The Wrestling Inc. Daily welcomed back former WWE referee Jimmy Korderas to discuss, amongst other things, referee contracts in WWE. While Korderas did not know the full details of WWE’s employee and independent contractor contracts, he believed that they should be friendly enough for some type of out-clause.
“I wish I could explain the employee’s side better,” Korderas admitted. “I was always an independent contractor, so I was never privy to how employee contracts worked out, but that being said, I assume that all contracts, regardless, have an out for both sides. I guess, usually, it generally benefits the company that’s hiring you.
“They try to make it as as friendly to them as possible, but with every contract, I’m sure there’s an out, and I’m sure that’s no different with this one here. Whether there’s a three-month clause, like they do in the independent contractor one or the 90-day thing, I’m not sure, but I’m sure there is an out there for both sides.”
Korderas did reveal that alongside wrestlers, referees were also subjected to a 90-day no-compete clause. Then they are wished the best in their future endeavors.
“It was similar. It was a 90-day deal, same thing,” Korderas revealed. “We are going to release you from your contract, but we will pay you for 90 days and during that 90 days, you will not be working for any other company,’ and after that once you’re free and clear, we wish you well on your future endeavors.”
That questions was raised since WWE released long-time referee Mike Chioda, and Chioda made his AEW debut months later on the Aug. 12 episode of Dynamite. Korderas gave his thoughts on Chioda’s AEW debut that had it’s ups and it’s downs for Korderas.
“I think it was kind of cool,” Korderas stated. “Mike is a friend, so obviously, I’m happy for him from a friend standpoint and also from a work standpoint because if anybody’s been paying attention to some of my ranting lately, I’ve had an issue with officiating at AEW. I’m not calling out the refs specifically. I just don’t like the way they’ve been utilized. I hate to put it this way, but it’s just a lazy way of using your referees. Lazy ways of distracting them and not utilizing them properly, and at times, sometimes, your referees are getting noticed a little too much when they shouldn’t be.
“Just little stuff like that and Mike is one of the best referees you’re going to find out there, and hopefully, somebody will listen to his advice because he’s got a wealth of knowledge on how to properly distract referees without making him look silly, but in his debut episode, I hate to go here, in the main event with Chris Jericho and Orange Cassidy, he was distracted by fighting way off on the stage, which is typical AEW.
“Why would the referee care about what’s going on way out there that has nothing to do with in the ring? Oh, look, there’s going to be a fight over there. You just watch the fight so we can have the distraction behind your back and then you can turn around. See, its just hurts to see. That’s just a personal thing that drives me nuts.”
As Korderas mentioned, he has posted videos on Twitter to give his critique on the officiating at AEW. He has admitted that it has gotten better, but he noted on the podcast that his critiques are more towards the booking rather than individual referees.
“Well, you do what they ask you to do, and that’s part of the job as well,” Korderas noted. “You can voice an opinion, and don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t very boisterous when I was at WWE, but I would politely say, ‘hey, would it be possible to do something like this instead? That way it doesn’t look as as silly or it doesn’t make me look as incompetent or whatever,’ and you know what, guys were always either, ‘yeah, that sounds good or no, let’s just keep it like this because this is what they want,’ but you just do what they ask you to do.
“And that’s why when I go on these rants about the refereeing in AEW, I don’t put all the onus on the referees. To me, it’s the guys putting the match together because at the end of the day, as a referee, you’re doing what they want you to do.”
You can following Jimmy on Twitter @JimmyKorderas. Jimmy’s full interview aired as part of a recent episode of our podcast, The Wrestling Inc. Daily. Subscribe to get the latest episodes as soon as it’s released Monday – Friday afternoon by clicking here.