Impact Wrestling Knockouts Champion Mickie James was a recent guest on The Ariel Helwani Show where she discussed many topics, including the influx of releases coming out of the WWE as of late. When Helwani asked James to elaborate on the topic, she called the recent releases “head-scratching”.
“It is head-scratching, but then they’ve had an immense amount of hirings, I think, through the years,” James stated. “So the company had expanded when it’s gone on the road because it had like almost like a whole division of just NXT and WWE and then obviously the pandemic has I think crushed everyone especially live events and touring, and all of those things and I don’t know, it’s just a whole… it sucks.
“It sucks for my friends, it sucks for my friends not to have a place to work and now that there’s, you know, seems to be competition like now they have somewhere to go, but then Ring Of Honor is kind of shutdown behind it. So it’s just like all of these things, but I don’t know. I feel like the business is ever-evolving, and it goes through its highs and lows; it goes through those things, and it kind of sucks. It sucks to be on one side of it, and I just that everybody uses it as repositioning and like to just kind of grow and do something different or like added to whatever that is because it’s crazy you know, it’s crazy out there.”
Mickie James also revealed that AEW never reached out to her directly following her WWE release, but because of her prior commitments in various other projects it would’ve been too much to take had she been offered a role on the roster.
“I never was technically reached out to by AEW, but I think they all knew that I was going to work with my husband at NWA and I really wanted to do this women’s show, like that was very important to me,” James stated. “I think there are obviously matches and girls I wanted to work with, and I certainly would have entertained it or talked about it, but I think my history with Impact too and I felt like even with Empowerr I was able to kind of bridge those gaps and make relationships happen and open up those conversations and doors.
“I didn’t know if I wanted to sign anything long-term like locked in for a multi-year or anything like that either. I think because I’ve been doing it for so long and I just don’t know, I didn’t know what I wanted to do. I just know I wanted to do the girl’s show and then think about wrestling after that. It’s why I only wrestle for Impact, NWA, and now WWE, that’s it.
“Because I’m like I really have so many things I’m working on now between our supplement company and mommy as much as I can full-time all the time when I am home and my horses and stuff, and I just want to be able to focus that time on him and those things and those little projects and then just wrestle, you know for the championship and stuff like that.”
On the subject of the forbidden door now being opened, Mickie James said she’s pleased to be able to call herself an independent contractor and that the conversation can be had as to whether or not this will be on-off occasions.
“I think, well, I don’t know. I mean, you could never say. I think the possibility of more one-offs are definitely, that conversation can probably happen. I think back to when business was more like territories, like that would happen all the time,” James stated. “They would start to lull out over here, and then they’d go over there and have like a year or two years in that territory and then kind of float around, so I feel like it does give a lot of power back to the performer.
“And um, you know technically we are independent contractors, and that should be a conversation, but obviously, as a corporation when you’re employing someone that’s you know, it’s odd how it’s always been the case and so at least for me, I’m grateful I can say that I’m an independent contractor and then I do have that and that I have such an amazing relationship with every company that I have worked with that we get to do very cool things together. So that’s fun, and it’s cool to be in that position, for me.”
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit The Ariel Helwani show with a h/t to WrestlingINC for the transcription.
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