WWE has noticed that bringing in Independent wrestlers who have learned a lot of their skills on the Indy scene are far more successful day one. It also turns out that they become big stars for them. People such as CM Punk, Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose, and Daniel Bryan have proved this on the main roster. While people like Kevin Owens, Adrian Neville, Finn Balor and Sami Zayn have done so down in the developmental territory known as WWE NXT.
The fact is, WWE knows these people are great. So they want to stack their roster with more and more like them. That means they are going to look to the best Indy companies in the world. One of the more notable Indy programs is known as Ring of Honor. This is the place people such as Daniel Bryan and CM Punk made their name, as well as popular wrestlers such as AJ Styles.
If you’re a great Indy worker, chances are you came through ROH at some point in your career.
According to Cageside Seats, ROH is taking notice of this. They realize that WWE is pretty much raiding their roster, so they are attempting to sign their talent to long-term deals so that they’ll be unable to leave. Don’t think this is simply a case of paranoia either. Samoa Joe is actually ending his ROH run early to go to WWE for a try-out where he’s all but confirmed to be signed. Another popular talent in Jimmy Jacobs will be starting with WWE after WrestleMania 31 as well.
On top of this, WWE has an interest in many others such as The Briscoe Brothers as well. Even Adam Cole will be WWE bound it looks like.
WWE knows the talent from ROH is great, so it makes sense to raid the ROH roster. People such as Daniel Bryan had the idea years ago for WWE to buy ROH and make it a developmental program allowing the same men to work there that do now. However, Sinclair Broadcasting ended up purchasing the company. They look like they won’t be selling any time soon.
By attempting to sign several wrestlers, they are also hurting themselves. They are attempting to get The Young Bucks to sign with them that will end up requiring the brothers to get permission to accept outside bookings. This is not cool for the Bucks as a lot of Indy companies like to use them and if ROH wants to lock them in, they can pretty much dictate who they are allowed to work with. So it looks doubtful they will sign with ROH, but that does not mean they won’t work with them.
Interestingly, WWE has had interest in the Bucks in the past but the duo turned down a WWE try-out last year. So even though WWE appears to want them, they don’t appear to want WWE. That does not mean they will not end up in WWE one day though.
It appears that ROH is in panic mode, and they have a right to be. WWE is trying to get the best of the best from the Indy scene. Anyone with a name and skill is being brought in. WWE NXT is quickly becoming an Indy promotion in it’s own right. Some say that similar to the territorial days, WWE is trying to end the big Indy circuit by making NXT the must-see Indy promotion despite the fact it is a WWE developmental program.
It seems to hold ground as well, as WWE is planning to travel across the country a lot more with the NXT roster. It is not as if they aren’t succeeding in places either. They are selling out everywhere they go with NXT. So they may end up working bigger venues to accommodate and that may even put them on par with main roster audiences.
ROH should be worried as well as other Indy promotions in America. However, Indy workers should rejoice some. It seems WWE is paying VERY close attention to the Indy scene. So we may see the best end up with WWE if not this year, maybe in years to come.
[IMG Credits: wrestlingnews.co, wwe.com]