Austin Aries Shows Up at Ring of Honor Show + Did Impact Know?

Impact World Champion Austin Aries appeared at last night’s Ring of Honor 16th Anniversary show. After Kenny King won his match against Silas Young to retain the ROH Television Championship, Aries came out holding a bunch of title belts, including the Impact World Championship, and said that he’s won every ROH title but the TV title, and since he collects belts, he was going to collect that belt. So Aries, the top title holder in Impact, will be competing for ROH’s midcard title soon. The Impact title was not mentioned on air by the ROH commentators.

Aries is a former two time ROH World Champion, winning the title in 2004 and 2009. He last appeared in ROH briefly in 2015.

Aries is not signed to a contract with Impact, so he is free to wrestle wherever he wants.

Aries did make Impact aware that he was going to make the appearance at ROH and Impact was supportive of it, feeling that it would bring them positive awareness, according to PWInsider. Current Impact management wants to have more of an open door policy, since they also feel that it’ll allow them to work with more wrestlers who wouldn’t have to be locked down to exclusive contracts with them.

Impact and ROH are not working directly together as of now, PWInsider says. They did have a working relationship before Anthem bought Impact last year. Things also really soured when Impact sent a cease and desist to ROH last year when they heard that the Hardys would be showing up at an ROH PPV, which lead to DirecTV pulling the PPV. Impact is hoping that this could be a first step towards a potential relationship in the future.