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09-09-2011, 01:41 PM #1
Chris Jericho Returning to WWE Soon?
The status of wrestler Chris Jericho, who parted ways with WWE last year, citing burnout and a wish to pursue outside interests. This was similar to the sabbatical he took in 2005, before eventually returning to the company in late 2007.
Talking about Jericho's return, Meltzer explains:
According to someone very close to the situation (not Jericho, who isnít going to tell anyone what heís going to do until he does it, thatís just how itís going to be), Jericho is said to be strongly considering coming back on a limited basis. What he would be looking for, it is said is a part-time contract that would allow him to do the other outside projects he want to do.
Jericho has long maintained in interviews since leaving that he will likely return to the company at some point, noting, "I will always be a WWE guy," but has refrained from giving a specific time frame. Indeed, he recently told interviewer, Eric Cohen of About.com:
I donít know when Iím coming back. Iíve always said that when the time was right I would know when I was ready to come back better than ever. So Iím not sure. It could be tomorrow. It could be a year from now. There has always been a lot of speculation from the moment I have left as to when I would be coming back.
It seems that Iím always involved with things and I am always the last one to know. As far as the vignettes that are going on, I donít think things are exactly the way people think they are. And if they are, Iím usually the last person to know. If someone out there knows please tell me.
In the meantime, he has toured with his rock band Fozzy and, more memorably, participated on ABC's hit show Dancing with the Stars (he fared well in the contest and lasted a decent length of time, but didn't ultimately didn't win). He also released his second autobiography, "Undisputed," and hosted the VH1's "Golden Gods" award show.
WWE would likely welcome back Jericho, especially with their worryingly thin roster right now. With Edge retired due to neck injuries, The Undertaker essentially retired (although he'll likely be back for the odd match or two) and Rey Mysterio's recent injuries, their main event scene is in dire straits right now and the company is desperate (heck, they've even started to push Mark Henry again).
Of course, Jericho's request for a part-time schedule could potentially cause problems, with CEO Vince McMahon often reluctant to give out light schedules to anyone but the absolute top guys, likely fearing if he relaxes on the issue, he will be setting a bad example and have everyone asking for more time off. Additionally, WWE has long had problems with contracted talent pursuing options outside the company.
Indeed, Meltzer also noted in this week's newsletter that, prior to Jericho leaving in September last year, there were issues between McMahon and Jericho over his decision to host the ABC game show, "Downfall." Ultimately, the show was cancelled after a few weeks, but the damage may have been done as Jericho left shortly after.
With this in mind, it's probable that if he were to negotiate a return, Jericho's outside projects would ruffle some feathers with the often-controlling WWE management. Notably, Ric Flair and Steve Austin have parted ways with the company in the past over management's insistence of handling their careers outside of WWE. It's also been alleged that divas Mickie James and Maria Kanellis were let go after showing interest in projects beyond wrestling and deeply irking management, who felt the two were being disloyal.
However, as noted, with the company as short on big stars as it is, WWE management may be forced to acquiesce to Jericho's demands and give him full control of his entertainment career away of wrestling. They really don't have many options anymore.