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WWE Changes Contracts After High Profile Departures, WWE Reportedly Signs Top Indie Star

– We’ve noted how top indie star Uhaa Nation has been close to signing with WWE. Word now is that the two sides have finally agreed to a deal.

– After the recent situation with Alberto Del Rio and CM Punk, WWE has changed all performer contracts. The contract now say that if a talent is fired for disciplinary reasons, they forfeit all merchandise rights and can’t work in pro wrestling or MMA for one year.

Source: Wrestling Observer Newsletter

  • Guest

    UFC fighters are independent contractors too. Its nothing surprising they did this. Never saw a WWE contract but if its anything like a UFC contract then I feel bad for the wrestlers. I know a lot of lawyers have labeled the ufc/fighter contract one of the worst they’ve ever seen.

  • DevastationCorporation2015

    No, they are independent contractors, which is why WWE isn’t legally obligated to provide them with things that they seriously need, considering their job, such as health insurance. If pro wrestlers, or at least WWE wrestlers, formed their own union, it would be a nightmare for Vince McMahon, because then he’d actually have to treat them like employees, with workers’ rights, instead of, in Steve Austin’s own words, cogs in a machine, that wear out and then you throw them away.

    The reason WWE can get away with this “no compete clause” crap in their contracts, is only due to the fact that most wrestlers who agree to work with them are either so excited or so desperate to be “in the big time”, that they’ll readily agree to anything. It’s no different from the “name rights” garbage that many former ECW wrestlers suffered. It all depends on how legally smart you are, and how intelligent you are in actually going over the contract they write up for you, because you can absolutely make changes to it yourself, have your own lawyer go over it, etc. That’s the business smart thing to do, but many do not, for previously stated reasons. Guys like Tommy Dreamer and Rob Van Dam, they were smart enough to work their contracts so that they legally retained the rights to the ring name and likenesses they had previously created and owned for years before ever working for WWE. But poor schmucks like the Dudley Boys, Spike Dudley, Justin Credible, Balls Mahoney, Tony Mamaluke, etc., once they were no longer working for WWE, they were no longer ever able to use their own ring names, that they had long before working for WWE, in any other promotion. Which is absurd. But, again, they were so eager or so desperate, either way, to work for WWE, to make that “big money”, etc., that they signed something they didn’t fully go over, and now reap the repercussions of it. Meanwhile, RVD, Dreamer, Sabu, Sandman, Raven, etc., those guys were obviously smart enough to set up their contracts the right way. Same with CM Punk, otherwise, WWE would right now own that “CM Punk” name, and he could never use it again, even though he created it 15+ years ago.

    There are odd cases like Rhino and Tazz, where they were lucky enough to be brought into WWE with a slight (different letter) name change, like Taz and Rhyno, so that once they no longer worked for WWE, they could still use the originall (correct) spelling of their ring names. It’s a very odd, kind of fucked up phenomenon all around, these WWE contracts. But like I said, many are willing to “make a deal with the devil”, in a manner of speaking, signing certain rights away which, legally, WWE cannot actually own, just so that they can work for WWE for some non-guaranteed amount of time, hoping they will have a good run and things will all work out. It would be nice if the people who run WWE were more worker-oriented, and actually cared about their wrestling talent, IE the people who make them money in the first place. But it’s fairly obvious, and has been from accounts of wrestlers going all the way back to when Vince Jr. took over the company, that they don’t. By all accounts, Vince Sr. was a fairly honest businessman and boss, and in general, while sometimes a tight-wad, took pretty good care of his wrestlers. The apple seems to have fallen very far from the tree, where Jr. is concerned. And you’d think, being a wrestler himself, that HHH, now the new “boss” (almost), would be more sympathetic and side with his fellow wrestlers. But that also does not seem to be the case.

  • oppa

    More proof that they are not independent contractors. If they were, there would be no reason why you would try to prevent them from earning a living for a year. Also proves that MMA is competition for WWE. I would also challenge how they could just amend your signed contract whenever they want, but if you try to alter it in your favor, you’d be out of a job. No wonder people like HHH want to “protect” the business. The more you find out about how corrupt it is, the less you want to support it.

  • Keith Learmonth

    Does make sense from a business standpoint, though. Punk proved that he could generate even bigger media buzz about him by having a controversial exit… If he’d retired openly, on screen, he probably wouldn’t have even gotten the UFC offer.

    They only brought him in because he’s getting massive attention on social media. If he’d had to wait another 4 months before he could sign, people would have started giving up on him.

    WWE doesn’t want people using him as an example, getting themselves fired just to springboard to another job somewhere else.

  • ddfindl

    Seriously. Funny that they added MMA to the non-compete… wtf

  • Kristopher Robinson

    That’s so lame lol.