Mike Bailey: I Agreed To Join NXT, They Stopped My Hiring Process Due To New Guidelines

"Speedball" Mike Bailey reflects on initially joining NXT, but the hiring process being stopped.

In October 2021, "Speedball" Mike Bailey officially signed with TNA Wrestling, starting with the promotion full-time in January 2022. Bailey had been banned from working in the US for five years after an arrest where he tried to enter the US to work without a visa.

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Speaking to Chris Jericho on Talk Is Jericho, Bailey reflected on returning to work in the US full-time and agreeing to join NXT.

"January 2022 is when I debuted with TNA, with IMPACT then. But it was a long road, even then. When my ban came up, the day I tweeted a little highlight video that made, a little announcement that my ban was ended, and then that got a lot of attention, and that got me talking to everyone. That got me signed with NXT for a couple months until they let me go without actually hiring me. After that video came out, I had already been talking with TNA, talked to some people from AEW, talked to NXT, got a bunch of offers and ended up taking the NXT one. Very excited to be there, they do the background check, they go the visa paperwork. That takes a couple months. Just a couple days after I submit the visa paperwork, for this one, you have to go and do a whole career retrospective and all the articles with all your accolades, you have to gather that and send it in. So I worked on that for several weeks, sent it all. Then I see they’re starting to release a lot of people in NXT. They’re letting go of people, and the person that had hired me, there was rumors that they had gotten released, so I texted them, like, ‘Hey, is everything okay? Are we good?’ They’re like, ‘Oh yeah, no problem. Contract’s in the mail, we’re sending it tomorrow.’ Then, the next day, I got an email saying, ‘Hey, due to new hiring guidelines, we’re gonna have to stop your hiring process," said Bailey.

Bailey confirmed it was Canyon Ceman who he was talking to during the process.

"I was not like, ‘Whatever.’ I was freaking out. I was pretty panicked. This is a big deal for someone like me, I had made some very serious steps to plan my move to Orlando, uproot my whole life, and then here we are again. So it’s like, ‘Well, let’s see what we can do to fix this.’ So I got back in touch with everyone that I had spoken to, and I ended up signing with TNA, with IMPACT. [WWE] made the decision not even two months ago. You haven’t even brought me in yet. The only thing I wished is that they had at least gave me the visa and flew me down so I would at least have something to show for it, but not even, just me sitting at home," he said.

Ceman and WWE parted ways in July 2021.

Elsewhere during the interview, Bailey discussed his future with TNA. You can find his full comments by clicking here.

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