Jim Ross shares a story about WWE not wanting their talent to hit to free agent market.
This year, the likes of Tye Dillinger, Hideo Itami and Luke Harper have requested their respective releases from WWE. Itami and Dillinger were granted their releases and it was recently reported by Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer that Harper was denied his release and WWE added on six months to his contract which stems from the time he missed due to injury. Former 4-time RAW Women's Champion Sasha Banks is reportedly at a "stalemate" with the sports-entertainment company as well after wanting to leave after WrestleMania 35.
All Elite Wrestling commentator and Senior Advisor Jim Ross spoke about WWE not wanting their talents to hit the free agent market when he joined Busted Open Radio. Ross shared a recent example of the previous sentence and said that an undercard talent who would remain unnamed, was paid $500,000 by WWE to prevent him from becoming a free agent and "hitting the streets" as Ross put it.
“That’s a good point. I’m sure there is concern there." Ross said when speaking about Tony Khan being able to financially compete with Vince McMahon. "I heard the other day -- someone told me in a meeting because I was asking about some talent -- I’m not officially in that department but you know, I’m the senior advisor, so I want to advise.” Ross laughed. “I wanna stick my nose where it doesn’t belong but at least you’re getting my opinion. I asked about one guy in WWE, who’s an undercard guy -- been there a while, solid hand, could help the younger guys learn because he’s at that age now, early 30s, and they say, ‘Well he’s not available. He just signed for half-a-million dollars’. He’s not even on television. 500k Bubba [Bully Ray], just to keep him off the streets so to speak. So yeah, I would think there’s a reactionary phase of this deal that, ‘Hey, these guys got some cash and they’re willing to pay people’.”
If the quote in this article is used, please credit Busted Open Radio with an H/T to Fightful for the transcription.