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Thread: Is Austin Aries done as a top-tier wrestler?

  1. #1
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    Is Austin Aries done as a top-tier wrestler?

    Austin Aries left the WWE a few months back, and his no-compete clause is probably about to run out. That said, he's obviously been with and left what was TNA before now, and at nearly forty years of age I'm not sure he's going to jump right back in there and main event. Besides, it's not like GFW is going to be the most appealing prospect for anybody, and if he's saved any money you might just want to avoid that hassle anyway. If he is as difficult to work with as reports suggest they might not be willing to fork out their limited cash on him, either.

    So, does that mean that Aries is done at the top level? And if so what does that mean for his career overall?

    I've always been a fan of his. But I think you've got his RoH work, and a very strong first couple of years in TNA that you can make a case for. I never had a problem with him being the one to finally defeat Bobby Roode, as in terms of the roster and popularity at the time he was one of the people who made the most sense. But I don't think they had a good handle on what to do with him as champion, and I certainly think that having had him win the big one, transitioning to Hardy so quickly made very little sense. In fact, with a few bumps in the road, I'd say the trajectory has generally been downwards from that moment. Which I guess for me means that for all of his talent, five years of his peak haven't really delivered on the man's great potential.


    So what's next? Return to RoH? A stint in Japan? Or do you think he'll crop up in either WWE or GFW again?

  2. #2
    The Brain
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    I think he'll bounce around for a while before settling down somewhere for a notable run somewhere. Where is anyone's guess, honestly. I don't see him doing anything extended in Japan, but I could see him becoming notable in ROH or possibly someplace like EVOLVE. I think he's got a few classics left in him, but as you say at 40 years old it gets harder to say. Big fan though.

  3. #3
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    I don't think he has bad blood with WWE and I could see him returning in some capacity in the future. I'm sure he figured he's got a good few years left where he can make good money on the indys so might as well take advantage of it.

  4. #4
    The Brain
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    Did people think he was good on commentary? If so he could come back to that role over time.

  5. #5
    Remember me? Degenerate's Avatar
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    Seems like Aries is doing quite well for himself financially, based on this tweet: https://twitter.com/AustinAries/stat...02093738680322. Maybe that's what he's looking to do now as his prime years are winding down.

  6. #6
    The Brain
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    Well good for him! I'm a little surprised he can make that kind of scratch but awesome if so. Will have to check out some of whatever he gets up to.

  7. #7
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    I imagine that is, in part, because we're massively exaggerating what the WWE are paying the guys on NXT/205 Live. I would have thought that only the top guys on the main roster earn real superstar money.

  8. #8
    The Brain
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    Still, the fact that it's a steady paycheck has got to be worth something. That's harder to do when you have to hustle and negotiate for every booking.

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    That all depends on the person and their prior situations. I took a year off full-time employment to do my own thing freelancing, and while I worked harder to get a steady flow of work and made about 30% less money in the same timeframe compared to my previous full-time job, I was a lot happier to do that compared to the previous 5 years of working for someone else. There's often a lot less B.S. to deal with when you work on your own.

  10. #10
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    Plus, does he have to hustle that much for a paycheck? I imagine that there are some advantages to being a big fish in small pond. Aries isn't going to have a lot of competition at that level - not many people on the independent scene who'll be able to draw better than he will today, I'd have thought. I wouldn't be surprised if he didn't get pretty much whatever he asked for.

  11. #11
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    The down side to being out there on your own is that you really have to work to make your money. No guaranteed bookings or money without a contract.

    I think Aries knows that he can go make some money on the indies, probably get one more run and make that Pro Wrestling Tees money. Then he can probably come back to WWE in a couple of years as a commentator and earn a steady paycheque to not have to bump.

  12. #12
    The Brain
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    I'd definitely be down with Aries coming back as a commentator. I wish more wrestlers got to try their hand at that in the modern WWE.

    Happiness is definitely a consideration too, and with a guy like Aries yeah, he's probably happy to be back to being his own boss for a while. The only issue is that independent promoters can only pay so much. Even well known companies like PWG are known to pass on guys they feel are too expensive some times, so it can be a double edged sword to be valued on that level financially.

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