The professional wrestling landscape is constantly shifting, and it’s moving much more quickly than ever with the announcement of All Elite Wrestling. The new company has forced the WWE to make some changes already, most notably in the way it treats its performers.
In the latest issue of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Dave Meltzer talked about the way the WWE is going to handle unhappy performers going forward.
“That’s why Lesnar keeps getting better offers to keep him from UFC, and why guys who they were doing nothing with that were unhappy are starting to get pushes because there are viable options for them to leave,” Meltzer wrote in the latest issue of the Observer.
This comes on the back of The Revival asking for a release from the WWE, presumably to pursue a contract with All Elite Wrestling. In the past, when a wrestler asked for a release long before their contract was over, the WWE would just put them on ice and not have them appear on TV.
A great example of this is PAC (Neville). When he was unhappy with his push, the WWE completely stopped using him and he was never seen on the company’s TV again. However, at that time, there was no All Elite Wrestling for PAC to turn to, and there was no reason for the WWE to worry about him being unhappy.
However, with the difference in today’s wrestling world, the company can’t afford to put wrestlers on the back burner like that, as it’s even more likely that they’ll jump ship to AEW once their contracts expire.
Meltzer also talked about how the company doesn’t want fans to have the perception that performers are unhappy. The WWE wants to be known as the top company, and the idea that the performers could make more money elsewhere hurts that image.
“WWE and Vince McMahon right now are going very hard on trying to avoid the idea that people want to leave, or the concept being in the business that people can get more money leaving or benefit from leaving, particularly after people like Juice Robinson, Jericho, and Cody all clearly did.”
It CAN be done. We CAN make it happen. 2019 CAN be the year for a Tag Team Revival... pic.twitter.com/NDrrPic7dB— Scott Dawson (@ScottDawsonWWE) January 2, 2019
He even mentioned how bad it would make the WWE look if a performer were to leave and blow up. After all, it already happened with Cody, who was treated as a lower mid-card performer during most of his time in WWE.
“The worst is one of these guys leaves and becomes an Okada, because then you look like TNA,” Meltzer said.
Only time will tell how the WWE is able to handle the rising of All Elite Wrestling and whether a slew of performers ends up moving to the new company.