Some interesting interviews today, some of which really do speak out against a lot of unnamed sources who claim outlandish things.
Brandi Rhodes Clarifies Departure from GFW – Brandi Rhodes spoke to CBS Sports about her departure from GFW and her debut in ROH and was very candid about the reason for leaving GFW, clarifying statements that seemed to contract several dirt sheet reports, most notably the speculation that she signed some sort of contract that GFW would take X% of her earnings from outside booking. Here’s what Rhodes had to say;
Unfortunately, that story is kind of a mess. There are some valid statements that I’ve seen, but it’s really not as dramatic as people want it to be. Basically, Cody and I were very candid with what we were doing after WWE as far as contracts go. People are confused. I never signed the contract that people think I signed with Global Force stating that they got percentages. What I did sign was a tentative contract with Impact Wrestling when they were still Impact. That contract had a clause for me, because I was already working on some stuff in other areas of television. That clause basically said that if something else in television were to happen for me, they can’t be uncooperative. And if they were uncooperative, we would be able to part ways. And that is honestly what happened. So, I am filming something awesome in Atlanta, but I can’t say what it is.
Opinion: Sometimes two sides just can’t get past the hurdles. GFW has a right to worry about how their talent is being portrayed, and they have a right to be vocal about it, and that seems to be the case here.
Speculation on Dolph Ziggler – The Observer is claiming that Dolph Ziggler has only been absent from WWE t.v. due to creative having nothing for him. He’s in the same boat as Harper, Rowan and Tye Dillinger. However I’m told that in regards to Ziggler, some feel his time is in fact running out. He’s never broken through to the top of the card and when given the chance has not delivered.
Opinion: If Ziggler’s days are numbered, I doubt anyone would have much interest in him at 37, and a history of not getting over as a top guy.
Rey Mysterio Update – In a move that’ll be similar to Chisitan Cage back in 2005, it looks like Rey Mysterio is walking away from a lot of money from Lucha Underground when his deal is up this September. Apparently Mysterio is making more money in Lucha than he would in GFW or even WWE. It’s also being said by the Observer there is no real interest from Rey to return to the WWE. It’s shaping up that Rey Mysterio will indeed be looking to GFW for a long term deal, and hopes to expand the brand back to previous heights. Part of the change is seemingly directed towards Lucha Underground who is currently paying him an astronomical level of money. Observer claims he’s one of the highest paid in the world, a source told me “…top 15, easily. Like, WWE main event money”. For clarity, Most WWE talent and most GFW talent make around the same amount, however the top ten percent of WWE make huge amounts more than even upper mid card guys.
Opinion: I’ve been hearing the buzz for a while that L-U was in trouble financially, to the point that season four is only likely if massive cuts are made. The Netflix deal didn’t help out as much as they were hoping for.
Al Snow Speaks Out – Al Snow spoke out against fans who criticized and blame GFW constantly, citing a lack of spaces, his enjoyment working for the company and the fact that everyone always gave their all, saying;
His departure from GFW Impact Wrestling:
Yeah, I’m certain it was a budget thing. Jeff [Jarrett] brought his own group, his own guys that he brought with him and there are only so many spots financially and budget wise that you can afford to have as far as producers. And, have a necessity and need for to produce the segments. It was myself and 2 other guys and he had brought in his own group. Somebody had to go! That’s just how it works. I had a great run there. It lasted MUCH longer than I expected. I have no complaints whatsoever. I wish them nothing but the best. I hope they strive and succeed and be a real force in wrestling. Hopefully, someday, I can come back and do business again.
Being an agent in GFW / TNA for 7 years:
In life, especially in wrestling, it isn’t a matter of if it will end. It is a matter of when it will end. You go into it knowing that. You’re going to have a run, you’re going to finish up, and you’re going to leave the territory. That’s an inevitability. You can’t get around it. Things change and then you move on.
If the negativity from the Internet during TNA’s darker days was felt backstage:
Of course it was felt backstage. I’m not giving lip service. Even if I still worked for GFW, TNA, Impact… I’d still state what the facts are. The facts are that everybody knew there were issues or factors that would occur or come up. But, I’ve got to tell you, one of the things that impressed me so much is that everybody there, and I do mean everybody there, worked so hard on that show. From the in ring talent to the production team to the camera crew to the office staff… I mean, you’ve got to think. They put on a comparable product to the WWE with not even a third of the budget, not even a third of the roster, not even an eighth of the resources, not even an eighth of the office staff, not even an eighth of the production staff.
Fact: Al Snow is a constant professional.
Quick Hits – RVD believes Johnny Gargano is using some of RVD’s moves. Trevor Lee called 205 Live garbage on the GFW Conference call. Low Ki seemingly agreed, citing the X-Division’s historical relevance on the industry. The Hardy’s were held off of shows this week due to WWE doing a brief tour in Canada, which Jeff Hardy is not allowed to enter without a lot of legal gymnastics. Matt was going to appear alone against the Revival but then the injury to Scott Dawson occurred and the segment was scrapped.