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flyonthewall2983

Is the empire crumbling before our eyes?

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The NXT X stuff was stupid to begin with because when WWE does European, Japanese, Mexico, Central/South America shows, those audiences want to see WWE shows, not shitty WWE versions of their local style, nor shitty local style of WWE shows. 

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On a certain level, WWE's hubris is understandable given how much success they've had in Mexico despite lucha libre being so deeply ingrained in the culture. The first-ever WWE event in Mexico in April of 2004 set a new live gate record for the country, and once they got on TV there, they instantly made CMLL and AAA look minor league.

WWE/Stardom is a story in itself. Talks fell through because WWE couldn't answer basic questions about what kind of plans they had for the company after purchase. Instead, they tried to seal the deal by offering to induct Rossy Ogawa into the WWE Hall of Fame.

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The Stardom situation felt a lot like Cornette's story about the Midnight Express meeting with the WWE and they wanted to talk action figures instead of concrete booking ideas.

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@WingedEagle Better question is who is left that's worth poaching? Everybody left in WWE has had their marketability ruined by terrible booking or is incredibly stale from over exposure. 

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I found an article that said Owens signed a 5-year extension in 2018, but he's definitely a guy I could see jumping to AEW if there's an opportunity to do so. Like Bryan, Punk, and Moxley, he strikes me as a guy who has saved a considerable amount of his money, enough that simply paying him more would be less enticing than what AEW would offer - specifically a lighter schedule (more time at home), artistic freedom, and arguably greater opportunities to market himself via merchandising, plus a contract that would still likely make him a top earner in AEW. 

With Owens, you almost have to think Sami Zayn would follow too.

Without thinking too hard about it, those two jump out at me as the only real talent worth poaching as they would definitely fit in nicely, can still go at a high level, and are probably itching for more artistic freedom and leeway - especially Kevin Owens, who definitely still has some hardcore matches left in him and would probably sell quite a few shirts on ProWrestling Tees.

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So Zayne and Owens? After the better part of a decade on WWE TV doing all sorts of stupid shit those two guys need to go away for awhile. Its nothing against them as talent, theyve done everything they could with the roles and oportunities given to them. I just don't see any value after they've been on an unwatchable program for the better part of a decade.

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I think WWE would make a strong move to keep Owens. Unlike a lot of Hunter's indie signings and NXT callups, Vince has always seemed to like Owens. He has always been pushed and featured prominently. Vince took shoot headbutts at a million years of age to get Owens over. He also got numerous visual victories over Roman in their feud this year, which indicates that they want to protect him. 

With Sami, I don't think WWE tries that hard. He is certainly stale and overexposed, but he has the advantage where he can just put on his mask again and instantly change his look. El Generico has never worked for WWE after all.

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There really isn't a more damning indictment of WWE than Ruby's post show presser where she s clearly enjoying being in a place where everyone around her is happy to be there.

It's been pointed out how AEW's been able to attract all these free agents not by going the WCW route of outspending Vince, but by being a not insane place to work where everyone's not walking on eggshells 24/7. 

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AEW wouldn't want Sami Zayn (great heel tbh) but holy shit they would DIE for El Generico. Wonder if KO knows his whereabouts.

I do see them trying to go for a "smaller" name, like Liv Morgan. Not every signing has to be HUGE, but she would probably do wonders in a different setting. Look at Tay Conti - she's improved more than anyone expected her to in just a short time. Imagine Liv reuniting with Ruby in a different environment?

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Apart from Owens and Sami...

I think they'd take Cesaro in a heartbeat. Keith Lee if he became available. Finn Balor would probably fit with all the Elite/Bullet Club folks, as would AJ Styles.

Guys like Tozawa, Cedric, Gulak, Mustafa Ali, Ricochet, and several from NXT would probably find a place on the lower card as well. But those would more likely come from releases than poaching.

 

I agree with @KawadaSmile that Liv Morgan could certainly find new life in the women's division, as could Mia Yim. As for a big name steal, I think Asuka/Kana would be a huge get for them.

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I get the vibe that Asuka is getting to the "fuck it, I don't care anymore" stage of her WWE career. I can easily see her being the next "we forgot when her contract expired and now she's on Dynamite" contestant. 

 

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They'll probably keep Kairi on that neverending "we're adding time on your deal because you  were injured" contract. IIRC she never officially left the company, she just moved into an "ambassador" type role so they could keep her quiet about getting concussed (then slapped around) on their TV.

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Charlotte Flair is the big name that leaps out at me. Especially if AEW bring in Ric Flair too. 

I'm sad that Samoa Joe went back to WWE after getting released. He would have been great in AEW, even if in a non-wrestling role.

It'd be cool if they could get & reunite Chad Gable & Jason Jordan. I more think of non-top guys that would help flesh out their roster. The top of the card is going to be busy already. But getting people like Tyler Bate or Pete Dunne could do a lot for the undercard & filling up TV time. 

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1 hour ago, Alucard said:

Ric said a few days ago on Renee's podcast that Charlotte would never leave and that she's the happiest she's ever been.

We’ll see if that remains true if they keep booking her with Nia Jax. 

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True that.

On the subject of who else they could poach, John Morrison's been shit on since the day he went back, but he was a star everywhere else he went.

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I would rather they get Ricochet than Morrison. Morrison had change the channel heat for me during his Lucha Underground days. Only time I really liked him was when he was in MNM.

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Sting used the words Mucho Respect on live national TV. Can you ever imagine HHH being a cool enough dad to say that on live TV. No, he'd be incorrectly using based and lit 

 

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