Comedian, Ronald Funches, joined Sean Waltman's X-Pac 12360 to discuss his experience with Lucha Underground and turning down a project with them due to how their contracts were structured.
Lucha Underground has long been in the news over locking down wrestlers, despite not taping new seasons for the promotion. Multiple wrestlers including Joey Ryan, Ivelisse, El Hijo del Fantasma, and others have taken (or threatened to take) legal action against the promotion's parent company (El Rey Network) and production company (Baba-G Productions) to get out of their contracts.
Waltman gave his thoughts about the situation with Lucha Underground and how it's difficult for the wrestlers to turn down offers, especially if they are early in their careers.
"When you're in a situation where you don't really have leverage, you either sign the boiler plate f---ing contract or you don't," Waltman said. "It's just like when I first went to WWE in 1993 and they sent me that contract, I was either signing it or I wasn't. I can understand why [the talent] do that.
"Even if [Lucha Underground] was trying to [come back], you're creating such bad will with anyone. You just don't want that poison in the water supply of the talent that's already there, or that you're forcing to stay there.
"These contracts and these no-compete clauses, if they're challenged in court I am pretty sure for the most part the talent can win that, but that means you gotta fight it, that mean you gotta have money for a lawyer. Also, when a potential employer sees that it's too much of a pain in the ass to f--- with [the Lucha Underground contract] and don't even want to mess with those [wrestlers] because they're tangled up in that. It's such a shame."
Waltman's guest, Ron Funches, had his own experience with Lucha Underground when they wanted him to come in for a one-off appearance. Funches recalled his manager saying not to sign due to all the language about exclusivity.
"I have my own personal thing with that because it made me really happy that I have my manager," Funches said. "Because I was actually gonna do a sketch with Lucha Underground and I guess Johnny Mundo, but my manager read their contract and it had all this language about exclusivity.
"They would own the right to the character 'Ron Funches' and all this other stuff and I am like, 'I am coming in for a five minute sketch, you're gonna pay me like $400.' I really still wanted to do it because you know how much I love wrestling, my manager was like, 'There's no way, I can let you sign this contract in case they ever actually try to go for this exclusivity.'
"And now seeing they're actually doing it with the wrestlers that they signed, I am very lucky, it made me feel like [the wrestlers] should have more representation and things of that nature because they have horrible contracts. And it sucks, they're legal, they're not moral but they are legal. So hopefully they can get out of them."
You can listen to the full interview in the video above or on iTunes.