Various: Grizzled Young Veterans Not Signed to Contracts with TNA, HENARE NJPW Contract Update, Indies

Update on The Grizzled Young Veterans Contract Status with TNA

As noted before, The Grizzled Young Veterans (James Drake & Zack Gibson) departed from WWE this past October and made their official debut for TNA Wrestling this past January.

Fightful Select reported that The Grizzled Young Veterans recently informed them that despite their current work for TNA, they are not actually under a contract with the company.

It was reported that the Grizzled Young Veterans are completely independent and are not signed to any company at the moment but they did not rule out on signing with someone in the future, whether it be TNA, AEW, or even a return to WWE if the situation made sense.

HENARE NJPW Contract Status Update & Interest from Other Companies

Monthly Puroresu held a recent interview with HENARE. One of the topics discussed included HENARE providing an update on the status on his current contract with New Japan Pro Wrestling.

“Well, to be honest, the whole pandemic era sort of put a cap on the amount of money that the people could make here. It’s the credit to New Japan, the Japanese company and Japanese style. If people are giving you their lives, you don’t fire them. It’s not like other companies where if the profit margins are down, you just release some of the guys at the bottom. Japan’s not about that. They’re all about servitude. So that’s one thing that I’m grateful for them. But in saying that, I’ve been outworking everybody, every single person, Japanese, all gaijin, I’ve been there, I’ve been hustling. I moved my whole life to Japan. [New Japan] is struggling with money, I’ll help you guys out. You don’t have to fly me every few weeks back to New Zealand. So I did that for them. Now it’s just like, ‘Am I being appreciated? Am I being given the opportunities that I deserve or that I’ve fought for?’ I’m not one to say like, ‘Please, sir, can I have another?’ Sort of thing. I’m a go-getter. But when you see guys like Tsuji coming in, he was technically below me, but then it gets thrown right into the match with SANADA. He lost, but he still got given that opportunity and not many people get that opportunity. I get it, he’s a Japanese guy. He’s the guy you wanna push, you need a evil gaijin and I’m happy to be that guy for you.”

HENARE also gave his thoughts about the interest he has received from other companies for the future of his wrestling career and also receiving an offer from Hollywood for a potential acting career.

“But contract-wise, I have had interest from quite a few other companies. At the same time yesterday, I got a call for a movie, a Hollywood movie that’s being shot in New Zealand. I had a call from the producers yesterday. So I’m like, ‘Wow, there’s so many different options.’ But I’ve done so much work here, I’ve hustled for so long, I’ve grinded for so long that I just want to see the end of that, the end of that path before exploring other options. But at the same time, if I go to other places with more global outreach, that Maori kid in Northland that’s struggling, that has nothing, they might just turn on his Netflix and see another Maori kid, you know? Like, ‘Hey, that guy looks like me.”

HENARE also gave his thoughts about his current goals for the future of his wrestling career.

“For me, the selfish thing would be to stay here. My whole why for starting this journey was that I could inspire a lot of Maori and Pacific kids. I could inspire a lot of people back home. I’ll be the first male New Zealander signed to a major company apart from Jay White, but Jay does not care one bit about New Zealand. But that’s just different. All power to that guy. He’s accomplished so much. But if you go back to New Zealand, you and I go back to New Zealand right now. We walk down the biggest mall and you ask people at the mall, ‘Do you know Jay White or do you know HENARE?’ Most people that you talk to would know me before they know Jay White in New Zealand. That’s not a knock on Jay, man. I respect the s***t of that guy. He’s still my senpai. I wrestled him even before he was a star here.”

Misc. Wrestling News & Notes

World Xtreme Wrestling recently announced that they will be shutting down this April due to WXW owner Afa Anoai current dealing with serious heart-related health issues. It was announced that they will be holding their final event called The Grand Finale on April 13th in Minneola, Florida.

WrestleCon recently announced that Steve Blackman and Ultimo Dragon will be making an appearance for the company at their WrestleCon 2024 on April 4-7, 2024 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Prestige Wrestling recently announced that Kylie Rae will be making her official debut for the company at their Roseland 8 event on April 14th in Portland, Oregon.

New Japan Pro Wrestling talent Kosei Fujita recently announced on Twitter that he will be undergoing nose surgery to fix his chronic empyema and rhinitis health issues.

As noted before, former WCW wrestler and Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee Steve “Mongo” McMichael was hospitalized this past Thursday in Chicago, Illinois due to a MRSA infection. McMhicael’s family recently provided a health update on Twitter stating that McMhicael is currently feeling better and they they were hopeful that McMichael would be able to return to his home on Tuesday.

Game Changer Wrestling recently announced that they will be holding a new event called Breaking GCW on April 21st in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

GCW also announced one new match for the card of their So Much Fun event on March 10th in Atlantic City, New Jersey:

  • Maki Death Kill Club (Maki Itoh, Matt Tremont, & Nick Gage) vs. Thrussy (Allie Katch, Dark Sheik, & EFFY)

TNA Wrestling announced three new matches for the card of their Impact! Bayou Blast tapings on February 24th in New Orleans, Louisiana:

  • Mustafa Ali vs. Kevin Knight
  • Tasha Steelz vs. Xia Brookside
  • Jake Something vs. Laredo Kid

Tokyo Joshi Pro Wrestling announced one new match for the card of their Grand Princess ’24 event on March 31st in Tokyo, Japan:

  • Minoru Suzuki vs. Maki Itoh

Deadlock Pro Wrestling recently announced one new match for the card of their DPW Live 5 event on March 10th in Berwyn, Illinois:

  • BK Westbrook vs. Mustafa Ali

Major League Wrestling recently announced one new match for the card of their Intimidation Games 2024 event on February 24th in New York City, New York:

  • MLW World Tag Team Championship – World Titan Federation (“Filthy” Tom Lawlor & Davey Boy Smith Jr.) vs. The Second Gear Crew (1 Called Manders & Matthew Justice) (c)