase was a high profile act who left soon after Austin joined to become the 4th member of the NWO after Hall/Nash/Hogan. So, clearly, he was held in esteem, having also had exposure as manager in the WM main event the year prior and gifted Austin the Million $ Belt on his debut. In that first year despite DiBiase leaving and therefore causing issues with that initial push strategy, Austin was due to be final 4 at the Rumble, and would have evolved into the Stone Cold moniker before the 12 months were out. So, no - while WWF clearly didn't foresee Austin lift off via Stone Cold, he was hardly brought in to be a bum.

The point remains. The truly great WWF reinventions of WCW transfers/other promotion journeymen (Foley/Levesque/Jericho/Austin/Calaway etc.) was to take under-exposed, often quite youthful talent and find a platform to help them flourish. A 36 year old been-around-the-block-had-a-reality-TV-show guy who has had plenty of opportunities to state top-of-the-card credentials is antithesis to this. Rhodes will be a flop over there: you can save this post and quote it end of year.

Edited by A_K
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Christ, you fuckers can be negative. Just let this ride and see what happens, then hot take. 

EDIT: Okay I just remembered my own pithy comment above so I'm being hypocritical. But still. 

Edited by Curt McGirt
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This is super fun palace intrigue, but I doubt this moves the needle for either company.

Are WWE fans really clamoring for Cody Rhodes? He was a pretty generic midcarder for most of his time there. Ironically, I think the only reason the needle might move for a week or two is AEW fans checking out his debut before the ensuing segments remind them why they stopped watching WWE years ago. He'll be booked well enough, probably along the lines of Drew McIntyre who had a similar career arc on a smaller scale. He'll have his moment in the spotlight, then go back to the upper midcard rotation.

While he was a founding father for AEW, the company has outgrown him creatively. Jericho does the role Cody should be doing way better than Cody ever could. What AEW fans wanted is a big-budget alternative to WWE, and they have that now. It's possible be respectful of Cody's legacy within the company, while understanding that he just doesn't really fit in anymore as a top guy. The only program I feel like was left on the table was with Punk. Otherwise, freeing up the tv time he was getting for his meandering programs for other talent will probably only improve the average show quality.

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9 minutes ago, Go2Sleep said:

It's possible be respectful of Cody's legacy within the company, while understanding that he just doesn't really fit in anymore as a top guy. 

Meltzer is the tastemaker who's helped make this all possible, and even he was throwing five stars at Cody mere weeks ago for a marquee match. I really think people are over-exaggerating how out-of-step Cody has been with what these people want. 

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I'm still not sure I'd trust going to the main roster.

If anything, I hope he's coming in to take over a heap of the backstage stuff for NXT and picking up where Dusty left off.

He can play that "veteran" role with some name power to maybe get people looking at that brand again and he's good enough in the ring to have great matches on their special shows.

Brandi can also get her reps in at the PC and work some tapings.

Nobody is going to be upset if Brandi Rhodes is the NXT women's champion in 6 months time.

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Guest Jimbo_Tsuruta
6 hours ago, odessasteps said:

Arm turning on Cody would get a babyface pop.

Cody v his own arm will probably be his first feud back in WWE. 

Edited by Jimbo_Tsuruta
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15 hours ago, SturmCRF said:

Wait, we could all be missing the big story here. Didn't Cody have a hand in training Hook? If Hook leaves AEW that could be curtains for them.

Like when Jerry Jarrett took Vladimir Koslov to Vince and he got him signed 

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Not sure if it was mentioned yet but Cody could leave, come back under a mask like another Rhodes we all know and love and win the AEW title.  Or he could just leave, come back and then compete.  Not sure word for word what his "I won't compete for the AEW title if I lose" clause was but maybe they have him embrace the fan hate. Cody leaves and comes back as  a Stardust type heel with Brandy as his manager.  

At this point nothing would shock me anymore. 

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4 hours ago, L_W_P said:

Nobody is going to be upset if Brandi Rhodes is the NXT women's champion in 6 months time.

It's wrestling. Wrestling fans. Somebody is going to be upset whenever anyone does anything. Ever.

Often, quite a lot of somebodies.

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Couple more notes from Meltzer on the radio show this morning

- Everything was released yesterday because TK and Cody both knew the story was breaking/about to break. (That Andrew Zakarian guy believes the WWE was pushing the story to news folks to get it to break ASAP)

- In regards to the options - Dave said he was surprised earlier this year when TK said he wasn't going to pick up all the options and figured he was talking about like Frankie Kazarian. He thought of everyone, Cody and the Young Bucks were going to be there for the long haul - long past say Jericho and Omega

- Dave brought up again that TK is operating on a budget and isn't "a rich guy spending crazy money". He specifically said that is why AEW didn't make an offer to Kevin Owens. Dave theorizes that after the next TV deal *IF* it happens in 2024 - would cause a big increase in the talent budget pool. (Side note - Dave has folks insisting that the rights increase is definitely gonna happen while Dave is cautious about just assuming it is gonna happen. It then spun in to a talk about how that WarnerMedia now has a taste for wrestling - they might bid for WWE. This whole part was wild speculation)

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