WWE is reportedly no longer interested in signing indie talent for the time being.
According to Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer and confirmed by multiple sources WWE has decided to stop hiring from indie promotions.
“The word from the top is no more independent talent as far as scouting and such” Meltzer said and added WWE’s feeling is “AEW can have all the independent talent to itself.”
I Feel Like I’m Taking Crazy Pills
I think this is an insane way to do business and don’t think this will do anything but hurt them in the long term. This is also contrary to what Triple H said following the Las Vegas tryout when he described what he was looking for.
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Hiring an indie wrestler is like a shortcut to getting them on the main roster. They already know 90 percent of what is needed to get them on the main roster. The performance Center wouldn’t need to train them how to take a bump, cut a promo or do a body slam. They would just need the finishing touches to have them ready to become a big star.
Another thing an indie wrestler has is name recognition. When a big indie person gets signed to WWE they bring a lot of buzz and fans over with them. For example when AJ Styles got signed he brought over fans from his indie days and his TNA fans. They have a built-in audience right from the start.
So Giving The Best Future Talent To Your Rival Is A Good Idea?
Letting or even encouraging AEW to sign top indie talent is letting many of tomorrow’s biggest Superstars slip right through their fingers and giving them to the competition. It isn’t clear what WWE considers indie talent. There is a big difference between someone who wrestles for some very local promotion and Ring of Honor.
WWE wants to build their own talent from the ground up. They don’t want wrestlers who are already “over” with fans in another promotion. WWE is looking to take people with a good look and then mold them to become huge stars. This is how WWE used to do it back in the ‘80s with recruiting guys at gyms. However, for every Sid Vicious, Lex Luger or Kurt Angle they get someone who they put a ton of time and money into and never turns into anything and retires after a few years.
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Maybe Ulterior Motives Are Afoot
During an interview with Ariel Helwani Nick Khan added more to WWE’s position on indie talent.
“We believe, because of a lot of the ‘indie wrestlers’ if you will have come through our system and are in our system with SmackDown and Raw now, we don’t want to just keep doing that same thing. We want to look elsewhere for great young talent,” Khan said.
With Nick “Budget Cuts” Khan saying that it makes me think this new position has some ulterior motives. What if the real reason they don’t want to hire big indie talent is because they would have to pay them more? Some buff guy off the street would request a lot less money than the king or queen of the indies.
For the time being WWE wants to conduct more open tryouts like they did in Las Vegas which got them many new signings with many having no wrestling experience. They also want scouts to bring WWE more talent to look at most likely from other athletic sports and competitive avenues like Crossfit.
Meltzer added that with this new direction it doesn’t mean they would never hire an indie talent or something set in stone. If WWE could get their hands on some hot indie talent they wouldn’t hesitate on signing.
What do you think of this new direction? Do you think giving the best indie talent to AEW is a good move? Do you think molding people with little to no experience into big stars will be a fruitful choice? So anyway since WWE is taking guys off the street I have to go to my WWE tryout so leave a quick comment and I’ll meet you there.
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Sources: Wrestling Observer, Wrestling Inc.