Indie News

Speculation on a Top Indie Wrestler Possibly Signing with WWE Soon


There continues to be a lot of speculation on current EVOLVE Champion Matt Riddle signing with WWE.

WWN Live has confirmed that Riddle will work all four EVOLVE events in August, beginning with a title defense against Shane Strickland on August 4th at EVOLVE 108 in Philadelphia. It was noted that Riddle will be added to additional EVOLVE dates if he is still the champion after August but he is currently scheduled to miss the first weekend of September (EVOLVE 112 in Joppa & EVOLVE 113 in Queens) due to “previously approved personal obligations,” according to WWN.

The PCW Ultra promotion in California noted that Riddle has been pulled from Friday’s show in Los Angeles due to “unforeseen circumstances” as seen in the tweet below. PCW noted in another tweet that Riddle’s booking was canceled on short notice. Riddle, who is booked for other indie dates in the Northeast this weekend, has also been pulled from several upcoming events: Over The Top Wrestling on August 18th and 19th in Ireland, during WWE’s SummerSlam weekend, plus Pro Wrestling Guerrilla’s big 2018 Battle of Los Angeles in mid-September.

WWE has had interest in Riddle for a few years now and they were the ones responsible for Riddle going to work for EVOLVE following a WWE tryout. Riddle, who has a MMA record of 8 wins & 3 losses & 2 NC, was released by UFC a few years ago after failing two drug tests in one year for marijuana. Triple H later spoke about Riddle during a NXT media call and talked about talents getting second chances but Riddle having to prove himself, noting that Riddle had a bright future in the wrestling business.

WWE officials recently reconsidered their position on signing Riddle, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter. New Japan Pro Wrestling had renewed interest in bringing Riddle in, but it’s believed that Riddle will be heading to WWE NXT. There were recent rumors on Riddle being locked into a WWE deal but PWInsider says those rumors are premature and they couldn’t even confirm his pre-signing medical tests. Due to the canceled bookings in Ireland on August 18th and August 19th, speculation is that Riddle’s signing could be revealed during SummerSlam weekend with a ringside appearance at NXT “Takeover: Brooklyn IV” but that has not been confirmed. Riddle could sign with NXT and still work the August EVOLVE shows as WWE does have the working relationship with WWN. Riddle is still scheduled to work another indie event during SummerSlam weekend in New York City – a match against PCO on August 17th at Joey Janela’s Lost In New York event hosted by GCW.

Below are the recent statements from WWN, PWG, PCW and OTT:

EVOLVE Champion Matt Riddle has been the subject of rumors. Riddle is confirmed for all four August EVOLVE events, where he will defend the championship at EVOLVE 108 against Shane Strickland in a Hardcore Rules Match on August 4th in Philadelphia. If Riddle is successful, he will defend vs. Darby Allin at EVOLVE 110 on August 11th in Chicago. Riddle is set for non-title action vs. Austin Theory at EVOLVE 109 in Melrose, MA and JD Drake at EVOLVE 111 in Livonia, MI. If Riddle is still EVOLVE Champion after August, he will be added to additional dates. Riddle is currently scheduled to miss the September weekend due to previously approved personal obligations.

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